Symbols #flashfiction

July 1, 2021, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about “the old photograph.” What is captivating about it? Where did it come from? How does it incite a story? Go where the prompt leads!

Symbols – by Hugh W. Roberts

“Have there been any other gay people in your family, Richard?” asked Adrian as he put the old photograph down.

“Have a look at the photo again. I think it’ll answer your question. Tea?”

Nodding his head, Adrian studied the photo again. “The older man is hot. Who is he?”

“My great-grandfather. Mum said my grandmother took the photo in Poland in 1939.”

“Why does he have a star and what looks like a triangle on his shirt?”

If that photo were in colour, you’d see a pink triangle. But the family have never wanted to talk about it.”


Image of a pile of old black and white photos
Image Credit: Charli Mills

Written for the 99-word flash fiction challenge hosted by Charli Mills at the Carrot Ranch. Click here to join in.

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15 thoughts on “Symbols #flashfiction

    1. Thank you, Robbie. These symbols are still used today, but in a way that acts as a reminder of the awful things humans once did to each other because of who they were. The pink triangle is still very popular within the LGBTQI community.

  1. What must Richard feel to see the family member “like him” vilified and marked for death? Love is love. It has overcome much hate. And may it continue to inspire more love.

    1. Thanks so much, Terri. Discrimination has many faces, all of which we should do our utmost best to ignore and banish to the bin. How much of a happier world it would be if those faces turned from hate to love.

    1. Thanks, Geoff. Yes, many still wear these symbols not just for Pride but to remember those who were killed for being who they were. I can’t begin to think what it must have been like to be sent to a concentration camp, knowing that you’d probably never come out alive.

    1. During World War II, those symbols were a warrant for death for most that wore them. A terrible history that doesn’t get spoken about much anymore. These days, both symbols are still around, but people wear them for pride and to remember those who died because of who they were.

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