Monday, April 26, 2010

Magpie Tales: Their dance

Dust motes float in the soft morning air, sunlight just beginning to trickle through the window erasing the shadows that paint the room. His eyes widen as it finally touches his legs, his chest rising and falling slowly, as he absently traces the ornate cap to the cane, fingernail finding each recess.

Once this cane meant continued freedom, now it's strength only accentuated his weakness. As if abruptly waking from the stillness, he grasps the cane, sending it spinning across the room, its clatter drowned by the candy dish exploding against the hard wood floor, the canes arc having knocked it from the coffee table.

She was a thief, the kind his mother had always warned him of, stealing the air from his lungs when she walked into the room. Her dress whispered as she flowed through the door, the glide of a meandering stream with the force of a tsunami. Skin like alabaster, just the hint of rose upon her cheeks. He had never felt so small in the presence of another, or so blessed.

Arm draped through his, they strolled through the large double door entrance way to the ballroom, where the spotlight found her instntly. Men adored her, women envied her, yet her eyes were only for him. This was their fairy tale, she his princess, as they drew circles around the dance floor, until even the stars came to marvel at them.

Eventually, even thieves find their betters, age slipped the window, purloining small things at first, then greedily plundering her mind. Those last days were hard on him, often finding this same chair, staining its cushions with his prayers and tears. Five years ago, she asked for one last dance, and while grace had given way, they swayed by the side of her bed, until her stamina was spent. That very night, she found her peace, and he lost his. Except in those moments when he remembered their dance.

Hearing the crash, heart stammering with fear, Susan's feet can not move fast enough. Shards of glass glitter in the sun, casting rainbows into her eyes. The old cane gently rolls back and forth and her father still sits in his favorite chair, smiling, chest no longer rising. Tears burn trails down her cheeks and she imagines he is dancing, once more with his princess.

This is a Magpie Tale.

115 comments:

Cop Mama said...

Ok, now you did it. I'm trying not to cry. So sad yet so beautiful.

Your written word simply amazes me.

Raven said...

I agree with Cop Mama, sad yet so beautiful. A truly marvelous piece.

Birdie said...

wow- it's getting better every time I come here. You have a gift, Brian, to transport your readers completely away from the 'real' world to the imaginary one; reading your posts one forget what's going on around him/her ... :-) Beautiful!!

Alan Burnett said...

There are so many memorable phrases in this piece : but "stealing the air from his lungs when she walked into the room" is perhaps the very best of the lot. Literary riches beyond the dreams of avarice, as Dr Johnson once nearly said.

Lorraine said...

Ocean's worth of tears...beautiful, sensitive...hurtful cut

christine said...

How sad and poignant, lovely tale.
I loved this line... now it's strength only accentuated his weakness. Very clever

Christine

Magpie said...

Brian, this is beautiful and I'm not even going to try not to cry. I've typed and deleted several things...nothing seems to say enough so I'll just quit trying.

Stacy (the Random Cool Chick) said...

Beautifully sad!

Valerie said...

Poignantly beautiful, Brian.
And I love this ....
She was a thief, the kind his mother had always warned him of, stealing the air from his lungs when she walked into the room.

Yodood said...

That is the best thing I've read in years. I had a similar experience with mother.

Bonnie, Original Art Studio said...

Hey Brian ... rip my heart into little pieces! Devastating and much too familiar.

slommler said...

So beautifully written. As I read, tears framed my eyes and my heart slowed it's pace. Hearing the music, I swayed. How you moved me today. Thank you
Hugs
SueAnn

TechnoBabe said...

The one left behind doesn't have a dance partner.

willow said...

Beautiful and romantic, Brian. I particularly like how his fingernail found the recesses in the carved top and also the prayer stained pillow. Nice.

Titanium said...

You write memories like a quilt; beautiful squares, blocks of time stitched together that warm the heart through and through.

Helen said...

Beautifully written ... and worth reading over and over.

Travel & Dive Girl said...

Beautifully written, but it breaks my heart too.

