Midweek Musings 1×03

It’s that time again… and let me tell you, I suffered through a metric shit ton of garbage new music yesterday. That’s how much I love you guys. Out of about 100 songs, two caught my attention enough to be considered worthy. And since there’s been at least one request for something upbeat, my chosen tune has been making me grin since I first heard it.

Knowing how evil-minded some of you are, I’ve no doubt you’ll find diabolical ways to spin this inspiration. For everyone else, this old-timey, toe-tapping tune inspires random bouts of chair dancing, Cary Grant / Jimmy Stewart marathons, and a need for sassafras and suspenders.

Without further ado, I give you Pokey LaFarge, “Something in the Water.”

She got a broke down El Camino, in the front yard up on blocks
Her mom walks around in a pink nightgown, sandals and white socks
She don’t mind a baseball game in the middle of the lightning and the rain
She’s a pain in my brain, drives me insane
But I love her just the same, boys, love her just the same

Chorus:
Something in the water (something in the water)
Something in the water (something in the water)
Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh
What makes her crazy I don’t know
Never seen anything like her before
There must be something in the water

She does her makeup and hair, to cook fried chicken in her underwear
She drinks malt liquor for lunch and dinner and sends me running scared
She yells, she screams and she beats me
But I don’t mind the way she treats me
She’ll someday lead to my death I know
But I’ll stay with her just the same, boys, stay with her just the same

Chorus

My hoosier girl is so fine, shake the watermelon off the vine
She’ll blow you a fist, throw you a kiss and you’ll thank her every time
Mmm, they’re all so crazy and beautiful
But I tell you the woman is never dull
They’ll break your back, give you a heart attack
But you need them just the same, boys, need them just the same

Chorus


The Guidelines:

  • This is a non-judged free write session.
  • Use the prompt anyway you’d like.
  • Post anytime between now and next Tuesday.
  • Keep it under 1,000 words.
  • Leave encouraging comments for other participants.
  • Most of all, have FUN!
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17 thoughts on “Midweek Musings 1×03

  1. Clarice

    “Griff,” the caller got my name right for once. Not Griffin. Just plain Griff!

    “Old Willy wants to see you. You had better make it quick.”

    Nurse Holdom’s implication was clear. My uncle Willy was on his last legs. Hell, he hadn’t been standing on his lonesome for over a year.

    “I’ll drive up tomorrow,” I said. Never do today what you can fob off on to tomorrow.

    I had a quiet night at the fights. Sammy the Barbarian took the title. That galumph could wrassle a cougar.

    The next morning, I hopped in my vintage Pontiac Parisienne and began the 4 hour drive up to Skookum Narrows.

    It was a fine fall day. Warm, like the sun knew something about climate change and wasn’t telling.
    I pulled into the Skookum Narrows Long Term Care Home and Coffee Shop parking lot a little after one.

    Holdom met me at the door and walked me down to Willy’s room.

    “Wheel him outside, maybe. He could do with a peek at the world.”

    Willy was sitting in his wheel chair. He looked like he was camping. Bits of food crumbled all over him. I think he smiled at me but it may have been a drool.

    I thanked Holdom for the opportunity to give Willy a shove and he and I wheeled away.

    The hallway leading outside was full of parked chairs. Heads hanging; legs flaccid, feet wrapped in plastic slippers, a bit of choral snoring amplifying the air, competing with Acker Bilk and the never ending drone of Stranger on the Shore.

    I parked Willy next to an old wooden bench that backed up against a gnarled Oak tree.

    Poor old Willy! What a mess he was. 87 and couldn’t even hold a bottle of beer anymore.

    I got reflective. Not much else to do other than sit there on the bench under the dying tree and listen to Willy’s drool splash on the fallen leaves.

    He had one thing going for him when I was growing up. Clarice. She was a fireball. I never understood how Willy snagged her.

    Slim as an alder; big eyes, always enjoying the moment, even when the moment was a game of Canasta with my folks. Canasta was their most exciting activity. Clarice yammered on a mile a minute, cracking tasteless jokes that even my old man got flush-faced about.

    All that aside, some of my best memories was staying with Clarice and Willy in the summer…Those days, like honey to me. Especially when Willy was away! Especially that last summer!

    1962

    “Mornin’ sleepy head,” Clarice said, hovering over me, clutching a tray with orange juice and toast. “Thought you might enjoy breakfast in bed.”

    She plopped the tray down and I dug in.

    She had on her favourite red silk robe, short, above the knee, slightly open, with a ferocious looking dragon breathing fire. I caught a glimpse at her well-preserved breasts. Well, the right one, anyway.

    “Would you like some coffee? It’s fresh.”

    I nodded. My parents didn’t want me smoking, drinking coffee or committing any other pleasurable sin.

