No, Baby! – for D’Verse

All roads lead to the center
and splinter.
That’s how the bicycle goes.
Wheels go round
over the ground
but a crack in the road
can dump its load.
Down on the ground,
cracks baby’s crown
as it falls down.
Babies shouldn’t ride bikes–
not those little tykes!
Then I woke up
next to my pup
And really quite soon
we howled at the moon
for taking the bait
a surreal to make.                                                                                                                                      Excuse my fun                                                                                                                                             I’m an olde nun.

 

Posted in A mixed bag | Leave a comment

SALVATION — flash fiction

      “Who’s Cremeans?” asked 10-year old Johnny, coming into the kitchen from play.

      Up to her elbows pummeling dough, his mother Elizabeth blew the hair out of her eyes and replied, “I give up. Who is he?”

      “Running for president, the sky says.”

     “Whatever are you talking about?” She noticed his muddy hands and said, “Come to the sink and wash up.”

     Johnny, tall for his age, was wearing a striped tee shirt and jeans. Red-headed like his mother, he did as he was told, then dried his hands and said, “Cremeans. Who is he?”

     “Mr. Cremeans was my high school principal. Why?”

     “He’s running for president, is all. Come look.”

      Elizabeth stepped out the back stoop to humor her son, dough still clinging to her hands. Johnny pointed up to the sky, where a line of disintegrating letters proclaimed, Cremeans for President.

     “Good question, Johnny. Don’t know that one….President of what?” Johnny shrugged his shoulders and watched as the small plane flew out of sight.

     Elizabeth was standing behind Johnny, and also watched as the plane disappeared. “I wonder which party he’s running for…or she.” Elizabeth returned to pummeling the dough while Johnny returned to searching the banks of their backyard creek for anything—mica, arrowheads, quartzite…

     Come suppertime the delicious fragrance of fresh baked bread wafted around the small family. James, husband and father at the head of the table, reported  the day’s news after giving the blessing.

     “They say a well-heeled dark horse has entered the race for President. No one’s heard of him before but he’s kicking up a storm.”

     “What party?” Elizabeth asked.

     “A new Salvation party. Evidently it’s been in the works a long time, undercover. All legal, t’s crossed.”

     “Salvation!” Elizabeth laughed. “We could use it!”

     “Where’s Cremeans from?” Johnny wanted to know.  “He might be Mom’s high school principal.”

     James threw up his hands. “The news people haven’t determined that yet—mystery man, mystery candidate, mystery funding.”

     Elizabeth buttered her toasty slice of bread. “I like the name of the party,” she said. “We registered again after we moved, didn’t we?”

     “You bet.” The conversation then turned to other topics—the Braves, the most recent mass shooting and the new movie playing at the local theater.

     The deadline for filing came and went, and Cremeans  was scheduled to make an appearance along with other front-runners.  The stadium was packed and a hush came over the crowd in anticipation of the first entrant. Applause greeted each one as they took their place on the stage, dressed to the nines, each wearing a silk necktie. There were no duplicate ties, nor near duplicates. Their secretaries must have conspired together.

     Each candidate was introduced to applause as they walked on, but the silence of a staring curiosity greeted Cremeans when, as the last of the candidates, he walked onstage dressed in working man’s clothes.  He was tall, rugged, middle-aged, bearded and sported a navy blue hooded duck quilted jacket, work jeans and journeyman’s boots.  His hair was iron gray and his blue eyes twinkled. Despite his blue eyes, Cremeans projected an Abe Lincoln aura. He did not remain for the show,  but addressed the audience: “Who here have their roots in England? Many hands waved.  Asia?..Ireland? China? Africa? …South or mid America?  He paused before asking…“North America?”  A small scattering of hands raised from the handful who resembled  Native Americans.

     He added, “If you elect me to be your president I swear to serve you with truth, compassion, and justice.”  With those words Cremeans strode off the stage to tumultuous applause, catching  a number of those cheering off guard, surprised by their own response.

     Conspiracy theorists who had been asleep before Cremeans’ appearance awoke with joie de vivre. Everyone, in fact, had a story. He was Lincoln’s reincarnation, maybe the Holy Spirit come to forgive the sinners and set them on the straight path.  That deteriorated into an argument about the definition of  the Holy Ghost, followed by the suggestion that Cremeans was really God incarnate. From whence had he sprung and where did the contents of his heavy coffers come from?  Perhaps them golden streets, it was rumored.

