Shattered Glass | Teen Ink

Shattered Glass MAG

February 19, 2009
By DarkenedStarlight BRONZE, St. Louis, Missouri
DarkenedStarlight BRONZE, St. Louis, Missouri
2 articles 0 photos 0 comments

He slowly turns the pliers in his hand, curling the wire around itself. With one last squeeze, the next piece of his beach glass mobile is complete. It sparkles as he holds it up to the sun and translucent brown, blue, and green dance across weathered skin.

The soft sound of clinking glass echoes through the workshop. The small room is furnished with a table and a folding chair. Older mobiles hang from the ceiling, moving slightly from side to side. A 25-year-old fan sits in the corner, blowing softly, ruffling the pages of the book emblazoned with a cross that sits on the corner of the table. One framed photograph stands next to the book. It is of a younger man – brown bottle in hand, arms around a smiling woman – grinning into the camera on a picturesque beach. The photograph isn’t there for happy nostalgia. It is a reminder of what he has lost and what he still has to gain.

He pushes his wire-rimmed glasses up his nose and settles into the worn folding chair. He sifts carefully through the round-edged beach glass, looking for the right piece to attach next.

The browns and greens shine back into his eyes. He can still identify the color of glass that each beer brand used for their bottles. This green is for Hefeweizen, this brown for Budweiser. He wonders, as he always does, if these well-washed shards are from bottles he himself carelessly threw into the ocean.

The mobile is for his granddaughter, Andi. Her brother, Gordon, has a similar one – well, he does if Melissa hasn’t thrown it out. He wouldn’t blame his daughter if she had. She has every right to still hate him. She has every right to ignore his existence.

In his daydreams, the lovingly crafted mobiles hang over the cribs. Melissa and her husband might hate them but decide that the children need something of their only living grandparent. Melissa might use them as a lesson: never touch glass bottles; the stuff inside is pure poison.

Another piece is firmly attached, and he checks his watch. His meeting is in an hour. They are going to play cards. His wife loved cards. Every time they play at a meeting, he is reminded of how she had begged him to go to a meeting, to talk to someone, to call his brother, to play chess with Melissa, to take Max hunting for shells, to walk the dog on the beach, to feed the cat, to do anything but drown himself in a brown glass bottle.

He finds another piece of beach glass and carefully inserts a wire in the small hole, threading his past and tying it in a mobile to hang over his granddaughter’s bed, so she might know some day that he never meant to hurt anyone.

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This article has 154 comments.

_NoAir_ BRONZE said...
on Apr. 12 2010 at 7:04 pm
_NoAir_ BRONZE, Toronto, Other
4 articles 1 photo 463 comments

Favorite Quote:
There are as many ways to live as there are people in this world. Each one deserves a closer look.

–Golly (Harriet The Spy)

I really love the effect you put into this! Really nice work!

ByThyName said...
on Apr. 12 2010 at 2:02 pm
Just going to say I really like this

E.Lee GOLD said...
on Apr. 12 2010 at 10:22 am
E.Lee GOLD, Akron, Ohio
15 articles 0 photos 168 comments
LOVE it!!!!!!

on Apr. 12 2010 at 8:29 am
PrincessPineapple GOLD, Chesapeake, Virginia
18 articles 0 photos 46 comments

Favorite Quote:
"To love someone is to learn the song that is in their heart, and sing it to them when they have forgotten." ~unknown

This is Amazing! I love how you slowly revealed what the man was doing.

on Mar. 21 2010 at 8:41 pm
bowloforanges SILVER, Burr Ridge, Illinois
5 articles 0 photos 2 comments

Favorite Quote:
"The years shall run like rabbits." -As I Walked Out One Evening, W. H. Auden


Penelope GOLD said...
on Mar. 21 2010 at 7:25 pm
Penelope GOLD, Hillsborough, New Jersey
13 articles 0 photos 14 comments

Favorite Quote:
There comes a time when you have to stop thinking of yourself as the main character in your own story, but as the suppporting character in someone else's story.

