A Reflection of You
   I have had some time recently to gaze back through life and reflect on past experiences.  I have spent a lot of time wondering why certain moments did not conjure up more exuberant feelings.  My life has been full of both tragic and amazing moments.   My reactions to these moments have always left me unsatisfied; as if something were missing.
   I can remember walking down the street on a late Sunday morning.  The sun was shining bright but a cold November nip was in the air.  The sidewalks were wet from melting snow.  Families hustled from their cars to enjoy lunch and an afternoon of shopping.  I stood and watched and questioned their smiling faces.  Why did they get such enjoyment from this while I felt melancholy and grey over the whole affair?
    I can remember being on vacation visiting beautiful beaches, touring medieval castles, dining on extraordinary cuisine, and sipping expensive wines all while surrounded by family and friends.  Instead of enjoying these remarkable delights, I would find myself turning inward and staring of in the distance; looking for something else.
   I can remember birthdays, holidays, gathering with friends, and countless other occasions where fun and happiness were overflowing from those around me.  I felt compelled to join in their celebration.  I outwardly played the parts of the clown, the life, and the host of these ceremonious debacles.  While inwardly feeling like I don’t belong anywhere in the room.
   Through pure serendipity an answer flew to me; both figuratively and literally.  I began to experience pure enjoyment out of everyday things.  The kind of enjoyment I see others so easily having.  At first I was shocked by such a revelation.  Until it dawned on me what was missing?  It was you; beautiful, wonderful you.  Soon we begin our life together.  The thought of actually getting true enjoyment and fun out of all those things has made me look at life completely different.  Living life with you, that missing piece that that kept me up at night and had me sitting on the sidelines, makes me smile and feel that everything is going to be okay. 


I Can't Believe
   I can’t believe no one ever told you how wonderful you really are.  When I first read your writing, I was completely amazed.  It was raw, biting, and completely from the heart.  Even though it was sometimes dark, it was still beautiful to me.  I wondered what kind of woman you really were.  I expected an intelligent, witty, and striking young girl.  I found out later, I was sorely underestimating you.

   Through hours of talking and sending messages, I got to know an amazing person.  You were far deeper and much softer than I had imagined.  Not softer in a passive sense but softer in a womanly sense.  You were strong and courageous just like your writing, but you had another gentle side that I had not expected.
   After exchanging sorted pasts and experiences, neither of us was scared away.  A foundation based on kindred spirits was laid.  What started as a friendship soon blossomed into a rapidly growing field of love. 

   Our love has been tested time and again. Nothing or no one has been able to dissolve our ever strengthening bond.  The obstacles that have presented themselves may appear large to the average observer looking in.  However, from the vantage point inside our protected fortress, the obstacles are quite small.  From time to time, I may brush a tear from your cheek or you may pick up my confidence from the dusty floor, but we remain two souls joined as one forever in love. 

   You amaze me more each passing day.  I can’t believe no one ever told you how wonderful you really are.

The End
   I wish I could remember more details of that final day.  They have long since been blown from my memory like the white, cottony seeds of a dandelion.  I can still recall the scent of your skin and the taste of your lips, but the words you spoke and the promises I made are long gone.  I believed we would out last them all.  The joke was on us, they are still laughing and loving on the ocean waves.  We can only sit on opposite shores and be spectators of the care free life we once had.

   I don't blame you sweet friend. You were always there.  Something happened along the way that caused our vessel to crash into the rocky enclave.  The crash was mighty and swift but the heartache severe.  With no one to blame, I cursed the moon and the stars.  Time has passed.  Life moved on.  The scars have healed but still visible to all.  I will never be the same.  Perhaps that's for the best, since I can no longer have you.  I have to be someone else now, for you still have the old me.  Put me in a box, on a tall, tall shelf.  On a warm summer evening take me down and look at me, that's when the healing will begin. 

