Love, Accompanied

Welcome to Friday Fictioneers, where every story is a surprise.

This week’s photo is courtesy of C. E. Ayr. Thank you, C. E., for a fascinating photo! It prompted me to imagine a concert hall in a vibrant city on the water, where amazing concerts are given every night by the world’s most talented performers. My story explores what happens when two of those performers fall in love.

For more information on Friday Fictioneers, or to post your own story, please visit our lovely leader’s website, author Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ Addicted to Purple.

concert hall ceayr

Photo copyright: C.E. Ayr

 

Love, Accompanied

by Jan Brown

It happened the first time she heard him play. 

That’s how musicians fall in love. They listen. Not to the frailty and false promise of words, but to the heartfelt passion of music that cannot be feigned.

He became her accompanist, a move that boosted both their careers. The sizzling electricity that passed between them was exhilarating! 

They never acted on the sexual tension, not wanting to risk their partnership. But now, in the autumn of her singing career, she could not imagine being apart. She looked at the pair of gold bands in the jeweler’s box, and hoped he would feel the same.

 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

To read more Friday Fictioneers’ stories, click the link:

Daydream

NaPoWriMo Day 30: Our last challenge for NaPoWriMo2016 is to write a homophonic “translation”  of a poem written in a language you don’t know. In other words, write a poem that mirrors the original in sound–-or what you imagine to be the sound–of the original words.

I selected a poem by José Marti (1853-1895), a champion of Cuban independence from Spain and a prolific writer and poet. This particular poem is part of a collection that was dedicated to his son, who was born shortly before Marti was deported/exiled to Spain. Its title means “I Dream Awake” (I looked it up), so I tried to give the mirror poem a dreamlike quality, while also keeping in mind that the collection honored his son.

The original poem:

Sueño despierto

Yo sueño con los ojos

Abiertos, y de día

Y noche siempre sueño.

Ysobre las espumas

Del ancho mar revuelto,

Y del león pujante.

Monarca de mi pecho,

Montado alegremente

Sobre el sumiso cuello, —

¡Un niño qu me llama

Flotando siempre veo!

~~~~~~~

My mirror poem:

Daydream

Your swanlike carriage languishes

Ably escorting me through days

And nights of struggle

Stealthily approaching

Dancing and marching in rhythm

Before entering the crypt

The arena is deserted

And the lion prowls alone

Core of my compassion

Mighty legend, a young man

Voice sweet and low as a cello

Effortless as the wind

Floating beyond the veil

~~~~~~~

Reverie

NaPoWriMo Day 29: We are challenged to write a poem in which each line starts with “I remember.” We’re asked to focus on specific details, and not whether the memories are of important events, or are connected to each other. 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I remember the youth group, our trip to Vermont. At night, we listened to comedy albums, back when we thought Bill Cosby was still a good person.

I remember the concerts, astounding acoustics for our college choir. Drinks at the Yacht Club (which had no yachts, and no body of water) before…and after.

I remember the Artist’s Café, the heady lunches in late afternoon.

I remember spring break. We got married.

I remember the move to Wisconsin, the blizzard with snow so deep only snowmobiles could traverse. No power or water—only the cheese shop was open.

I remember Main Place, the Saturday brunches that lasted till the bar closed Sunday morning.

I remember dinners with John at the Inn, Friday night fish fries and dance bands.

I remember the trips to Arkansas–warm, sunny Christmases and barbequed goat on New Year’s.

I remember Summerfest and 70’s music.

I remember the divorce.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Backwards in Time

It’s National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo), and I’m completing a challenge to write 30 poems in 30 days. Today, I am combining the daily poetry prompt with the Friday Fictioneers’ photo prompt. The NaPoWriMo prompt is to write a poem that tells a story…but tells it backward. Thus, the first line of the poem is the end of the story. As I see it, I have four challenges: make it poetic; make it tell a story with a beginning, middle and end; make it work whether it is read forward or backward, and keep it to 100 words. You can let me know if I succeeded in the comments!

