Narration in English

Writing Example

ComradeshipThe last time we were together, he was by my side singing loudly. We were marching in rhythmical military step, singing one of his favourite songs. He was singing with great fervour, moving his feet up and down. I realized how much he must be suffering, exhausted as he was and at odds with his shoes. That morning, he had borrowed some laces from me to fasten his worn-out shoes. He spent a long time trying to fix them, in the hope that they would stay on his feet properly and stop bothering him, but all in vain. He had had no alternative but to wear them as they were, and so he had walked in them all this time. But no matter how rugged the road, he would not refrain from singing.
The last time we were together, he was by my side singing loudly. Some strange feeling seized me and made me wish that I could burst into tears. He seemed enraptured, and I felt that he was looking into the future, spending some moments of happiness there. He had been liberated, and so had his whole family; he felt so proud to have fought for some time side by side with his people; such a noble people, whose dignity had been trampled on, and who would later emerge from the lamp like a Geni and attain prosperity and progress. How happy he would be when he was reunited with his children rejoicing in his dignity and humanity. That’s what I guessed he was thinking as he sang.
I could not stem the tears flowing down my cheeks. I too felt an overwhelming ecstasy of joy now that the three years we had spent together in the mountain had been crowned with triumph, and we had returned safely.
I tried more than once to stop the flood of tears, but they were beyond my control. I assumed this was due to my joy at still being alive, for I could have been deprived of my life at any time. I longed for my family, whom I would soon be reunited with after an absence of three years. I visualized them one by one, adding to their features the touch of my three years’ absence, during which they must certainly have grown older.
My companion stopped to fasten his worn-out shoes, gradually slowing down the rhythm of his singing till he fell silent. “I wonder what sort of world we will soon be facing. Do you have any idea what the future will be like?” he asked.
I replied that I did not care about the future as much as I cared about seeing my family. With a smile on his lips, he said, “Ashely is fourteen now; maybe I’ll find suitors at home waiting for my return …”
“But she is still young, isn’t she?” I remarked, with my hand round his waist helping him walk.
” I was just joking,” he replied quickly. “She is slightly built, and still needs ten more years before she’ll look marriageable.” Smiling and gazing into the distance, he added: “Their life will be better; their future looks fantastic.”
When I realized that he was trying to tell the story of his own unfortunate past and compare it with the future of the young, I made him bear in mind that we had to rejoice in the victory we had achieved, and that we would shortly be welcomed very warmly. He smiled, gathering snatches of his beloved song. Soon he got into the swing of his song once again, and raised his strong and tuneful voice to repeat the refrain of his melody.
The road in front of us had not changed, even though the sun had set a little earlier, after the lorry had dropped us at the bend near our village in order to continue on its way to the distant city where it would set down our other comrades-in-arms. We had said farewell with no hope of meeting again in the near future. Now that liberation had been achieved, each one would be returning to his previous work.
Some lights from our village came into view. My companion trembled with joyful anticipation and started pounding my shoulder, crying, “There it is, our village!” I did not utter a word in reply, as I felt more homesick than ever and wished I could enter my house immediately, before the children went to sleep. We didn’t feel the ground under our feet. We had quickened our pace, and the beat of his shoes sounded strange.
All I can recall of that day are his voice as he sang, the beat of his shoes hurrying along, and his hope for a bright tomorrow, in which his children’s future would be brilliant.
I saw him today in shabby clothes, I didn’t recognize him at first. I took him for one of those beggars who keep passing by, insulting your humanity, which is just unable to give them anything at all. However, I suddenly recognized him as my companion of the mountain. When I decided to tap him on the shoulder he was coughing in such a terrible way, that I decided to express my joy at seeing him in a different way, and give him a hand to support him.
“It’s been a long time,” I said.
I was shocked by what he had to tell me. The hope of a brilliant future had not been realized. His work, which provided his livelihood, had petered out; the future of the children had returned gloomy, and Ashely was working for foreigners. Consumption was eating away at his body. I felt that he really was in need of five euros or so, but he was too proud to borrow them. When I handed him the euros, he changed the subject swiftly, saying, “How nice those days in the mountain were!”

Learning Points

Narratives are the easiest form of writing for most people because they tell a story or a specific experience using chronological organization.
Here are some tips you can use to narrate your story :

  • Think of an interesting story from your life.
  • Provide enough details for your readers to easily understand.
  • Make a timeline of events.
  • Organize the events into beginning, middle, and ending.
  • Add transition words to move the narrative through time (first, next, then) or add emphasis (however, therefore, moreover).
  • Use figurative language :

Similes : Comparison with like or as (She looked just like a kitten).
Onomatopoeia : Sound words (splash, bloop).
Hyperbole : Exaggeration (Albert screamed like a wild lion).
Dialect : Words spelled as they are spoken (It was in the days of Siba).

  • Include dialogue and action.
  • Don’t narrate the whole experience if you only need a small portion.
  • Brainstorm a way to start with a common saying, question or description to hook the reader.
  • Don’t tell the story without having a specific point in mind.
  • In conclusion, restate your thesis and tell the lesson behind your story.

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