     Some swore they saw an aura/halo around his great head, and let themselves be mesmerized by Cremeans’  penetrating glance.  That he displayed strong compassion was beyond dispute.  But who would he select for a running mate?

     It appears he has a son.

                                                                           THE END

Copyright Nan Mykel 2019
Posted in flash fiction | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Do You Agree?

Augusten Burroughs writes that Affirmations are dishonest. “They are a form of self-betrayal based on bogus, side-of-the-cereal-box psychology..The truth is, it is not going to help to stand in front of the mirror, look into your own eyes, and lie to yourself. Especially when you are the one person you are supposed to believe you can count on.
“Affirmations are the psychological equivalent of sprinkling baby powder on top of the turd your puppy has left on the carpet. This does not result in a cleaner carpet. It coats the underlying issue with futility.” This Is How, p 4-5, 2012.

Posted in A mixed bag, Survivors, | Tagged | 5 Comments

A FAIRLY TALE – Flash Fiction

A FAIRLY TALE

Broom in hand, I was trying to quietly steer the bluebird’s flight as it swooped around the sleeping body of Mr. Marvin.  Glancing down, I noticed my employer appeared to be having a seizure.  He was shaking and muttering and looked uncomfortable to boot. As his “man,” I had no choice but to wake him, without mentioning the spectacle he had been making of himself.

I was pleased to see him collect himself upon rousing. It was no seizure at all, as I knew; I’d been with him going on twenty years.  His first words were, “Is that beggar still sleeping under our elm?” to which I had to admit.

“Where does he relieve himself, Chadwick?” Mr. Marvin was a little cross; it was unclear whether it was due to being awoken, the trespasser, or by the dream he had been having.  Suddenly becoming aware of the bird’s flight overhead, he bellowed and threw the covers over his head.

I’d rather have coaxed the bird out an open window, but they were stuck with fresh paint. Since I feared Mr. Marvin would squash the bird in his hypnopompic state, I encouraged it into the next bedroom down the hall with my broom, and closed the door.  Was a bird in the house an omen of death or was this a bluebird of happiness?

My master’s voice called from his room, “Where does he relieve himself!”

It was cheeky of me, but I shouted back, from the hall, “I don’t know. Would you like me to post a watch on him?”

“Lord no,” he grumbled as I re-entered his room and helped him on with his attire. “If you took him a breakfast tray do you think he’d be willing to scamper off?”

“I can ask him, m’lord,” whereupon he scowled at my flippancy.

 

“Ahem.”  I cleared my throat, standing over the huddled figure still buried beneath his ragged blankets.  “Have a spot of tea…and vittels?”

The blankets parted, and I had my first glimpse of the fellow who looked to be on the underfed, gaunt side. Watching his uncut dirty blond hair swing side to side as he woke up, he reminded me of a wet dog trying to shake off water.  “Wha?”

“His lordship thought if we fed you breakfast you’d be willing to amble off to someone else’s…er, tree.”

The bugger made an undescribable response and extended his arms to receive the tray which contained a nourishing breakfast—a grand breakfast for one such as he. I am not bereft of pity, but what would the neighbors think?

He mumbled something that vaguely sounded like “Thanks,” and looked up at me. I noticed his eyes immediately travel behind me, and discovered  Mr. Marvin who, dressed now as though for the city, was eyeballing our interloper, literally looking down upon him.

“What’s your name? Why are you trespassing on my land?”  As the trespasser finished swallowing, Mr. Marvin added, “And how old are you?”

The seated figure was still leaning against our elm, and only answered the second question.  “I’m looking for my bird.  He flew over this way and I can’t find him.”  He motioned with his arm and as he did so a round globe rolled out from under the blankets.  Everyone froze for a minute, staring at the object.

“What’s that you have there, something you’ve pilfered?”

“No. It’s mine, has been in my family for years.”  The trespasser tucked it back under the blanket.

