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The She-Shed -- FWG Flash Fiction for 7/17/2023

I missed the last two weeks--no good explanation why. This week, though, writing on such a rainy day, the prompt below really touched me. For what it's worth, here's "The She-Shed" from this prompt:


Nanna’s she-shed was our sanctuary, our place of respite from the mundane. A spot for stories, at first, then more and more arcane teachings as I grew from a toddler to a pig-tailed tomboy, to a too-cool high-schooler. By the time I went away to college, I thought I had outgrown Nanna’s spells and incantations, chalking their subtle effects up to coincidence and random chance.

Over time, summer visits became school breaks, then only holidays, then…

Bad choices led to an ugly breakup and a broken heart. Suddenly, I found myself bereft—of friends, a home, and worse…hope. That’s when Nanna called to me, or rather when I let myself hear her call for the first time in too long.

I told myself it would just be a weekend visit, but when her warmth wrapped around me, I found a comfort I had forgotten when my ego, and hormones, had run wild.

The she-shed was a bit overgrown—Nanna was ill and alone for so long—but when I pulled the vines down and polished the glass, memories came flooding through the shame like the sunlight shining through the panes. Her spirit, inhabiting every pot, blossom, and sprig of ivy in that space, whispered her love and forgiveness.

The family, those who took the time to attend, was shocked when I donned Nanna’s favorite dress—the one covered in bright, colorful flowers—for her funeral. But the fact it fit my body and my heart perfectly was all the affirmation I needed. That and the whisper of joy only I could hear when I opened the faded wooden door of our sanctuary to Nanna’s celebration of life. And none who were there raised their voice in protest when the lawyer unsealed the will.

Perhaps they heard the whispers as well.

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