Where Did That Dream Go?

Where Did That Dream Go?

(So I asked  a Shrink!)

By BR Chitwood

Where did that dream go, you ask?

Beyond your grasp, sadly…

You had it, but you let it go…

You did not pursue it to the end…

Other diversions caught your fancy…

The phrase is: ‘wine, women, song’…

Sound familiar? ‘wine, women, song’?

WWS slowed and finally ended your dream…

But they were part of the dream…

Too many working dreams spoil the broth!

You’re mixing metaphors, Doctor…

But you have no trouble grasping meaning?

Grasped, Doctor. So, you’re saying, ‘no chance for me’?

There’s always a chance, but youth is gone. Maybe your next life chances will come again…

Whoa, Doc, you believe we get to come back?

That’s not so crazy an idea. A colleague of mine, a hypnotist, has written about taking some patients back to former lives, even having some patients talk about their time while in training units between lives. He has done ‘case studies’… Go to a library, book store, and look under hypnosis, case studies, psychiatrists, former lives…you can find them if you’re interested.

Oh, I’m interested. I just find it so hard to believe.

You wouldn’t be human if you took it at face value. Remember, most of us are ‘doubting Thomas’…many did not believe we would put a man in space, go to the moon, have ‘space stations’, diseases cured, knowledge re-doubling every few months, and all of these life-changing events are being challenged, joined by nefarious rioting groups trying to destroy our cherished freedom and liberty. It is a crazy and wild time for the history of the world… I just hope our kids in the future will be able to read and know of this history… Sorry about the digression, but, in your case, from what you’ve shared with me today, you have had a comparatively good life. You have accomplished many of your goals – which a lot of folks would die for. I really cannot find any major anomalies in your life. Keep your dreams alive. That’s a good thing. The large news I would give you is: be happy in your life – you’ve got more living to do.

Thanks, Doc. You’ve got me feeling better about things… I’m going to find the book or books you were talking about. When I absorb them, I’ll call you for another session.

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BR Chitwood – August 12, 2020

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CHAT: REAL-ME & ALTER-ME

CHATREAL-ME & ALTER-ME 

by BR Chitwood

REAL-ME

My good wife allows me ‘space’ for my Romantic memories – spread across a lifetime…those loves along the way that leave a special ambience of thought…and, instances of special sadness.

Damn! It’s tough being a ‘Romantic’!

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ALTER-ME

After all the years, the thought keeps hammering away at Alter-me: ‘So, what are you going to do with those romantic wishy-washy moments you carry in your knapsack’? Unless you’ve invented a ‘retrieval system’ or ‘Time Machine’ for periodic visits, what the hell good are those moments? Don’t you think your ‘non-romantic’ wife might get a bit sick of your ‘wine and wonder’ wanderings?

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REAL-ME

Okay, Alter-ass Ego, you’re off-base. You have no business of ruffling these old memory moments. You have cramped my thinking all these years about what a ‘bad-ass’ I am for remembering beautiful moments in my past…and, leave my wife out of this – she is comfortable in her own skin and loves the ‘loop-de-loop’ heart and mind of my vagabond life.

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ALTER-ME

Really! You’re going to ride that train? You really need to finally, once and for all, GROW-UP, aging-arse, live in the real world…

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REAL-ME

How the hell does one slay an ‘alter-ego’! You would think after all the years we would have bonded. You’re always doing this to me, using ‘the guilt-whip’! I’m in my ‘Real World’! This is who I am… (Geez, you would think better partnerships could be built between the actual ‘deed-doer’ and the ‘do-nothing alter’.) This is/was the real world I live(d) in, and I cannot close the doors of those ‘Real World’ people and events… I think about them, write books, short stories, songs about them. They were ‘Real’. Some, I loved and with whom I had tender and wonderful moments. I can’t throw those ‘realities’ into a trash can.

