prose

2003-02-17 A Story of Sorts to Sort out a Story

 

Conversations in my mind with the woman from, "He Tells Me Its Over"

 

She calls to take his youngest child sledding with her even younger child.  She has not dated the man for over 7 months. They only dated for 6 months before that, yet she still calls to take the kids here or there or to allow an "ill" I-want-to-stay-home-from-school child that has be locked out of the TV and computer to come over and entertain her own sniffly coughing daughter.  Four months after breaking up because he didnt want to get married and she decided to look around again, she paints a sign on the local hiway saying "marry me Dec 8".

 

This is how I would like a conversation to go,

 

"Do you think this is a good idea?"
"The roads are fine," she says to me from the seat of her car.
"No, I mean calling Laura all the time to be with you."
"This is none of your business," she might reply.  "That's up to Dwight."
"Well, it is my business if the only reason you call Laura is to see Dwight. It's not fair to the children yours or his to keep up the realtionship if it is only to prepetuate the hope in your daughter of having Dwight as a Daddy someday."
"That is up to Dwight still again."
"Well," I say, "Dwight is too nice and doesn't want to hurt your feelings because he doesn't dislike you.  He has the utmost respect for you, however every time you call, every time you intrude on our lives brings us closer together and further from you. He reaffirms his commitment to me and reminds me he loves me not you."
"I like the kids company, we do things they like together like camping and going to the beach for a week. Things that Dwight doesn't do for them."
"Because Dwight has to work to support three daughters on a single paycheck and be one of a few people in America who doesn't have a credit card debt. And by the way, I want to thank you for having Laura overnight, that just gives Dwight and I more time alone.  They only time the children are encouraged to be away from the house is when they should be with their mother so they can bond with her.  Laura was welcome at the house even on Valentine's Day.  We had a steak for her and Anna but they chose to leave.

 

"And when you called Dwight, 'You son of a bitch' when you saw my Valentine's Day flowers.  Is that becasue he did not give you any?  Were there no Christmas presents?  Did you ask him for flowers or like most women hope for flowers.  Dwight and I decided honesty was important in the relationship. If you have something to hide then you need go on down the road.  I told Dwight I wanted flowers I didnt want roses becasue they are too expensive. I DID want them delivered to the shop where I work and I wanted them on Valentine's Day. I gave him phone numbers and web addresses so he wouldn't even have to leave the seat of his desk.  But in his strive for economy and simplity, he did it himself.  He went to Walmart and bought the vases (3 additional for his 3 daughters)  Then, went to the grocery store and bought enough for all 4 and stuffed them in as only a man could have done.  His middle child pushed him aside and finished the task, but she couldn't remove the tell tell sign of unarranged flowers. And, he delivered them Valentine's Day morning, on a day when I was running late and gumpy from anticipation of the outcome of Valentine's Day, the Super Bowl Sunday to every woman in the Western world.  His smiling face beaming as he presented his bursting bouguet in a vase the color my ex-husband couldn't remember as my favorite.  He didn't get just one kiss like the man at the florist shop hoped for when he paid for his arranged bouquet that evening as I picked up my three roses. I gave my lover as many as he could take under the watchful eyes of my fellow co-workers.  They smiling and happy in my joy, seeing me come out of my dark days into this mans light."
"And yes I asked him to marry me as well because he is just the sort you want to marry.  (But mostly in response to your Dec 8th proposal) And he said he didn't want to go there at least not now.  But it didn't keep him from making a commitment to me.  And he also said living together is just convience, not a commitment, just helping a friend who needed a hand up. I said its a dangerous trap of mixing commitment and furniture, dosed with pride and fear of abandonment and not belonging.  I have said since my own failed marriage I would never live with a man again unless I was willing to marry him. I never thought it could be me who wanted to get married.  I shiver at the thought.  But I don't want to be without him day to day."

I realise by now this is just a solilique and the lady in question has since driven away with the coveted child. And Dwight and I have walked back to the house under pretext of collecting my things from the weekend I might have forgotten.  I had planned to leave when she drove up in the drive for the third time that day.  I was going to kiss him and return to my home 20 miles away and to my almost grown daughter. But I stay a few minutes till the icy driveway was empty and I buried my face in his warm shoulder and told him over and over again I don't like it when she comes over but I won't stand in Laura's way.  And I apologise for my feelings and he stops me and reminds me that it should be him that should be apologising for putting me in the middle.  And I agree and he does and his kisses are more passionate as he tries to reasure me it is me not her he desires and hungers for.  It is me he looks for throughout the day to talk to to share.

