27 April 2010

Magpie Tales-Sonata




I.
Papa's walking stick leaned against the wall next to the front door. I could see it from the stairs looking through the balusters as he waited for Mama to finish dressing. Sitting in the study, he would call, "Clara! It's time to be going." The smoke from his pipe wafting up to meet her perfume as her bedroom door opened, the hem of her skirt sliding onto the wood and her heels clicking their way to me. "Young lady, you should be in bed" as she lifted me up to kiss me on the cheek, her earrings twinkling in the early evening light. My toes were tickled by the lace of her gown as she lowered me to the floor just in time for me to see Papa walking out from his study to look up at us. Smiling, he reached for his walking stick and watched as Mama descended the stairs. He opened the door and took Mama's arm, looking back over her shoulder and winked, "Sweet dreams." The silver tip of his walking stick guiding them into the night.

II.
As the curtains moved with the early summer evening breeze, the scent of lilacs and magnolias drifted in. The floorboards creaked as he paced hearing the laughter of women above his study. He reached for his pipe and then remembered Clara's request. He placed his pipe by his chair and looked at his watch. Seeing the time, he picked up his walking stick and stood at the base of the stairs, the silver tip clicking the moments away until the bedroom door opened and the bridesmaids filed out, still preening and giggling, followed by his daughter, Lucy on her mother's arm, the silk of her gown brushing the balusters as she made her way to the stairs. They stood for a moment and smiled down at him. His hands grasped the walking stick as he gazed up, his heart filled with pride.

III.
It was spring and the children were running in and out of the house playing hide and seek. He sat in his study, reading, a blanket about his legs and his pipe nearby. Clara had passed on just six months ago and his daughter, Lucy and her family had come to live with him for a spell. Looking out the window, he felt alone as he watched the tulips and dogwoods swaying in the breeze, knowing how much Clara loved the seasons and her garden. A loud crash brought him back and he was out his chair in time to see his grandson, Charles drop the walking stick at his sister, Amanda's feet.Shattered glass and petals of tulips and lilac lay at their feet, their eyes wide as he picked up the stick. Lucy stood at the kitchen door, a dishcloth in her hands. He looked at Charles and said, "It's time to walk." With that he placed the stick in Charles hand said, "Take your sister's arm." As he walked out the door, he looked over his shoulder at Lucy and winked.


Tis just another Magpie Tale--for more tales, walk this way! Thank you to Willow for the inspiration!

18 comments:

joanny said...

What a beautiful story-- I was captivated with the passing of time and seasons,, but love lives on. and to think this was all inspired by that walking stick. Just lovely and I had the music sonata No. 15 in D Major Pastoral, Op. 28 -
playing on from your blog that made it so much more enjoyable. Love your new banner too.

Joanny

Brian Miller said...

what an endearing tale...snippets of life the stick ever present...almost a family memeber. smiles. nice magpie.

willow said...

Wonderful chapters in the life of a walking stick. I thoroughly enjoyed this, CM.

Everyday Goddess said...

love this!

Catalyst said...

Ah nicely done, CM. A sweet story.

Lyn said...

You really created a lovely and very human scenario..thank you!

Helen said...

I love the way you took us on a journey with this walking stick!

Jennifer said...

I just love these vignettes - you've painted such a vivid picture of a family in a few short paragraphs.

steviewren said...

Very nice seeing how the cane accompanied the man throughout his life.

Tumblewords: said...

A charming tale of life stages. Enjoyed it!

Suz said...

This was so enjoyable
i love your writing style

Titanium said...

Beautiful- you led the way through states of grace with this one.

Jingle said...

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

mine is up!

Jingle said...

beautiful writing style!

Enchanted Oak said...

I liked very much traveling along through the contented life of a lovely walking stick. This was a fine job.

Peter Goulding said...

Very well written vignettes and all linked so cleverly through the stick.

Reya Mellicker said...

Your banner is fabulous! Wow.

It's kind of shame people don't use walking sticks much anymore, isn't it? Though Willow's family walking stick has been a great inspiration for so many here.

chiccoreal said...

An indelible story; rich with memory and emotion. The way you describe the scenes with ample detail reminds me of a real story about a real person. Dr. Sigmund Freud? This is what came to mind with the pipe and the office and Clara. The description of the fabric really created this timepiece mood. Excellently written and endearingly human by a masterful writer par none.

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