Of Dawn’s Song and Night’s Dance

Today, for your reading pleasure: A pair of drabbles (stories exactly 100 words in length), and the images that inspired them. Enjoy!


“So pretty,” he said. “What do you play for?”

“Not what,” she said. “Who.”

“Who, then?”


He tilted his head. “A flock of starlings?”

She nodded hers. “That’s what she’s made of.”



She took up her violin and bowed a favorite tune. At once, the cloud of birds filled the sky – thousands upon thousands, all flying as one. Then their amorphous mass changed… took shape… became…

A woman. Murmuration danced across the dawn, rapture sketched in the living blur of her many-winged face.

“How…?” he breathed.

“How else?” she sighed. “The right song can play anything true.”


(Image credit: “dawn chorus” by Benco42)


“Now what?” he asked, as the moon rose high. Its light shone on the water running down the rocks.

“You’ve witnessed my dawn song.” She pitched her voice over the cascade, raising her violin. “Now see what night’s music brings.”

With her bow’s dance across the strings, the silver stream came alive – came apart – came together into a choreographed company of women.

To his surprise, they took him by the hand and pulled him into their flow. He called back to her, “Is this safe?”

“Keep your head up,” she advised, “and keep breathing. My tune will do the rest.”


(Image cred: “River” by Rob Gonsalves)


(Enjoyed what I wrote? There’s loads more where that came from! Browse the DEShipley catalogue, why dontcha. Also, I’m still looking for folks interested in an early read ‘n’ review of Outlaws of Avalon 2, “The Marriage of Allyn-a-Dale”! Hit me up if you want in. ^_^ )

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