Blues Buster: Images of Heaven

Now my WIP is off in the hands of Beta readers…I can relax a little and get some flash fiction down. So today, here’s my Blues Buster for The Tsuruoka Files. The prompt song is Images of Heaven by Peter Godwin.

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Photograph by Lisa Shambrook (Please do not use without permission)

Images of Heaven

Her pink dress fluttered in the breeze, I squinted, my vision blurring as she waltzed closer, not really pink, paler than that, but it fluttered all the same. She’d been dancing all day, ever since I woke, ever since I regained consciousness with a skunk in my throat. I watched morbidly transfixed as she danced across the grass, bare feet stepping lightly and a pirouette beneath the sun.
Sweaty runners hurried by, their neon trainers padding on the asphalt, but even their blur couldn’t hide the dancer.
Tired mothers pushed buggies, and threw glances of contempt my way, hurriedly calling back recalcitrant toddlers who strayed my way. School children filled the path in front of me, loitering and shouting, and spitting and swearing. I glared and they backed away from my shaking fist as I took a swig from my bottle. Businessmen snatched late conversations on mobile phones and glanced at their watches. Businesswomen hurried past with barely a gaze, gulping down coffees from Starbucks and checking their iPads, and I waited for rush hour to fade.
By early evening, I relaxed into the bench, my usual corner, and drank. She danced, showing no sign of letting up and if I drank more, knocked it back, maybe she’d go…
Dog walkers, the park’s evening invasion of choice. Labradors bounded past, springer spaniels pulled at their leads, and a German shepherd walked sedately by its knowing golden-brown eyes boring into me. A little old lady walked a tiny puffball and I let out a guffaw that made the old thing tremble. I shrank as a big black dog on a retractable lead snuffled up to the park bench.  I glared and it replied with a growl baring its teeth, and its owner threw a horrified glance my way before yanking the lead and hurrying on.
But still my dancer danced.
I watched as her small, lithe body balanced on toes, and her arms moved with grace and beauty. As the sun’s ball of hellfire began to set, its golden tones settled on her long, pale hair.
The evening chill thrust through my bones and I shivered, settling back into the bench as the sun pooled in molten gold on the horizon. Before the sun dropped behind the world I leaned forward, and stared at the fluttering gauzy skirt, her white hair and her graceful moves. As the night hid her from me, I recalled a mental image, a photograph in my mind, and I supressed a strangled sob.
A pair of giggling lovebirds wandered past, they paused as they saw me, but I curled my lip and the moon glinted on my bottle. They moved on hurrying away through the darkened park.
The silver moon, a shining sickle, threw rays upon the frosty trees as well as my bottle, and danced on the girl’s shimmering locks. Her pale skin glowed in the dark and her gossamer dress fluttered, as did my chest.
I shivered.
They say dead men are visited by the ghosts of their wrongs. My lascivious gaze recognised the pale pink dress, the gauzy tutu, the delicate limbs and her tiny heart-shaped face. I recalled my wrongs vividly as she visited me that night, the ghost of my forgotten past.
As the early morning sun peered over the trees in the park, and mist swirled across the grass, a Labrador snuffled at the foot of my park bench. The brown bottle chinked and clattered to the ground, released from my cold, stiff hand, and as the dog’s owner stifled a shriek, I faded, disappearing into the eternal depths of damnation.

(601 Words)

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