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ALTER-ME

Look, ‘Real Me’, you’re really getting worked up here… Maybe, just, maybe, some of us ‘alter-guys’ try to save their ‘Real Me’s’ the money they would spend on Shrinks. But, look at it this way, you’ve made it this far without Shrinks. Sure, we’ve been through some tough times, but you have ‘hung in there’ like a real trooper. Hey, there are some ‘Real Me’s’ that don’t get through it all – you know, different interior networks, and they can’t handle the stress. Hey, we have all kinds of people with their ‘programs’ set differently. You don’t stress as much as you once did before you began writing your books, putting down thoughts via your characters that you had experienced… This stuff does not happen JUST to you, ‘Real Me’.

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REAL-ME

Okay, I somehow feel better… Here’s what I’m thinking…

Who truly knows how all this life business starts? The loves, the memories, the realities we face, how we handle them… Everyone has her/his way of handling their emotions, their decisions, their memories, and, you’re right: I’ve made it this far, have a great wife and family, and I also have love memories I don’t wish to shed, but, put them into perspective with all the other realities…label them:

 FOND MEMORIES.

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BR Chitwood -August 6, 2020

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Short Journey of Steven Bardo

-Image art by: Nick Herasimenko – Unsplash. com-

©Short Journey of Steven Bardo

By BR Chitwood

Steven Bardo stumbles down a sidewalk in Phoenix, Arizona, the front pockets to his soiled trousers turned inside-out, and he bounces into a brick wall of a mercantile building and falls to the sidewalk. Bardo rests his back against the old brick wall, takes a couple of deep breaths of smoggy air, tightly closes his eyes a few times. People walk by the man, showing no care or interest.

The back of Steven Bardo’s head rests uncomfortably against the aged wall as he gazes across the road to another commercial building, his stare locking on nothing of which his eyes are interested, just at a place in his mind where a vacuum of despair fills the historic messiness he has made of this life he owns.

Steve Bardo was not drunk. He had barely enough for two beers and one jigger chaser of liquor at the bar he just left. The bartender refused to give him credit for more drinks and muttered in menacing words for him to leave the bar. The unsteady figure now leaned back and against the building’s wall, staring straight ahead across the street to a locked-in stain spot on the white brick facing, him mind swirling with thoughts of his yesterdays, the work mistakes, the gambling, the ‘extra-women’, all the side-tracks that crushed his marriage.

Tears came with a sad wry smile, and he dropped his head, turned it slightly to his right, and saw stuck in the crevice of the sidewalk what looked like a folded ‘Circle K’ lotto ticket. It was a ticket someone must have thrown there, and he absent-mindedly picked it up and put it in his shirt pocket…

For a moment, his sad smile brought him up to date with this moment, sprawled on a sidewalk with a lotto ticket in his pocket…he slowly shook his head and murmured to himself: ‘Stranger things have happened. Dumb luck was all over the place. Why did I come up this street when I left the bar? That empty shack by the railroad track is my only refuge’.

‘I’m broke, stumbling around like a drunk sailor…my life is the ‘pits’ – hell, the movie people make these tear-jerkers all the time and make millions upon millions of dollars on the well-off crowds who flock to the theaters to feel sad for the poor bastards portrayed on the silver screen’…

Steve Bardo sat on the sidewalk for many moments until he felt somehow bare and vulnerable. He struggled to his feet and slowly began shuffling back down the street toward that abandoned shack by a railroad track that now served as his home.

He passed the ‘Circle K’ on the corner where he turned toward the RR shack, walked a few feet, stopped, and had a sudden urge. ‘Why not check the number on the lotto ticket? The ‘Circle K’ is only a few feet away’.

Inside the ‘Circle K’ he approached the employee behind the counter, an older woman, Marge by the pinned label attached to her blouse,  already showing signs of doubt and worry about the man approaching. Still, she thought, ‘he looks harmless, sad and lonely, and he’s pulling a lotto ticket from his shirt pocket…maybe, he gets lucky’.

 The counter lady smiled sweetly at the man, suddenly feeling sorry for him. “You have a winning ticket there?” She asked cheerily.

He tried to smile, gave his head a short nod and handed her the ticket. The pleasant lady brought a good feeling he wasn’t sure he could explain to anyone.

