Today’s Prompt: A man and a woman walk through the park together, holding hands. They pass an old woman sitting on a bench. The old woman is knitting a small, red sweater. The man begins to cry. Write this scene.
Young Woman’s Point of View
It’s a beautiful, pleasant Sunday morning. The park is filled with young couples enjoying the sunshine and groups of children hanging out on the swing sets. Birds are chirping merry songs from the treetops; their whistles bring a bright smile to Anna’s face as she strolls down the path holding the hand of her boyfriend, Luke.
They’ve been friends for a long time, but they’ve only recently begun dating. Anna is enjoying taking things slow between them, and she knows that Luke feels the same way. She prides herself in being able to read people. They’ve been there for each other since they were both little, and so she understands a lot about his life, the joys and the sorrows he had been through. Luke could hardly be blamed for trying to be careful in this new relationship: he’s had several bad relationships where he got too involved too soon, and neither of them want to ruin their friendship if they’re not compatible.
They pass by an old woman, sitting hunched over on one of the benches. She’s knitting something, her hands working away even as her eyes roam around the park. Her skill is effective enough that she apparently has no need to look at her handiwork all the time: she glances down occasionally, but it is a casual movement that implies she knows exactly what she’s doing.
Anna turns away from the woman and looks up at her boyfriend, only to see that Luke is crying. A pang of guilt hits her and she squeezes his hand tighter, speeding up a little to get past the old woman. Luke is so sweet, although he doesn’t like to show it, and she knows why he’s so affected by such an ordinary image. His grandmother, who died when he was a little boy, used to knit him all of his clothes and despite his determined arguments that he accepted her death long ago, Anna can read him like a book.
Old Woman’s Point of View
It’s rare that the days are this bright these days. When Betty had been a little girl, summertime had been magical, warm and sunny, but now that she was a great grandmother she had to make do with the few days the years provided. As soon as she had woken and glanced out of her window to see what a good day it was, she had packed her things and gone to the park.
The new arrival, her first great grandchild, is the reason why she was knitting. Betty has no instructions with her but needs none to knit a jumper for the baby, the first of many that she’s planning to make. The needles work almost without her instruction, as though they have repeated the pattern so many times that they no longer require her to think about what she’s doing any more.
As she looks around her, observing the local children enjoying their rare day in the sun, she spots a couple walking past on the path. The woman, a short lady in a pretty summer dress, is holding onto the man’s hand tightly, as though she’s afraid she might lose him if she lets go. The man is, surprisingly, crying.
Betty watches them walk past, a glimmer of hope in her eyes. It’s wonderful to see a man who’s so in touch with his emotions in an age when people are more interested with Facebook and computer games than going out and socialising in more traditional ways.
Young Man’s Point of View
Sweat trickles down Luke’s forehead. He doesn’t like the heat and he’d much rather spend his date with Anna somewhere quiet and air conditioned, like the cinema or a pub. Pubs are good places, especially on hot days.
He walks along the path next to her, looking across the park to the gate at the other end to see if there’s anywhere nearby he can suggest they stop for a drink. Anna pulls him onward.
As they move closer to the salvation of the park gates, something buzzes around Luke’s head. He doesn’t swat it away, not wishing to look foolish in front of his new girlfriend, so he keeps walking without paying it any attention.
They walk past an old woman seated on her own at a bench, knitting something with limited attention. The buzzing returns at that moment, followed by an impact that causes an uncontrollable reaction as the buzzing insect flies straight into Luke’s eye.