I just want her to know that he's not going to change his mind and marry her for the benefit of one daughter's feelings (or love of her cable TV) or to provide her with medical insurance and a stay at home mommy (albeit on disablity). She needs to stop using the girls to put herself in his line of sight whenever possible.  Because what we have is healthy and growing and moderatly benefiting from her intervention.  But the cost to the child is the question at hand.  The motivation of the former lover is highly questioned.

And if she insists that it is none of my business and especially none of my business what goes on between her, the kids, and Dwight...I will just say,
"Well...It is...because Dwight gives ME flowers."
And ya gotta know, flowers are the language of love.

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The Passing of the Old Ways (Prose)

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Prose

My village had always been a peaceful village. Simple, always beneath notice; beneath concern. We were not even deemed worthy of pillage or plunder by roving war bands for what prize would we be? Such a small town so far out of sight would assuredly be far out of mind. What could we possibly possess of any worth? We could not even boast of horse or oxen. As a town, we were poor, but as a people, we were wealthy.
I remember the Spring. It would break free of the harsh Winter, causing great rejoicing and festivity in our small village. At the equinox we would gather about the Great Priestess, excitedly awaiting her blessing of the fields. The Priestess, who was my mother, would call upon the Great God and Great Goddess, imploring their sanctification. She would then wait for the sign of the Choosing.
One man and one woman would be chosen to become the vessel of the God and Goddess. I, being the Priestess in training, would remove all of their earthly arraignments, leaving them free of the lesser inhibitions of humanity. I would then anoint the chosen maiden with the signs of the Goddess, blindfold her, and lead her to a secluded glade. There she would become one with the Goddess and await the God. I would then anoint the chosen male with the blood of the stag and place its antlers upon his head. We would lead him to the roving herds where he would become one with the God and run as would the stag. At nightfall, the God would seek out the Goddess. That night they would couple, consummating the fertility of the fields.
We were an intrinsic people, dedicated to the Ancient Ways. We honored the God and Goddess in all aspects of our life. In our ideals. They blessed our bountiful harvests, so that we were never hungry. They protected us from the untamed forces of nature; we were always in tranquility. They granted us our ethereal desires; we never did without. Yes they are real. To feel their power manifest is to never doubt. It is a feeling beyond normal comprehension. You are surrounded by their presence. You become the God and Goddess. You become a part of all of the creative forces that manifest in all life. It is a feeling beyond understanding, but it is there, and it is real. They are apparent in all of us. They guide our arrows true. They give us knowledge. They give us love.
The Priestess taught us all that she had learned. She taught us they way of the hunt and the way of survival, for she was the fastest and truest of the village. She taught us the ways of knowledge through song and through script. She taught us the ways of home and family, for she knows of all. She taught us of the Ancient Ways, the ways of balance, the ways of creation, the ways of entropy. She taught us of life. She taught every man, woman, and child, any who wished to learn. We shared. We were a people of love and caring. But that was before... before They came.
The Autumn of my fourteenth summer came early, bringing with it an ominous feeling that perpetually lingered throughout the village. Feelings of anticipation and change hung forebodingly upon us. Fears and doubts reigned free where there were none before. All premonitions of forthcoming tragedy.
And then They came. Many men on horseback arrived at the outskirts of the village. They demanded to speak to our village counsel. Being such a small village, there were only two counsel members: my mother and Fegan, our greatest land holder. I explained that they were about business and would return until nightfall. They disregarded my reparation, not even acknowledging my existence. They remained closed mouth, ignoring any offer of conversation or hospitality. I did not trust them, so I watched them intently, wary of their every move.
They were a gruesome lot. Dressed in solemn colors of blacks and grays, ornamented with a single silver cross upon a silver chain. All but one of the men appeared to be of the warrior breed. They were all of stocky build, wearing black leather breast plates atop their gray linen tunics that were neatly gathered about their black leather breeches. They each brandished an unornamented sword at their right side and a dagger at their left. They each sat astride a black horse of great girth and stance, a breed much larger than any known to our region. They were regal, yet feral and remained ever attentive to the meticulously prudish man that appeared to be in charge of the assembly. He wore his robes as would a person of great stature. He was a frail man of great height, but he held himself with an air of authority, an air of superiority. In my eyes, he was a man to be aware of.
They remained mounted upon their steeds until word arrived that the council had returned and would receive the entourage at the village well. The austere man in the robes quietly administered orders to dismount. He chose four of the larger men to accompany him, the rest were ordered to remain behind. He turned his cold, hard gaze upon me and demanded that I lead him to the well. I complied with his wishes, more out of curiosity than obligation.