AngelMay said...

Nicely done, Brian - with a single exception, if I may: I don't think it is possible for a candy dish to "implode" unless it is in some kind of pressure chamber.

Hope you don't mind the criticism. It's the logical Spock side of me - a retired computer programmer who just can't help herself.

Brian Miller said...

thanks angel...fixed it...

kkrige said...

That was an absolutley beautiful piece Brian. I love the ending. Excuse me, I have to go get a tissue...

Pat said...

You always take me to a different place with your writing. Magnifico! Very moving, sad, beautiful, heartbreaking. Your words are exquisite.

LadyCat said...

They finally dance again...very touching.

Zuzana said...

This was so poetically sad, bittersweet and touching, full of gentle melancholy.
At all times I wish I would master the English language the way you do; you are a magician with words.
;)
xoxo

buffalodick said...

Good writing here today...

Daniel said...

Wow Brian. I loved this wonderfully moving piece. So vivid. Sad and beautiful. One of your best.

Jessie said...

thank you for the tears, the shivers, the connection.

simply beautiful...

Star said...

I like your style of writing Bryan. It goes well with the theme of this piece. I particularly liked your observation of the cane rolling on the floor at the end.
Star

Jingle said...

I feel wordless,
I simply marvel at the vivid images your words transform, when they ultimately dance in heaven, the mission completes.

Jingle said...

I feel wordless,
I simply marvel at the vivid images your words transform, when they ultimately dance in heaven, the mission completes.

Jill said...

Absolutely CHARMING...I am always a sucker for a love story.

May I suggest that Susan, is a very blessed lady having grown up witnessing the love her father had for her mother.

TRUE LOVE...wonderful.

Jingle said...

Earthshaking love is everyone's dream, what a treat to see it reflected here... Tragic ending makes it more astounding and touching.
I enjoyed you magpie today!
Congratulations on the success
in writing such a revolutionary tale!
;)

Jingle said...

Hope that you and your family enjoy an excellent Monday!
You Are The Prince, and Hope that YOU
Cherish Every Moment With Your Charming Princess At Your Loving Home!
May Happiness, Joy, and Good Fortune Be Around You!

william said...

YOUR MAGPIE TALES ARE JUST THE BEST MATE, YOU HAVE A WAY OF CAPTURING THE READER, KEEPING THEM THERE AND THEN WANT MORE. WELL DONE :)

JStar said...

Bitter sweet...Brian, your words are captivating, as always!

steviewren said...

Awwww, weren't they lucky to have had that kind of sweet love. No wonder he was lost without it.

Everyday Goddess said...

it's a good reminder for us to cherish the days we do have together.

beautifully written!!

Mama Zen said...

This is wonderful. I can see them dancing.

RNSANE said...

It's nice to see a love story, now and then...one that REALLY is a love story. Beautiful, Brian, made this old gal's heart beat a little faster and even brought tears to my eyes. You are a sweetie. I can say that because I'm sixty-five.

Baino said...

Terrific Brian, you're really showing some wonderful versatility here without losing your unique touch.

Christina said...

What a tear-jerker, Brian! Beautiful, but I think I need a tissue.

Ronda Laveen said...

In a way, I don't think the end gets any better than that.

AmyLK said...

So pretty! And they are together again.

Bernie said...

This is wonderful and yes I do have tears in my eyes. So enjoy your poetry Brian.....:-) Hugs

mama-face said...

It's as if there is an electrical current running through and connecting them...but that's my off the wall interpretation...as usual.

One of your best, Brian. So so good.

deb said...

slayed me.

and oh to have that breathless love , even with the risk of losing it.

Jane Jones said...

Dear Brian: This scenario strikes home and I cant help but cry. The cathartic reaction you have achieved is in your rich descriptions of time and place. I especially love your opening sentence; so very observant and refined;

"Dust motes float in the soft morning air, sunlight just beginning to trickle through the window erasing the shadows that paint the room"

What a creative way of seeing the world; very asthetically sensitive; the artist as writer. Excellent.