“Well, let’s keep our fingers crossed.” She smiled and went to a small alcove to run the numbers.

Steve Bardo leaned on a small counter at the alcove watching the nice woman’s face as she did her meticulous check of the numbers. Then, with glowing eyes, she repeated the second re-check of the lotto ticket…

The man watched her moves, and, with every cheerful mood she made, he became more excited…’My Good God! Maybe she’s finding me a new life’… He knew something good was happening.

Then, police officer Gig Weller walked into the ‘Circle K’. Officer Weller watched Two young casually dressed men filling their tote bags with many bottles of liquor, wine, and sundry treats. The taller of the two men saw the policeman, and, when their eyes met, all three knew, one way or the other, the party was over – and all the booze and ‘goodies’ stuffed in the ‘gear bags’ would not be used in frolic and fun…or, resale.

Officer Weller approached the two men. He judged them to be in their mid-twenties, and, at the moment, they were nervously dithering as to what their exit plans should be.

Within ten feet of the young men, the officer saw the signs that spoke of illegal activities.

“You fellows want to show me what’s in your ‘sports bags’?” The officer rested his right hand on his holstered weapon.

“Just some party stuff, officer.”

“Lots of booze coming off the shelves and into that travel bag…you planning to pay for that ‘party stuff’?”

The two men were not so evident of their criminal intent as some he had encountered, but he could observe that nuance he had come to trust over the years…these fellows were committing a robbery – he knew it but would practice decent discourse until they made their move.

The two medium-built men looked quickly at each other, and the shorter one answered: “Oh, sure, Officer, just making it easier on ourselves with the bags, and we didn’t notice any collection carts when we came in.”

The Officer gave a slight smile and pointed toward the entry/exit doors: “You mean those stacked at the entrance? You two bring your bags to the counter, and we will get an accounting.” The Officer’s right hand never left his weapon.

Reluctantly, the two men shuffled toward the counter, closely watching the Officer’s moves. Another male employee had returned to the counter and watched the approach of the two men and the Police Officer some three feet to the side. The counter clerk knew instinctively that trouble was walking toward him, his slow labored swallow giving him away.

“Okay,” the Officer said, “pay the clerk, and we’ll see if we’re done with all this.”

The two men looked at each other, the taller man spoke: “Go ahead Ellis, pay the man…”

The man called Ellis looked quickly at his partner with widened eyes: “Whoa, Jack, I thought you were paying with your credit card…”

“No, it was the other way around, Ellis. I don’t have my credit card or any money. You were to pay.”

“Bull-croppy! You were to pay! Look in the bag…maybe you put your credit card in there.”

Jack grabbed the bag, unzipped the middle opening…

His voice no longer carrying any cordial tone, the Officer Weller spoke in a loud demanding voice as he pulled his gun from its holster: “Drop the bag and raise your arms, you are both under arrest…”

The man called Jack pulled a revolver from the bag and jumped sideways toward a counter end, and pulled the trigger several times.

A woman’s scream was heard from the back at the alcove.

The Officer managed to get off several shots, one shot immediately mortally wounding the man called Jack, and, unfortunately, one bullet from the now dead man crazed the shoulder of Officer Gig Weller, fortunately, not disabling him. The man called Ellis stood shaking, arms raised high and stiff.

Officer Gig Weller cuffed the man called Ellis, made his call to the precinct, described the altercation and aftermath…

The ambulance arrived, put some ointment on Officer Weller’s shoulder and a patch. Ellis was taken to lock-up.

The police ambulance not only carried Jack to the morgue but Steven Bardo, the man who had lost his way in life…until the final moment of his living. He was killed by a stray bullet from the gun fired by Jack.

Officer Gig Weller talked to a tearful Marge as she emerged from the ‘Circle K’ alcove to report the death of Steven Bardo. When Weller saw her tears, he asked, “Was Mr. Bardo a personal friend of yours?”

“No, but in my heart, I know he was a good man who had some very bad luck in life, sad from all the weight he was carrying, the mistakes, loss of family, the ‘boogey-man’ always there inside of him…” Fresh tears began to trickle.