    Clarice had different views on sin.

    “Willy had to take a load of lumber down to the coast. It’s just you and me today. I was thinking we could hike up to Bakers Dozen Lakes. Take a picnic lunch; swim. Sound good?”

    It did sound good to me.

    After breakfast, we set out. It was about an hour hike up and over Campbell Mountain. A hill really, but the Campbell’s were the one to name her so they went with mountain.

    Clarice led the way.

    She must have been 42, 43 that year. My fifteen year old eyes loved the sight of her smooth backside squeezed into shorts. She was only 5’ 4” or so but she was as fit as the girls gym coach back at Crater High.

    We finally reached the first of the 13 small lakes that formed the chain and that were strung out like a watery necklace far into the mountains.

    “The best swimming is on the opposite shore. More private. Deep water. Delicious,” she said. 10 minutes later we were there. We placed a blanket on the grass that edged the lake.

    “I don’t know about you,” Clarice coyly said, “but I want to feel the cold water all over me. That won’t embarrass you Griff, will it? Me, being naked?”

    Well, you can imagine, I swallowed my gum, metaphorically, that is, because you shouldn’t walk and chew it at the same time, at least in my family.

    Clarice didn’t actually wait for an answer.

    Smiling like a cat who was just about to gorge on its favourite meal , she pulled off her t-shirt, unclasped her silk bra, shucked her shorts and underpants, stood there for probably a moment longer than an Aunt should, and then dove in.

    After a few shocked moments of pondering family relations, I followed suit.

    Actually, suitless!

    That was my last summer visiting Willy and Clarice.

    That winter, she left him. There would be no more aunts for Willy to share.

    He lived alone as far as we knew, kept to himself, missed our rare and rather dull family reunions, and sort of fell off of our family radar.

    A couple of years ago, Public Health contacted me. Last living relative!

    It was the least I could do, keeping in touch with Willy.

    Payback time, I suppose.

    906 words
    @billmelaterplea
    http://www.engleson.ca

    Liked by 2 people

  2. “A vampire holed up in a church?” Graham studied the architecture of St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral. Mulberry Street pedestrian traffic ignored us, as per New York City custom. “Our boy has a flare for the dramatic.”

    “He can be your boy,” I said. “I don’t want him.”

    “On the upside, I don’t personally know this one.” Graham tested the slide and trigger on his new sidearm. “So I won’t be freaking out.”

    “On the downside, he can still hypnotize you into being dinner.”

    “You are hell on a man’s confidence, Red.”

    “If he starts talking to you—” I opened the tall red door. “Plug your ears and sing Yankee Doodle Dandy.”

    “As if,” he scoffed. “Let’s forget the part where I’m not American and don’t know the words and go straight for the part where, oh yeah, I’m not American and don’t know the words.”

    “God Save the Queen, then.” I shrugged. “Just make it loud and proud, so I know to rescue you.”

    “You’re going to be the death of me.”

    Shaking his head, he followed me into the cathedral. Scaffolding and drop cloths hid most of the left side of the room, signs of a full restoration in progress. The low evening lights cast shadows throughout the basilica.

    “I’m going up,” I said. “Keep to the center aisle where I can see you.”

    “Got it.”

    I climbed the scaffolding, giving myself a ten foot height edge. I shifted my site and found him. The indigo trail led right to the altar, and now I saw him. Lounging in plain sight, trusting the shit lighting to hide him, while giving him the perfect view of anyone entering.

    He’d seen us the moment we walked in.

    Shit, damn, fuck.

    “Heads up.” I waved my hand ahead. “He’s at the altar.” I knew he could see us, so I didn’t much care if he heard me. Better he didn’t go thinking we weren’t ready for him. On the other hand, the hand that recognized the value of an ace up the sleeve, it might have been perfectly awesome for him to think that.

    “Oh, someone has very good eyes.” The voice crept into my mind, but I shook off the soothing urge to set my gun down and chill out. “I’ve been waiting for company.”

    “Red?” The hematophage stood as Graham’s deep voice rang out. “Do I start singing now?”

    “Feel free to just shoot him, English,” I called.

    “No,” the vamp sighed. “I wouldn’t do that.”

    Graham froze with his gun halfway up. The vampire glided down from the altar.

    “Don’t you dare, you bloodsucking bastard,” I said. “Not even one step closer.”

    The vamp halted his steps from the altar. His red eyes zeroed in on me and he shivered.

    “You actually came.” The voice echoed through the cavernous room. “He said you would. How did he know?”

    Those uncanny eyes shifted from me and back to Graham. We each sidestepped, me angling for a better shot around the scaffolding, and him cagily keeping me from it.

    “Don’t worry, Iris. I’m hungry enough for two.” The red gaze slid back to me, the right edge of his mouth curling up. “And I can stop after you.”

