John Lost Returns


When he first left England he was a young man with no particular destination. He found himself months later in the hills of Cambodia, squatting by a cook fire and sharing millet from a single bowl with three strangers, the act of eating their only common language.

His name was acquired perhaps in Tibet or Nepal. By this time, the identity of the British boy had long since disappeared, along with any trace of accent. He hardly spoke anyway, mistrusting words, preferring the transient solidity of gesture.

She had found him at last, this long-ago sister who begged him to return.


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  1. michael1148humphris

    I like the phrase ‘long ago sister’, I don’t think she will get him to return, but at least she knows that he is alright in his own way.

  2. seekeroftruthweb

    That is a committed sister! Considering his going from place to place and the fact she found him “at last”, she must have been searching a long time. Wonder if she’ll join him and not return herself!

  3. Margaret

    My mother speaks of her uncle who disappeared from his home in Scotland sometime in the early 1900s. He was only a teenager, and the prevailing theory was that he’d joined the crew of a ship and possibly finished up in Australia, where, strangely, we now live. Your story made me think about this lost relative and wonder. Very evocative storytelling.

Don't just stand there.