Rusty fork's glory days recalled

The fork was yellow.

Now it is too rusted to see.

As it leans against the wall, dusted with chicken grain, it stares at the spade with envy.

The fork has three out of four prongs, and the spade was used more and in better condition.

The spade looks the embodiment of grand; with shiny blade and worn handle, it shames the fork into the belief of the obsolete.

Even as I observe this silent war, I know the fork has led a glorious life.

Icy claws clutched the fork with long fingers.

Cold eyes pierced the dim light of dusk.

A silent laugh was frozen on a motionless face.

One hand wielded the fork, the other groped grotesquely at soaring snowflakes.

There was a crooked nose reaching out menacingly beneath eyes of stone.

We had constructed the snowman in the early hours of evening, knowing that snow was considerably more awesome when witnessed in darkness.

After a day of adventure, this was the final stage before we entered the cosy cocoon of the house.

Our gloved hands had moulded three icy planets - Jupiter, Neptune and Pluto.

After consuming what seemed like tons of snow, we had decided to manufacture another celestial body and exhaust yet another ton of the glorious sky-brick.

A gnarled carrot was sacrificed for a proboscis, while pebbles were ground into the face, a sickly smile.

The shiniest and blackest were selected and morphed into facetious eyes.

He watched the dusted forest in the distance with longing.

From beneath the wide-brimmed slouch hat, eyes hinted at emotion.

He was laughing, but it was a cold, unhappy cackle rather than a warm hearty one.

The frozen butterflies, stricken by heavy ice, drifted and swirled to the ground, almost lighter than air.

He observed this and wondered, would he ever see real butterflies?

As a slight breeze entered the stage, he shifted his grip on the fork.

The hat was commandeered from the shelf and planted slanted on the snowman's head.

The face studied the frosted trees; he seemed to peer into the unfathomable gloom.

Almost as an afterthought, a yellow fork had been brought forward, and soon wooden arms were grasping the fork in a hand of seven split-fingered tendrils.

No matter that the tool lacked a spur; we noble creators had recognised the snowman's fondness for the fork.

Well anyway, back to feeding the chickens.

It was a long while ago now, when all of us kids were home and snow days seemed more common.

I've never made a snowman by myself before.

I tip the grain into the chicken trough and as the fowl come running over, I thank the fork for a sad memory.

The fork was yellow.


• By Hannes Geissler, Year 12, Catlins Area School

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