Those Who Know Us By Name

“Well if it isn’t little Miss Swinnerton.” Jack chuckled, scrubbing a rag over his hands as he walked out of the workshop. “I thought you’re working away in the city somewhere.”

Sarah smiled and let the car door fall shut behind her. It was always the city with Jack, never a name.

“How’d you recognise me.” she asked. “What was I, five last time I came here?”

“Six if I remember rightly. You made a point of tellin’ me as soon as your Granddad lifted you out the car.”

Sarah nodded.

“And of course I recognised ya.” Jack grinned. “You Swinnerton women were always the prettiest faces to come and visit me.”




            1. Already read it and ‘liked it’.
              The ecological take was interesting, especially with the gap in generations and the juxtaposition of memory between grandfather and grandchild.
              The idea that the grandchild asks what the factory was for adds a hopeful edge as well. As if non-sustainable timber production has decreased.

    1. I didn’t actually intend for the character to be sexists. I was drawing more from my own life growing up in a rural community where my grandfather was fairly well known and family resemblance got me recognised by people I’d never met.
      It can be somewhat disorientating hearing “now you’re a Swinnerton for sure!” when waiting on a table of people you don’t know at the local pub.

  1. I loved this line, “t was always the city with Jack, never a name.” It really helped define both Jack and the town in which Sarah was raised.

    1. Maybe at some point in the future, I love longer short stories if you’d like to read them, just check out the category short stories and flash fiction to find them, they’re a little way back I’m afraid though so you’ll have to hunt a tad.
      I’m currently working on a collection of writing for launch in April and I’m working on two different novels so my schedule is a little cramp.

  2. I’m not trying to split hairs here but your narrator says “It was always the city with Jack, never a name”, as if she was familiar with him but then she says she hasn’t seen him since she was 5 or 6. I just don’t feel like that is something a five or six year old would notice about a person. I’m not trying to pick and I hope you will accept this criticism in the spirit in which it was given.

    1. Of course. Jack is supposed to be an old family friend and it was an attempt to try and show something from my own life. There are people I never see but almost know because they are so closely joined to others in my family.
      Does that make sense?

  3. I choose to think that Jack isn’t sexist, he’s just old and remembers the look of a certain family. I thought it was a compliment about her looks – and some families do have a certain resemblance passed down from generation to generation. Good story too – really thought it was good!

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