Sunday, June 16, 2019

Playing with your muse (short story)(1 of 2) by Leanne Dyck

Do writers sleep soundly? What makes them toss and turn? Who do they wake up for--too early in the morning?

photo by ldyck

Playing With Your Muse

You, the writer, were in bed, but you weren't asleep. The pillow was too lumpy; your knees too bony; the blankets too warm; the bed too cold. The deep breathing exercise you'd found online had promised sleep after four or five deep breaths. It might have worked for some, but not you.

I have to relax, you told yourself, I have that major presentation tomorrow. I have to be rested-- I have to get to work early-- I have to beat rush hour-- I have to--

You breathed out slowly. No, I don't. You smiled. I'm retired. Retired and living in paradise. No major presentations. No rush hour. No stress.

You visualized taking your last sip of grapefruit juice, depositing the glass in the sink and cutting a path through dew-kissed grass to your studio. There you reply to songbirds with clicks from your computer keyboard. With images of your happy place occupying your mind, sleep came.


The phone broke through your dreams.


"Fine," you spat, flicked on the bedside lamp, flung back the covers and climbed out of bed. 


Stiff legs carried you down the hall.


Your bare feet slapped the polished wood stairs--polished and slippery. You could have fallen--been knocked unconscious, died. You held onto the rail and made it safely down. 


You turned on the kitchen light and picked up the receiver. "Hello."

I have no time for niceties. "An elderly woman. Any elderly woman. This is important--she's an any-woman, but older. Wrinkles. White hair. The whole thing."

"It's too early," you groaned and I'm not surprised. You're not the most driven writer. "Not for everyone. I'll phone someone else," I warned.

"No, I'm listening."

"She's alone--not a soul around. Isolated."

"Got it," you said.

"I see her on a rocking chair. Her hands are busy... Busy... What's she doing?" Sometimes I have to really work for it.

"Knitting?" you suggested, grabbing your pen and notebook.

Part 2 of Playing with your muse

Next Sunday evening...
June 23
Please visit this blog next Sunday, for part two of How a writer sleeps.