Mr. Marvin smacked his lips and said “Well, well, what do we have here?  A magician …”

I interrupted Mr. Marvin, “Just searching for his blue bird of happiness, m’lord.”

The beggar sat up straighter. “You found him? Is he all right?”

Mr. Marvin can be a rapscallion at times, and now he said, “What do we get in return for the bird?”

The man who was now cast into a magician’s role said, “I’m the beggar and you’re the lord and you’re trying to swindle me?  You’re no better than me!”

Those had been my thoughts, exactly, until Mr. Marvin clarified. “I only want my three wishes, magician.”

I dared to interject. “Shall I fetch the bird?”

M’lord shook his head. “Not until he can prove his mettle.  My three wishes?”

The magician hung his head, putting on a pitiful face, and did not respond.

“All right!  Leave these premises now,” Mr. Marvin said sternly, whereupon the figure seemed to fade from sight into the tree trunk.

Mr. Marvin was speechless for once, and I spoke up again.  “You have two wishes left, but he’s not here to grant them.”

The lord of the manor bellowed, “Come back here,” whereupon the trespasser—or the beggar or bird tamer or magician, whoever he was—slid back from behind the elm, one side of his lips curled into a grin—or was it a smirk?  Hard to tell, since he was so in need of a washing up.

M’lord’s face turned dangerously red, and as he tried to loosen his collar his eyes rolled back and he fell to the ground; but he wasn’t suffering from a nightmare this time.  Outrage was getting him. I turned to the tramp.  “He has one more wish!  Save him!”

The tramp looked regretful but slowly shook his head.  “He has to make the wish.”

The unholy sounds from Mr. Marvin continued, but he finally croaked, “Yes!” and immediately it was as though a giant hand that had been squeezing him relaxed, and a peaceful silence followed.  I looked at the trespassing magician.

“I’ll get your bird,” I said.

 

942 words                                         THE END

c.nan mykel

Posted in A mixed bag, flash fiction | 12 Comments

YES, BUT….

MAMA

…look at it this way…It’s like being an atheist or agnostic. No place for wishful thinking? I agree if you put it that way. Yes, but…How many more suicides might there be if a mutation had not occurred which gave them hope? Hope for a spiritual connection? For a union/reunion? Where is that pocket of bliss that has perhaps already prevented many suicides–and thus posed a reproductive advantage for humans? Perhaps that’s the God gene, of which Wikipedia says:

“The God gene hypothesis proposes that human spirituality is influenced by heredity and that a specific gene, called vesicular monoamine transporter 2 (VMAT2), predisposes humans towards spiritual or mystic experiences.[1] The idea has been proposed by geneticist Dean Hamer in the 2004 book called The God Gene: How Faith is Hardwired into our Genes.

“The God gene hypothesis is based on a combination of behavioral genetic, neurobiological and psychological studies.[2] The major arguments of the hypothesis are: (1) spirituality can be quantified by psychometric measurements; (2) the underlying tendency to spirituality is partially heritable; (3) part of this heritability can be attributed to the gene VMAT2; (4) this gene acts by altering monoamine levels; and (5) spirituality provides an evolutionary advantage by providing individuals with an innate sense of optimism.”
I’m going to have to think some more, so I’ll sign off for now.

Time magazine couldn’t find anything to disprove Edgar Cayce. When something that smacks of perhaps the occult I’ve seen even scientists suggest it was “just esp.” In many other situations they deny the existence of esp.

Posted in A mixed bag | Leave a comment

WHAT TO DO WITH OLD LETTERS AND CARDS?

Today I’m dealing with a fat box of old letters and cards. I’m steeling myself to discard them, but only after recording the dear names from the past. Several are from the family of my best friend, Rob, who was taken by AIDS in 1996. Several also from a warm former fellow therapist in Pomeroy, Mary and spouse Jim who bought a house In Tennessee and have stayed in it…Several Christmas letters from Jan, graduate schoolmate…Many Christmas letters from grad classmate Fred, with whom I got my GSU degree..A handmade birthday card from contiuuing great good friend and poet, Cathy…A 1995 letter from Rob…A lengthy death notice/obituary about my first therapist, Irma…An Easter card and then a 9-page letter from Ruth, a family member in a nursing home whom I’ve just recently gotten to know….A note that accompanied an elephant hair bracelet from Eileen, a favorite intern’s who was on a trip to the Sudan…An artistic, newsy original Christmas newsletter to the tune of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas from psych friend and classmate Jan…A 1984 note from Flowery Branch, writ on Phyllis’ new electric typewriter…

