Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: NOISE (05/03/18)
- TITLE: Music
By Francie Snell
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Then it came: a low rumble at first, like a storm building in the distance. She raked her fingers through her hair as her body went tense.
The clamor of heavy footsteps and claws scraping on the hardwood floor climbed ominously up the stairwell. It arrived in the hallway just outside the door. Thump, thump, thump, something struck outside the door. The creature wanted in.
Linda moaned and clasped her hands over her ears. “I can do this. I can do this,” she said, trying to drown out the sounds.
The door flew open with a crash and three little boys and a dog bounded into the room. They stood before her with dirt smudged faces and anticipation gleaming in their eyes as the dog wildly wagged its tail.
“Hey mom, we’re hungry. Can we have peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for lunch?”
The dog woofed.
“Oh yeah," he said,"but no peanut butter for Rufus. He doesn’t like it very much. It gets stuck to the top of his mouth.” The boys giggled.
She followed them as they rushed down the stairs into the kitchen. They clambered onto the chairs around the table. “Strawberry jelly, okay mom?” one said.
The others cheered. “Yeah.”
They laughed and giggled and made faces at each other as they talked through the food in their mouths. The youngest one said with a scowl, “Maam, Joey was mean to me outside. Can you punish him?”
Joey shot up straight in his chair and shouted. “I was not.” He stared menacingly at his brother. ”But if I was, you deserved it.”
“I did not!”
“Now boys,” their mother said in a high note, “Remember the rules? No whining, no yelling, no screaming…. only inside voices when we’re at the table…remember?”
They all moaned. “Yeah mom,” and shoved the last bite of lunch into their mouths. Immediately, chairs squeaked against the kitchen floor as the boys pushed themselves away from the table.
“Thanks, mom!” each called out as they scrambled from their chairs and out the door with Rufus barking after them.
Linda watched the four of them spring off the back porch steps and onto the grass as the screen door slapped shut behind them. They ran and screamed and jumped in the air to begin the second half of a beautifully sunny day.
Later in the afternoon, Linda sat at her desk and gazed out the window over the backyard and reflected on the day. Her sons, drenched with perspiration, roared with laughter as the dog chased them across the green grass. Hollers and shouts, grunts and barks, those sounds somehow sounded different to her now.
She mused over the peace she felt and thanked the Lord for the music in the noise of three little boys and their dog.
Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound! They walk, O Lord, in the light of Your countenance. In your name they rejoice all day long, And in your righteousness they are exalted. Psalm 89: 15&16 NKJV
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