Zephyr at Dawn – Round Table Nights II

ZO, Revered One, I have told you 25 tales, and now, in the middle of this night, I shall to tell you one more.

So, here at the round table, before the candle burns down, thus I begin this Scheherazade chronicle: A man walked down the dusty yellow street between the low white houses. He wore a long white shirt belted in woven thread of gold, turquoise silk balloon pants and camel hide sandals. On his head was a turban that rather resembled a pumpkin in both color and design, with a small stem-like dome at the crown. He was a pasha or somebody like that. In one hand, where one would expect a staff or sword, he carried a bottle of Zinfandel, Red Zinfandel. In the other a brass oil lamp needing polishing.

A beautiful young maiden strolled toward him. Instantly he was smitten. He waylaid her and struck up a conversation. He thought, Shall I bed her or behead her? For, surely I will not wed her. She is too pretty. I shall bed her and then behead her, for she is like all the others, always wanting nothing but my riches and once she gets them she will be unfaithful.  The maiden had no idea what was going on in his head. She thought him rather handsome, but that his big pumpkin hat must weigh down his brain.

“My dear,” said he to the maiden, “Come with me to my——”

“Bfff; bfff. … Biff.”

Oh — it’s Dickens. Excuse me. Let me get up from the table and let him in. Moriarty, the Phantom of my Blog, is back, his arrival heralded by his black, fluffy dog, Dickens. I open the heavy metal security door of my blog. A soft breeze out of the west has picked up.

“Moriarty. Welcome back. How was your trip to Arkansas? How is your family? No wonder you didn’t open the door yourself. Your hands are full.

“What is that you’re carrying?” I ask him as he enters the blog.

Suddenly, Dickens steps out of the shadows and walks in front of Moriarty. Moriarty trips and the thing he is carrying flies into the air. I catch it.

“Moriarty. It’s a zither. You’ve brought back a zither.”

“I found it in a roadside yard sale when I was in Missouri,” he says.

“I thought you went to Arkansas.”

“I did, but I have to drive through a corner of Missouri to get there.”

“Oh, right.”

I hold the zither by the window in the light emanating from the sun about to rise above the horizon. “It looks in pretty good condition from what little I know about zithers,” I say.

“I’m going to take zither lessons,” he says. “I’ll become a zitherist. —-

“{{{     }}}  What is this mess all over the place? You’ve got papers strewn everywhere. This is awful.”

“It’s my A to Zs,” I say. “I’ve written them all the way to Z. These are my notes and drafts and Outliers.”

“Outliers? What are the outliers?”

“The Outliers are my darlings that wouldn’t fit into my tales but I didn’t want to kill, so I saved them in my Scheherazade Chronicles ‘Outliers’ file, for other tales.”

“And everything’s so dusty,” he says. “Why haven’t you dusted?”

“Because, I was totally immersed in writing the A to Zs. Everything else fell by the wayside.”

“Well, you’re going to have to dust, but let’s get started cleaning up these papers.

“Guess what I saw while I was driving across the Chesapeake through Maryland back from Arkansas?” he says as he picks up a page and wads it up. “Sinbad’s ship. It was in dry dock. They were replacing the rotted wooden boards and all the ribs. The sea really battered it.”

He tosses the wadded page into the trash basket. Dickens snatches it out and runs with it.

“Hey!” I say. “What’s on that page?! I may need it. Let me see it! Is that my ‘Outliers’ page?”

I chase after Dickens, running through the kitchen. I quick glance at the clock on the microwave. I forgot, in the night I had heated up the mac and cheese Thomas Jefferson had left on his recent visit. It was still in the microwave.

I find it unsettling when I want to know the time and I glance at the microwave clock and it says “END.”

Samantha Mozart

24 Responses to Zephyr at Dawn – Round Table Nights II

  1. Hilary says:

    Hi Sam – hopefully Barbara will give a shout out when she visits … I’m still catching up … and must write another post shortly – probably at the weekend! I just saw your comment on my Z for Zennor post … but felt I must call in now …

    I will be back to read properly too .. I need to take Moriarty under my wing, and make sure I’ve understood the Dickens connection in amongst the chronicles of Scheherazade … I shall return anon … that glass of Zinfandel beckons! Cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — I just now saw your comment here. Sorry I missed it yesterday. By now you’ve made the Moriarty/Dickens connection as told in the Scheherazade Chronicles. Conan Doyle’s Moriarty connection with Charles Dickens would be … well, it might be interesting. Charles Dickens might have put Moriarty to intriguing use. –That thought and I’m only drinking my morning coffee — no Zinfandel yet. That’s for later — and please do stop by to share a glass with me. 🙂

  2. Val Rainey says:

    Oh Sam! You are way too funny! Your fellow must have been related to Henry V111. He coudn’t decide what to do with his wives…….divorced, beheaded, died…divorced, beheaded…survived as wife number six outlived him.

    • sammozart says:

      Perhaps he was related to Henry VIII, Val, but more apropos to this story, he was more closely related to Scheherazade’s Sultan, I think. Frankly (to toss in yet another name), I think Henry got the idea from the Sultan (or in this story, the pumpkin-hatted pasha. 🙂

      Thank you for visiting and commenting.

  3. Beatrice says:


    • sammozart says:

      Why, thank you, Beatrice. What a joy to have you come by and comment.


  4. Celine says:

    What a fun post to end A to Z with, I had a chuckle (I confess, I had to google zither – what a gorgeous instrument!). I like Moriarty and Dickens a lot already – I’m looking forward to going back and reading more about them.

    It’s sad that A to Z has ended, but it will be nice to go back to normal life, with dusting and other chores getting done so we’re not all living in chaos 😉

    • sammozart says:

      I agree with you, Celine, about the A-Zs ending and getting back to dusting, laundry, etc.

