She sat on the stairs on the front stoop, her face in her hands, and stared down the road. The grey line that snaked to the far distant gate was empty. Not even a bit of wind to move the stubby brush that marked its rutted edges. Raising her hand to shield her eyes, she squinted and tried to see if a tell tale cloud of dust marked the hills to the main road.


Propping her chin back in her hands, her eyes glazed into the big, wide sky. She shouldn’t be waiting here. It wasn’t right. How many times had she waited? For hours, sometimes. Sometimes for nothing. The stone in her belly weighing heavier with each slowly waning afternoon. She knew this was wrong. Wrong in a way that would haunt her all her life. Wrong in a way that could unravel her. But still, once a fortnight, she washed her face, scrapped the farm from under her fingernails, brushed her hair and sat outside to wait.

Her mind wandered back to that early autumn afternoon. That first time was different. Cold and shivering in her summer dress and open shoes. She didn’t know then what she knew know. A wry smile crossed her face. “Ignorance is bliss, my lambchop”, her mother used to say. God! If her mother knew. She dropped her head and ran her hands through her hair; closed her eyes against the glare of the sand. Swallowed the tears caught tight in her throat.

And later, composed again, leaning back against the solid white walls of the house, she watched the rising wind make the grey earth dance. And thought again about the path of choices that led her here. And wondered at the capriciousness of a passing glance. How much could be misconstrued in the exchange of a few words and a bottle of farm honey.

And as the sun began to turn the land the colour of war, she stopped waiting, stood, and turned back into the empty house.


15 thoughts on “verlang

  1. ramon says:

    Sjoe, Dolce.
    “scrapped the farm from under her fingernails”
    Jeez, girl.
    When are you gonna start writing that book?

  2. dolce says:

    Whaddaya mean, Ramona. That is a book!


    When you do, R, when you do!

  3. ramon says:

    Ja, ja. You just start, OK?

  4. dolce says:

    You know me, Ramona. I’m just hoping some fabulous publisher will whip up my blog and edit it into a dinky little pocket guide and I’ll be instantly rich and famous.

    Or not.

    And I’m waiting for the fully published Benderth and L novel. Dammit.

  5. dex says:

    Sheesh, Dolla. This is very, very cool.

    And ‘Verlang’ – exactly the right choice.

    you good blogger.

  6. morty says:

    fekking brilliant, dolce – can almost smell the dirt.

  7. bluepeter says:

    That are a very cool sad story indeed. That blog are wearing the “favourite sad story of the month” award in my deliriiiss opinion. Lekker. Smaak the little dramatic einde daar …

  8. ramon says:

    Benderth and L are almost done. October, I reckon.
    I’ll mail it to you – need some input!

  9. K Chasu says:

    brilliant dolce! tell me – you read a book called Gemsquash Tokoloshe?

    It’s awesome and I really recommend it.

    Anyway, back to the cleverness of you (in the immortal words of winnie the pooh) – lovely.

  10. Dolce says:

    DS Ta

    Dex you’re back! Good trip? *shuffles feet and says in quiet voice* We missed you.

    Ramona Really? Are you going to look for a publisher? Man, that would be so cool!

    KC Nope – haven’t read it. Will look out for it though. Loving SA literature at the mo. And ta very much.

  11. 302 says:

    as was stated in an earlier comment that pretty much sums up what verlang entails and more and it’s got me thinking of an English equivalent but nothing quite fits.

  12. vapour says:

    Great writing Dolce. Do you have to have had a similar experience in order to write a story like this. Or do you think a person is able to create it?

  13. Flutter says:

    WHOA! (How appropriate! – my anti spam word.)

    Awesome stuff Dolce. Hang on to ye bridges young lady!

    I keep thinking about this line…
    “How much could be misconstrued in the exchange of a few words and a bottle of farm honey. ”

    I want more I tell you. More!

  14. dolce says:

    Mort Whoops – sorry M, didn’t see you there. And thanks. Where’ve you been?

    BP Jeez, boyo, that lergy sounds bad. And you know me, always the drama queen.

    302 & Vapour Funnily enough, that’s why I chose that particular word, even though the whole piece was in English….it was emotion I was going for, not an experience as such, and verlang was the only thing that cracked it. It’s kinda unnamed.

    Flutter fanks very much lady.

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