Coltrane Blues
   My friend Charlie stopped by my apartment the other day.  I was in the middle of cooking dinner when I heard his obnoxious knock upon my door.  I put down my knife and answered the door.  "Hey Charlie.  What's up?" I asked.  Charlie replied, "Not much chief.  You want to go out tonight?"  I told him I was in the middle of cooking dinner, but would go out for a drink afterwards.  Charlie asked, "Mind if I eat with you?  I am starving."  I reluctantly nodded yes.  Charlie is always inviting himself to dinner.
   I resumed my kitchen duties while Charlie plopped down on the couch.  I had Coltrane playing in the background while I was cooking.  Charlie shouted, "Mind if I turn this noise off and put on some TV?"  Before I could even answer, Coltrane was off and the inane blast of some laugh-track laced network programming filled my small apartment.  "Lovely", I thought to myself.

   I finished cooking dinner and Charlie and I ate with little conversation.  After cleaning up the dishes, I threw on a jacket and we journeyed out into the crisp fall evening.  We walked down 42nd Street to McFadden's and wondered in.  We each ordered a beer and scouted the crowded bar for familiar faces.  The regular crowd seemed to be absent tonight.  Charlie and I drank our beers and talked about our day.

   Charlie and I had been friends for quite awhile. We had met in college our freshman year and became fast friends.  He was a boisterous chap with a knack for saying the wrong things at the right time; especially with the opposite sex.  We eventually became roommates in our sophomore year at Bards.  Charlie's "no fear" social attitude complimented my low key, restrained demeanor.  We had a lot of fun in college and remained friends after graduation.  Charlie had several jobs over the years and usually climbed the corporate ladder quickly, but he never managed the ability to hold his tongue when talking to his supervisors.  Not that his ideas were always bad, but he never was able to deliver them in a non-abrasive manner.  I was more the calm type and held down the first job I landed after college.  I took a slow and steady approach to moving up in my company.  There were many times when Charlie was between jobs and had to crash on my couch.  I never minded.  After all, Charlie had been good to me and we had a lot of good times over the years.

   The night lingered on and Charlie and I had polished off many beers.  It had turned out to be a good evening and I was glad I came out with Charlie.  We stuck around for last call and staggered out of the bar into the chilly night.  We walked several blocks before realizing the beer we had rented was ready to move out.  We ducked into an alley to relieve ourselves.  When we finished, Charlie looked at me and said, "You know, I don't know if I have ever thanked you for being such a good friend".  I patted him on the back and said, "You too Charlie".  In that same moment, I pulled the garrote out of my jacket pocket and swung it round Charlie's neck.  I tightened it with all my strength for about 20 seconds.  Charlie's eyes bulged and spit flew from his mouth as he struggled to comprehend the situation.  I briefly loosened my grip and Charlie whispered, "Why?".  With a devilish look I smirked, "Don't ever come to my apartment and turn off Coltrane you bastard".  I re-tightened my grip until Charlie's wind pipe was broken.

   I exited the alley and sauntered off into the night.  I thought to myself, "I think I'll heat up the left overs when I get home". 

My tweets
  • Sat, 16:19: Waiting in lobby of an auto shop...it feels like Deliverance.

My tweets

The Old Man in the Woods
   The old man sat rocking slowly in his chair.  The dusty, wooden floor of the shack creaked louder than the rockers on the chair.  The old man solemnly stared out the window.  The gray, November sky looked as lonely as the leafless trees.  The long, massive branches of the oaks appeared lifeless to the old man; much like his soul.  He remembered back to a better time and how he wound up here.

   The old man was a third generation farmer.  He learned everything about farming, livestock, tractors, and motors from his father and especially his grandfather.  His grandfather had retired from farming when he was a boy.  Therefore, his grandfather had much more time than his father did.  They would spend warm summer days tearing down tractors and rebuilding them, inoculating cattle, and talking about what they would plant the following spring and why.  He loved his grandfather so.  By the time his grandfather died, the old man had learned everything he needed to know.  He and his father farmed the land together for a few years and then the old man took it over by himself.  

