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Archive for March, 2015

Last chapter of Pearly.  I am going to make the whole story into an audio book, with Tabby as the voice of Pearly, and the very best flute players as the musical voice of Pearly and friends! (and a very good oboe player as the voice of Obi.)  Auditions soon!

Chapter 12

‘Yes,’ I thought. ‘That’s me. But how do you know me?’

He picked me up and looked even closer. ‘I can’t believe this. This…this is the very first flute I ever made! Pearly. See the ‘y‘? See the crazy underlining? That happened because I was waiting for an important call, and the phone rang and…she slipped out of the clamp. Incredible!’ he said, ‘ I never thought I would see her again.’

‘Well, she’s going cheap,’ said the flute-mender.

‘Oh, no,’ said Ad, ‘I can’t afford anything, mate, sorry.  You know, we’re broke.’

‘I’m literally saying you can have her for twenty quid, Ad. She still works OK. Got a lot of sweetness of tone.’

Adam put me to his lips. I thought I would faint with gratitude. I was being played. Thank the wondrous sun. We played ‘Syrinx’. I felt like my soul, which had been kept hidden in months, even years of silence and darkness, was pouring its light over the world.

Ad stopped playing. ‘I will have her,’ he said. ‘Georgia’s nearly eight. She’s ready for a lovely, special flute.’ I heard a flurry of notes changing hands.

A gust came in the window and I could hear Pixie and Clarence and Yammy calling, ‘Bye Pearly! Good luck, Pearly!’

While the flute-mender was writing out the bill, Ad played me again. He played a chromatic scale from bottom C all the way to top C and down again. During those lovely notes, I said, on the way up: ‘Goodbye, my dear friends. I hope you find kind homes. I will always think of you and miss you.’ And on the way down I said, ‘Pixie, Clarence, Yammy, cheer up! You’re in safe hands now, love you!’

I was taken to my new home, in a bumpy, creaky basket. We bowled along. Brakes squealed as we arrived. Adam took me up the garden path. He opened the door with his key. ‘Tokki?’ he called. ‘Tokki, you’re never going to believe what I found for Georgie.’

‘What, love?’ said a voice. I couldn’t place it for a moment, but knew I had heard it before. ‘Oh, a flute!’ she said. ‘It’s not like we’ve got any of them!’

I could tell this was a joke.

‘Not just any old flute, though,’ said Adam, opening my case. ‘Look, it’s the very first flute I ever made.’

‘But Ads! Georgie was going to play oboe!’ she protested. I realised the lady was Toccata. But if Toccata was here, where was Obi?

Toccata shouted for Georgie, who came running in. Hers was a quiet, shy presence. She stepped close and picked me up wonderingly. She stared at my engraving. ‘Is this really the Pearly?’ she asked.

‘Yes, Georgie,’ he replied. ‘It’s Pearly. You can have her for your very own.’

‘She’s the very first one you made? The one you were making when I was born?’

‘Yes, she was born at the same moment that you were!’

Georgie started to play. ‘Kookaburra sits in his old gum tree-hee…’ She played fast and neatly, by ear.

‘…merry merry King of the Bush is he-ee’ came a creaky old voice. ‘Laugh, Kookaburra, Laugh,’ we played together.

He struck up again: ‘There’s a hole in my bucket, dear Pearly, dear Pearly,’ he sang. ‘There’s a hole in my bucket, dear Pearly, my dear.’

‘Then mend it, dear Obi, dear Obi, dear Obi,’ I replied. ‘Then mend it, dear Obi, dear Obi, my dear.’

Obi and I, and Toccata and Georgie collapsed into laughter. Dizzy with happiness, we played ‘Ye Banks and Ye Braes,’ then ‘Loch Lomond’, ‘My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean,’ then, ‘Molly Malone,’ ‘I Could Have Danced All Night…..’

…..then ‘Doh, a Deer,’ ‘The Hills are Alive, ‘Climb Every Mountain,’ then ‘Chim Chiminee,’ ‘Just A Spoonful of Sugar,’ ‘Let’s Go Fly a Kite,’ then ‘Greensleeves,’ ‘Edelweiss……’

….then ‘Circus Pony,’ ‘Wind in the Withies,’ ‘Circus Rag’, ‘Toffee Tango’, ‘Dance of the Street Urchins’, …..

