Thursday, 8 December 2011

Give me Chardonnay or give me death!

She stood at the edge, looking down at the cold, hard ground below. Could she do it? Had she the courage? A couple of seconds and it would all be over. A life ended; in a crash of exploding rainbows, as the halogen spots flashed through her broken shards. It would, surely, be a blaze of glory. And what then? Would that be it, the final curtain? Or would she rise from this shimmering death, like a phoenix, to begin life anew?

Such were the thoughts flowing through the quivering silicate bonds at the core of her being. Was there something else? In her younger days, she had heard whispered rumours of a Land of Crystal. Idle cupboard chatter she had thought; childish little flutes, giving comfort to each other in the darkness. But now, in her moment of choosing, cloudy doubts began to crystallise into the clarity of hope. Could there be such a place?

No time now for such thoughts, she said to herself. The dye is cast. She leapt.

Her life swam before her, a swirling, sparkling vintage of years gone by. She smiled fondly at the vision of the old man, breathing life into her, coaxing and caressing her into the beauty she became. Her brief time sitting on the shelf of his Paris studio. Her years at the Ritz. Oh, life had been sweet then. Such music, dancing and gaiety. The notes of Moonlight Sonata, drifting across the Seine. But then came the storm clouds of war. Sweet Sauternes were replaced by dry Reislings. Straussian waltzes crunched under jackboots, as swastikas sang of Wagnerian heroes. And then, her finest hour. A night in the hands of a G.I. who had liberated a case of 1921 Chardonnay from the hotel cellars. She floated through that night, her head spinning with the glorious Chardonnay. La Marseillaise rang out through the Parisian night. Liberty filled the smoky air.

But now, her liberator was long gone, leaving her trapped in trailer land, where those storm clouds of long ago flickered into life again on the screen in the corner. She could smell the lingering odour of the supermarket slop that still stained her once shiny surface. Enough she thought, and closed her eyes as she fell to oblivion.

"Oops, gotcha!" said the man as he caught her in his outstretched hand.

"Hey Honey, pass the Thunderbird over would you."

"Sure" said the woman, turning to face her husband.

"Whaaat?" screamed the man.





"You clumsy ape! That was my Grandaddy's glass"

"It screamed, I tell ya. The damn glass screamed!"

"The glass screamed huh? I think you've had too much Thunderbird for today buddy. C'mon, we're going to Wal - Mart. I'll drive."

Somewhere, far away, in a Chardonnay dream, a wine glass softly hummed the opening bars of La Marseillaise, as the light of it's creator flooded through each tiny facet; reflecting the glory within.

© W. Burn 2007

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