I like stories like that, but I can never write them. keep up the good work!

kather BRONZE said...
on Mar. 21 2010 at 5:34 pm
kather BRONZE, Wilmette, Illinois
3 articles 0 photos 8 comments
Nice. Very thorough, tangible descriptions. It's touching, about the grandfather... Good job!

on Mar. 21 2010 at 4:32 pm
signed44 SILVER, Waxhaw, North Carolina
7 articles 16 photos 12 comments
Thank you.

on Feb. 27 2010 at 6:49 pm
spitfire213 SILVER, North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
8 articles 0 photos 55 comments

Favorite Quote:
In the devil's den i may be, so stab my heart and set me free.

absolutely amazing! i dont think i've ever read anything so down to earth and touching.

on Feb. 27 2010 at 1:13 pm
krisssss BRONZE, Nyack, New York
1 article 0 photos 25 comments
This is by far one of the most discriptive pieces of literature I've read. Your vocabulary is incredible and the way your portray the story is amazing. Please keep writing !

Jacobf2 BRONZE said...
on Feb. 27 2010 at 9:15 am
Jacobf2 BRONZE, Branford, Connecticut
2 articles 0 photos 2 comments
i love the way you capture the scene with your description, very well written.

on Feb. 27 2010 at 9:02 am
writergirl13 GOLD, Cherry Hill, New Jersey
11 articles 8 photos 261 comments

Favorite Quote:
All are lunatics, but he who can analyze his delusions is called a philosopher.
Ambrose Bierce

I don't think he killed his wife, he wouldn't be looking for glass at the beach, he'd be sitting in jail. I thought maybe he is disliked by his family because he couldn't stop being an alcholic?

on Feb. 27 2010 at 8:58 am
writergirl13 GOLD, Cherry Hill, New Jersey
11 articles 8 photos 261 comments

Favorite Quote:
All are lunatics, but he who can analyze his delusions is called a philosopher.
Ambrose Bierce

WOW! that was beautifully written! you did a very good job with sensory details. i also loved the way you explained what the grandfather has been through in life and how his only family hates him.

on Feb. 18 2010 at 6:39 pm
juicyfan6 BRONZE, Mount Laurel, New Jersey
1 article 0 photos 46 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I solemnly swear that I am up to no good." - J.K. Rowling

This is well written. Nice job. :)

on Feb. 5 2010 at 5:44 pm
sasssgirrrl22 PLATINUM, Pearl River, New York
27 articles 0 photos 266 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Giving up is not a part of my vocabulary."
"Don't let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game."
"Truth be told I miss ya, truth be told I'm lying."

wow. this is truly amazing. ur descriptionz were incredible. So much that I had to remember this waz a fiction article lol. awesome job!

on Feb. 5 2010 at 1:32 pm
beautifuldownfall, Kkk, Iowa
0 articles 0 photos 20 comments
Wow... The emotion you crafted so expertly is amazing! It really...really makes one think. Well said! (& the descriptions are amazing!)

on Feb. 5 2010 at 11:21 am
Lucky.Deviant SILVER, Park City, Utah
6 articles 6 photos 21 comments

Favorite Quote:
"We all know the people that walk the halls, we all know their in this fight to be the best in life with us, so why to we snare at them, glare, and pass them by without even a friendly smile that says; I'm here for you, we'll be alright." -Myself

The emotion in this is wonderfully put in. I love the story and the way you infer things like the glass bottles. Very nice, you truly put writing at it's best.

on Feb. 5 2010 at 10:59 am
violingoddess GOLD, Mesa, Arizona
10 articles 9 photos 20 comments

Favorite Quote:
It ain't bad being good
when you feel like you can no longer stand- get on your knees
Curiousity is the mother of discovery

I love the imagry used in this piece! good job, well done :)

on Jan. 14 2010 at 9:34 pm
~*TheDreamer*~, Clinton, Mississippi
0 articles 0 photos 8 comments

Favorite Quote:
"You do some things. Most fails. Some works. You do more of what works. If it works big, others quickly copy it. Then you do something else. The trick is doing something else." -Leonardo da Vinci

Wow. I can't believe how much emotion and information you can pack into just that many words. Again another reason why I love writing :)

on Jan. 14 2010 at 2:53 pm
Simply put: Amazing!