A Graceful Exchange
“So frustrating,” Mrs. Lovejoy sighed as she glanced out her kitchen window to see Bella, her daughter, dancing in six inch stilettos in the family rose garden. She turned her attention back to her guest, the new gardener, whom she had invited to breakfast. “If only she had discipline,” Mrs. Lovejoy said, “she could’ve been a principal ballerina instead of a ballroom dancer.”
The gardener looked out the window, her eyes widening at the sight of an attractive, full-figured, locked-hair woman dressed in red and flawlessly executing a pirouette. “Devant. Chassé,” the gardener commented.
“You know ballet?” Mrs. Lovejoy asked.
“I do!” the gardener exclaimed with pride.
“May I ask where you studied?” Mrs. Lovejoy inquired and poured her guest a second cup of tea.
The gardener slowly raised the cup to her mouth and smiled. “With disciplined ballroom dancers,” she said.
Mrs. Lovejoy nodded, though slightly embarrassed. “Touché, my dear, touché.” She looked out the window again at her dancing daughter. “She is at least graceful—my Bella.”
“She is,” the gardener agreed. “May I guess who taught her?”
Mrs. Lovejoy gently stirred her tea twice and tapped the rim lightly. She lifted the cup with a thumb and index finger perfectly positioned and her pinkie correctly extended. “This former ballerina, of course,” she answered.
“Principal, no doubt?” the gardener assumed.
Mrs. Lovejoy, with a smile, motioned for her guest to look out the window once more just as Bella glided through a Viennese Waltz turn and ended with a slow, elegant curtsy.
“A rose comes from nothing less than a rose, no doubt?”
The gardener nodded. “Touché, madam, touché.”
A.M. McKnight (March 2019)