Thursday photo prompt – Carved #writephoto – The Shirkers


When the battle ended, the shirkers were gathered before the victorious commander.

These were the men who had run, hidden or found something else to do as the battle raged.

As punishment, they were led in chains to the boulder rock on the edge of the stream and put to work.

They were to stay there, day and night each with a piece of course rock and rub the boulder until each man dropped from either exhaustion or death.

Carstairs being the greatest of all shirkers organised the men into teams to rub at certain spots until he saw the shape emerging.

Being artistic of mind, Carstairs saw the pursuit of art as far more engaging activity than running at an enemy and inviting death upon oneself.

Over time the men began to appreciate what was happening. Some men from previous shirking campaigns even praised Carstairs as a man of vision, deluded yes, but a man of vision.

The sculpture took shape, each man took ownership of his section, and by the end of the first year they had something they were proud of, a potential bath when it rained, and let’s be honest they each needed a good wash every so often, and future shirking shelter.


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34 Responses to Thursday photo prompt – Carved #writephoto – The Shirkers

  1. Shirking shelter. I like the concept.

  2. Sue Vincent says:

    That explains the mystery of the stone perfectly, Michael 😉

  3. Lyn says:

    Carstairs is a smart man 😀

  4. Carstairs is a genius Michael.

  5. Ah, a great piece, Michael. I enjoyed it.

  6. Pingback: #writephoto – The Shirkers – Michael | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

  7. willowdot21 says:

    Brilliant, there is alwaysa visionary!💜

  8. colonialist says:

    Ingenious, although making a bit of a hole in the plot. Of course I have to crow in ‘caws’ to mention that the cause of the body of this corse was meant to be coarse.

  9. Anne Copeland says:

    This says so much more than just the physical artistry of the boulder itself; the choices the men made to not join in the fighting with everyone else, but to do what was right within their own consciousness regardless of the consequences. And then to take the supposed punishment and turn it into a work of art is pure genius, and a wonderful inspiration for anyone who is faced with seemingly insurmountable choices. Great job!!!

  10. Anne Copeland says:

    As someone who is a mixed media and fiber artist, I truly appreciate such wonderful imagination that goes way beyond the unexpected. Keep on doing what you do so well.

  11. Pingback: Photo prompt round-up: Carved #writephoto | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

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