17 January 2020

Published January 15, 2020 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © J Hardy Carroll

Genre: Historical Fiction

Word Count: 100

STRENGTH IN EACH TEAR

Lula cuddled and sang to her two-year-old son. The doctor’s words echoed through her mind. “I’m sorry, there’s nothing we can do. You need a miracle.”

            The screaming prayers of the itinerate preacher beseeching God for a miracle only served to add to Lula’s sorrow. Her baby would never enjoy the beauty of a red rose or a blue sky. Born too soon, the incubator stole his sight.

            “Don’t you worry. We’ll make our own miracle.”  

            Ten years later, Barry Gordy dubbed Lula’s boy Little Stevie Wonder, saying, “Mrs. Morris, your son’s musical gift is nothing short of a miracle.”

108 comments on “17 January 2020

    • Dear Penny,

      I think perhaps the miracles come from our attitudes. Like airplanes where attitude determines the altitude. No doubt Stevie’s gift would be there if he could see. But then, we’ll never know. Thank you. 😀

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • Blindness isn’t the worst thing that can happen. He was talented anyway. It’s a good thing medicine has advanced since the early ’50’s . We may now assume that a kid in similar circumstances can recover quite well.

    Like

  • Dear Rochelle,

    It’s all in how we look at things, right? Stevie’s mom (like Ray Charles’ mom) didn’t give up on her boy. I, too, loved the “miracle” bookend.
    You truly are the queen of the genre. I love how you bring to life real people the way you do.

    Shalom and lotsa bright and colourful love,

    Dale

    Liked by 1 person

      • True, that! Miracles are all around us. Some so daily we forget they are miracles. Some so big we forget they are still miracles … 😉 And, as for talent — I know some people who don’t use theirs, and it puzzles me. I also know that sometimes there are unseen reasons why they won’t, or feel they cannot, and it makes me sad. Just as it makes me sad, sometimes, to think of all the other ‘what ifs’ that just are – in me, in others, in the world. We are a walking mystery, the lot of us. 🙂
        Na’ama

        Liked by 1 person

        • My mother was the prime example of someone who didn’t use her gift. In her youth she was a budding artist. I still have some of her pen and inks that were amazing. When family and employment took over she let it go and her artistic abilities went into doing paint-by-number. She also loved crossword puzzles and Mah Jhong twice a week. 😉 It’s always made me a little sad she didn’t pursue her art.
          Yes, we are walking mysteries. 😉 Although I think I might be an open book…a comic book. 😀

          Liked by 1 person

          • How fascinating! You see, my mom is a talented artist, painter and craftswoman. She might’ve developed those talents more had it not been for very difficult circumstances on many fronts that lasted for decades, but she did try, and I remember periods of time while growing up when she pushed harder to try and make time and space for her creativity. It was not supported, alas. Nonetheless in her later 50s, and after divorce, she went back to college to complete first her BA then her MA (with honors, yeah!) which had been interrupted when she got married, and after retiring began taking classes in painting and drawing and hasn’t stopped painting since. She is very good. My sisters have some of her paintings hanging in their homes, and recently we produced an album/book for her, a gift for her 85th birthday, with 85 of those paintings photographed into it. She’s exhibited with other artists from her school in several exhibits and I’m so glad for her. We can’t change the decades of artistic expression she might’ve had earlier, but at least she’s making the most of it now.
            Here’s to mystery and making the most of the books-still-in-writing that we all are …
            😀
            Na’ama

            Liked by 1 person

            • I love it! My renaissance began in my 50’s when I realized I was a writer with a story to tell. Up until then I dabbled and wrote poetry as a means of journaling so a lot of it is dark. I’ve wanted to be an artist since I can remember. Went to two years to the KC Art Institute, but marriage and babies got in the way. Then a job. I always said when I retired I wanted to get back into my watercolor. As you can see, I have. 😉 I thought about going back to college but decided against. Your mom is one of my new heroes. 😀

              Shabbat Shalom,

              Rochelle

              Liked by 1 person

              • 🙂 Yeah, while I don’t recommend waiting-to-retire as a default way to get to one’s hobbies and loves and ‘callings’ and talents … I totally understand how it all too often (especially for women but not only for women, to be fair), gets put on back burners till retirement allows the time for it. All the power to you and to my mom and to the other many who made good on their “when I retire” plans! 🙂
                XO
                Na’ama

                Like

  • I thought Smokey was the with the Miracles. I love Stevland Morris, which we discussed a few weeks ago. This is one I don’t have to read further into. In high school, my friend got me into Motown. His stepfather got him into it. Stevie, Marvin, and The Temptations have been some of my favorites ever since. I’ve been to Motown, which is a museum now. In what was the recording studio, they had out sheet music for some of The Temptations hits. I got to sing Temptation songs in the same place they recorded the original classics. Too bad Barry wasn’t there.