Pauline said...

love, sorrow, magic - it's all here

Dr. Heckle said...

I usually make jokes and I can't really do that here... Great story. Very well written.

Maggie said...

Sad, yet beautiful Brian.

Kuyerjudd said...

I just have to say, this is great. Powerful imagery. Gave me goose bumps as I tore past each word towards the next. Had me at the very edge of my seat.

Luisa Doraz said...

I can only imagine how deep and passionate you are in life. :) Have a great week. Love your work.

Monkey Man said...

Brought to mind my recent dance with my mother. She held on very tightly. I knew it was our last.

Suz said...

You really go for the story
and I liked it..yes I did

Lyn said...

Very touching..the passage of time, the aging of beauty, so clearly told..lovely, sad..life...

Tracy said...

This was so good. Sad and kind of a happy sad, too, knowing that he's with her again. Obviously they belong together so the happy part is that they finally are.

(By the way, you guys caught TWENTY FIVE fish????)

Catalyst said...

Brian, that was beautifully written. So lyrical and so satisfying. Sad, yes, but happy as well. A great piece of work!

JeffScape said...

Dude.

Kick. Ass.

Excellent all-around. Totally.

The Lucy and Dick Show said...

What a story! Awesome emotion there!

Leslie said...

Beautiful story of a last sweet dance. It seems sad to many but I look at the years of joy and dances those two could have missed.

Thanks Brian

Lisa said...

again, you brought me to tears and encouraged this Jaded Heart to believe in forever love...a love that has eluded me, but, alas a love for which I still hold onto hope!

You are the master. You are the muse. I am your student at your feet soaking up your greatness!

She Writes said...

I loved this one. A favorite.

Jingle said...

http://itistimetothinkformyself.blogspot.com/2010/04/awards-are-given-to-jingle-by-kathy.html

Good Evening, Brian:

I am working on my magpie, kind of overwhelmed, because I try to write a story instead of a poem.

Thank YOU for stopping by.
;)

suzicate said...

Absolutely incredible! I am awed.

secret agent woman said...

That's lovely. It makes me think of my father, who sits and smiles blankly, with his growing dementia.

Kate Hanley said...

Another great story and congrats on the poem being accepted. That is so AWESOME! I'm sure it's the first of many!

TALON said...

Sad, but lovely, Brian. Which is a wicked combination :)

Harnett-Hargrove said...

I am stopping by late.... enjoying all of the comments.
And, the post is beautifully crafted.

Kat_RN said...

Loved it, now I need to go get a tissue.
Reminds me of my parents.
Kat

sheri... said...

brian, i'm worn out by the time i get here, having to scroll through so many comments!! and like them, i adore your prose, the power and imagery from a man twice your age! thank you so much for the joy you bring :)

berna said...

I can sit in stillness and see this. It is very good!

Berna said...

I can sit in stillness1 and see this! It is very good

The Retired One said...

So wonderfully touching, Brian.

Heidi said...

Beautiful.
Congrats again on your first published work!

Me said...

Breathtaking. I'd say more, but what can I say that hasn't already been said somewhere in the 73 comments before mine?

Eva Gallant said...

Whagt a love story!

Cabo said...

You are simply Golden, Bro. I truly hope what you deserve finds you soon. :)

Kathy's Klothesline said...

You are a master of words......

Tumblewords: said...

Beautifully done!

joanny said...

poignant -- teary eyed tale.. way to go --- touching the soul.

Joanny

Jen said...

Tragedy isn't in dying...it's in never having lived and loved...they are together and dancing again...both at peace.

LadyFi said...

So tender, so powerful and so beautiful!

mo.stoneskin said...

Probably my favourite of yours yet. I loved the line "stealing the air from his lungs", I could feel it happening!

Anya said...

Very very sad ....... :(
but its true love !!!

(Lovely touching words :)))

otin said...

That was wonderful, Brian. Very emotional tribute to real love.

CatLadyLarew said...