A couple of 1985 letter/cards from close friend Virginia, who later dropped me like a hot potato, and I’m sure it was my fault…A loving 2009 Christmas letter from former intern/counselor Eileen, whose Christmas Newsletter listed books read and rated…A photo of former intern Winkie and her son and granddaughter from South Africa…A photo of the entire department of psychology at GSU in 1977…A great 2014 letter and photo from the old artist, sparky professor emeritus, Bob…A 1999 letter from an intern who needed more than my minimal support for her counseling thesis. Jane was a very warm and supportive counseling student who got bad breaks with her profs…An incredibly warm and appreciative letter from close friend, Jamie, head of our Friday night soup group, in 2000…A card from former student Jim from Saudi Arabia, where he ate goat eyeballs, in 1976…A 1986 letter from early special friend Carrie, now deceased (As are many in this list)… The former sex offender treatment group at the prison and I received a greeting from John in 1997, reporting he’s still married and “clean.”…A note and photos from a male cousin who later wrote me a nasty letter when he thought I had not sent a requested photo to his mother. He later found out I had, to his embarrassment, in 2005…The Order of Service for Pete’s memorial service in 2008…A 2009 Christmas letter from Jane, a relative who has since dropped me from the family. Funny when you’ve not been around someone for years you have different communication patterns and I guess I blew mine…

…A 2007 Obituary of a good and kind fellow prison psychologist, Stephanie…A letter of appreciation in poem form from prison “graduate” Hank prior to 1996…So many great letters I don’t remember responding to. Sorry sorry sorry!…A sweet birthday card from a daughter, Lili…Two handmade valentines from granddaughters Julia and Lauren…A beautiful Mothers Day card from Elizabeth…In 1984 Elizabeth telling me she has cat scratch fever…Handmade birthday card from Lauren and Lili…A 1975 memorial card for friend Sylvia’s son Alex…2007 letter from genealogy cousin relative Paul, playing bluegrass regularly since his wife’s passing…1996 card and photo from my friend and mentor over the years, Patricia…In 2009 received a note from friend and author John and Mary who moved to Cincinnatti…In 1990 non-deliverable Christmas card to Carrie…In 2008, the Spiritual Growth Discussion Group which had been meeting at my place constructed a Get Well booklet for me when I had a valve replaced, from Andree, Vivian, John and Mary, Cathy, and Jean-Clare…A Thank-you card from my ex… It’s strange how I could forget a Mothers Day card I didn’t save, the one to “Mommie Dearest.” Tee hee…

Earlier I ditched most of my yearly hardcover journals after tearing a few pages out hither and yon. And I tore out drawings and passages for my book on dialoguing with incest offenders. A few people feel better after discarding old journals, and possibly don’t even keep cards or old letters anyway. I have felt reluctant to do it, because it seems like I’m throwing that person away. Maybe I’m concerned that my memory may fail me to the extent that I won’t even recall them without a stimulus?

One of my projects which I’ve handed over to my eldest daughter is to record the primary happenings in each of our lives (“Daze of Our Lives.”) The journals sure would have come in handy for that enterprise, but then there are the yearly hand-made and zeroxed Christmas cards which I’ve bundled elsewhere for that project…

Found on http://pickettsinpoland.blogspot.com/2012/11/last-day-in-wrocaw.html
Posted in A mixed bag | 2 Comments

OH

OH
He’s feeling like a bear today.
I’m feeling like a skunk.
Not that being’s me’s so hot
but inside I can see
lavender waves lapping
me, 60% salt water sloshing
and hark, the sea is singing
while words wrestle to be the
first down on lined paper.
Now inside, a big burp
riding my wave. Oh, the echo
of it all! Hanging out at my
favorite corner there’s light at
my end of the tunnel! Please,
I’d choose psychotic
Over robotic
any day…or night.
Ommmmmmm…
What’s inside your head
Today?

Nan

Posted in A mixed bag | Leave a comment