For more information on Friday Fictioneers, or to post your own story, please visit our lovely leader’s website, author Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ Addicted to Purple.

antique store mary shipman

Photo copyright: Mary Shipman

 

The nightmare ended as quickly as it began

She turned to watch her pursuer vanish in a cloud of dust

Dazed, she ran through the doorway into the mall

His face red with rage

He turned to look at her in her flimsy sundress

His harsh words echoed through the rafters

Hyper-religious

Hypocritical

Brutal

He reminded her of her grandfather

A man in Victorian dress berated a young clerk

Dizziness overcame her

Sun peeked through high windows, reflected off dust motes

The walls were as faded and stained as the wares

The antique store looked like a portal in time

 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

To read more Friday Fictioneers’ stories, click the link: 

When Words Aren’t Enough

NaPoWriMo Day 26: This is inspired by a prompt posted on Twitter by @MadQueenStorm. The prompt is a question: “What do you do when words aren’t enough?”

When you’re sick, words are not often enough. Platitudes don’t really help. People remind you that things could be worse. “At least you can be thankful you’re alive and breathing.” Hmmm….maybe so, but if you’re in constant pain, it doesn’t really feel like living. Words sometimes hurt more than help. So I often rely on music for comfort.

~~~~~

I sing

soulful melodies

express what words cannot

~~~

I smile

rousing symphonies

take our hearts to a better place

~~~

I listen

downbeats of jazz

infuse us with energy and love

~~~

I sigh

you hold my hand

we wait for peace to return

~~~~~

Sunny

For NaPoWriMo Day 25 (yes, I am running behind!) we are challenged to take a line from an existing poem and use it as our first line. But…we must take the poem in a completely different direction than the original.

I took the first line from “The Fall of Rome” by W. H. Auden, “The piers are pummeled by the waves.” Auden’s poem offers a dark view of the state of civilization. While I do not disagree with his assessment, my poem takes inspiration from a restaurant in Sausalito.  From that perspective,  life was joyous, not despairing, and the view from the piers was quite sunny!

sailboat

the piers are pummeled by the waves

each hard, rhythmic slap

in time with the beat of jazz

the miles of blue I hear

and see before me

gulls dip and dive for bread

honking thanks as they take wing

sailboats glide

laughing and waving

sun cuts through the fog

sparkles off our glasses

bread, brie, fruit, wine

all these are ours

and the ocean, too

for one long day

life is good

~~~~~

Symphonies

NaPoWrMo Day 24:  This draws inspiration from the prompt posted by @MadQueenStorm, “if we were symphonies.” 

~~~~~

if we were symphonies

I would play mine

and send it through the air

resonating through the trees

warbling from the throats of birds

echoing through the streets

bouncing off buildings

all the way to your house

when you hear it

would you think of me?

~~~~~

if we were symphonies

I would play yours

to keep me company

in the solitary dark

I would dance with your allegro

drink wine with your adagio

peal laughter to your scherzo

hug you to the rondo

would it resonate loudly

or fade into the space between us?

~~~~~

Serpentine

NaPoWriMo Day 23: Today I took inspiration from NaHaiWriMo, where the prompt is “serpentine.” It reminded me of the winding road to Seal Point at Point Reyes National Seashore in northern California. It’s a lovely drive…if you’re not the driver. Making your way through mountainous terrain in deep fog takes patience and skill; I have little of either.

cliffs and sea lions
white knuckles
on a foggy drive

1024px-Point_Reyes_National_Seashore_headlands_from_Chimney_Rock

Source: Wikimedia – Public Domain

 

Earth Day

NaPoWriMo Day 22: We are challenged to write something about Earth Day today.

bumblebee tom tolkien copy

Photo Credit: Tom Tolkien Creative Commons CC by 4.0

This is the same subject I wrote about last Earth Day. For more information about the dwindling population of pollinators such as butterflies and bees, check out the articles listed below. The last one is interesting in that it describes the necessity to hand pollinate fruit trees in China, but also provides a bit of good news about bee populations in the U.S.

Wikipedia – Colony Collapse Disorder

Wired – Wild Bee and Butterfly Declines

Wired – It’s Hard Work Being a Bee

If you like the photo above, you might want to visit Tom Tolkien’s photostream  and blog.