- Books, Literature, and Writing
When Angels Sing: Chapter Seven
Welcome Back, My Friends
When I first wrote “The 12/59 Shuttle From Yesterday To Today,” my goal was to write a metaphor of sorts. I’ll leave it to you to discover the meaning of the metaphor, or perhaps to determine if there is more than one metaphor in the book and this, it’s prequel.
I can tell you this, without giving anything away: this story, or collection of stories, or future book, is 90% about love.
And never has this world needed the message of love so badly as now.
Of course, we all say that during our lifetime, don’t we? I’m sure people living during the Great Depression said the same thing….we need love….and people during World War 2….we need love….but this is my story, and my time, so I’m allowed that freedom of opinion….we need love today.
This, then, is my message of love.
Sheila is still ten years old but the calendar has turned to 1970.
A Cold January Morning
The child Sheila was trudging along by the creek on a snowy Saturday morning in mid-January, a muffled, nearly silent scene of child in nature and nature in child, so one, she was, with all that was natural and so at home in it all, this child was. The flakes fell softly at first, like the beginnings of a drippy faucet with defunct washer, but with each step the child took more flakes fell, and still more, until, after an hour of trudging, the background was fading and the leak was a full-fledged gusher.
She wore her purple overcoat, did this child of love, for purple was her favorite color, purple being the color of lavender, her favorite plant, and on that overcoat were hundreds of red hearts, a color-clash for sure, but the message was not easily mistaken, and that message was I love you and we love us and love is omni-present, and in fact she was whispering those words as she stopped in her tracks amidst the falling snow and then dropped to her knees, her purple coat turning white in the silence of it all.
The creek gurgled nearby, or perhaps it babbled, one can never really be sure with creeks, and the only other sound that could be heard was a slight gasp from the raven-haired child with green eyes and a face of kindness….sort of like “OH” but not quite so pronounced, rather more like “oh” with an emphasis on the surprise and mystery of it all.
She bent down but in truth, she didn’t have far to go, and her tiny hand plucked something from the branch of an azalea and then, as the snow continued to fall and the surroundings continued to turn whiter than white, she abruptly sat down and spoke into her cupped hands.
Ten minutes passed by, then fifteen, then twenty, and the snow fell heavier and the young girl began to resemble the azalea, and the azalea resembled the blackberry bush, and whiteness prevailed as minute thirty-two came and went….and……
The child, abruptly once more, stood up and raced for home.
And at That Home
From the barn came the sounds of a handsome baritone voice, a voice reminding one of choirs and throaty invocations, a voice which could easily be mistaken for the voice of God, if one were a believer, so deep, so rich, so Mississippi mudlike in quality, and that voice was singing “All You Need Is Love” with no apologies to the Beatles, so beautifully it was sung.
And that voice was attached to a voice box in ways we will never understand, and that voice box was the property of one Sam McCabe, Samuel on his birth certificate but Sam to those who knew him and the name he much preferred. “Call me Sam,” he oft proclaimed and Sam it came to be.
Sam was just finishing the first chorus of his second favorite song when the love of his life sauntered sexily into the barn, not an easy feat, by the way, sauntering in a sexy way, but Heather Miller, his wife, had perfected the feat without really trying. She was THAT lovely in an earthy way, think Mississippi mud once again, and she exuded that loveliness in a bad girl way, a way that suggested she knew a secret, a perfectly naughty secret, and if you were lucky enough she just might share it with you.
And the singing stopped and the two rushed to each other, entwined they soon were, and nature took its course, or began to, for the purely unplanned sexual encounter of these two oversexed human beings ended as quickly as it began with a “Mother, Father” exclamation from outside the barn and getting nearer lickety-split.
Sam had just tugged on his pants, backwards as it turned out, and Heather was busily buttoning her blouse when a snow-covered stalk of lavender walked into the barn, and that lavender had hands and those hands were cupped around a treasure of sorts.
“Mother, Father, look what I found,” said the lavender which of course turned out to be Sheila. “Mother, Father, my best friend has finally arrived and isn’t it just wonderful? Father, why are your pants on backwards?”
Why Indeed, Father?
Sam had no answer for the question and besides, he was a bit out of breath and flushed, but Heather quickly recovered, as she always did, and addressed her special child.
“Sheila, my darling, whatever are you talking about? What best friend and from where did this friend arrive and oh, my goodness, your father does get confused occasionally, wrong shoes on the wrong feet, shirt turned inside out, pants on backwards, it’s just your father, Sheila, and no worry to you. Now tell me, darling, about this best friend.”
“Mother, Father, it’s Delilah, of course,” and with that the beyond-adorable child opened her hands and showed her parents a…….
Yes, the tiny hand held a tiny ball of orange and black, barely noticeable in nature, and isn’t that sad, when you think about it, one of the kindest, most gentle of all bugs, merely an afterthought in the natural order of things, as though kindness and gentleness were not valued by nature, but of course that’s silly, now isn’t it, and….oh, my goodness, this narrator apologizes for his untimely ramblings…back to the story.
Mother and Father, a.k.a. Heather and Sam, made the sounds of exclamation and surprise that were expected for they knew, as parents know, how important this bug was to their daughter although, in truth, they were clueless.
“Oh, she is lovely, darling,” gushed Heather.
“A prettier ladybug I’ve never seen,” chimed in Sam. “Very pleased to meet you, Delilah,” he added.
“And you say she is your best friend, Sheila?”inquired Heather.
“Indeed she is, Mother, Father,” the child said. “She and I have wonderful adventures ahead of us. Delilah will be the Maid-of-Honor at my wedding, and she will be of assistance for me as I live out my destiny, and of course she will provide comfort to me and, well, she will do what best friends do. To others she is just a miniature, insignificant creature, but she is so much more to me.”
And then the ladybug flew from Sheila’s hands and landed on Sam’s nose, sat there for a count of five, and then did the same to Heather’s nose, five more counts, and then returned to Sheila’s hands.
“My goodness,” said Heather. “What was that all about? And it seemed to me, silly old me, that Delilah was smiling when she perched on my nose. Is that even possible, lady bugs smiling?”
In response the young girl simply smiled and, as often happened when she smiled, the room seemed to brighten, and when she spoke she did not directly answer the question because, well, that was not her way.
“What was that song you were singing earlier, Father, as I was approaching the barn?”
“A song by the Beatles, my cherub, called ‘All You Need Is Love,’” replied her loving and adoring father.
“Mother,” said the time-travelling ten-year old. “That is the answer to your question. Anything is possible where love resides.”
More fiction by this writer
And with That We Will……
Well, we will take a break for a week, and return in seven days with another installment of the story that would be a book, the little literary engine that could, I think I can, I think I can, I think I can…..
Thank you for joining me, and of course, Heather, Sam, Sheila and Delilah thank you as well. You are all appreciated.
2016 William D. Holland (aka billybuc) #greatestunknownauthor