Absolutely exquisite Magpie, Brian! Well done! Well done!

natalee said...

Im starting to tear up....i am speechless...as usual great job

Vicki Lane said...

Very lovely -- a perfect ending.

The Empress said...

Oh, I love following magpie tales and their participants. I'm still too intimidated to try, because what I've read posted in so beyond words of praise.

This is excellent. Thank you.
Absolutely amazing.

Jingle said...

Good Morning, Brian Miller:

Your words of encouragement are very
precious and I treasure your time
and efforts in being a true friend
and support when it is needed.

Will see you later.
;)
;)

Jingle said...

I will be ready by noon...
Smiles!

Alix said...

Whoa. Don't let Nicholas Sparks see this... By comparison, your poem takes the "The Notebook" and makes mincemeat out of it.

"This was their fairy tale, she his princess, as they drew circles around the dance floor, until even the stars came to marvel at them."

Mama Wheaton said...

I don't think I could add anything to the praise you've already received but nicely done!

Mr. Stupid said...

Beautifully written. I loved it. The ending was marvelous...:)
Take Care!

Queenmothermamaw said...

Loved the lines about aging stealing a little at a time. So true you don't even know it is happening. Great writing Brian. Love reading your entries. Thanks for visiting.
QMM

suryagni said...

this is too beautiful. you truly are a magician of short stories.

you bring them to life.

i have a small gift for you, will you accept it :)

http://window2mysoul.wordpress.com/2010/04/22/friendship-cherished/

with warmest affections,

petemarshall1 said...

a breathtaking piece by a breathtaking writer with comments to match

Brian, are you on Twitter coz I am struggling to find a way to register your updates?

cheers

Pete

Jennifer said...

Oh how beautiful Brian. And what a picture you paint - from the dust motes to the exploding candy dish to them drawing circles around the dance floor. Much more beautiful than sad, because they had each other.

Grand Pooba said...

Very sad but touching!

Jingle said...

http://jingleyanqiu.wordpress.com/2010/04/27/magpie-tale-the-magical-wish/

I tried my best.
Thank you for the encouragement!
Happy Happy Tuesday!

blueviolet said...

That is a such a sad yet lovely piece.

rel said...

Brian,
A+ to you my friend...A+\
rel

Captain Dumbass said...

Fantastic work, Brian.

C.M. Jackson said...

always the twist--makes me want to shout!! GREAT WORK! there I feel much better;-)

JML said...

You really have a way with words. It's borderline ridiculous how well you use all of them.

little hat said...

You've packed a lot into this short piece Brian. It painted a pictureof a whole lifetime in a few words. Great.

Jingle said...

Days go by so fast, April is ending in a few days, but the magic, the smiles, and the lasting memories will follow and remain...loved this magical magpie, it breathes life and power...

Best luck on your theme Thursday post today, I look forward to reading it.

Your talent is unbeatable,
Your passion for human in general is exceptionally deep,
I miss my time here if I did not check out what others have said about your work, I feel lost if I disconnect with the art you create for too long...

Smiles!
Happy Wednesday Afternoon!

Mmm said...

Very touching and well written indeed, as often is the case with you. you really must not make a habit of it! :)

The Bug said...

This was so poignant! She was a thief stealing the breath from his body. Sigh.

Lisa said...

You are killing me your writing is so beautiful.

Chhaya said...

Heart wrenching ...

i m speechless... reminded me of my grandma...

Syd said...

I bet that he is dancing with his princess.

Selma said...

You write with such sensitivity and care. A beautiful story tinged with melancholy which actually makes it quite tender. You have great skill.

Katherine said...

Brian! Brian! Brian! A breathtakingly beautiful story!
I feel so sad for him ... I really do love your work Brian. You are a true romantic!

Marla said...

This made me think of a post I wrote about my parents and how they always danced. Beautiful, Brian.

The Girl Next Door Grows Up said...

Well now I am all teary! That was so beautiful. Thank you for entering this - it was very refreshing!