“Why was he in your ‘Circle K’? Sounds like you had an emotional encounter with him.”

“Steven Bardo found a ‘lotto ticket’ on a sidewalk, and, on his way to his humble shack he called home, he passed our store, came in to see if the numbers might have been winning number – a real ‘long shot’ of course…

“Old tear-jerker me, I feel immediately sad for the man and wanted so much for that lotto ticket to give him a new lease on life, and my verification came at the very moment of his death from that stray bullet…

“I got to see him light up with a smile when I told him he was a winner? NOT, the jackpot amount, but enough to turn his life around…his last number was ‘13’, but he knew, KNEW, that he was a winner – finally, a winner. Thank God he was able to go with that knowledge…”

A trio of tears dropped to the ‘Circle K’ floor.

The End

©Short Journey of Steven Bardo

By BR Chitwood – July 22, 2020

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World of Wannabe

World of Wannabe

By BR Chitwood

The world of Wannabe is available only to the hermits of the world, those precious few among us who come to a place in their minds that bid them escape the habitual and mundane nuances of life, a place where patterns of living become such narrow spaces to subsist and cater to those higher, more spiritual longings of the soul.

Wannabe is a place of transition, a place of substantial caring far away from the giants of commerce and business, a place where loneliness becomes a blessing, not a curse, where a day begins with a soft salute to the Maker of us all, then tending to the humble daily needs of faltering lives of beasts and fowls, building a sanctuary for the forgotten simple inhalers of fresh air, a blessed place where living in the only skin you have need not worry about the predators of the world.

 Such a special place is Wannabe for those who have no earthly longings save for the harmony of living among a cayote’s wail to the midnight moon, a bear’s gentle grunt in passing on a trail, a large cougar’s poetic stance on a boulder in silhouette with the full moon, a bearded man sharing his meager meal with a wildcat or snake.

Wannabe is a place for the hardy and the matter of fact, with no dreams left to interrupt his or her simple life, a place one might call a refuge while a hermit calls it home.

Most visitors will not stay long in Wannabe for they see Isolation, loneliness, and the absence of imagination and desire to create, while the hermit will never wish to leave because he/she could not dream beyond what they find here.

There are no obituaries for the Hermits of our world…they are the few who faded from the tall buildings and neon lights to find their own peace on earth!

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By BR Chitwood – June 30, 2020

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Gina Malloy’s Secret

[Image Art by: Aziz Acharki – Unsplash.com]

©Gina Malloy’s Secret

By BR Chitwood

Recently… Ah, hell, just yesterday, I made the decision to end a one-year relationship with a lovely lady who within the first few weeks of knowing her gave all systems of body, heart, mind a collaborate indication that my search for a life’s companion was over. Gina Malloy was twenty-six years old, lovely in a Natalie Portman way, and we came together on a daytime ‘Soap Set’. I played the Doctor who would win her heart.

The first six months was as ‘storybook’ as Hollywood could have filmed it. We had a lovely place in Pacific Palisades, always eager after a day on the ‘set’ to get home and enjoy our privacy and luxury. We were quick to cater each other’s needs because we wanted our mutual and natural caring personae to show. It was a fun six months, real, honest, and wholesome, the caring and catering bringing most delightful bedroom tricks and treats, sighing satisfying oohs and aahs.

In the seventh month, Gina seemed to be avoiding contact with me. At first, I thought it was that time of the month when women go through their ‘Menstrual Cycle’, but I began to question my reactions. So, it was my way to ask more harmless questions of Gina which she brushed aside, by my thinking rather cool-like and somehow out of character. “Danny, please, stop with the questions. Everything is fine.” She would then leave the room too abruptly.

So, I, Danny Watts, decided to give her the silent treatment until she came around to her old ‘self’. I was still convinced it was the ‘menstrual cycle’ thing. And, she did show some signs of becoming her old self until I apparently kept a conversation going too long or made some cuddling moves or show too much affection.