…and we carried on playing, Georgie and I, happy year after happy year, until we could play the Martinu Sonata, the Neilsen Flute Concerto, Bach’s ‘Badinerie’, Rachmaninov’s ‘Vocalise’ and even ‘Flight of the Bumblebee’, but….my best times were always the candle-lit evenings when Obi and Toccata would join us for our very favourite, ‘Dance of the Blessèd Spirits’.

 The End

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Chapter 11.

I had to do something. I tensed my core, pulling it into a painful spasm, and flashed an intense bar of light towards Gerald’s eyes. He exclaimed, grimaced and dropped the head-joint.  Yammy gasped thanks as he clattered down on top of me. Gerald was exclaiming in agony, feeling about for goggles. ‘Gerald!’ came a yell from outside.

The man swore and banged the goggles down on the work-bench. ‘Oh darn,’ he said, ‘can’t get a minute’s peace!’

‘What is it?’ he yelled.

‘Gerald!’ shouted the woman’s voice.

‘WHAT?’ he shouted. ‘I’m TRYING to WORK!’

‘Your TEA! You forgot to take your TEA with you,’ she screamed.

Gerald swore and turned the horrible machine off. Grumbling, he shuffled off. I heard what sounded like a front door slam.

Then things happened so fast we didn’t have a clue what was going on. The door to the shed opened with a tiny creak, and a quiet, quiet hand gathered us all up and piled us stealthily back into the sack. Whoever it was picked up the whole sack, making an effort not to clank us. We were moved silently onto the person’s back and he started walking, very fast and very quietly, away from the shed. As soon as we rounded a corner, he started to run. We were jolted painfully about, tangling up keys, wires, tubes. Suddenly we started going extra fast. We heard loud waily scary noises. ‘Oh blimey,’ panted the flute-napper, taking off even faster up the road.

He took a sharp left. We were in agonies, being bashed about on his back. All of a sudden, we were thrown to the ground. Sharp prickles came through the sack. We were on a mass of something horribly spikey. Heavy foot-falls slap-slapped into the distance. The sirens went past. All was quiet. We breathed a sigh of relief. At least we were not going to be melted down.

We lay there, in the prickles for days and days. The sun shone through the tiny holes in the sack’s material. Rain dripped through and soaked us all. I felt my pads swell, and my keys start to stick. One day the wind got up. All the flutes in the sack howled and moaned the trauma of the past weeks. Pixie the piccolo squeaked in sadness as his wood swelled and cracked.

Then there were a couple of calmer, warmer days. We heard the grass being scuffled. Whistling. A dog sniffing around. ‘What you found, Buster?’ said a young voice. ‘Ooh. Yuck. Is it bodies? You ain’t found a body, have you, Buster?’ The kid peeked inside our sack. ‘Oh, phew, not bodies. What is it?’ He pulled out parts of Clarence and Pixie. ‘Oh!.. Clarnets an that. Flutes. You poor things. Someone’s gotta of nicked you from somewhere posh.’

He heaved us onto his back and set off, clanking. After about half an hour of trudging, we heard a bell ring above us as we went through a door. ‘Look, Mister,’ said the boy. ‘Look what I found.’

The flute-mender took us gently out of the sack, piece by piece, exclaiming with sorrow at our state. He set the lad to drying our pads by putting rizla papers in between the pads and the metal and squeezing our keys shut. What a relief to have moisture pulled out of you. The flute-mender turned a little air-heater on, so we would dry out, and laid our poor tarnished bodies on dry cotton, matching up foot-joints with bodies and head-joints. ‘Will you be able to mend them?’ asked the boy.

‘Yes, of course,’ said the flute-mender, ‘and you can help me. All instruments deserve to be saved so they can play again.’

We were so relieved. We lay basking in the warm, dry gusts. The flute-mender picked me up and started to polish my metal. He exclaimed in a low voice: ‘Oh….Pearly…I’ve mended you before! Never thought I’d see you again!’

He showed the boy my engraving and the scratchy line under my name. I tried to glint, but my shine could not get out through its tarnished coating. ‘A silver cloth should do it,’ said the flute-mender. He set to, carefully cleaning around my keys, on my keys, and all of my head-joint. He put an absorbent cloth through me, leaving it there to pull out the rain. By the time he and the boy left for the night, we all felt massively better and could not believe our luck.

