All compositions are the sole property of the author and cannot be duplicated, reprinted, modified, published, stored, encoded, broadcasted, performed, posted, transmitted, exhibited, adapted, or used, etc. in any way without permission. The author reserves all moral, legal and intellectual property rights ©

Monday, May 23, 2011

Key of Life

By Royce A Ratterman ©

   They met in the B-Flat Club during a slow dance. For all they knew, they might never meet again, but something clicked. Maybe it was the club’s vocalist who sounded almost as soft and smooth as a brandied ice cream, maybe it was the band and their way of romanticizing all of the songs, maybe it was the club’s atmosphere and the billowy smoke from the patrons’ cigarettes, cigars and pipes; or maybe it was just them . . . two people escaping the mundane realities of every day life to enjoy the crowded solitude of a popular dance club.

   That night, as she ducked out of the exit door like a stream’s ripple flees across the water, they made eye contact once again. It was late and tomorrow was another day. If tomorrow comes, another chance may accompany it. Another chance to meet and hold out their hearts in their hands like in a dream, another chance to make beautiful music together on the dance floor, another chance to blend together like a violin and cello in this symphony we call life.

   When the two mystic lovers met again they sat and sipped drinks. During their fifth encounter they talked of life and love, they talked of time and chance, they just talked. And they danced . . . and while listening to the soft-souled singer gently in the background, they even fell in love.

   At their wedding reception a few years later, the soft-souled singer and the club’s band performed selected songs for this privileged couple. Friends and family danced to the tunes that brought these two together, together for life’s gentle concert. A concert that has a beginning and an ending. A concert filled with the music we all write for ourselves and for each other.

   They visited the club off and on over the years, dancing slowly and methodically around the floor. They watched other couples fall in and out of love. They watched the band grow old while the songs stayed as young as the day they were composed. They watched each other.

   The two lived a long life together and saw their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren grow into adulthood. They taught them to dance and taught them to live; to live life’s symphony to its fullest and to sing its joys and sorrows from the depths of their souls, to never just sit in the background.

   As they danced slowly to their favorite song “For All We Know” on their 50th wedding anniversary, they smiled gently and gazed into each other’s eyes. They did it again on their 60th, just as they had the night they had met.

   The B-Flat Club finally closed. An era was over, but the dance of life continued for Mr. and Mrs.  Ophanon. The dance of eternity . . . .


I authored the above Flash Fiction piece which is part of a collective entitled: "Renovated Reputations and Manufactured Memoirs" found at Professor Kenney Mencher's site.
Mr. Mencher is professor of Art History and Studio Art at Ohlone College in Fremont, California and Director of Louie Meager Art Gallery.
My story is reposted here by permission.
Professor Mencher's site HERE


Kittie Howard said...

Wow, powerful work! The line about watching others fall in and out of love really turned the clock with a sense of passing sadness around such love.

Royce A Ratterman said...


I'm happy you enjoyed this piece. Some have told me it related to their lives directly while others see their parents or grandparents lives in this story.

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

This is a powerful piece. The vivid imagery called on all my senses as I read (smooth as a brandied ice cream; billowy smoke from the patrons’ cigarettes, cigars and pipes). And the pacing was exquisite.

I think this was my favorite line, which seemed to sum up the theme of everlasting love: They watched the band grow old while the songs stayed as young as the day they were composed. Wonderful!

Thanks for the follow on my blog! I'm taking the summer "off" to write my new novel, but I'll be popping in about once a week with updates, etc. On writing breaks I'll be quietly perusing the blogosphere, and I look forward to visiting here.

Until next time,

Royce A Ratterman said...

Thank you, Nicole!

I wish you good luck and a smooth focus as you work on your new novel.


Linda Kage said...

Such vivid visuals. Very nice with a distinct, original voice. Thanks for sharing such creativity.

Theresa Milstein said...

Sweet story!