Ground Zero

Contributor: Ray Daley
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I'm sitting there alone on a park bench with nothing but the fading remnants of my thoughts and dreams for company when the bomb finally goes off. There are children who are still playing on the swings, people are walking their dogs too. A little way down the path a couple are walking, holding hands, probably on their first date.

On the pond, ducks and swans are competing for space with the model boat enthusiasts. Underneath the shady Oak trees a family is bonding over a picnic lunch.

And this is the way the world ends.

No countdown timer, no ticking clock, nothing visible to defuse. It's the ultimate weapon.

You can't disarm what you can't see.

When it happens it's the biggest bang since the first one.


And yet all around me they carry on with their lives as though nothing has changed for them, the kids swinging higher; determined to get over the top, sandwiches being passed around amongst friends and family, dogs refusing to let go of interesting sticks and ducks glaring at model yachts.

Because this is how my world ends.

Not with a bang, nor a whimper. The only victim of the fallout is me.

I sit alone on the bench where she just walked away, still holding the ring after she said no.

The bomb was dropped.


The emotional time-bomb exploded. And this is how my world ends.

Wounded by rejection, death by broken heart.

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Ray Daley was born in Coventry & still lives there. He served 6 yrs in the RAF as a clerk & spent most of his time in a Hobbit hole in High Wycombe. He is a published poet & has been writing stories since he was 10. His current dream is to eventually finish the Hitch Hikers fanfic novel he's been writing since 1986.
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