The Balleria of the Sea | Teen Ink

The Balleria of the Sea

November 7, 2014
By Storiesaresouls SILVER, Parker, Colorado
Storiesaresouls SILVER, Parker, Colorado
6 articles 0 photos 4 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Imagination is far more important than knowledge." ~Albert Einstein

"The universe is made of stories, not of atoms." ~Muriel Rukeyser

The ship was broken. That didn't much matter, however, considering that it was already at the bottom of the sea, but it was still a sad sight to behold, such a magnificent thing being slowly destroyed through the years. Only a decade had passed, but the steel had cracked and broken in places, allowing vulnerable support beams to show. A thin coat of grime and sand from the sea floor covered part of the deck, which had broken free and dropped to the bottom of the ocean during the ship's descent into the icy water. Ropes and pulleys and steel beams and wood benches all spilled from the structure of the vessel in a smooth wave, almost like a spilled drink flowing over concrete. Fish wove in and out of the skeleton of the ship, looking at the once beautiful exterior with wide, unblinking eyes, almost as though they were startled at the fact that yet another ship had failed to stay afloat. And yet, the one thing they were not concerned about, was the most interesting thing of all.

There was a woman, a woman dancing on the broken deck. And she was beautiful. Her face was pale, milky, almost, framed by dark hair, twisted into a perfect ebony bun that rested against the nape of her neck. Her expression was set in a calm, concentrated mask, and, almost subconsciously, she was closing her eyes, as though she was listening to a music only she could hear. A smooth, swanlike neck was exposed, tilted ever so slightly to the side as long, elegant fingers swept through the water in a graceful curve, arching high above her head. Taught muscles shone underneath her flawless skin as she balanced easily on a slippered toe, and her delicate hand gently gripped the eroding railing of the deck as though it were a pole in a ballet studio. A creme white tutu billowed away from her body, seemingly unaffected by the current around her.
Fish swam lazily past, caught in the same current that uselessly tugged at her tutu, but the dancer didn't notice, only releasing the railing and lifting her other arm to join the first in an elegant oval. Her once bent leg extended, and she began to spin, twirling around and around in a unearthly dance, her eyes still closed as she listened to her inaudible music.
As time went on, the ballerina's dance slowly became more intricate, more beautiful, never once loosing its air of grace and dignity. She gave a practically nonstop performance, pausing for only a moment, when she stood motionless, body locked in the shape of an I. She made that instant seem so simple, posing neatly in the middle of the deck, with her arms arched over her head and the tip of her ballet slipper pointing towards the setting sun above. She looked like the type of ballerina that should be trapped in a music box, effortlessly holding a perfect pose until she wound herself up and began her dance once more.
Eyes still closed, the ballerina swept her arm to the side, dipping her body forwards as a long, lithe leg extended behind her. She was stuck in her own world, a universe that consisted only of a fluid elegance and an inaudible song. However, the creatures swimming past her were not a part of her little universe, and they didn't pay any mind to her dancing, however beautiful. And, because of this disregard, a small fish, one swimming hurriedly away from a fairly large predator right on its tail, brushed against her pale arm.
She seemed almost startled by that barest touch of living flesh, the sensation of warm scales against her frozen skin enough to make her stop in the middle of her music box dance, balancing on the very tip of a toe as her eyes flew open. Bright, warm irises emerged from underneath her thin lids, the ring of brilliant color seeming to mimic the dark golds, Scotch browns and underlying reds one could find in a piece of amber. Those eyes were too bright, too beautiful to belong to a living human. They were haunted, and scarred, lost, almost, and they made her seem as though she was in the deepest throes of despair. The face that had once seemed so youthful, so peaceful, now belonged to a woman that had too much to remember.
Her arms slowly lowered, and she looked around, her expression distant and unfocused as she sunk to rest on the heels of her feet. It was plain that she still did not- could not- allow herself to see the reality that was right in front of her. Instead, her mind molded something different for her to see, something more comforting than the wrecked ship and the cold ocean.
A deck, the same one she stood on now, brightly lit and warm. A stage, with a dark velvet curtain. A performance, the last one of the night. A costume, one of a bird, with bright white plumage that fanned behind her in a wave as she danced. A single spotlight, focused on her and her alone. A mask, pulled over her face. And a tear, as bright as a diamond, slipping out from underneath the bondage of that mask as the performance went on.
She'd known the ship was sinking. The Captain had told her. And he had begged her. He begged her to dance, dance for one more night, dance for the doomed passengers, dance to give them one last thing of beauty to hang on to as the sabotaged ship sunk to the sea floor.
And so she did. The beautiful ballerina with the pale skin and ebony hair danced her own life away, and she never stopped, not even after the ship ducked its head under the freezing Atlantic waves.

The author's comments:

I wrote this in tribute to the brave musicians that were on board the Titanic. They never stopped playing, not even to save themselves, only using their music to ease others' pain, and I think that's the bravest thing anyone could ever do.

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This article has 3 comments.

LadyZ SILVER said...
on Nov. 25 2014 at 9:04 pm
LadyZ SILVER, Bellefonte, Pennsylvania
5 articles 0 photos 17 comments

Favorite Quote:
From the movie adaptation of Going Postal, "The only problem with having a bright tomorrow is getting through the night before."

Very strong story! I think ballet is a beautiful art form. I feel that you keep a good consistent voice, and your comma usage and use of "and," while unconventional, portrayed the same poetic elegance as a dancer. 

on Nov. 18 2014 at 4:15 pm
Storiesaresouls SILVER, Parker, Colorado
6 articles 0 photos 4 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Imagination is far more important than knowledge." ~Albert Einstein

"The universe is made of stories, not of atoms." ~Muriel Rukeyser

Thanks a ton! Glad you liked it. :)

on Nov. 18 2014 at 3:05 pm
guard-girl GOLD, Clover, South Carolina
10 articles 11 photos 147 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take."
Proverbs 3:5-6

Wow this is really amazing. It is descriptive and left me yearning for more. keep it up!