Changing Shapes


Copyright – Douglas M. MacIlroy

Lying down hand in hand with a boy with no other intention except to gaze up at the passing shapes above, we used to hypothesise and ponder; were they strong enough to walk on?

A few years passed and I was up among them, looking at them.  I saw cotton valleys and mountains; a whole magical world made of white and I wondered; was there anything more beautiful?

Now, glancing up I see rain coming and when up among them, looking through them, all I see is my tomb thirty-five thousand feet below; is there a death more horrible?


For Friday Fictioneers. No dark fiction from me this week; just stark, cold reality. Hope you like it anyway.

8 comments on “Changing Shapes

  1. Sandra says:

    The use of the word ‘tomb’ rather than ‘grave’ had me wondering whether I was missing the significance of this, particularly as you said you weren’t doing dark fiction this week. Nevertheless, an enjoyable piece. Well done.

  2. Chilling and well-written.
    Personally, I think the most horrible death would be suffocation. Not that I’d like to die by a fall from a great height, but it would beat suffocation in the Good ways to Die department.

  3. This seemed rather dark to me, although I admit to being a little lost as to what was going on in that last sentence. Clouds seen from above do look as though you could walk on them, don’t they?


  4. Hi Sandra,
    “I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now.” This could be the somber refrain to the Judy Collins classic. The story of told with subtlety. My best interpretation, and it’s just a guess, is that she died in some kind of air disaster. Liked the way you progressed the story all the way from childhood through death is so few words. Ron

  5. pattisj says:

    I remember wondering if clouds would support us walking on them.

  6. Dear Sandra,

    I, too, thought the ending was rather dark. Loved the view of clouds from both sides and also had “Both sides Now” ringing in my ears. Nice one.



  7. troy P. says:

    I’m intrigued by the two seemingly different, but at the same time (?), directions that the narrator ends up at. And I think the darkest part was the post-script, actually. I hope all is well.

  8. Linda Vernon says:

    I liked the way you contrasted this. Each segment told a story. The first two were innocent and optimistic and the last one is the cold hard reality of life.

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