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Artifical Flowers

Artifical Flowers

4 mins 8.6K 4 mins 8.6K

She made artificial flowers

Artificial flowers

Flowers for ladies of fashion to wear

She made artificial flowers

She made artificial flowers

Flowers from Annie’s despair.

She sat alone at the bar. With a drink that lay, untouched for a long time. It was a Thursday night; which meant it was retro night at the bar. The oldies kept flowing like vintage wine. From Connie Francis to Pat Boone. Elvis to Ella. Belafonte to Bassey. The songs kept playing. Her drink remained untouched.

Her appearance belied her age. There were streaks of silver prominently shining from the otherwise brown wavy mane. Her complexion had just started showing signs of ageing. A tad premature actually. Her eyes were slowly losing that twinkle, burdened with the sadness of time. Her fingers trembled slightly, as she held on to her glass looking at it intently. But, she still didn’t take a sip.

She remembered old times, like it was yesterday. They had been fighting a lot of late. The smallest of disagreement would result in huge fights. And the passion that they shared, even translated to these fights. Nothing was spared. With each knockout punch both felt hurt, tired and fed up. They both knew this couldn’t continue for too long.

Each fight they had, would end with them coming back together, with renewed gusto. Their love-making was more passionate. Their dinners more romantic. But somewhere, there was a tiredness creeping in with the regularity of it all. It had to give in.

The smokey bar seemed less noisy to her today; as she could hear the music better. As she sat there and reminisced, Bobby Darin was singing Artificial Flowers. She smiled to herself, a tired and resigned smile.

She remembered their last fight.

It had been uglier than their usual fights; which were pretty nasty in any case. She’d seen him smiling and hugging the new girl from his office. She knew that smile. She could almost feel that hug. She was livid. They had a major showdown at her apartment, that night. He left, vowing never to come back. Actually she’d thrown him out.

A couple of months passed before both realised that this was it. There was going to be no more get-backs. This was the final split. As in all relationships of this tumultuous nature, it took them time to get used to their new status. They both handled it their own way. He, by leaving town for good. And she, by leaving men, after as much as a week each. Sometimes it didn’t even last that long. Recovery was hard. For both.

Then one fine day she received a bouquet of flowers from an unknown source. She recognised the sender from the handwritten note.

Together or apart,

My love will die,

Only the day,

The last flower here dies.

It was a lovely bunch of yellow roses. Mostly buds. That he remembered her choice of flowers made her smile, to herself. She kept them in a vase next to her bed. Every night she’d look at the bouquet as she saw the flowers bloom fully. Then gradually they mbegan to wilt. By the third day most of them had wilted.

As she came back from work one day she looked at the vase. All the flowers had wilted excepting one yellow rose which stood out. Fully bloomed and beautiful. She was amazed by it. She came closer to feel it and then she realised...it was the only artificial flower in the entire bunch. She looked at the note which still lay by her bedside once again. That was the night she finally broke down, unable to hold on to her feelings anymore.

As the Bobby Darin song ended, she was jolted back from her thoughts to the present day. She finally picked up her glass with her trembling fingers and downed it in one go. She put the money under the glass and she got up picking her overcoat up.

She put her hands in her overcoat pockets as she felt the cool breeze sweep across her face, caressing her untied hair. She kept walking by the pier singing Artifical Flowers, Artifical Flowers to herself on that cold Thursday night.


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