Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Tall Story Time

She peered out towards the clothesline, where the washing hung limp and soggy above the lawn. "Blast! Those clothes will take ages to dry - not a breath of wind, and the sun’s got no real warmth, this time of year.”

There were multi-coloured post-it notes stuck round the frame, and they fluttered in the draft coming through her kitchen window with  more enthusiasm than the clothes on the line. But as she stood muttering to herself,  shimmering golden shapes suddenly bloomed in the middle of the garden. 
“Good lord! Is that several skinny men playing ring-a-roses, or one fellow rushing round so fast he blurs and looks like a group?" She rubbed her eyes, and squinted to see better. Yes – at least three! “Whheeew! Angels or Aliens?” The words squeaked out in a breathy whisper from a voice she didn’t recognise as her own. The hairs on her arms and neck felt as though they were on the move, and the word ‘horripilation’ that had been in last week’s crossword, flashed into her mind. “Even my bloody goose bumps are so scared, they’re huddling, and my heart rate must be off the scale.” 

Despite this initial panic, the longer she watched the light beings, the calmer she felt, for there was no sense of threat about them. In fact, she began to see beauty in their twisting and turning, and almost before she realised, she was stepping out of the back door and moving on hesitant feet towards them. Telling herself “Come on girl you can do this!” she determined to somehow make ‘them’ or ‘it’ understand she meant no harm, hoping to goodness, they’d feel the same. 

Her “Hello!” was as much a thought form as a spoken word, but it seemed to have the desired effect. Their whirling slowed, and two fine gold strands  stretched towards her hands, while a third touched her forehead, making her feel light headed for a moment, before she became aware of rippling musical tones which cascaded over her skin as though they were living creatures. “Come, join us!”they seemed to say, and her body responded to their music, until she too was part of the graceful ballet being danced on her lawn in the sunshine. She felt as though lemonade bubbles had replaced her blood, making her fizz and sparkle from the soles of her feet to the top of her head – and beyond. All sense of time had disappeared.

Eventually the bubbles settled, the dancing slowed, the music faded and the golden entity of which she’d been a part lifted itself skywards, leaving her standing on her lawn, somewhat bemused. The world had returned to normal, and the day had moved on. The sunlight no longer touched the washing. 

Already she was thinking she'd imagined the whole thing.“How could I have wasted so much time daydreaming? Now I’ve got all that damn, damp washing to manhandle indoors and drape around the kitchen.”

But as she lifted her hands to remove her red skirt and her husband’s green shirt from the line, she felt a slight tingling in her fingertips, as they touched not only dry, but perfectly smooth, uncreased clothes, ready to wear… She looked up at the sky, and said ‘Thank you!”

This is my post for the In Tandem #14 prompt.


  1. Wow, I wanted to believe it too my fair lady; wouldn't it be loverly - loverly - loverly...

  2. Better than a tumble drier, eh Ann? LOL

  3. A daydream the doubles as tumbledrier and ironing service! I want one. Well rounded story.

  4. Good picture and story - Dave

  5. Jinksy, my dear, have you been at the cooking sherry? Alien life forms hanging from the washing line indeed.

  6. What, may I ask, did you have to drink at Willow's ball last night?

  7. Thats just the kind of thing I do. I can also watch tumble driers at work!
    The painting looks just like a line of colourful washing.
    Maggie X

    Nuts in May

  8. I would go back to hanging my clothes outside if I could have an experience like that!

  9. "There were multi-coloured post-it notes stuck round the frame, and they fluttered in the draft coming through her kitchen window with more enthusiasm than the clothes on the line." No one has ever made post-it notes sound more enticing!

  10. I don't think I'd be bold enough to join such phantoms - but then, look what I'd miss;-)

  11. Lovely idea. Could do with a couple of entities like that. Do they do vacuuming too? :-)


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