   The old man did a wonderful job with the family farm and made it more profitable than ever before.  He met a young woman, fell in love, and got married by the time he was 25.  His life seemed full to those around him, but the old man never felt that way.  At least, until he had his first drink of whiskey.  Life instantly seemed full.  It stayed that way for awhile.  He and his wife had a couple of kids, the farm was doing well, and the old man kept filling his empty soul with whiskey.  This didn't last for  long.  The old man started drinking earlier in the day, the chores got neglected, and the family got neglected.  The old man was becoming violent during his blackouts.  The farm hands quit.  His wife threatened to leave and take the kids.  The old man would sober up for a few days.  Followed by an even bigger binge than before. 

    He woke up one morning and he was alone.  His wife left him a note telling him what he had done during his drunkenness.  He recalled none of it.  The note said he had smacked her, broken windows, and cursed at the children.  Flashes of his kids crying flipped through his mind and painful cuts on his knuckles assured him it was true.  He dismissed it.  If they would have just let him be, it would not spiral out of control so bad.  He was alone now so he could get things back in order and assumed his wife would then return.  First, he needed a drink to get rid of his headache and calm the shakes.  He woke back up to the sound of sirens and people screaming.  He had set his barn and house on fire in yet another blackout.  His farm burnt to the ground.  He was 35 and had no future.  The old man decided the thing to do was to build a shack in the woods near the back of his property.  He would build a still, plant some corn to feed the still, and stay away from people as much as possible.  That's what he did for the next 25 years.  He had been granted his wish; no one would bother him.

   On one cold November afternoon, the old man was warming some beans in the fire and sipping on his moonshine.  His days blurred together, but he thought it was Saturday.  Suddenly, there was a rap on the door.  The old man nearly dropped his jar of moonshine.  He never had any visitors.  He opened the door expecting trouble.  Instead, an eight year old boy stared up at him.  The old man snapped, "What are you doing bothering me boy?"  The boy shyly said, "Please sir, I am lost.  My family just bought the next farm down the road.  I went off exploring and got lost."  The old man briefly felt sad for the boy.  Then pointed to the west and said, "Just walk that way towards that row of Poplar trees.  That will get you back to your farm."  The old man then slammed the door and stirred his beans.  The little boy on the porch began to cry.  The old man had another pang of sadness for the boy.  He opened the door again and asked, "Why are you crying boy?"  The boy mumbled through his sobs, "I don't know what a Poplar tree is sir."  The old man said, "What?  A boy your age doesn't know a Poplar tree?  Mercy son.  Let me get my coat."

   The unlikely pair trudged across the harvested fields towards the boy's farm.  The old man said nothing.  The boy said, "I'm Jim.  What's your name?"  The old man blurted out, "George."  The boy politely said, "Glad to meet you George.  Thank you for helping me."  The old man wanted to smile but didn't.  They came to the edge of the boy's farm and the old man pointed to their farm house in the distance.  He said, "Can you make it from here?"  Jim nodded and thanked the old man again.  The old man nodded back and returned to his shack for beans and liquor.
   A couple of days later, the old man had another knock at the door.  Once again, he opened the door to find Jim.  The old man snarled, "Surely you are not lost again."  Jim laughed and said, "No sir.  I was bored and came back to see you.  What are you doing?"  The old man said, "Nothing that involves having a little boy around.  Now you better head home."  Jim replied, "I thought maybe you could teach me about trees George."  Something in that statement made the old man choke up.  It reminded him of being with his grandfather.  To his own dismay he said he would.  He set down his moonshine and walked out into the woods.  The two walked around for hours looking at all the different trees.  The old man loved teaching the boy.  Jim seemed to enjoy learning.  A friendship was born that day.  For the next few years, the two met several times a week and the old man shared his knowledge of the land.  The days they were together the old man stayed sober.  The days they weren't he usually didn't.  However, his life seemed better than it had in a long time.

