Even more of a challenge than a simple Drabble, here we are dealing with the concept of telling a story fully in fewer than perhaps 50 words – Which Mary Mageau seems to master with panache.
First Selected Flash and Micro Fiction by Mary Mageau – More to Follow
I close my eyes, press his letter to my heart, and read it hungrily once more.
“I can’t live without you any longer. Your father will never accept me, even though I’ve paid off my car and saved some money. Come away with me now. Pack your things and meet me tonight at midnight. I’ll be waiting by your back gate.”
We’re on the road – windows wide open – pedal to the floor. Not even wild westerly winds can catch us.
He pushes past me to stash two six packs in the fridge. He moves around fast, checking my place out, drawing the curtains across the front window, locking the front and back doors.
‘I’m out again and I need a place to stay tonight.’
His arms and neck are covered in ink—more prison tatts. He’s so edgy, always looking quickly around and behind, walking with a limp, smelling of dirty old clothes. We face each other across the kitchen table as he cracks open another beer.
‘And what about your restriction order?’
‘Tomorrow I’ll be gone.’
Holding me later I feel his anger rise. Is this the first thunderclap announcing the blows and punches that will fuel another of his approaching storms?
Beyond the stillness of falling snow lies a deeper silence. It has broken our bond to set us adrift.
I hold my mother’s hand, feeling its tissue soft skin, and her small fragile bones. She is always hunched over in her chair near the window. As I tell her about our family, her eyes grow cloudy and she withdraws. I speak on but she doesn’t hear me. I hold up a soft pink shawl I brought, and wrap it around her shoulders, yet she doesn’t see it. Then I lean forward excitedly with, ‘Why don’t we go for a drive, past our old house?’ She shows no interest. Finally I give up. I kiss her goodbye and move away, gently closing the door behind me.
Sitting in the car afterward, I watch the light of the setting sun slowly diminish. It reminds me of her dimming light, trapped in this endless, dark winter of dementia.
A Dance Spectacular
The grand finale arrives to an ear splitting techno beat of, ‘C’mon Baby – Rock Me.’ It sets the blood pounding. In the darkened auditorium a strobe light descends from the stage loft. Flashing on and off in a stuttering rhythm, it reflects the gyrating dancers streaming onstage.
The girls and guys are kitted out in brilliantly coloured t-shirts, socks, and hot pants, teamed with white fluorescent running shoes. Their high stepping, fancy foot work creates a moving shower of luminous sparks at the floor level. The noise rises further when laser lights are turned on the audience, blinding us momentarily each time they circle past.
By the last chorus, the entire auditorium has erupted into a scene reminiscent of Dante’s Inferno. We reach over the 120 decibel threshold of pain when the cheering and stamping of the audience sweeps everyone toward the final curtain call.
I make a quick exit, happy to leave all the intense noise and excitement behind. Walking home alone, the whisper of light rain surrounds me. As I lift my face to taste its sweetness, I savour this blessed peace and quiet.