Same Rhythm, Different Time

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic
Two strangers pass each other the street. They both have the same urge. Cover is not my own, credit to http://favim.com/image/551060/

Submitted: March 16, 2017

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Submitted: March 16, 2017

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The two of them passed each other without saying a word, and why would they have done anything different? They had never met each other, though it was possible that they had met a long time ago. It was a time when they were young and they wanted nothing less than the world. They went headfirst into everything and gave it their all. No matter how much they loved everything, they always came back to dancing. The now old man still yearned to dance the night away. He wanted to put on his old top hat, dress himself in decent clothes, and dance. His preferred musical accompaniment was jazz, but so long as there was something, he could care less.

The woman was a different case. While she was just as old as the man she was passing on the street, they did not dance to the same tune. Ever since she was a little girl, she had been a ballerina. She danced from Swan Lake to The Nutcracker and everything in between. She glided through the air as if she could fly and, so long as there was music behind her, she hadn’t a fear in the world. She would spin and twirl and she became the embodiment of music. Her body became nothing more than a vessel for the rhythm of the dance.

Now, the two of them could barely walk down the street. He had to walk with a cane and she had a slouch from years of bending her spine in awkward angles. His knees were weak and they he could barely tap his foot to a rhythm. They hated it, growing old. They could no longer let the music free them from this mortal coil.

Nonetheless, when they passed each other on the street they could feel it. They could feel the yearning each of them had inside them. They could feel that all the other one wanted to do was dance. So, they stopped.

The man reached out with his cane and stopped the woman. “What dance?”

She looked at the man, puzzled. How could he have known that she used to dance? “I was a ballerina for the longest time. Then the arthritis came, and then the heart issues and I had to stop. How did you know I danced?”

The man did not have an exact answer. It wasn’t something he knew, but more so something he felt. He could feel the rhythm emanating from within her soul, desperate to be set free again. “I used to dance as well. I had no formal training like you, but I danced nonetheless. I wasn’t half bad, either.” The man let out a wheezy laugh. Years of smoking had not been kind to him. “It was terrible for my knees though. Too much hopping and twisting I guess.”

The old woman smiled. It wasn’t every day you met someone like this. “I always used to make fun of people like you. I thought you were a disgrace to formal dancers. Now look at me; an old, disheveled ex-ballerina.” She let out a sigh. “You can feel it still inside you, no?”

The smile on the old man’s face started to curve downwards into a frown. “Yes, I can still feel my dancing spirit. It’s weak and fading, but it’s still there. God, what I wouldn’t give to be young again.”

“I understand.” The woman nodded I agreement. “But alas, we aren’t young. Time got the better of us after all.”

The man looked at the woman, and could almost see the ballerina she used to be. This gave him an idea. “Would you like to go the ballet this weekend? We might not be able to dance, but we can still appreciate the music.”

The woman smiled. “I would love to, but only if we go to that old jazz club downtown afterwards.”

“Fair enough. We’ll meet at the ballet at 6:00 Friday night?”

“It’s a plan.”

So the two of them walked off, and the rhythm inside them began to come back to life.


© Copyright 2017 Joshua Rowe. All rights reserved.

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