Acknowledging him indirectly, I made my way to the well, never looking behind to see if they followed. I announced their arrival to the council then turned to the stringent man, bowed, and dismissed myself, all in obvious mockery. I quietly took my seat at the foot of the Priestess and waited for the proceedings to begin.
The robed figure strode and openly glared at my mother and I. He turned to Fegan and bowed before him, introducing himself as Thomas of Canton. He rambled on about being a servant of the one true God. He said he had been chosen to go forth and spread the great word of God to us barbaric and uncivilized people. In my opinion, he was quite mad, caught up in a religious fervor that he wished to inflict upon everyone, willing or not. I cautiously watched my mother out of the corner of my eye. Her calm formal appearance never changed yet I knew what disquieting and disturbing thoughts ran through her mind. The travelers that traveled through our village, few and far between though they were, relayed to us the horrors that fanatics, such as this Thomas, had rendered upon past "heathens", or victims as I saw it.
After spewing forth his glorious intentions he quietly drew back and awaited our response. The silence had settled upon us as would a burden, very heavy. No sound was made, no breath was heard. Then just as I thought I would break from that silence, my mother spoke. Without casting a glance upon the priest, she asked him why he was so sure that we wanted to change. The priest stiffened and turned white with rage, shaking uncontrollably. He turned to my mother and damned her in the name of his God. He called her evil and vile, all the while praying to his God that she be cursed as should all women. The villagers became restless and began to whisper amongst themselves. The priest turned to face Fegan once again and demanded that my mother and all other women be removed from his sight. I had held my anger and patience longer than bearable. I stood and faced the priest, daring him to say one false word more to my mother lest I run one of our evil spears right through his self-righteous heart. Angered, he turned and fled back to the outskirts of town, mounted, and rode away. Wishing that I had seen the last of this pious lot, I dismissed the villagers and led my mother back to our home.
A great upheaval had descended upon our small village. And as I lay in rest that night, I prayed to the Goddess for guidance, but I could already feel her sorrow and tears of loss. She could not intercede in the wars and injustices that man put upon man.
The next morning I awoke to the sound of confusion and fear. Thomas and his men had returned at sometime during the night and set up camp right on the outskirts of our village. I stood and contemplated, watching the men as they wandered about their camp. I knew things would never be the same again.
Our lives changed drastically over the next few months. We were not a fighting people and many of the villagers succumbed early to the harassment of these holy men. And the first to fall into the "path of righteousness" was Fegan. He had always been intimidated by my mother, envious of her importance and popularity. It was all too easy for him to see the evil of women for it was a woman that provoked such greedy and malicious thoughts in him. He was the first to convert, but not the last.
Life became unbearable. We could not perform the smallest homage to the God or Goddess without being harassed, and sometimes beaten. We were never alone. Where one turned, one would surely find a man of the new order preaching the evils of the Old Ways; always preaching the unworthiness and ignorance of women. But the most devastating blow of all was that some of the menfolk began to believe in these new preachings. They began to openly look upon us with fear and suspicion. They would avoid us, ignore our pleas of compassion. And those men that still believed in us, spoke not. For those that did speak out were confronted in the dark of night, and the words of the one true God were left upon them in the form of welts and bruises. They learned quickly to not speak openly of their thoughts. We, the women, were alone. It soon came to pass that the Old Ways were vehemently forbidden, and those of us found practicing in secrecy, suffered indescribable tortures by the hands of theses pious men. Many chose to abandon their lives and beliefs in fear of persecution, in fear of death. All had been lost...
And all this time my mother protested against these violent ways, and she suffered horrible atrocities for her objections. She had been beaten, tortured, and raped by these honorable men. They broke her.
They had won. The women had been forced into submission by fear and pain. The Old Ways were gone in all but our memories. The men controlled everything. We were no longer equal. We were valued less than any livestock, tolerable as only child-bearers and servants. They had won.
They said we were "saved". Our "voluntary" reformation had gained us a place in the after-life. There was but one thing left for the townspeople to do in order to guarantee their salvation: rid the village of the harbinger of evil, the Priestess...
And so I watched, gagged and bound upon a horse, as my mother was stripped, beaten, and banished by her own people. And I cried as they led me away. I knew that I would never see her again....
Two summers have come to pass, yet it seems an eternity. I sit alone, crying. My home is a distant, distant memory that forever haunts my dreams. I cry for my mother, for she is ever lost to me. I cry for the loss of the God and Goddess, for their children have left them. I cry for my loss of life. I know I will never feel the compassionate touch of a gentle man. I will never know the joy of having a babe in my arms. And never again will I know the thrill of the Spring hunt. I am cloistered to the merciful God and must willingly obey his minions or suffer at their hands.
And now the dreadful bells toll their hollow cries, calling me once again to come forth and repent for my sinful memories...