The flute-mender worked on us for several weeks, humming. He seemed to be in no hurry, but calmly replaced our wires and pads, working eight hours a day with few breaks. When he finished me, he played a quick two-octave scale. I felt like I was awakening from a long sleep. It was so wonderful to exercise my voice. He put me on one of the little stands around the shop.

Yammy was on a stand near me. I had a chance to ask him about Lucy. What had happened to make Lucy and him be apart? ‘You know the story,’ he replied. ‘You know it already.’

‘I don’t, Yammy. I haven’t got a clue what happened to you. Is Lucy alright?’

‘I mean, you know the story, in the sense that…she…’ he almost choked… ‘she…got a new flute.’

‘Oh,’ I said.

‘A top-range Jupiter. Solid silver body. She was eighteen, going off to the Royal College of Music.’

I felt a rush of delight, that my work had not been in vain, but also pain, that I had not been allowed to help.

Yammy carried on: ‘So, she needed the best…’

‘But…you are, were, the best, Yammy.’

‘No, no…I wasn’t, you see…her mother….she traded me in….for Joopey.’

‘Poor Yammy,’ I sighed.

‘Then the shop sold me to a lady who gave me to her delinquent student son as a present, hoping that music would save his soul. He had no idea what I was worth, pawned me for cash at the first opportunity and that horrible artist man picked me up for next to nothing.’

‘Well, at least we’re not mobiles any more,’ I said.

‘Yes, thanks to you….Pearly, I’m sorry,’ he said. ‘Sorry I was mean. I understand more about life, now.’

The bell tinkled and a chap came in.

‘Oh, Ad, you’ll love my new consignment!’ joked our flute-mender, gesturing around the shop. ‘Forty-five of them, all fallen off the back of a lorry. See what I mean?’

I knew we had not fallen off the back of a lorry, but I thought that it might mean that we had been stolen.

They walked around, talking about all the different instruments. They finally reached me. ‘Yeah, I’ve seen that one before,’ nodded the flute-mender. ‘Came in in a terrible state. Honest, anyone else would have had to do away with her.’

The customer’s face came up close to me. There was an intake of breath and a pause. ‘What?’ I was thinking. ‘What now?’

‘Pearly?’ he said.

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Pearly cover

Chapter 10

Melt us down? I didn’t really know what that meant, but I knew I didn’t want to be a picture frame, or a candlestick. I felt panicky and helpless.

We were thrown in the back of a van for a journey that seemed to take thousands of bars. Then someone with a limping gait and rather a pungent smell, probably Gerald I thought, trudged down a squelchy path with us, pulled open a bolt with some difficulty, slung us onto a hard surface. I heard crackling and felt heat. He went out again. The atmosphere seemed dusty and smelt of wood-shavings, smoke and turpentine.

I was terrified, I can tell you. Was I no longer going to be Pearly? Was I going to be merged together with the others and become something else? Was I going to die? I held onto who I was, and said to myself, ‘Pearly, if this is the end, you have had a good life.’  I thought of all the things I had done in my life.  The most important thing was Lucy.  I felt a rush of the purest love for her. ‘You helped Lucy.  You knew friendship, with kind Obi and dear Flutty. You heard wonderful stories. You even played the faun, with most of an orchestra. You helped everyone to escape from the Old Man’s Cave.’ But nothing I said to myself helped, as I didn’t feel ready to die. I felt like I had so much more life in me to live, and to give, and knew there was so much music out there that I had not played yet.

Smelly Gerald came back. He tipped us all out on the work-bench. He started up a machine which made a whoosing sound. We could feel a sudden heat coming from it. We waited in fear. The light turned orangey. It was moving too much, it didn’t seem normal. Flickering reds and golds. Oh! I suddenly remembered Silvia’s candle-lit concert. It must be flames. I was so afraid. Suddenly Yammy’s head-joint was lifted away from my side. ‘Jeez! Solid silver!’ exclaimed smelly Gerald with a laugh. ‘God sakes, those idiots! Haven’t got a clue!’

He grabbed the torch thing which had a hot column of fire pouring out of its end. He was just about to start melting down Yammy’s head. Poor Yammy sucked a desperate gasp of mouldy air in to scream a high-pitched scream. He knew he was done for.

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You might have noticed that the title of the book has changed.  I decided Pearly needed company on her adventures.  Have not updated the cover yet, but it’s on my to-do list!

