(WIP) Peter, Peter

Hello, my friends, it has been a while. I was foolishly optimistic to think this time at home would mean many a splendid day writing until my heart sang. The reality is, it’s been tough. My husband is high-risk so we have been hermits, and it’s been hard to see all that’s going on globally.

I have my fellow author and friend Jason to thank for this little boost in writing. He knows I have been working on an anthology of what I am affectionately calling “Steampunked Nursery Rhymes” (no, that’s not the official title) and he gave me an idea for Peter, Peter Pumpkin Eater.

I can’t tell you how delighted I am to be able to have written something like this after months of being in a fog. I hope you are doing well. Hang in there.

~~

Peter’s wife could do no wrong.

Leastways not in the eyes of Peter, who made his modest living with the best pumpkin patch Pennsylvania had to offer.

No one in the little town of Aster could forget the day the stow-away boy stumbled off Mr. Arden’s wagon as the gruff man unloaded his pumpkins to sell. The little boy with his shock of orange-red hair and dark green eyes gave all around quite the shock. It was as though the pumpkins consorted amongst themselves and, through some faery magic, created a wild creature from their essence. Peter could not remember, or would never tell of, his existence up to that point of discovery.

Mr. Arden, a man of few words himself, took the boy to his pumpkin farm and kept him as help in exchange for a place to say. Rumors spread faster than a wildfire. Who was this boy and where had he come from? No one would ever know the truth, yet how could the truth be more captivating than the creature gossip made of Peter anyway?

It’s a dark nursery rhyme. The picture fits!
Photo by Aleksey Boey on Unsplash

The excitement of it all kept the villagers warm through the winter and curious through the spring; but as the heat of the sun bore down and created the lazy haze of summer, rumors of Peter faded into the shadows. By the time Mr. Arden arrived at Mr. Wharton’s same shop around the same time the following year to unload his wares, the latest sensation buzzed down the streets. Though some noticed Mr. Arden had traveled alone they knew better than to ask. Mr. Arden never wished to be noticed or spoken to unless absolutely necessary. Perhaps his great shyness prevented him from bringing the boy who would undoubtedly wish to see the village, ask questions, and be approached by others.

Seasons changed, years past, and the most noteworthy comment anyone made about Mr. Arden was that his pumpkins seemed to be growing better by the year. They seemed fuller, somehow bigger, and more colorful. Mrs. Wharton cried out as she arranged the pumpkins on her table, “Don’t it seems as if these strange little pumpkins haven’t got a personality all tucked up inside them? Bless me if I can’t say but that one looks sad, that one stands proud over there, and that one is sighing away in love.”

What are your thoughts?