Fly through the air like a hawk, like the peregrine falcons who fly over the bridges and glide along the Hudson and East Rivers. I want to feel the wind under my wings and soar into the air and look down on us or swoop into the waters and fish.
Among the ten thousand workshops, seminars and meetings I have attended during my life was one session where I was to learn transcendental meditation. The man who ran this group of wanna-be hippies from the Upper West Side spoke with a base so low it resonated in your mid-section, instructed, “Imagine you are an animate or an inanimate object, another person or being, and become that.”
Deep into my meditation, I became an eagle and took off, riding on the currents above the ocean, gliding along the shore, dipping into the water and coming up victorious, I was the falcon perched on the tallest steeple of Riverside Church, the river currents teasing me; I became free.
When I came back to my sedentary self, I felt sad. I truly wished I could do that.
And we are the rarefied few who can.
That is what we do when we write.
We fly … and find the kind of freedom we can never find anywhere else. We are the master of all we survey … that world is our private kingdom … and within its boundaries is everything we have ever dreamed of or hoped to be.
I want to send my two geezers flying through the internet and used my blog as a testing ground. Needless to say, I have changed several things in the first two sections … but much less than I did at the end.
No matter that I have practiced with flash fiction, I found it difficult to hold it to 5,000 words, so the ending was hard to fashion. It had to tell you the true purpose of the story, to wrap up the plot, give you the moral angst and provide a satisfactory conclusion.
And so it will, so it will.
But you will never read it here.
However, in the spirit of fairness, I will give you a little bit more. You can draw your own conclusions from that or protest that I did not say enough.
Whatever your reaction, I do hope you have enjoyed my little experiment. And the next time you get the chance, close your eyes and let her rip …
Life in Reverse …
One week later, Aggie came through my front door juggling several folders, a loose-leaf binder, a Dunkin Donut box and two containers of coffee. “Now we can get down to business.”
“I have made a comprehensive list of the most popular small businesses, including an on-line shop for our crafts.”
“What’s with the plural pronoun? I hate crafts.”
“How can anyone hate crafts?”
“Okay, I’ll amend my comment.” I gave her a toothy grin. “I don’t like crafts.”
Ignoring me, Aggie went through each idea, about the wonders of scrapbooking and the thousands of nifty embellishments for each style. She bubbled over the joys of selling Mary Kay cosmetics, and revisited for the third time the old standby of Tupperware.
“Young women today don’t get into Tupperware when they can get disposable plastic containers for a couple of bucks.”
She threw that folder aside. “Okay, no Tupperware. How about Mary Kay?”
“I don’t like Mary Kay cosmetics. They smell funny.”
Undaunted, Aggie continued. “I always loved Avon.”
“We’re going backwards again, Aggie. We both tried Avon in the burbs and flopped. I had more Avon product displays in my garage than our district manager.”
“Then we could try the personalized coffee mugs and plates or ceramics and use your back porch for a kiln.”
There was no way around this. Aggie was gunning the engine and I was standing at the garage door. The best I could do was plaster a smile on my face and wait to get flattened.
I felt a sharp pain. Aggie had wacked me in the head with one of her empty photo albums. “You haven’t heard a single word.”
“I was listening.” I rubbed my head. “That hurt you know.”
She fingered a single butterfly embellishment on the table. “Don’t you think these are cute?”
“No, I don’t.” I pushed it away. “I have a linear mind. I think in columns of numbers like my dad. Concrete and practical is what I am and this is …”
“The only thing you want us to do together is go to silly book clubs with your new snooty friends.” She folded her arms over her chest, closed and unresponsive.
“They are a nice group of women.”
Since the second grade we have had tons of arguments, spats and parting of the ways. But only twice before had we ever had such a heated confrontation that we actually got angry. I saw it in her eyes, plastered on her perfect, pink cheeks and embedded in her fat frown.
And like both times before this one, Aggie cut me off at the knees.
“It won’t last. You’ll find something about them you don’t like. You don’t like cats or dogs. You don’t like selling Avon or Tupperware and now you don’t like crafts.” She returned the blue and pink butterflies to a baggie. “Money is what you like. Lots and lots of money like the fortune you’ll make after you sell the house.”
Before I could react, the space where she had been was vacant. Like a vacant lot before developers fill in the dirt with bricks and mortar, before the framing, or lines and pipes are laid to bring in water and energy.
I was left in an empty space with only the echo of my door slamming shut.
There you have it. Three parts of a whole with the last part left undone. Or rather it is done, but un-posted.
Next week I’ll have to come up with something else to do. I think I’ll hold off on my characters, old and new, and concentrate on one subject or another that is near and dear to our hearts.
How about you folks?
Do you get a tickle when you leave something undone?
fOIS In The City