Short story: The second death of Lazarus by Gaby Mancey-Jones

Detail from The Rising Of Lazarus by Vincent van Gogh. Photograph: Wikipedia
9 Jul 2013 @ 11.53 am
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Detail from The Rising Of Lazarus by Vincent van Gogh. Photograph: Wikipedia
Detail from The Rising Of Lazarus by Vincent van Gogh. Photograph: Wikipedia
gaby-mancey-jones

The second death of Lazarus
by Gaby Mancey-Jones


 

In the tomb a small funeral party, strung up with expectation. We cleaned the room before everyone arrived, polished the windows, mopped the floor – the only patch of dirt was a small ring of dust around his body, where we’d left him on the bed in the morning.

Photographers were crouched at the foot of the bed, a spare camera left just under his tagged foot. Some had gone out for a cigarette during the wait. Flecks of light rattled around our breathing bodies, our straining tense chests – they hung still over him.

Sunlight from the French windows passed over his body as the day wore on, the shadows stretching and shrinking as they crawled over the floor. It was the only movement he showed that day, his open eyes getting clearer as the sun shone through them. A fly rested by his lip, rubbing its little legs in anticipation; Lazarus didn’t flinch.

After the ‘first resurrection’, as he always called it, we were set adrift by pagans in a boat without oars, sails or rudder. Even those days in the middle of the ocean were a blink of the eye for him. He couldn’t possibly imagine how it feels, our waiting for a saviour around his bed… post-ascension anticipation.

Outside the window, cars were driving idly by in shadowless midday heat.

 


  • A number of talented Huntington School year 10 students took part in a one-day writing workshop – and YorkMix is delighted to be the first to publish their work
  • To find out more about the creative writing workshop, and to read the other students’ work, click here