Pearly cover

Chapter 9

It felt like The Blessed Spirits had given me my life back, so after this day, a spirit of rebellion rose in me and I decided that things had to change. It happened like this. The Old Man had strung up a new flute on my row. I could tell from the changing light what was going on. This poor flute was not happy to be strung up. He was shivering and shaking with fear as the Old Man bashed him about, threading his body and foot. As his head-joint was tied onto the wire and left to swing a big arc, he gasped at the cold, wide air in terror. I recognised his voice. ‘Yammy?’ I managed to whistle, using the excess of the gust he cast around him.

‘Pearly!’ he cried, terrified and sobbing. ‘Help me, help me, I can’t stand this.’

‘Don’t worry, Yammy,’ I assured him, ‘we’ll find a way to get out of here.’

This was a lie. If there was a way out, we would have found it by now, I thought. But then I considered again. What if I hadn’t tried my very best yet? Was there maybe a way? I thought and thought all night. How could we, together, stop the Old Man in his tracks? Without a breeze, it was not possible to call out, only to grasp tiny amounts of air with which to whisper. I was too light to be able to fight back physically. All of us flutes were too flimsy to be able to hurt a man. Fidel was too small and Clarence, though solid enough, was weak. Then I suddenly thought of that huge tuba. I could tell from his clunking how big he was. He was so big, he must also be heavy. I knew from the direction of the clunks that he was hanging quite high from the ceiling, on a level with us. Soon my plan was ready. I whispered it to Clarence on my left. Clarence squeaked it to poor Pixie to his left. Pixie squealed hoarsely to Fidel who bashed his strings on the curtain-rail thus setting the trombones off. All round the room you could hear whisperings, like a wave, like a magic force.

Then, as moonlight sent its faint rays into the room, we heard a new sound: it was a rather slow squeak, squeak…squeak, squeak. I listened with growing hope in my heart. It was the tuba swinging himself on his string. Over the course of the night, we heard the fibre after fibre of the string snapping. ‘Careful, careful,’ I sent around the room, ‘don’t snap them all: make sure you keep one thread!’

The next day The Old Man strung up a new warped viola, stopped for a coughing fit, shuffled under the tuba, raised his stick and thwacked it, hard. We heard the usual clunk, and then we all heard a much tinier sound: it was the tuba’s last string breaking. It’s like it happened in slow-motion sound. You could hear that last fraying fibre give, with a subtle snap. We all heard the tuba falling through the air. We heard that massive instrument give one last solid clunk, and we all heard the Old Man fall, groan and lie silent.

We spun around sickly in shock for a few days. I detected other human presence, people moving around, murmuring and soft exclamations. The silk threads binding us to the ceiling were snipped. Our pieces were crammed into a bag, all of us jumbled up. My core was with another flute’s head-joint and my foot-joint was rattling around inside poor Fidel’s delicate wooden body. Honestly, I didn’t know where I started nor ended. My head-joint was crammed up against Yammy’s. He was still shivering with grief and pain. I felt most odd, almost like I had died and become one with the universe. Except I knew I wasn’t dead. We were thrown all together in the back of a van. It was bumpy and dark. We were clattering about on top of one another. My core mourned my head-joint and foot-joint. My head-joint missed my core and my foot. My foot just felt kind of queasy. It’s not easy being a flute you know, especially when you have been taken apart.

On that long journey though, I came to realise some things. I remembered Lucy’s teacher, Silvia, saying to her, ‘Always think positive, Lucy. You can do it. Bar by bar.’ I wondered if there was any way I could see this latest development of my adventures in a positive light? It took a lot of thinking but I eventually started to realise that being together with all those other parts of other flutes was kind of wonderful. We had been created, all of us, to make music. At least we all shared a common purpose on this Earth. We might have been created in different years, different decades, even different centuries, but we had all been created by people who needed us to sound beautiful. And even bunged together in that smelly sack, we held it together. I could feel the others holding themselves taut, trying to hang on to their dignity. Our overriding worry was: were we being taken to the dump, to land-fill? Were we none of us ever to be played again?

