ADSactly Fiction: The Usual Swallows
The Usual Swallows
There, lying on the sand, the man remembered his dead wife. The afternoon he met her, she had been one of the most beautiful he had ever seen. The sun was still shining and the sea was still as if God was resting. The sky was clear and only a few swallows were crossing the sky when the man who was fishing saw the woman coming. She was a luxuriant girl with long black hair, beautiful legs, and wide hips. Her tanned face, her brown eyes and her fresh smile made that poor fisherman feel like the most special man in the world. The girl came to swim at the beach and to look for some shells. She was wearing a spring dress, white slippers and a straw hat. She had no qualms about talking to him, smiling and being close to the fisherman. For the first time the man felt that he existed, only because that young girl was looking at him.
After that first time, other afternoons came. The woman, the fisherman and the swallows were the only ones on the beach. There they spent hours chatting and laughing, counting the seashells and the swallows as they passed by. When it was the fisherman's turn to declare his love, he told the woman that the fishermen would tattoo a swallow on their skin when they had a very successful trip or when they found the perfect couple to live with. According to some beliefs, the swallows meant fidelity and loyalty, the fisherman told the woman. That afternoon he told her that the difference between swallows and other birds is that the swallow chooses his partner for life, that when he finds his soul mate he never leaves her. Then, softly said to him: I want to tattoo a swallow in your honor. Without saying any words and knowing all that it represented, the girl accepted.
After a few months they got married and every afternoon they went to see the swallows fly. With the flight of those birds they not only remembered their first meeting but also their eternal promise of fidelity. It was on that beach where the woman, after several attempts, told the fisherman she was pregnant. Happy they celebrated the good news, imagining that their love grew every day. But sometimes life is not as it should be: in childbirth, woman and baby died. The fisherman found no refuge for such sadness and unhappiness. Only returning to that beach made his sadness and grief lighter.
There, in the middle of the afternoon and lying on the sand, he watched the swallows pass by the deserted beach. He never told his wife that another belief was that the swallows possessed the spirits of our dead loved ones. At that moment he opened his eyes and watched as one of the birds built a nest. At first he felt rage, perhaps a bit of zeal, but then he smiled. Perhaps the spirit of his wife was in that swallow, thought the fisherman who was smiling again. With that slight smile he gets up, grabs his basket full of fish and leaves the beach for sure in the afternoon of tomorrow, when he will lie down again on the sand to watch the swallows pass by and see if that swallow has finished his nest. The fisherman smiles and thinks of tomorrow.
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