    How, damn it? How could he be saying almost exactly what Mariele had said, two days ago and fifteen hundred miles away?

    “No!” I screamed as he bolted for Graham.

    I sprinted along the scaffolding, but there was no easy way to get between Graham and the vampire. Saying a prayer for my bones, I hurtled off the edge with a kamikaze shriek. I clipped the vamp’s legs, knocking him backward from Graham. My chin slammed into the thinly carpeted stone floor.

    “Wait your turn, Iris,” the vampire snarled back at me and reared up to tear Graham apart.

    I scrambled to grab the hematophage by the hair. I yanked his head back hard enough to snap a human’s neck and rammed my Kahr into the base of his skull and fired. Bone and brain matter exploded in fiery chunks. The skin of my right hand blistered and burned and I tumbled back. My bandages disintegrated in smoldering bits, and the stitches beneath were freshly torn open. I smothered my arm under the red carpet runner to keep the entire works from going up in flames. I didn’t feel it yet, but I saw the damage done. No way my blood hadn’t done a little tango with worm infested hematophage blood and tissue. Only real question was if the incendiary rounds had done their work and nuked the parasites first.

    Graham shoved the dead vamp off him and sprawled on his back, gasping for air.

    “Kelly, I think it’s time to accept the hard truth.”

    “Someone’s trying to kill us?”

    “You mean trying to kill you, but no, not that truth.”

    I had to use the nearest pews to regain my feet. I stuck out my good hand and helped Graham to his feet.

    “I mean the one where you really are going to be the death of me.”

    “Pretty sure you’d already be shaking hands with the reaper without me.”

    “True enough.” He touched my cheek. “Your chin is busted open.”

    “A lot of me is busted right now.”

    “I’m damn glad I’m on your side of this war.” He reeled me in, wrapping his arms around me, resting his head on my chin. “You have bloody well earned those Wonder Woman pajamas of yours. I’ve never quite seen anything like your screaming banshee flight through the air. You might be insane, come to think on it.”

    “I fight any way I have to,” I whispered. “To keep you—us—alive.”

    His hold on me tightened.

    “Us,” he seconded. “Has to be us. I’m increasingly certain there is no me without you, Red.”

    I squeezed my eyes shut, the pain in my arm finally coming to screaming life, and wondered if his concern would be put to the test sooner than later.

    @caramichaels
    1000 WIP words

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Basic

    ‘Excuse me but what on earth are you doing up that pole at this time of night?’

    I rolled my eyes, how many times I had told her, that I did not want to join her exercise class, and that I was not listening to her Health and Safety Training anymore.

    ‘Mom, I’ve told you I want to be a firewoman, and the only time I can practice is when you are in bed, and unable to nag me constantly.’

    She murmurs something under her breath about pulling a muscle in my spine and grabs the office chair.

    There are times I wish I was blind and deaf as she proceeds to drape herself across it all the while telling me I have to learn the basics as her pole is completely different than a Fireman’s pole.

    I wonder can she not smell the fear emanating of me. She is a naturally, lithe, sexy woman whereas I take after my dear lumbering dad, with all the grace of an elephant trying to learn ballet.

    I know I’m not going to get any sleep tonight if I don’t at least put on a show of trying to keep up with her and learn a move or two. ‘Okay, mom, you win give me the chair.’

    She claps her hands like an excited toddler and begins to manipulate my body into all sorts of unmentionable positions. I felt like I was playing twister but with no visible means of steadying myself should I start to fall.

    ‘See, it’s working, your already at least fifty per cent more nimble than last week.’

    ‘Mom, you meant last week when I had the flu, and you tied me upside down, and left me there for half an hour.’

    ‘Don’t exaggerate dear, it was at the most fifteen minutes and I do believe it cut your out of work time by half, the rush of blood to the head or something.’

    I couldn’t argue her point, but I think it was more the heat that surged through my body when her mixed pole dancing class arrived an hour earlier than she thought. They must have thought I was enjoying some weird bondage session. Mr. Roberts has never looked at me the same since.

    I begrudgingly have to admit to myself that since she has got me to participate now and again my posture and along with it confidence has greatly improved. Being a stroppy teenager I could never tell her that, and the only time it was safe to practice without being caught was the middle of the night.

    I gave up the idea of the fireman thing months ago, my mind now totally engrossed in catching the eye of a certain Paul, unless of course mom can teach him to give me a fireman’s lift. It’s hard to try and be sexy when it’s your mom teaching you but she can teach me the basics, I smile to myself, I’ll take it from there.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Bayou Waltz

    Beatriz wakes with a start. She’s not yet familiar with the noises of the house. Perhaps it was only the midnight chiming of the grandfather clock that startled her.

