Paper Trail of Love
by Yvonne DeBandi

Short Reads

Challenge: Write a scene based on the provided photograph.
Photo by Photo by Simone Viani
Written for:


Ridiculous.   Silly.  Ashamed.  That’s how I felt on top of the enormous grief filling my broken heart.  I couldn’t manage the entire heartfelt note, uncontrollable sobs interrupting your words of love.

I remember the day clearly… my explosive reaction born from the uninvited addition to the perfect zen retreat. What possessed me to find your beautiful origami ship inside my crystal-clear vase of sand so offensive? Your quirky stunts, both large and small, are what made me fall head over heels in the first place. Now, there will be no more.  None to make me laugh, none to make me cry.

When the men in uniform approached the door, my feet wouldn’t obey. I knew what was on the other side. Maybe if I didn’t answer I could ignore the truth, but not even my imagination could find a way out of this black hole. The envelope they provided remained unopened for days, beckoning my acceptance.

Courage finally welled. What I expected to be a letter prepared ‘just in case’ this call of duty became the last, was a four-line stanza that led me to your favorite toolbox. In the top tray I found an origami hammer that said ‘open me’ on the handle. Through words of love and enjoyed memories you guided me around the house in search of your paper creations… twenty love notes later ending up at my crystal clear vase.

© 2019 Yvonne DeBandi. All rights reserved.


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