I could not sense much from inside the sack. It was dark and painful, being clanked around with all the other instruments. Eventually we seemed to be inside, and were dumped on a table or bench, I didn’t know which. We were battered and worn. Nobody spoke as there was no wind, no breeze, no air even. I felt the despair of the other flutes, the pics, the clarinets, the trombones. Our despair was all muddled up with everyone else’s. We felt sick with anxiety that we would never be played again. We became aware of movement, people moving around, the bumping of things all around us that were being moved. People started opening the sack, having a rummage around in us, and then leaving it. People would pick up a bit of flute, say ‘Oh, flutes,’ and put it down again. One woman said, ‘Ooh, these are all in a bit of a state, aren’t they?’

‘Our Gerald wants em though, don’t he?’

The lady with her said, ‘Oh yeah, Gerald can make something out of anything, even old junk, you know what e’s like.’

I wondered what she meant. I thought it couldn’t be good, whatever it was. What did Gerald make out of old junk? Who was Gerald?

We found out soon enough. There were clouds of dust, crowds of people, shouting and a big hammer banging down with a yelling of ‘Going, going, gone!’ I realised that things were being sold and that soon it would be our turn. We were grabbed from the bench, held up in the air. My foot-joint was yanked out of the bag and held up. ‘A collection of damaged, mostly silver-plated musical instruments…’ said the loud man. ‘At least eleven kilos here…old metal and wood.’

As the hammer banged down, the ladies said, ‘See, I told you Gerald would want them. He’ll melt it all down and make us a massive picture frame, or candlesticks.’

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Pearly cover

Chapter 8.

Working on the faun was the hardest and best thing I had ever done. Deb and I had to learn first flute too, in case Eva and Flutty were ill on the night. We took turns. I can’t explain how wonderful the piece is. It seems to hold a whole world within it, a world free from pain and confusion, a world of peace and wonder. We can enter that world and could explore it for a life-time and not be finished. I loved handing over the phrases to Obi, having him develop the theme and hand it back to me.

One day, Deb asked Brian if she could take me home as she wanted to practise the harder passages of the faun. I was jolted and bumped about in her arms. I was aware she was walking on hard surfaces, going down steps. The noises were abrupt and scary. I felt sudden rushing draughts even through my case. Deb had me on her lap for a while, but there was a rumbling and a strange swishing of doors opening then closing. Deb put me down next to her. The long rumbling happened a few more times. The doors whooshed again. I felt a flurry as Deb got up. The doors shut. Then I heard, muffled and from a little distance, ‘Oh, my flute!’ but it was too late. I detected her voice shouting ‘Oh, please, my flute, my flute!’ but I was trundled away.

I was picked up quite soon after that and shoved into a musty bag. In the darkness of my case, I felt scared as a new person jolted and bounced me about. Over a few days my case was opened and closed. I was tossed onto a chair, left on a table, thrust onto a shelf. It was as if whoever had me just didn’t know what to do with me. After a couple of weeks of being chucked about, I was carried down a hill, taken through a door with a tinkly bell, so into a shop, I thought, and left there. Still in my case, I was put out on a shelf. I could detect the sadness of forgotten objects all around me. Old teddies, I think, from their talk, old dolls, stuffed dogs and old record-players. I slept, sad that Deb had lost me and that I would never get to play the faun with Obi, ever again.

I was picked up. I heard a rasping cough. My case was opened. Murky dusty light poured over me and foul air as again the person coughed. I was prodded and put back in the case. I was thrown into a bag and taken outside. I was bumped about and laid in a creaky container. I felt like I was travelling fast, but smoothly, and out in the fresh air. We spun round corners, zoomed down hills, creaked up hills. Then someone was carrying me up a path, I think. I heard the coughing again. We went up a step. I was chucked down onto something quite hard, like a bench. There was silence for a while. I strained my senses to try to detect where I was and what this new place could possibly be like.

I had almost started to doze, despite my unease, when the clips on my case were undone. I knew immediately that something was not right. The light was odd. Thin moving shafts of sun seemed to be cutting across the space in an odd way. What could that be from? I could sense an atmosphere of strangeness, the unusual, the scared. Cold, old hands took my foot joint and pushed fine tickly string through it with a stick. The person manipulating me was muttering strange words, and coughing and spluttering. I could not understand the words.