   One summer afternoon, Jim and the old man went fishing.  The old man told Jim, when he was a boy, he and his friends would throw a rope over the walnut tree branch that hung over the creek.  They would swing way out into the creek and jump off.  Jim thought that sounded really fun.  After they were done fishing, Jim went home and the old man went back to the shack.  A few hours later, the old man heard some commotion.  He saw an old truck race across the field.  He walked in the direction of the truck.  It was headed towards the creek.  The old man walked that way too.  When he got close enough, he saw Jim's father pulling his lifeless body out of the water.  The large walnut tree branch had snapped and evidently hit Jim in the head while swinging.  It had killed him.  The old man went home and picked up the moonshine.  He sobered up long enough for the funeral.  Some folks even said they noticed tears on the old man's cheek as the lowered Jim's body in the grave.  No one saw the old man after that.  Most people figured he got drunk, wondered off somewhere, and died.  No one knew for sure, until one day many years later.

   Twenty years after the accident, Jim's father got a letter in the mail.  The letter was from a boy's orphanage in a rural area down the south.  The letter stated that an old man named George had been volunteering nights and weekends to help teach young boys about farming, livestock, tractors, and motors.  The old man worked in a machine shop during the day and saved nearly every penny of his earnings to donate to the orphanage, after his death.  The money was to be used to buy new tools and educational materials so that the program, he set up, could continue.  He had only one request, that the classroom and shop area be named in Jim's honor.  The old man had remained sober since Jim's funeral and dedicated the rest of his life teaching other kids like he had taught Jim.


Taco Stand
   One morning I walked into the living room to find my roommate staring into his dog's eyes. 

   I asked, "What the hell are you doing, Charlie?"

   Charlie replied, "Shhhhhhh! I think we're communicating."
    I just laughed because good old Charlie was all saying shit like that.  I mean he is one of those guys that is really dumb.  You know like really stupid.  I feel sorry for him most of the time, since he's so dumb and all.  I just sat on the edge of the couch watching these two stare at each other.  Christ, they did this for about 6 hours.  I got bored pretty quick and walked into the kitchen to fix some coffee.  Most people think I look too young for coffee and that's probably why I drink it so much.  You know just to mess with people.  I do that when I get bored.

   So I take my coffee back into the living room and my idiot roommate is still staring at this dog.  

    I asked, "So Charlie, what the hell is this mongrel telling you?" 

   Charlie gave me a bewildered look and said, "He wants to go to the taco stand."

   Oh man!  That really got me laughing hard.  I rolled off the couch, onto the floor, laughing so goddamn hard.  I spilled my coffee and almost burnt my chest off.  No kidding!  I just kept laughing for about 2 hours straight.  I got bored after that and decided tacos didn't sound too bad.  I told Charlie to leash up his mutt and we'd go get tacos.  Off we went, like a bunch of loons.

   We get to the taco stand and Charlie remembers he has no money.  This really made me mad.  Charlie was always doing shit like this too.  He's one of those guys who loves to go places and never has money on him.  He expects someone else to pay for his stupidness.  If I really cared that much, I would have punched him in his dumb old face a long time ago.  After about 3 hours of arguing with him and his dumb dog, I decided to just pay for the goddamn tacos.  I even got a taco for that miserable dog.  I felt sorry for that dumb dog sometimes.  You know belonging to Charlie and all.  Anyway, we got the tacos and started walking back home.

   We had to cross this busy intersection on the way.  Since we had spent so much time at the taco stand it was getting really dark out.  You know, dark enough that cars going by have trouble making out your face.  That damn intersection was so busy.  We stood there for probably 2 hours or so waiting on a break in traffic.  I got so damn bored waiting like that.  I started to whistle because I do that when I get bored.

    Charlie snapped, "Cut out that goddamn whistling!"

