Sunday, May 13, 2012

CHARLIE + MABEL ~ By Absolutely*Kate for a romantic mother

I wrote this for my loving and romantic mother several months after she lost her fella and I lost my father.  Less than two months later, I said farewell to her for the last time as well.

They're together again  . . . loving up where the stars know greater lights, 
but I thought I'd rerun it for her Mother's Day,
'cause givin' your Mom pleasure is such a darn good thing.

Here goes ~   


By ~ Absolutely*Kate

Act One

Charlie was a sailor when his ship came in. He whistled low his favorite tunes. He heaped high his fondest hopes, back and forth, forth and back on the  first dogwatch from 4 to 6 pm when land was sited. It had been a journey to remember, and he was on a journey to discover, a journey towards all the what nexts a man who revered life could reasonably shove into a navy blue duffle bag.

Charlie loved life, people and a real swell gal named Mabel . . . but he didn't know that yet. He didn't know Mabel yet. And Mabel thought she was in love with Tommy. Tommy however, was infatuated with his new Nash Rambler convertible and would be not at all pleased later that evening when Mabel's chocolate shake would dribble down chrome and sheen in an unfortunate A&W car hop delivery scene. As Mabel's sense and sensitivities were on a subconscious quest for a man of gumption who loved life to join up with as a forever loving wife, back home 'round about midnight, she would pick up a pen and cross Tommy and his materialism grumbles clean outtasite off her Mr Wonderful list.

But back to fathoming Charlie. Peering from the edge of the pier into a variegated dusk strata settling the aura of the western horizon, he passed his hand o'er dark waves upon waves of thick black hair, swiveling tall torso to advantage his best vantage back at the USS Constant. Charlie's instincts knew when it mattered to hold moment to memory, indelible as Dale Carnegie would someday reinforce the technique in him . . . but not yet. The trusty barnacled ship had been this first mate's fate for a pack of years, the formative ones, the ones that made a lanky boy from a small city a bigger man of his own reckoning. Charlie's inner barometer attuned genuine readings of sensational smiles and the solid gaze knowing eyes bespoke. The insight of his sight saw the best within ordinary folk. Even when they didn't see it, Charlie brought it out of them the more, from purposeful or chance encounters.

Mabel would be a chance encounter, that look-up-eyes-lock sparkanddazzle across a dance floor, but we're not hearing that music play . . . yet. A week or so of back pocket memories, while whistlin' Glenn Miller and hummin' Cole Porter, would transcend both their busy lives until a non-committal stroll on a lazy Sunday afternoon past a secluded portion of Perry Beach would open Charlie's wandering eyes to wonders smack dab before him. We haven't made it there yet either. Besides, Mabel had months to go, dating Roger next, a cultured college catch who had come a'courting. Roger was destined to become a pilot, a rich man and a happy Hawaiian home owner. Some destiny's distances are too far to travel for a close-to-home Midwest gal like Mabel, so, dreamer that she was, she'd still wave off Roger's hankerings with her best embroidered hanky, and they'd slowly part fast friends.

Charlie turned from his reverie at sea to see how the night might beckon. Wilma Jean, a local siren who had taken an immediate liking to the profile she'd seen touseling, decided to beckon. With a tousel like that, there could be gobs of fun to his tussle too. A femme fatale with Look Ahead flashing signal lights to her peepers was willowy Wilma Jean, if you know what I mean. The night was a bambino and time was on her side. Sorry to say, fresh lines weren't.

"Hey Sailor, new in town?"  

No missed-opportunity jerk, Charlie turned with a smirk. He caught the condition her tossed grin was in, heard the sultry giggle accompanying her wriggle and formed a contention about her intention. Oooh boy though, did Wilma Jean wriggle. It was shimmy on parade, just standing there. It was a homer in the 9th with bases loaded and DiMaggio taunting. It was how contour tight-skirted a waist and how cleavage graced why gorgeous breastsare elevated.