    My friend told me a story recently about Lionel Ritchie accompanying Stevie to his car to listen to a tape. Stevie got in the driver’s side and pretended like he was going to start driving. Lionel Ritchie had a minor panic attack.

    Stevie is truly a Wonder.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Nobbin,

      I laughed out loud at the idea of Stevie getting in on the drivers side. I love a man with a sense of humor. 😉 Motown is a glorious piece of American history. “I got sunshiiine, on a cloudy day…” I remember when I first heard Little Stevie Wonder on the radio with “I was made to love her…” There was something ever so appealing about him.
      Thank you for sharing your experience.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • I have two things to say:
    One does not need to yell for God to hear them. (Referring to the preacher, not your story telling.)
    And two: A mother’s love can ease any tragedy.

    Maybe three things:
    Another well done historical story from you. ;0)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Phyllis,

      I’ve been in the presence of more than one screaming preacher. Total turn off. Working yourself and your congregation into a frenzy does not usher in the presence of God. As for points two and three, I agree about a mother’s love and thank you re my story. 😉

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Innerdialects,

      In two of my novels, I have written a character who is born blind in 1904. At first her father wants to institutionalize her. It turns out she’s an outgoing musical prodigy. Thank you for validating her. I believe you have a special gift as your son’s mother. Thank you for making my day, too. 😀

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

      • How wonderful to know you’ve written of a section of our society that is a jewel in humanity’s crown. May God bless the work of your hands with healing. And I’m so glad for the opportunity to meet you and the amazing blog community with heart. It heals more than external challenges. I do my little bit for Johann, and we’ve had new health issues, he’s recovering, (med side effects), but we’re getting there. Thankyou for your time, and kindness. ‘Much hug’ from our 18 yr old. 🌻Rayla.

        Like

  • The gift of sight is something we take very much for granted, isn’t it. I can’t imagine what it must be like to have never experienced it, any more than I can imagine how you’d feel if you’d once enjoyed it and then been deprived of it. Which, I wonder, is the least painful. Very well done. As ever.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Your story illustrates the strength of human resolve – sad but uplifting.
    I understood from your lovely story that we make the best of our lives the best we can. We should never be complacent with this wonderful gift of life.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Wonderful! I love Stevie Wonder, always have. It was years before I even realized he was blind. I used to do an interpretive dance to his song “The Secret Life of Plants”….Oh, now that’s an old old mem. Of course, I never told my family… they were too prejudice to see past the skin to the talent. Oh, man, Rochelle, now I’ll be out at the music store looking for that song again. 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Bear,

      How sad for people who are prejudiced against other races and ethnicities. They are the losers. I had to look up and listen to the song. Lovely. Another thing we have in common. I’m also an interpretive dancer. Thank you.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • As for Stevie Wonder’s music, I agree with the preacher.

    When one door closes, another opens, as they say. But only the truly brave walk through. And usually not without help .

    Alternatively, one man’s curse is another man’s gift. But it takes an extraordinary person to recognize and cultivate that gift.

    So kudos, to the mom (or dad) and many teachers, as well as the miraculous set of circumstances, that ensured that this miracle happened.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Dear Rochelle,

    Stevie Wonder’s mom deserves a lot of the credit. If she hadn’t believed in him, he wouldn’t have become such a wonder! You’ve brought them both to life and touched our hearts with your writing.

    Shalom,
    Mags

    Liked by 1 person

  • So sweet. We always want to see the future – and unfortunately, despite all technological advances that have been made, that one remains elusive yet 🙂 I love the way you set up the storyline quickly and wrapped it up neatly without leaving us feel cheated of the ending and how everything turns out. Such a nice way to write about such a monumental story.

    Like

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