    After you buy a guy and his mutt tacos, you expect to be able to whistle a little bit while you're waiting on traffic, you know?  That's just the kind of guy old Charlie was.  So I waited for this big semi to come roaring down the road and kicked old Charlie right in the back.  I can kick pretty hard.  A lot of people don't think I can kick like that, but I can if I really try.  Charlie fell out right under that truck's tires.  Then the damn dog got jerked out too.  I felt bad about that.  I didn't really want the dog to get hit too.  At least, he won't have to stare at that goddamn Charlie for 5 hours every morning.  I finally got home and started eating those tacos.  They were good, but I got bored pretty quick.  So, I didn't eat the taco I bought for the dog.  I didn't think that would be right.  I didn't want people to think I was mean, you know? 

The Trip
   The darkness had fallen hard and fast.  Now rain pounded the windshield with extreme force.  I figured the next thing was for the temperature to drop a few more degrees and turn this shit to ice.  That would have given a wonderful finale to this spectacular adventure.   I squinted through the fogged window for some idea of what may be barreling towards me from the blackness ahead.  As the rain hypnotized me into a relaxed funk, I thought back to the dealings of the last year and how I ended up fleeing your psychotic pit.

   We had met at a literary convention a year ago.  We immediately found a spark between us.  I thought you were beautiful, smart, articulate, and had the most amazing green eyes.  We talked, went out to dinner, and had a terrific time.  We did not become physical, since neither of us wanted to rush into a relationship.  We had both been burnt before.  After I returned to New York and you to Utah, we began our long distance friendship.  Over the months, the relationship slowly turned romantic.  Our jobs and the distance made it very difficult to do more than talk on the phone for hours on end.  We even discussed one of us moving, so we could be together.  It seemed to be going great.  One day it turned.

   One evening I called and you were suddenly despondent.  You said you didn't know if you could trust me.  I wasn't sure where this had come from.  I begged you to tell me what was going on.  You finally broke down and claimed it wasn't me that you were just feeling overwhelmed with everything.  I said I could understand that and we made up.  You even invited me out to visit you.  I arranged for the time off work, booked a flight and a rental car, and flew out on Monday.  

  When I arrived we met at a little bar and grill.  We had some wine and talked for a few hours.  You were as beautiful as I remembered.  After a couple glasses of wine, we began to get flirty.  You gave me a seductive look and said, "Let's have one more glass of wine and go back to my house."  I nodded and excused myself to the restroom.  I remember thinking how happy I was that we had met.  After the last glass of wine, I don't remember much.  I didn't  feel drunk, but something hit hit me like sledgehammer.  It wasn't until I awoke, tied naked to your bed that I realized I had been drugged.

   Your bedroom walls were plastered with pictures of me and a couple of women in my office.  Everything was foggy, but I could definitely tell they were pictures of me; innocent pictures of me and my colleagues on working lunches.  I didn't see you right away.  You were sitting on the floor in some lacy lingerie, crying, and honing a large knife.  I yelled, "What the fuck are you doing?"  You yelled back, "I'll tell you what I am doing.  I am going to cut you up so you can't cheat on anyone anymore."  I said, "What are you talking about?  I am not cheating on you.  These are innocent pictures with people in my office.  Where did these pictures come from? "  She quipped back, "I hired an investigator to follow you to see what you were up to."  I yelled again, "YOU WHAT?"  My mind began racing and I thought to myself, "This bitch is going to fillet me." 

  You climbed on the bed and got on top of me.  You ran the knife down my stomach as you cried.  I begged you to untie me so that we could talk.  I promised you I was not cheating.  You laid your head on my chest and said, "I don't think I can believe you."  I begged again for you to untie me.  You ran the knife up my arms and around my throat.  Then you leaned in and kissed me.  To my amazement, you bent down and whispered in my ear, "I know you're not cheating on me.  I just wanted you to know what would happen if you did."  You drew the knife quickly towards my wrist and cut the rope.  You laughed coyly and said, "Now make love to me."  You seductively removed your bra and cut my remaining restraints.  I pushed you back roughly on the bed and we made love for hours.  Around eight o'clock you said, "How about we go shower and then get some dinner."  You walked to the bathroom, glancing back over your shoulder and motioning me to join you.  Your naked body was amazing in the dim light from the shaded lamp.  I grabbed the heavy lamp and clubbed you on the back of the head.  I smirked, "Dinner? So you can drug me and fuck with me again, you crazy bitch?!" 

