Thursday, April 28, 2011

Character Sketch "Tiny"

Sidebar: Many years ago I frequented a small Irish pub. My experiences drive me to work on this small group of characters.  Tiny is my first. Posted below is my first draft. Tiny was an actual bouncer and some of how I describe him is true but most of it is completely made up. Incidentially, the real Tiny did not have a problem with BO.

Photo from Google Images

Tiny was the harbinger of order for a chaotic Irish pub. He smoked like a chimney and guzzled Guinness like it was water. Most days he was a sheep in lion’s clothing. His laugh was guttural with a tempo that flowed into a hacking wheeze. He perched himself at the bar’s end. Strategically this was optimal because one of his many duties was to keep track of the regulars and their typical shenanigans.  Tiny was hard to miss, his chubby rosy cheeks and blood shot green eyes were framed by a shocking mess of unmade bed hair. The whole sorted mess of a head was perched on top of his thick six foot four inch frame.  His gut was legendary. The way most beer drinkers gain a gut, Tiny had more than enough for a few. Yet this did not slow him down when he needed to be at the top of his game. He moved with the alacrity of someone half his size and was a bit windy when doing so. Aside from his putrid cloud and a camel dangling from his bottom lip he was a fine bouncer and Axel couldn’t have had a better employee even if he wasn’t his younger brother.
To say he was a mess was stating the obvious as he couldn’t completely be counted on to wear a clean shirt or change his underwear with regularity. But his heart was big and when his odor exceeded his heart’s capacity and reached the unmanageable Axel would send him home to mom. She would straighten him out. From the moment he stepped into her front door she stripped him down to the nitty gritty, tossed him a robe sending him straight up to wash behind those ears. “Be a good lad and make your mom proud, get up there and shower off the week’s stench while I make you a nice breakfast.” The boy would do anything his mother instructed.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Salvador Dali  - Lifted from Google Images

I made it by each and every landmine today
I kept driving
other focused
able to look away

I came home
found my nourishment here
happy with myself
praying part of me

The saboteur no more
the other self I deplore
happy I feel within my skin
each day my strength deepens
it all starts from within

So I draw on my strength
a private mantra I pray
I will keep it close at heart
I will say it everyday

Little by little I watch with joy
as my destructive self melts away.

Monday, April 25, 2011


Magpie Tale 63

I took a little break so that I could see the color again
color had disappeared from my life and in its place it was dark. The negative space was blurry and it hurt my eyes to look, so I looked away.

I breathed a deep breath and it wasn't deep enough and I was told it's not deep enough. So I tried again and again and slowly my strength returned. I was frightened that I was leaving. The kind of leaving you can't come back from but I prayed my prayer of healing and I am better. I see c0lor again and my lipstick matches my nail polish again.

I am coming back again and here is where I will find the woman buried deep inside the pound of flesh were she hides her eyes too embarrassed to see and join the world around her. She flushes the pain like pillows of adipose tissue releasing the toxins that keep her epoxied to a death wish that is no longer wished for.

She finds her joy and praises all of the God she knows that joy has once again returned.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Skipping Stones

Google Image

Inept at sadness
Not so much
Evade lucid pipedreams
Each stone I skip comes back to me
Why is it so hard to win
Jacks or hopscotch
 The rules never change
Systematically it is all the same
Fold the pain into origami
Something crane like perhaps
Set it out to float
Discover in it the very best
As it disintegrates
Melting into the water
Consumed one fiber at a time
You will find
Inept at happiness
Not so much

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect Two Hundred Dollars, Go Directly to Jail

For the keepers of Brody Bernard and the sister in particular who lived it.
I did not have a photo of Brody but
this dog kind of looks like him. Image lifted from
Google Images
She thought, “Cute as a puppy, but he isn’t cute now.” “Brody Bernard! Get Back Here! Brody Bernard!” She yelled at the top of her lungs. A passerby shouting over her shoulder yelled, “Bernard’s not listening!” “Really, lady?” She thought, “Why do people feel it necessary to state the obvious. A little help would be nice. Instead I’ve got this woman and whose this Jack ass taking our photo while I am up to my knees in pond sludge? New running shoes, Oh shit, “Brody Bernard stop chasing that duck and get back here!”
I left my house at three thirty with just enough time to go for a run before the after work crowd. It was the first nice day of spring. I looked down at the black nose and amber pleading eyes. “Do you want to go for a run?” His tail – back forth and around in a circle, it just about waged off his rear end and he hopped like rabbit with excitement. “Ok boy let me grab your leash.” The Park was gorgeous two laps around the pond made a mile and I wanted to get at least three miles in. We loaded up and off we went.
That is when all hell broke loose. What I had not counted on was my dog’s reaction to all the water fowl and the water. I guess I should have figured after a winter of being cooped up. He busted loose and dove right in swimming out towards the ducks without a single backward glance. No amount of cussing, not even when I threatened his life did he come back. The more I yelled the more he swam, in the wrong direction. I had not even, barely, exited my car with him on the leash when this happened. He had me at a full run, I ran smack into a large walnut tree when I lost the leash. Game over and now I stand in my new running shoes with water up to my knees yelling, “Brody Bernard, THAT IS IT! YOU ARE GOING DIRECTLY TO THE POUND!”
Brody ended up back at home. As a punishment he got a bath instead of a one-way ticket to the pound. I guess it's the eyes that kept him out of doggy jail.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