"Is that an opportunity in your pocket, or are you just glad to see me?"
Charlie chuckled. This dame was a looker alright, but some of the other qualities his journey had him yearning for, like substance and grace, talking long into the night or being on the same wavelength that silently spoke cross currents . . . just weren't all on board. But the night was a bambino, and he was hungry. "Saaaay, you know where a guy can get a good spaghetti dinner in this ol' town?"
Wilma Jean led Charlie to DellaRosa's. Della herself warned Charlie as she served a magnificent antipasto and the best house straw-basket chianti, about fast girls on speedy nights. "You looka like'a nice'a boy. Why you messin' wit dat one? She's a'trouble I tell you. Find yourself a nice'a girl. Ask her to be your wife. Kiss her close and dance her tight. Care and share ~ la vita bella. You'll be a better kinda happy spending all your days in a bee-yoo-ti-ful life." When Wilma Jean returned from the Ladies room, Signora Rosa slopped a little sauce on the red and white checkered table cloth and Charlie's date swore like a . . . well, like a sailor.

There were plenty of sly come-hither stares and sidling up the sizzle on the walk back downtown, but Charlie didn't find a very profound need aroused for what her ancient pitch was proceeding her to leading him to. Back at the pier, his faraway look, across dark night waters lapping against the stalwart Constant, preceeded their farewell. 
Alone in his lumpy bunk, but with a full belly of molto bene spaghetti, Charlie buoyed up his boyish belief in what the probabilities of the next twenty thousand tomorrows would bring a persevering man. Perhaps another port, perhaps more adventurous strolls, why, maybe even a dance hall. Yeah, that's the ticket. Contentedly he sighed, rolled on his side and turned the knobs on the wooden Philco to let the music play into his tomorrows:

I'm making believe 
that you're in my arms 

though you're so far away.

Making believe
I'm talkin' to you;
Wish you could hear what I say.

There's plenty more to mutter on how Mabel became available, but we wanted to get this written by the time Valentines' Day calendared up to wax eloquent. Mabel did dance her way into Charlie's heart, and never complained when he stepped on her toes. Their instinct knew they were so in sync that complaining wasn't how it goes. And many a beach knew their stroll, and the sun shined from their backyard upon their share and their care. They were so happy there, and there. Heavens, they were happy everywhere.

Alone on her plush mattress with the memory foam, the soft cotton sheets hung on the clothesline that day and the warm sky blue comforter, Mabel abled up her girlish dreams of what the propensity of the immensity of the last twenty thousand yesterdays had brought to a passionate, pleasured, laughing, loving woman. Always another home-cooked meal, cup of coffee poured, newpaper page turned, child's life shared would endear Charlie more the part of her. The best part, the heart part, that was always the easy part. Always she could feel the kiss to build their dreams on, dancing cheek to cheek, and only having eyes for him too. Yes, that's the winning ticket. Softly, she sighed, rolled on her side and turned the dial on the plastic Panasonic to let the music play over her yesterdays:

I'm making believe 
that you're in my arms
though you're so far away.
Making believe
I'm talkin' to you;
Wish you could hear what I say.
And here in the gloom 

of my lonely room

we're dancing like we used to do
Making believe is just another way of dreaming
so til my dreams come true 
I whisper goodnight, turn out the light,
and kiss my pillow 
making believe it's you.



The auras of their horizons smile,

as auras and love constantly do.

Charlie + Mabel
is indelible as a moment of memory,
constant and alive in sailing its true.

(c) Valentines' Weekend, 2011
... Mother's Day weekend, 2012

Author Absolutely*Kate
for True Lovers everywhere 

Bathing Beauty photo credit ~ UppityRib
Golden Hearts Entwined ~ Mamjodh 
"I'm Making Believe" song 
warbled well by Ella Fitzgerald and the Ink Spots,
Lyrics by Mack Gordon,  Music by James V. Monaco 

FRANNY and her PAUL ~

There comes special hunks of sparks of Life
when Love simply, thus strongly,
conquers all.

~ Happy Mother's Day
of always Loving, Mom

~ your Katie


Helen A. Howell said...

What a lovely tale, told in your special style. Beautiful photos too. ^_^

Salvatore Buttaci said...

Kate, in a world where,as Frost wrote, "Nothing gold can stay," our parents remain our greatest treasures no matter how long they're gone from here. God is so good to allow us our dearest memories so that we can share their lives with others. I did not know your parents; you did not know mine, but I pray one day to get to Heaven and share God's Light with them all, including all the people I have loved in my lifetime, including you. This is my daily prayer. As for your writing here about your parents, it is poetic excellence!

Salvatore Buttaci

Anonymous said...

Kate this is something your parents would really be proud of. Nice job on this.

seana graham said...

Finally got a moment to read this, Kate. It is a lovely tribute--wonder which of them you got all your gift for wordplay from?