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The Daughters of Zeus (2)

calliope

Calliope

The steamer trunk and the crated harp arrived by drop-shipment the next afternoon. The truck had just trundled away when a motorcycle with a sidecar roared into sight, and then swerved into the driveway. The helmeted driver was swathed in leather boots and breeches, a cashmere coat and a mohair muffler, and the sidecar was jammed with suitcases and briefcases, held in place with a complicated warp and weft of bungee cords.

The driver unwound the muffler, took off the helmet and nodded at me. “I’m Calliope, the Muse of Epic Poetry,” she said. “Just take my bags inside. Hey, Rati. Got everything under control?”

“Just barely, Calli. I dictate, and she scrawls with a number-two pencil in a half-used notebook, left over from her kids’ homeschooling days. Says she always starts out writing that way.”

“That’ll work for now, but not after Clio gets here. What kind of experience has she got?”

“Some craft magazine patterns, freelance op-ed columns, and a couple of self-help handbooks for her clients, when she was still in nursing practice. Lots of academic papers, but she doesn’t outline. She’s in grad school, too.”

“She’s overdue for a change of genre. Is there enough space here for Terp?”

“Terp can dance in the living room. And there’s a Yamaha upright, so Euti won’t have to ship her Steinway.”

“She’ll be glad to hear that. So what’s there to eat, around here?”

To be continued…. 

©2014 – 2016 Christine Plouvier. All Rights Reserved.

You can find the artist of the Daughters of Zeus here.

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The Daughters of Zeus (1)

A_muses_me_by_jstone16

erato

Erato

The invasion began on a quiet morning in mid-February, 2009. I awoke with a blink of a scene and a snippet of dialogue in my head. It wasn’t anything I’d been dreaming; it was more like something from a book or a movie, but I’d never read or seen anything like it. I picked up a notebook and pencil that I kept at the bedside, and jotted some impressions: a tall man, a short woman, a stone house, a leafless orchard, what I thought they were saying….

I thought, I wonder where that could have happened.

A voice replied, “Ireland.”

I was stunned, but not just because I was alone, and the word had come from nowhere. Moments later a Muse materialized, sitting on the foot of my bed, and tuning a violin.

I protested, “But I don’t know anything about Ireland. Saint Patrick and the snakes. Internecine warfare in Northern Ireland. Gerald O’Hara, in Gone With the Wind, naming his plantation ‘Tara,’ after some place in County Meath, wherever the heck that is.”

She finished tuning the fiddle, and said, “You’re pathetic. Well, here’s your first lesson: Ireland’s national symbol is the harp. It’s also my main instrument, but I had to ship it with the steamer trunk.”

Then she set down the violin, took my scribbled notes, read them, and shook her head. “When the harp gets here and I start playing it, you’ll get that scene right.”

She tossed aside the notebook, picked up the fiddle, and dashed off a quick jig. Then she said, “By the way, I’m Erato, the Muse of Love Poetry. What’s there to eat, around here? I like chocolate for breakfast.”

To be continued…. 

©2014 – 2016 Christine Plouvier. All Rights Reserved.

You can find the artist of the Daughters of Zeus here.

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What’s YOUR Claim to Fame?

IRISH FIREBRANDS: A Novel ~ and Other Works by Christine Plouvier, Indie Author

THE ~ BEST ~

Here’s mine!

How can I make this claim? Easy. I write like Edward Bulwer-Lytton … or like a contemporary Irish journalist.

I think I was born using big words. When I was in kindergarten, like all the new schoolchildren, I was sent to Miss W., the school speech therapist, for evaluation. She sat down with me, on those ridiculously small kiddie chairs, at one of those ridiculously large, round kiddie craft tables, set up in the cloakroom at the end of the hallway (she traveled the school district, so she had no office at this school), and she shuffled her flash cards before dealing them out, one at a time. The cards had no words, only pictures, and the test was for me to state the name of each object that they portrayed.

I was careful to enunciate clearly, for I had learned to read aloud by the time I was 4…

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