A Tapestry of Life by Hedley Griffin


A Tapestry of Life

 Thomas hadn't expected to be alive when the town's time capsule was opened. How long was he going to continue living? He was quite elderly, but inside, still twenty-one. Was this his last life on Earth? Did he need to come back, reincarnate in another time in the future? Perhaps he was now old enough spiritually and he could then evolve and develop elsewhere at Home? Millions of years had passed since he was first culled but still the lessons continue.

Thomas, being the oldest member of the community living in Plano, a town in Collin County, Texas, he had been invited to witness the opening of the town’s time capsule. It had been closed since the early schoolroom at the Heritage Farmstead Museum was first restored all those years ago. He stood in his shabby long, grey coat, gazing at the old rusty box that had been discovered when the town’s main hall was being renovated. Although a little scruffy in appearance and his hair needed cutting, he was well known for his longevity and popular for his sense of humour. His grey eyes enchanted as they sparkled with perception, always followed with words of wisdom. He peered around from the top of the steps of the hall where the crowd had gathered for this special occasion. As people explored the contents of the time capsule, memories of his own life surfaced, inspired by what was being displayed in front of him. As each article was lifted out a warm feeling of nostalgia sponsored his thoughts of the past. He had lived northeast of the town all his life, near the famous Southfork Ranch, which had been made famous as the setting for the television series, ‘Dallas’. A lady lifted a television magazine out of the box and reminded him of those days, and then a newspaper suddenly appeared with the headline, “Thomas Denton exonerated for the murder of his girlfriend, Rita Ashley”. His skin went cold as the ugly, traumatic memories froze his thoughts. Thomas had spent time in prison and it was only after DNA analysis that it was proven that he had been innocent of this crime all along, but the effect on his life had been severe and he had washed away the stains of any reminders of that time, until now. The lady with the newspaper in her hand looked up at Thomas and smiled, a gentle offer to heal the wound. She knew how awful the episode had been for this man, innocent none-the-less, but then she suddenly noticed a change in his expression.

So much had happened in his lifetime. Did he fear death? No, why should he? How could he fear something he understood? It is only the unknown that creates fear in people’s minds. Death is a door we must all pass through. Thomas would return Home, where he belonged, where he came from years ago when he first accepted his Tapestry of Life.

Suddenly, his legs gave way and he slumped down onto the paving. Some of the people nearby peered down at him, but nobody knew what to do. It didn’t matter, as this was his time. His Tapestry of Life had come to an end as it does for all in due season.

As he sat up and left his body from the right-hand side he was welcomed by a messenger who invited him forward into a purple tunnel. He stood and looked back at the lifeless body he had left behind, the messenger waiting graciously, before he then moved forward up the slight incline. At the top he saw a light on the right-hand side through which he entered, leaving the tunnel and stepping out into the garden. On the left, he passed the oleander and the lemon tree and paused to enjoy the scent. Butterflies fluttered around his head in the fresh, warm air. As he walked further across the grass, soft and gently green beneath his feet, he observed, in the distance, a ribbon of silver laid out in front of him, the river of life, and on the far bank he saw a crowd of those he knew, waiting to greet him. He crossed the seven illuminated stones in the river as the water flowed across his bare feet. He was Home and dry.


Hedley Griffin spent 30 years as an animation director, much of this time working for BBC & Channel 4 Schools Television.  He now writes and self-publishes 17 picture books, DangerSpot Books, and historical creative non-fiction under a new imprint, Ancient Publishing. @AncientPublish1

"A Tapestry of Life" first appeared in the Hedley's “Memory of an Ill Wind and other stories”


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