My core was picked up. My cleaning rod was used to thread silken thread through me. I was moved this way and that as knots were tied and retied and tested. My head-joint then had the thread put through the mouth piece and down and out again. My three parts were lifted and tied to something like a wire circle. My parts were spinning in thin air. I could not think straight. I felt sick. My foot joint was floating at an angle. My head joint was twirling crazily, and my core was swinging around and about. The metal circle above us squeaked unpleasantly. I had never felt this before. It felt like I was going to fall. This was much much worse than being dropped as a child learnt how to play C sharp! I wanted to be put together again, I wanted to be whole, to be held, to be locked, secure, in someone’s hands. ‘I cannot live like this,’ I wanted to scream, but, split into my parts, I had been silenced.

I had always been used to being held tightly nestled in my case, or held securely by somebody. This was disorienting. As my three parts started to swing more gently and slow a little, I could think a little clearer. I detected grieving, nauseous instruments all around me and realised with a jolt of horror where I must be. This was the Old Man’s Cave that Alto had talked of, the gruesome graveyard for dead and dying instruments. I felt like nothing had ever been this bad.

I hung there, dull and scared out of my mind, for many days. The big oak door creaked open and banged shut. The Old Man coughed. Dust settled upon my poor disjointed form. I swung, sick and ill with the silence, the motion and the torture. Flutes need to be played, I wanted to shout. Flutes need love, breath! Above all, we need music. We need sound and love, sound and love mixed together. But no breeze stirred that dusty room. I sensed the damp in the air corroding my silver. I felt a tiny popping on my surface where the metal was being hurt. Hundreds of other instruments and tens of other sad, grey flutes swung around me. Only when the sun sneaked through the high windows for a second, did they glint, but with a menacing, hard gleam, a disillusioned stare.

I made friends with a mournful clarinet called Clarence, and Pixie, a tarnished piccolo.  Next to them was a twisted trombone, so hoarse he could hardly make a sound. We were all four cheered up a tiny bit by a mad violin called Fidel, who had been hung by his strings from the light. He would swing on his strings violently enough to bash his body against a metal curtain rail, so he could make short sharp exclamations, like ‘Whoa!’ or ‘Enough!’ or ‘Pop!’ which at least interrupted the tedium.

Every day the Old Man stumbled amongst us, stringing up more sad instruments. He would poke and prod us, or pull the door back and forth, sending gusts to make us cry and swing. He swore and muttered angrily about his ‘installation’, whatever that meant. He sometimes fell over and bashed things with his stick. Every time he went under a huge, dented tuba which was hanging from the ceiling quite far from us, at the other end of the room, he would reach up and smack it hard with his cane. The tuba’s deep clank of misery became the deathly punctuation to our long days.

Only once did the Old Man open a window. A fierce wind tore the metal frame from his fingers as a freezing gust ripped through the room. Us mobiles flew in frantic circles, our parts clashing with each other, colliding, hurting, scraping my silver-plate. One flute screamed in desperation, as the air shot through her parts, ‘I refuse to be ART! I am a FLUTE! Let me be a FLUTE!

Not art! Not art!‘ we echoed, using every tiny breath of wind left in the room.

The flutes stilled and again we hung there, for dusty weeks, silently praying for a way out. The only thing that kept me alive was the memory in every cell of my three parts, the sweet memory of the faun, the bouncy Street Urchins’ Chorus from Carmen, the melody from Sheherezade, and Fauré’s Sicilienne, all of which I cradled in my mind and listened to again and again in my memory. If I concentrated hard enough on the music, I could almost escape my plight. It was as if I could no longer feel my body, I had become pure spirit.

One day, I woke up with an even deeper sense of despair. It was so bad, that I thought to myself, ‘Pearly, come on, there must be something in all the beautiful music you have learnt, which will help you now.’ Out of nowhere, the melody of the Menuet before ‘Dance of the Blessèd Spirits’ came back to me. I hummed it quietly to myself. When I reached the Lento Dance, the rhythm changed and the intensity, and I realised I was making sound that the others could hear. At least, other flutes were joining in with me, with low buzzing harmonies. There is a part of the Dance where the flute is very high, but very quiet. It’s magical. It has a huge power. It’s like as if the flute is holding back, holding on to massive amounts of energy that are just ready to burst forth. We got to that bit, and by now all the flutes in the ceiling were helping, humming, droning, whispering, and suddenly we burst past the limitations of our sad, split bodies and could all hear the orchestral version in our minds, as one. The Blessèd Spirits had come to help us…I could feel their shadows all around us, twirling, linking us all together….we were Dancing with the Blessèd Spirits…. we were the Blessèd Spirits.

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