Grass Stalk Children



There was a trick to whistling with a blade of grass; a trick that Stephen could manage but for some reason whenever Mary tried, it was damps hands and shredded foliage instead of whistles.

“Don’t worry,” he told her, cleaning off her hands with his sleeve before snatching up more grass by the roots, “I will teach you.”

He showed her how to angle the blade against her lips, to blow over the blade and send sharp slices of sound flying across the fields between his house and hers.

“When I marry, everyone in the audience will have to whistle as I walk down the aisle; everyone except for you.” she said.

“I won’t have to whistle,” he whispered, leaning in close, “because when I grow up I’m going to be the one marrying you.”



Prompt taken from: Five Sentence Fiction


    1. You will need the sort with really wide blades. I haven’t tried it since I was very young, my dad showed my how to do it, who knows if I still can… brilliant, now I have to go outside and see if I can still do it.


  1. The kids where I grew up did something similar, but we held the blade between the thumbs of both hands (hard to describe without a picture) and cupped our other fingers into a sort of bell, then made the sound by blowing across the blade in the small opening between our thumbs. It made a sound more like a duck call than a whistle, but the idea is along the same line. This brought back that memory – I hadn’t thought about that in many years!

    Good story!


    1. I was probably thinking about the same sort of technique, but it has been so long since my dad showed me how to do it that I can’t remember all that well.
      My great-gran had another technique where she used to fire the seed-heads off wild grass at people.


  2. Aw, that was sweet!
    The only grass story I have (well, about that kind of grass anyway) is me and my brother daring each other to eat grass. Nothing near so romantic.


    1. I live in the middle of the countryside and most of my family farm, so I grew up with all these weird ways to amuse myself.
      My great-gran used to initiate these battles where you fired the seed-heads from wild grass stems at each other.


    1. Thank you! This piece seems really popular actually. I don’t normally get so many comments but a lot of people have been sharing memories of learning to do this, or playing with grass as children.
      It is such a wonderful common denominator and I’m just a tad smug that my piece seems to have brought some really brilliant memories to the forefront of people’s mind.


    1. Thank you! I was worried that my writing may have been taking a turn towards the grim far too often, so I’ve been making an effort to vary the tone of my work.
      It is not as easy to write a lighthearted or witty piece, but practice seems to be helping.
      I rather liked your entry as well, (after following that cheeky link included in the comment. I’ll have to use that trick myself perhaps.)


      This site holds a lot more writing if you’re interested.


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