Friday, May 20, 2011

Black Angel #fridayflash

This post was prescheduled for Friday 13, the day of the Great Blogger Crash, so I'll try again this week. I'm sorry it's been so long since I posted a story. I've been off doing the A - Z Challenge, planning an overseas trip, writing, planning a new blog challenge (Romantic Friday Writers,) so some of my blogging had to go. This is a story I posted for #fridayflash a year ago. It's my way back into the routine. Many new readers will not have read it. I hope you enjoy it...

Black Angel

Black is my new favourite colour.

Your hair is the first part of you I see as I push you into the world. Amidst the euphoria and pain I am surprised to see a little head covered in black. Sure, it is messed in little curly strands, mixed with blood and fluid, but when the nurse washes you and hands you to me wrapped in a shawl as soft as fairy down, your hair is a halo of black fuzz. As I gaze at you I fall in love. I hold you close and kiss you and blow soft puffs of air across your head, catching my breath in wonder.
Art is blonde and I'm a redhead. Go figure. But I love your black downy fuzz. It goes so well with your bright red wrinkly just-been-born skin.
I'm ready to leave the hospital when I get a huge shock. You’ve gone bald. My God! Your beautiful black hair is no more. No one warned me about this. How can this be? To go from fuzzy black to bald overnight. Obviously I hadn’t read the baby books closely enough. Is there something wrong with you? No, I'm told. This is quite normal. Normal, I huff, no one told me I was going to have a bald baby. I hug you close, mourning the loss of your baby locks. It looks like I’ve given you a zero cut with Art’s clippers. It’s ok, I'm told, she won’t stay bald for long.

Within a week your hair grew back, but this time it wasn’t black, it was blonde.

And blonde it remained, except when you were sixteen and you and your friends decided to go goth at a pyjama party. When I picked you up, there you were, one of six gorgeous girls with charcoal-black hair, thrift-shop black overcoats and black Doc Martens, laces trailing like old spaghetti. My mouth was open, ready to tear strips off you, when I realised that you hadn’t gone black, you were…
…red, see Mum. I wanted to be a redhead like you. Whaddayathink?
It’ll grow back, I say, a bit at a loss.

The redheaded phase only lasted a few months, then the blonde was back but with a red tinge. I wondered why you didn't go black like your friends who kept their black hair, their overcoats and Docs, then added piercings, tatts and attitude, but I was pleased you didn't take it all on board.

How I loved your long strawberry-blonde curls. You were a Botticelli angel come to life. My heart did somersaults just looking at you, lying there in your dark room at night, clutching your red teddy bear, your hair wavy on the black satin pillowcase with its single red rose.
Art was beside himself, terrified every time you went out at night. He'd pace the floor, look at the clock, look out the windows.
I prayed.
Art always hated your friends, especially Jack with the black mohawk, stiff as a weapon. You were Art's little angel. He never wanted you to grow up.
He got his wish.
Who would have thought that you'd be caught between Jack and Art's hatred? Who would have thought you'd take the fatal blow? Oh, Art...Art...Angel...Angel...
Here you are, lying so close to me on your four-poster bed with its black drapery. But tonight your beautiful strawberry-blonde hair is hidden from me. Except for one curl, caught in the zipper of the slick black body bag.
Black is no longer my favourite colour.

I hope you enjoyed my story. I'd love to hear from you...


Sonia said...

Oh, this is so tragic. I wasn't expecting that ending.

L'Aussie said...

Neither was I when I wrote it Sonia. It just happened. Thanks for coming by.


John Wiswell said...

"It’ll grow back, I say, a bit at a loss."

What a nice mom thing to say. Though the opening was pretty bold for me, the story won me over in a few paragraphs.

L'Aussie said...

John, thank you.


Steve Green said...

Oh wow, so much heartfelt has gone into writing this, this is an excellent piece Denise.

Deb Rickard said...

A tragic story wrapped nicely around the hair motif. Neatly done.

Deanna Schrayer said...

Denise, this is so very well told, so sad, but beautifully written. I love the descriptions, and that ending - wow!

L'Aussie said...

Steve: Thank you. You're right. Lots of heartfelt.

Deb: Thank you.

Deanna: Glad you liked it.

Theres just life said...

Denice I remember this from the first time you posted it. It is still just as powerful now as then.

Pamela Jo

L'Aussie said...

Thanks PJ.

Donna Hole said...

What a beautiful, memorable letter. I loved the hair theme; and the end, "black is no longer my favorite color."

Well done.