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The Dance for the Ages

Updated on January 1, 2017
Dean Traylor profile image

Dean Traylor is a freelance writer and teacher. He is a former journalist who has worked on various community and college publications.

May I?” he asked. “Yes,” she said, beaming. And with that, the slow-dance commenced. And -- as Randolph reminisced that moment so many years ago -- a smile widen across his aged and withered face. “Ninety-years,” he sighed. Then, something dawned
May I?” he asked. “Yes,” she said, beaming. And with that, the slow-dance commenced. And -- as Randolph reminisced that moment so many years ago -- a smile widen across his aged and withered face. “Ninety-years,” he sighed. Then, something dawned | Source

Randolph’s opportunity arrived when the band in the gymnasium slowed everything down. He stepped onto the dance floor and weaved his way toward one special person.

Penelope was in the middle, waiting for someone to take a chance with her. The butterflies swarmed in his stomach as he mustered all his courage to take that challenge.

“May I?” he asked.

“Yes,” she said, beaming.

And with that, the slow-dance commenced.

And -- as Randolph reminisced that moment so many years ago -- a smile widen across his aged and withered face.

“Ninety-years,” he sighed. Then, something dawned upon him: “Ninety-years?”


He awoke and found himself confined to a bed in his room at the nursing home. It was midnight. He was in the present -- and so far away from the memories that had played in his dreams.

Still, the music played. The same melodic sounds from his memory waft through the room.

Randolph struggled to sit up. He scanned the room, believing one of his great-great grandchildren had forgotten to turn off a radio or TV when they came to visit. But the power on the radio was off. So were the TV and other electronic devices (with the exception of the various monitors that continuously and rudely beeped through it all).


Then, he caught sight of a spark of light.

He peered toward the dresser and found the source. An open book emitted the light.


Randolph’s eyes sparkled at this spectacle. The people on the page – long dead – were alive and dancing.

Lunch Hour Dance, 1920: And, once again, the two slow danced into oblivion with the band's sweet melody playing in the background.
Lunch Hour Dance, 1920: And, once again, the two slow danced into oblivion with the band's sweet melody playing in the background. | Source

A surge of vitality reemerged within his 108-year-old body. He got out of bed and shuffled toward this peculiar source. It was his high school yearbook -- left open by one his curious off-springs. And, the page was opened to the Cotton Ball Dance. There, Penelope stood in the center, waiting.

Randolph’s eyes sparkled at this spectacle. The people on the page – long dead – were alive and dancing. Penelope, his first and only true love -- and who had passed away many years ago -- was as beautiful as the first time he set his eyes on her at the dance. She smiled, affirming that what he was seeing was real.

“May I,” he whispered, transfixed.

Her hand reached from the page. Randolph obliged. Gently, she pulled him into page, and into the dance where he became youthful, again.

And, once again, the two slow danced into oblivion with the band's sweet melody playing in the background.

"...into oblivion with the bands sweet melody playing in the background." from advancingchristway.com
"...into oblivion with the bands sweet melody playing in the background." from advancingchristway.com | Source

© 2014 Dean Traylor

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    • aScribbler profile image

      C.K.B 2 years ago from The void I call my mind!

      A wonderful story. What a lovely scenario and beautifully scripted view of an end of life situation. we should all be as lucky as Randolph. Up n beautiful

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