    But lights flicker beyond the windows and voices echo beneath the portico. She tiptoes to the balcony that overlooks the main entry. The grounds of Petite Lune are filled with bonfires and bodies, people eating, and drinking, couples dancing, children playing, and animals dashing about underfoot.

    She pulls a lace shawl over her shoulders, perches on the top step of the staircase, and watches the commotion in the foyer, supplies coming in and food going out.

    Livie comes out of the great room and starts up the staircase. “Oh, Miss! You’re awake. Come join the party.”

    “I’m not sure that’s wise,” Beatriz says, tugging the shawl closer. “I haven’t decided whether or not I’m going to keep the property.”

    Livie kneels on the step below her. “Just come out, Miss. What can it hurt to meet some people? Try some new food? Learn a couple new phrases?”

    She looks at her bare feet, considering. “I can hardly do that in my nightgown. Let me change first.”

    “No,” Livie clasps Beatriz’s hand and holds fast. “This is ‘come as you are.’”

    Beatriz sighs, laces fingers with Livie, and rises. “I’m not sure I’ll ever get the hang of life in Malady. Why would anyone have a party in the middle of the night?”

    “Folks can’t relax and enjoy themselves until it cools off. Besides, the bayou doesn’t wake up until after midnight.”

    They step out onto the verandah and pause beside one of the thick white columns to take in the view. Mason jars with candles inside hang from trees. Blankets and awnings in every hue are draped across tent poles and branches. People of every creed, color, and language move through the candlelight and shadows.

    It’s like a scene from one of the fairytale books her father read to her as a child, where gypsies roamed the land in colorful caravans, elves and sprites flittered about dusting everything with glitter, and animals spoke as clearly as any human.

    A commotion breaks out off to the left, near the large reflecting pool, and Livie tugs Beatriz’s hand. “Let’s go see what’s going on.”

    They arrive just as Evella is extracting a small bat from her hair. “Disgusting little –“

    Beatriz reaches out to catch the bat as it tumbles out of Evella’s pile of curls. “Oh, look at those adorable ears.”

    Evella stares at Beatriz a moment and laughs. “Careful, Miss Goddard, or before you know it, you’ll be one of us.”

    “Isn’t that what this is about,” Beatriz says, stroking the bat’s odd ears. “Enchanting me so I won’t sell the property?”

    Livie exchanges glances with Evella.

    “Let’s forget about property deeds for now and just enjoy the evening,” Evella says, patting the decorative concrete railing overlooking the pool.

    The three of them settle on the sturdy ledge facing the pond. The water is still and calm but for the gentle motion of water lilies and cattails.

    Livie hooks her legs around the rungs and sways to the music. Evella braces on her palms and leans out over the water. Beatriz nestles the bat in her lap and swings her bare feet over the tops of the water iris.

    “I’ve lived out of a suitcase my whole life,” Beatriz says, glancing at Livie and Evella. “Never stayed in one place more than a few months. So I don’t know what home is, what it’s supposed to feel like, but this here – the lights, music, and friends – this is pretty much everything I could hope for.”

    The pond water ripples and surges towards them as though propelled by a submerged leviathan but out of the spray and froth steps a lone man, clothes soaking wet and eyes a strange shade of green.

    Beatriz gives a sharp shriek and grabs Evella’s arm before she recognizes him.

    Evella hops down and scoops up the bat. “Things aren’t always what they seem in the bayou, Miss Goddard. You are safe here. Never doubt that. Never forget it.”

    Livie grins at Etienne as he shakes the water out of his hair, and follows Evella.

    Etienne doesn’t speak, simply hooks an arm around Beatriz’s waist, lifts her off the concrete, and guides her into the nearest fray of dancers.

    She puts a hand to his chest, to push him away, but doesn’t follow through. What’s the harm in a dance or two?

    A new tune strikes up, something lively and bright, and the dancers take off. Beatriz slips her hand into Etienne’s and follows his capable lead. He’s lean and sturdy against her, his feet light, his hold gentle.

    As they whir around the circle, the lights and shadows mingle, colors blend and form new hues, and faces begin to merge, looking both human and animal. A woman with the face of an owl stands beneath the willow. A child with the tail of a lizard plays ring-around-the-posy beside the pond. The scents of food, bodies, and the land envelop her like a familiar blanket.

    The music slows, becomes a stately waltz. Breathless and pleasantly dizzy, Beatriz puts her arm around Etienne’s waist. He doesn’t correct her form, but draws her close and takes up the dance. Somewhere in the measured revolutions, she laces her hands around his neck, presses her cheek to his, and hums a lovely little counter melody.

    A hush falls over the bayou, humans and animals alike become still and watchful, as though all their hopes and dreams rest on this moment, in this woman … and they do.

    – – – – –
    @bullishink / 943 WIP words

    Liked by 3 people

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