Microfiction challenge #20: Isle of the Dead

A nice cheery subject this week. That’s the title of the painting, which I think is eerily beautiful. It’s a pretty small island if it’s meant to stock all the dead ever, so maybe it’s like the Tardis? Or the portal to another dimension? Where is it, and who is in the boat?

There’s lots to get your Halloween teeth into with this one. What I would suggest, if you want to keep on good terms with me, is not to mention pumpkins, or werewolves, or vampires. Keep it classic, please.

Post your stories in the comments below before next Thursday, and have fun!



Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

66 thoughts on “Microfiction challenge #20: Isle of the Dead”

      1. He does one job, lies down, makes rosehip and hibiscus tea with honey, answers one of his colleagues’ queries, has a nap, moans . . . You’re right, there is a tale buried somewhere under the mound of Kleenex!

      2. I’ve been blogging since 2009, always under a pseudonym. I don’t know why. No one who knows me as Lorraine has any idea I have a double life as a blogger any way. Guess I get paranoid at times since I’m not always kind in my comments towards my in-law family. Nor my own. When I was care-giver to my mother, I didn’t want to reveal who she was, and my husband is such a private person, writing about him seemed like betraying a trust. But it’s time I owned up to who I am. Scary to not be protected by a mask a guise, a ruse.

    1. You have excellent taste. What wine would you suggest to go with this? I could turn off the lights, light a candle or two and lose myself for an evening listening to this.

      1. Well, I don’t have a problem with vampires and werewolves per se, though the ideas are done to death and it’s so hard to make them fresh. And they have nothing to do with Halloween as far as I’m aware. Pumpkins are clearly brought in from the Americas, though we can proudly claim Trick or Treating as our own. Unquiet spirits is really what All Hallows Eve is about, isn’t it? That thinning of the barriers between this world and the next. Right, I’m off to write a tale ๐Ÿ™‚

      2. It’s everywhere. Even in Catholic countries where traditionally All Saints and All Souls meant going to Mass, or a candlelit vigil. And the pagan touch was lighting the candle in the window so the dead could find their way home, and setting extra places at table. Pumpkins and vampires???

    1. It is a very atmospheric painting. I imagine complete silence and absence of life on the island. Not surprising really if it’s the Isle of the Dead. I didn’t know about his personal tragedies.

      1. A cemetery was near his studio where his infant daughter was buried ; it has those haunting cypresses. I expect he longed to be reunited with those he loved but suffering is part of our lot in this world. It’s a wonderfully human story .

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