   I'm on my way to the airport now.  I hope this goddamn weather holds out.


Just Waiting on Someone
   Flashing back to that morning still made me shutter.  We had been laying naked in bed earlier that morning.  You always woke  up so beautiful.  I rubbed your soft skin and just stared in amazement at you.  Oh, how you hated that.  You smiled and pull the covers up over your eyes.  I jerked them back down, exposing one of your breasts and you shrieked.  Then I tickled you until you could take no more.  It had been a wonderful morning, until I got the call.

   I sped to the hospital thinking the worst and hoping for the best.  It was excruciating.  I got to your room and you looked nothing like you had a few hours ago.  Your face was swelled, your nose was broke, you had a tube in your throat, and your were in a coma.  The policeman said a dump truck had crossed the center line and smashed into you.  They had to cut you out of the car.  He solemnly said, "I'm not sure why this girl is still alive."  It seemed like an eternity before the doctor visited the room.  He looked at some of the tests and whispered something to the nurse.  She left the room and the doctor came over to where I was sitting.  He asked if I was her husband.  I said, "No.  We are engaged."  He then asked where her parents were.  I said, "I have called them and they are on their way.  They live out of town so it will be a little while.  Please tell me what's going to happen to her."  He coldly looked down at me and softly said, "We don't know if she will ever wake up.  If she does, she may not ever have her full mental faculties back."  I hung my head and cried.

   Lindsay's parent's arrived later that evening and the doctor told them the prognosis.  We comforted each other all night.  I took off the next two weeks of work to sit with Lindsay.  I rubbed her hands, talked to her, and kissed her forehead many times a day.  I was looking for some sign she might come out of the coma.  The two weeks were up and I never saw a real positive sign.  I was very depressed.  I didn't know how to go on without her.  I returned to work while Lindsay's parents kept the vigil going.  Exactly two months after the accident, her mother called and said she was responding to voices.  Once again, I sped towards the hospital in my car.  I got to Lindsay's bedside and whispered in her ear, "Lindsay, it's me honey.  I love you."  She squeezed my hand.

   The next few months were painstakingly slow, but Lindsay did improve.  She slowly started talking in short sentences.  She started eating milkshakes and eventually real food again.  The doctors were amazed.  Lindsay was very determined.  Six months after coming out of the coma, she began standing up and doing some basic leg exercises to rebuild her strength.  At eight months, she was taking a few steps.  My hope of getting Lindsay back to normal got stronger everyday.  After 1 year, Lindsay came home.  Of course the transition was difficult.  Lindsay still had long strides to make, but normalcy did not seem so infinitely far away.  It was tangible. 

   Lindsay did make a full recovery.  We became a normal couple again.  During her ordeal, we had missed our original wedding date.  On our 5 year anniversary (2 years after the accident) I proposed to her again.  It seemed like we had started over in a way.  I wanted it to be really special.  We went out to a very fancy restaurant, I surprised her with our family and friends being there, and I even got the original engagement ring fitted with an additional diamond setting.  I proposed and she started crying and went off to the bathroom.  I chased her and asked what was wrong.  She cried and shook and said she wasn't sure she could get married yet.  That after the accident she wasn't sure about the future.  I tried to understand.  I said, "We'll just take it slow and see what happens."  She nodded and we hugged.  That was Friday.  Yesterday I found out she is having an affair...with a friend of mine.

   I am writing this on her laptop in her bedroom.  I am waiting on her to get home from sleeping with my buddy.  Her car accident is not going to look so bad after tonight.  Oh, there's her car now.  Gotta get....
Tags: , ,


Log in