Faye's Monet - Panel # 1

Panel # 1

Original Oil by Faye Tyler

Excerpt from a Chapter – 1st Draft
By Royce Addington

Awake, just after sunrise, Faye removed the plastic tubing apparatus from her nose that kept a steady stream of oxygen breathing into her body as she tried to sleep through the nights of pain and discomfort. The floor to ceiling sliding glass panels beside her bed allowed the early morning light to wash through the elegantly decorated room. She could hear the incoming tide of the San Francisco Bay just below her little balcony.

It took an incredible amount of energy and effort to get out of bed but she knew it would be worth the exertion. Faye reached for her shell pink cameo coloured bathrobe draped across the back of her favorite antique Louis XVI chair. Slowly she put it on, tying the cognac coloured ribbon at the neck in a loose flowing bow down the front of her cherished chiffon layered sheath. Faye loved how the satin ribbon felt as it slid through her artistic hands.

Every morning, her routine was the same. She padded the few short steps into the tiny galley kitchen to make a first cup of strong instant Yuban coffee. She waited impatiently for the water to boil. The day was going to be glorious and she was bursting with the desire to throw open the glass doors and wander among the profusion of her beloved flowers.

At 79, Faye had transformed her twenty by eight foot deck into a veritable wonderland of artistic beauty and serenity. Over the years, she had acquired an incredible eye for designing spaces, combining shapes, colours and fragrances. For the last few years, this unassuming weathered wooden deck had become her world and her canvas. Huge verdigris pots and flower boxes filled with masses of blooming old roses the colours of sunset danced with enormous hydrangeas and lilies of the Nile. There were pansies and marigolds. Japanese poppies and lilac. Nasturtiums and a morning glory vine gone mad. In the corner, she had the gardener place a five foot tall Myers Lemon tree which filled the sea air with a delicious tangy fragrance. Her naughty orange tabby named Thomas claimed this pot as his very own. Every afternoon he could be found languishing there; swishing his tail to warn anyone who might be contemplating an interruption of his nap.

On this fresh morning of new beginnings, Faye sipped from her favorite English china mug painted with a bouquet of roses with an opalescent glaze. It sparkled like a bubble in the sunlight. A fleeting sense of human mortality landed lightly on her stiff and aching shoulder. Faye chuckled to herself,

“I’m most definitely an eccentric old woman who, of course, does NOT see herself as old. I still have great legs! Getting old is the shits! It’s really quite funny! Here I am cheerfully conversing with the Angel of Death disguised as a butterfly…and it’s all OK. Who was it that said,

“All is well. All is well. And…all will be well.”

Damn! I’m going to chew on that bit all day today until I remember.”

Yes, I know…” Faye said out loud to no one but herself.

She knew this was the last chapter of her life. How perfectly appropriate that Monet was on her mind this morning as she admired her little paradise. It still took her breath away each and every time she saw one of his masterpieces. The artistic expression and passion had spoken directly to her heart. Faye mused,

“Claude, my friend, you are the one who taught me to paint from my soul! What would Oprah call it? Ah, yes…My AHhhh HhAaaa Moment! I hope you give painting lessons in the Great Beyond?”

Faye set her coffee mug on the small ornate iron table that faced the impressive bridge connecting Marin to the East Bay. This was not Giverny but it would do just fine. In her thirties, Faye had dreamed of one day seeing Giverny; wandering through the magnificent gardens in Monet’s footsteps and even perhaps painting there for an afternoon. The Fates had other plans.

Unconsciously, she took a long deep breath and recognized a twinge of regret mixed with angina pain; her heart muscle contracting as if to say,

“Hey, remember me? I am the emotion and passionate well of all you have done. I allowed your imagination and creativity to play along, but the soul of your work is my gig! I demand attention be paid! Can you feel me now?”

Faye smiled. Today would be a good day. Like no other. As if to confirm these thoughts, a majestic pair of Canadian geese gently landed on the calm water just off shore. They drifted along the incoming tidal current craning their elegant necks, looking up to her balcony with expectancy.

Dave, Faye’s handsome grandson, had told her that Canadian geese mate for life. Dave was so like what she remembered about her Cherokee father. They both shared a deep love, respect and psychic understanding of nature, animals and the earth. Both men had chosen a life of adventure and danger. Faye realized that, at this very moment, Dave too might be gazing out across a vast sea as he left the port of Homer, Alaska. Tears of pride and nostalgia filled her eyes. As she wiped a tear that had slipped down her high-boned cheek, she motioned for the geese to come closer,

“Oh…all right then! Wait here! I‘ll be back with the most delicious crusts you have ever tasted.”


JD said...

Are there more panels?
Other chapters to be posted?
Will stay "tuned-in". Thanks.

Pattie Mosca said...

Ahh To get to know the lady faye...Waiting for more!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I can see that balcony so clearly!

Cheryl Finley: said...

This is a beautiful story and you've written it beautifully. I could see her deck and balcony clearly. It's a gift to have gotten to know Miss Faye through your story. What a loving tribute. Thank you!

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