      Moriarty says he’s glad you like him, and Dickens is wagging his tail. Their stories are interspersed throughout my blog, and I am planning to collect them into a book.

      Thanks! Nice to have your visit again.

  5. Hehe! The end is not nigh, it’s just the mac and cheese. Phew. A fun and imaginative end to a great series of posts. Congratulations for surviving! I think we’ll all need to get busy dusting.

    It was great having met you, Samantha. I look forward to your future posts. 🙂

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, thankfully just the mac and cheese, Sara.

      So glad to have met you, too, Sara, and I will be back to read more of your delightful and imaginative posts. 🙂

  6. Pat Garcia says:

    I’m laughing again!-:) This is so funny and I’m falling in love with Moriarty. I can see everything so clearly from your descriptions. You have a keen sense of humour.

    Outliers? I’ve got a bunch of those too. If you look at my desk the only thing you see is paper everywhere. Then there’s my iPad. It’s got a whole bunch of outliers where I woke up at 2 or 3 in the morning and began typing out words that The Prophet or The Child was dictating to me. My these characters. They can be really pushy when they have grabbed hold of your imagination. They know they are a part of you and they can be quite fresh.

    Samantha, I have so enjoyed your blog during the A to Z. You have been a blessing to me. When I needed to laugh, then your Moriarty was there with Dickens. Beautiful.

    Congratulations you made it, and I have gained insight into a dear friend that I love.


    • sammozart says:

      Yes, these pushy characters grabbing hold of our imaginations, Patricia. Thank you for gently prodding me to put their antics into the A-Zs.

      I, too, have gained insight into a dear friend. I think of you often and I love you, too. I would love to hear you sing one day.

      And, speaking of our friendship, I will be back to reply to your touching email soon. It’s just that momentarily I have gotten behind, because Moriarty wouldn’t be pushed into doing my laundry, so I had to catch up on that this morning. 🙂


  7. Fee says:

    Love, love love! Congratulations on completing the A-Z! I’m so glad I found your blog in my travels this month. I’ll definitely be back in the future 🙂

    Fee | Wee White Hoose
    Scottish Mythology and Folklore A-Z

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you so much for your encouraging compliment, Fee. That means a lot to me. So glad to have found you on the A-Zs, and I will be back to read more. 🙂

  8. Marsha Lackey says:

    Microwave END. What a way to go. So perfectly Samantha. There is always an adventure in your posts and characters beyond imagination. I will miss and I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of the follow up book. Thanks you for all the emotions, that covered so many areas of humanity.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Marsha. Your comments are always so insightful. I try to relate my stories to universal human experiences. So, hopefully, as you say, I have succeeded a bit. There’s always more, and I will write more. I think Moriarty’s busy right now, though, unpacking his suitcase and seeking a zither teacher. 🙂

      Book coming up, as soon as I get my computer back. Thanks.

  9. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha – the Zephyr wind can gently blow all which ways .. a great tale with many twists .. and here’s the ZZZing around the Round Table – are you coming over to Cornwall to Tintagel .. or will you try another Round Table setting … but I will definitely join you for some Zinfandel … congratulations and good to meet up with you – cheers and see you shortly .. Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — I plan on coming over to Cornwall to Tintagel, at least virtually; would love to join you for some Zinfandel, at the round table or anywhere.

      I am so glad to have met you. Thank you for coming with me and supporting me on this journey. It means a lot to me.

      BTW, I have an English friend here, Barbara, whom I told last evening about your writing on Cornwall. She was very excited and provided some of her own historical knowledge of the area. I emailed her your blog link. So, she’ll no doubt visit and may or many not comment; I don’t know. She is a retired teacher of math and history and has lived all over the world — even taught at Guantanamo.

      Cheers. See you shortly. I got a little behind, as I couldn’t get Moriarty to do my laundry, and had to catch up on that. 🙂


  10. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Goodness, what an escapade! See what happens to you when you don’t get enough sleep! 😉 But, I felt I was right there with you the whole way. I did enjoy your journey. I hope you picked up many friends on your journey. We DID IT! Congratulations!!

    • sammozart says:

      Well, Gwynn, since you were right there with me all the way, you could’ve helped catch the 12 lb. zither flying at me. But, oh, well, this Storyteller got enough sleep that she managed the catch despite a black, fluffy dog being in the middle of the whole thing.

      Yes, it’s been quite a journey and I have thoroughly enjoyed it. Thank you for taking the journey with me and for your support. Much appreciated. Made some fascinating new friends, too — some really good writers.


  11. Robert Price says:

    LMWATWT, (Laughing my way all the way through), love it.

    Write a lot more!



    • sammozart says:

      I slept with the windows open last night and awakened this morning to a zephyr at dawn and then to read your LMWATWT (glad you translated) — glad you laughed.

      I think the maiden would have been more forthcoming had not the pasha spoken in text lingo to her, so that she could get a handle on what he was about….

      Thx for the writing encouragement, as ever, R.


  12. Susan Scott says:

    Ah whimsical to the last .. may the zephyr wind continue to blow in and out of your being, your space, your sight and sound Samantha , as you go hither and zither and not get into a tither … that mac and cheese for Jefferson is re-usable and I hope to partake of it and of course the Zinfadel when next at your round table.

    Time now for some real zzz’s what say you?

    • sammozart says:

      As I go hither and zither, indeed, Susan. What might get me into a tither is trying to say zitherist 10 times, fast. 🙂

      Yes, time for some real zzz’s.

      And then for us two, mac and cheese and Zin and camel watching, I’d say.