Upon Primrose Hill

Joe Grant returns as cavalcadeofstars approaches its one year anniversary.

Upon Primrose Hill
By
Joseph Grant

As a young girl, Gwendolyn Harris survived the Blitz by huddling with the rest of the city in the famed London Underground while the station shook from the bombs that concussed just overhead street-level and one of her earliest memories was holding her doll in one hand and her mother’s hand in the other, quickly walking through the “Way Out” tunnels emerging up the stairs into a much different city that she had left and in many respects, a much different world. Like all Great Britons during that generation, she did her part for the war effort, her older siblings pulling their weight with canning and rationing and her Mum volunteering at St. Bartholomew’s and after a couple of direct bombardments, was thankfully moved to Hill End Hospital at St Albans, while her Dad sadly made the ultimate sacrifice later on in North Africa. She remembered the day her nearly inconsolable young Mum told her father was never coming home again and the way she screamed he wasn’t dead and she ran from their flat for blocks and blocks only to be shaken by the distressing sight of doll parts strewn about the end of a mews, a result from a toy factory taking a direct hit from a misdirected German bomb. The war ended, she matured, met the man of her dreams at a dance she wasn’t supposed to go to, they went together for years, married and had a baby boy but the infant developed the whooping cough, not helped by the sooty Great Smog of winter 1952 and died in the very same hospital her Mum had once worked. The devastated couple never had another child, instead opting to travel the world, but the sight of new parents wheeling their infants in carriages met her corner of the globe and as the years were taken away in graying strands of time, this sense of loss was born anew whenever she passed proud grandparents toting their prized grandchildren along the avenue. Although it annoyed her husband, it made perfect sense to Gwendolyn when she saw a company on the telly one night that would make a flawless replica doll of a child from a photo and when the bundle arrived by Special Delivery Royal Mail, an excited Gwendolyn unpacked her son’s old clothes and once again recaptured the maternal instinct robbed from her years ago and as she wheeled her pram with the rest of the proud parents and grandparents upon Primrose Hill, her world was set right once again.

Bio
“As a Pushcart Prize nominee, Joseph Grant’s short stories have been published in over 200 literary reviews such as Byline, New Authors Journal, Underground Voices, Midwest Literary Magazine, Inwood Indiana Literary Review, Hack Writers, Six Sentences, Literary Mary, NexGenPulp, Is This Reality Zine, Darkest Before Dawn, strangeroad.com, FarAway Journal, Full of Crow, Heroin Love Songs, Bewildering Stories, Writing Raw, Unheard Magazine, Absent Willow Literary Review.”

This story is formatted per Mr. Grant’s request.

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About vision791

Pushcart nominee Jeanette Cheezum has been published on several online writing sites and in fifteen Anthology books and four poetry books. Three of these books have made the New York Times Best Sellers list. Awarded The Helium Networks Premium Writer’s Badge, Bronze Creative Writing Award and a Marketplace Writers award. Recently she has published thirteen ebooks at Barnes and Noble and Amazon. You may find a list of some of her work at www.hamptonroadswriters.org
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7 Responses to Upon Primrose Hill

  1. dianne cerkvenik says:

    Another gripping story from Joe Grant. Joe Grant will surpass Stephen King, as the new teller of horror stories that keep you at the edge of your seat daring to turn the page. I like his stories and look for more, no, I thirst for more stories and can only hope author Joe Grant produces a full novel, many novels in the future. Joe Grant has the ability to really tell a story that gives a good scare.

  2. A beautifully written story of survival and coping with an immeasurable lost.Claudette Walker

  3. I think Joe Grant is one of those writers who is not only excellent at what he does, but constantly entertaining and enjoyable to read. His stories are always rich and vivid in detail, and in just a few words you learn everything you need to know about his characters, where they are, and where they have been. It tales talent and ability maintain that consistency story after story.

    This is one of those haunting stories that starts innocently but leaves you with a knot in your stomach, and hangs around long after you’ve finished reading. Well done.

  4. donna valosin says:

    I have to say that i am not surprised on how wonderful of a writer Joseph Grant has become!
    Upon Primrose Hill, Excellent! very intriguing.

  5. Nikon says:

    Fantastic story Joe.
    I love the sentence structure &, of course, the plot line. Just magic!

  6. Joe, this was a great story. It went well with the new look of cavalcadeofstars. I’m so glad you chose to celebrate the first anniversary with us.

  7. Madam Z says:

    So much sorrow in such a small space. But I’m glad there is a happy ending. Dolls never die.

    And Joe never fails to please.

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