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My Yuletide

As we lock the doors

slip off our shoes

kick the snow from them



Rip down last years decorations

tinsel gaudy like a transvestites favourite attire



we re-read cards from people we can't remember, can't stand and who hate us!



We look at the gifts people atributed us with, knowing those who we are just an after thought to, and those to whom we are a real person.



You could be mentally scarred when you receive your fifth aromatherapy set!

What is that about anyway?



Did Christmas change or is it myself

The childish wonder has been replaced by anxiety stress and the opposite of goodwill

Leaves me every year practically divorced!

I always get ill, and not from the christmas cheer!



Then there are the sales to contend with!

People barricading themselves against shop doors

to get something for nothing!



Gentle Jesus just weeps and the curse of Christmas sleeps

a dragon to be awakened 12 months from now!





However somewhere in the distance I hear the sled bells and I promise next year will be different.................


Author's Notes/Comments: 

Bah humbug!

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the filth (and the game of god)

we are all just toys of god, objects in his little game.

use us, abuse us, it’s like a trick, and we’re all just pawns in his losing match



it’s come down to this, i can’t tell me from yourself

we’re all so similar, and plastic, and we’re all lying to ourselves



you act as if i know what’s going on

i act as if you know me

it’s easier once you know how things will eventually turn out

and they’re not for the better, i can assure you



don’t focus yourself on the past

things are how they are now because of how people have messed up things before us

but we won’t make the same mistakes

so deal out the punishment before i escape



why have you done this?

i don’t know what i’m in for anymore.



even the most beautiful things are often ugly.

even in your most vulnerable moment, i'll never touch you.

even while awake, i’m probably still dreaming.

even in death, i’ll most likely be living.

even in your finest hour, things have already ended.

leaving you alone, leaving us alone in this filth.



what you have made us into, we’re likely to put you away for a long time

we’re not in need of you, let us go on living without you

your creations shall bring an end to you just like they said to you

and once you think you’re pure someone will defy you



sticks and stones shall break me but my name will not effect me

please forgive me for my sins before i do them all over again

once i think i’m gold, you’ll change me back

and my death lies here, an unending trap

shall i greet him this time? should i meet him this time?



i know what i’ve been doing has been so wrong and i’ll swear and swear i’ll never do this again

but once you turn your back, i’ll turn mine as well and i’ll go right back to where i started



your therapy has done no good to me

all this world must reach down for me

and pick me up from beneath this sand

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imperfection

even if it's perfect, you will search to find a flaw

imperfect, as everyone is, better make them more aware

i've walked the mile, but all the while, i've been here all along

circling back to the beginning, all this hate has got me nowhere



you've got to look, got to find, what's keeping us inside

some things will never change, just as i'll never break the surface

dying words like a living death, can't escape this living hell

some things just never seem so certain



i live this role as an object, so novel, something to pass your time

move through, more or less, by being told what to do

and i always give in, when you're still wanting more

you can't stop pushing me through



and maybe i've been sick this whole time

    although i know i'll never cure this

    i keep on treading this path of crime

and maybe i've been so dead that i just can't live

    although i know it's you who still controls me

    i'm running out, because it's more than i can give

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IT ISN'T REALLY FOR YOU OR FOR ME

It  isn't really for you or for me, to say what's right or it's sometimes wrong.To make decisions for others, that's not really for you or for me here to do, as we all go through life, we all have everyday choices to make,and in the end we all have to face in life the good deed or the wrongs that along the way, we have made.It isn't really for you or for me to judge anyone in this earth, accordingly to their beliefs or the color of their skin,it's not really for you or for me after all to go around; spreading poison with our tongues, or causing somebody's heart to break.



After all Life its not about how pretty or ugly somebody might be, or how light or dark their skin is or how many books you've read or not, or the size of the house you may have or the car model that you drive, or how many friend you may have or not, or if you're very rich or poor, or how popular you might think you are.No, in the end of our life's journey all that doesn't really matter at all.All that we'll leave behind,

as one day  we'll all die and we'll turn to dust.

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