My Secret Tree

It was uncared for and probably long forgotten by the person who bothered to plant it. Perhaps it was planted by the dropping of a bird. Large olive green foliage hung lifeless and dry. My secret tree edged its way to the back wooden fence. Other such bland shrubbery camouflaged the red orbs that hung heavy making its very existence incognito.
Not being of the world for more than six years, it was alien to me. The leaves started at the very bottom of the trunk and I was sure it was just an old bush. Its fruit wouldn’t be known as fruit to me yet. They were just balls of curiosity and I was curious by it. I picked a ball. At first I handled it like a precious object. I felt its circumference and placed my index finger into its flowering top. I was immediately reminded of a cactus flower but its texture, weight and warmth only drove me towards further exploration.
It was warm from basking in the summer sun. It must have been there for years before anyone discovered it. It was my discovery. I claimed it. It belonged to me. I had to get inside the thing but I had no viable tool so I threw it on the cement retaining wall and it split in two. Crimson liquid squirted and red corn looking kernels burst forth. It left me wondering, does this taste like fruit punch? It looks like fruit punch. I dipped my finger into its ripped flesh, closed my eyes and tasted its elixir. Would this be the poison that would end my life? Instinct told me it was safe, to go ahead and I did.
I thought it certainly must be something the Indians used. I knew about the Indians and their natural ways. I visited the Natural History museum and watched an Indian woman grind corn into meal. Certainly this plant must be of some use to her people. Its internal structure, require it be of some use or why would it exist.
Gingerly my small fingers peeled away the leathery flesh revealing large clusters of red seeds and paper thin segments compartmentalizing those clusters. I placed my mouth over an entire section and bite down. Hot red juice trailed down the corners of my mouth and onto my t-shirt. I wiped my hand over the stain and admired its deep claret color. It tasted sweet and earthy. I was hooked. I kept my secret not even my stained clothes confessed my discovery or at least my mother never said anything about my secret tree or my discovery.


Monday, April 4, 2011


I wrote this in first person. However, this is dedicated to the people in my life (both online and in person) that suffer from anxiety and stress. I pray for their recovery.

Divot my skin
Round chemical markers colliding
All seeking purchase
In triangular receptors

The storm rages on
And the body is pelted
A hailstorm of Mexican jumping beans
Pinging from tip to toe

I am not laughing
There is no place
I can leave my own body?
Give it back perhaps?

Only the Andrea Gail
Knows my ocean
Trapped on this
Hurling asteroid
Stinging with the strike
Of a thousand wasps

Friday, April 1, 2011

Everyday Pearls

There are many grades of fresh water pearls. Some of the lesser grades are very unique in shape and luster. In my humble opinion, it is the imperfection of these little sea gems that make them ideal for the everyday look. They come in a large variety of colors, sizes and shapes. My local bead store carries a whole section of five dollar fresh water pearls. My recent creation include the mauve pearls that came off of that five dollar wall.
There is a graceful fluidity when pearls are individually knotted and strung on silk. It is just downright luxurious without being overstated. Stringing pearls on beading wire is a sin. Don't do it! It diminishes the feeling significantly and even cheap pearls can look and feel expensive when strung correctly. When it comes to pearls silk is the way to go. 
Stringing pearls is almost mediative for me. I find it relaxing and after seven years it is a very peaceful activity. I did not always feel that way. Like everything it takes time and practice. However, even my early knots still look good. Being self-taught, I firmly believe that anyone can learn how to do this. The reward in the end is a beautiful piece of jewelry.
If this is something that you think you would like to try I encourage you to review my article How to String Pearls and Other Beads on Silk . Feel free to leave a question or comment.  I will help you get started. The only really tool you need in a pair of needle nose tweezers and a few small inexpensive jewelry findings (parts to the necklace).
Mauve and Cream Fresh Water Pearls

Easter is right around the corner. Skip the egg dying this year and make yourself or someone you love something pretty!