In the following weeks Gina took a couple of trips to visit sorority sisters, she said, irritating our film execs because they needed to alter scene selections for the soap. Returning from those trips, she seemed her ‘old self’ and, for a short duration, we were back to our ‘good place’.

By the twelfth month of our cohabitation, Dina was driving her own car to the studio…she seemed always to have some errands to run after the ‘shooting’ was done for the day. When she did not come home on some nights and none of our friends knew her whereabouts I knew that the relationship was in serious trouble, and/or, there was no longer a relationship, period.

When Gina did not come home some nights, and my heart and mind vacillated between dread of accident and/or death. My mind conjured up possible scenarios – car problems, in a hospital somewhere, seeing someone else, raped and murdered (yes, my mind took me there as well). The love we shared in the early months of our time together brought me to tears, to self-recrimination, to a ‘hell’ I could not have expected. More calls, hospitals, police stations, people we knew, there was nothing worthy of good news or bad news.

There were sleepless nights of worry and heart aches that brought more tears.

When I got to the Studio yesterday morning, I was told that Gina was no longer a part of the ‘Soap’ cast. She had apparently called in her resignation to some angry studio executives, and some hasty re-writes of the daily script were made with a lot of cursing.

It would be one of the longest days of my life. Then, when I got home from the day’s filming with a low threshold of hope of finding Gina there, I found the envelope tacked to the door…

My legs suddenly became rubbery. My breathing was erratic and suffocative as I staggered to the ‘love seat’ where Gina and I spent so much of our time petting and staring out the broad plate glass window to the distant waters of the Pacific Ocean, listening to the soft romantic music-making of our favorite Sergei Rachmaninoff. We were so proud when often criticized with insulting ‘Romantic’ qualifiers.

With shaking and reluctant fingers, I pulled the folded letter from the envelope. On the first page of the flowery stationery, a large ‘Red Heart’ was centered in the top-middle of the first page, and something broke inside of me…the tears came, flowing fast down my cheeks because in my hasty glancing at the written words I saw a phrase that caught my eyes and brought the weeping…

I focused on the beautiful heart and could go no further for many moments as my hands would not stop their incessant trembling. My whispered mumblings of sorrow and regret assembled with the slight humming sound of the air conditioner. My mind was filled with the past images of Gina and me in all the activities of our lives. My unsure shaking hands reached for her face I longed to see in front of me but could not tenderly grasp it…

Cowardly I allowed seconds, minutes to pass, knowing there could be no good news coming from her beautiful hand. I closed my eyes for some seconds, felt a short sharp pain in my chest, sniffled loudly, sighed deeply, re-opened my eyes and stared down upon Gina’s words, some now fading and smeared with my tears.

With sniffle pauses, I slowly focused on the words on the pages my fumbling fingers lifted from my lap.

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download (1)

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My Dearest Danny,

How does my own broken heart convey to your troubled mind and heart the awful news which I must share with you in this missive?

For me, and I hope, for you, Danny, our first days, weeks, and months together were the happiest, most incredibly beautiful times of my life. I could never have hoped to meet someone with a heart, a mind, and a soul so remarkable in their tender giving of love and understanding as your marvelous trio.

I love you, Danny, and our special time together represents God’s gift to me, His gift which will stay with me until your arrival in Eternity.

The Cancer came unexpectedly and I’m sorry my mood-changing behavior often upset some of our precious time together. I allowed my self-pity to open the door to bitterness and anger… I loved you, loved the harmony of our lives together, and, at times, I felt cheated and unfairly treated by Fate.

God finally gave me the understanding of life’s slowness and haste, its repetitions, its ebbs and flows, an inner knowledge that finally came to me, not so much by total comprehension, but by some holy, spiritual awareness that was impossible to doubt.

I’m sorry, dear Danny, if this all sounds too theatrical, but the truth of life and death will be known. I know that. You will know that.   

I’m in Arizona, Danny, and the medical group keeps my pain under control. It is now just a matter of hours before my life here is over but please know that I am at peace and will be waiting for you in Eternity. I pray that you will go on with your life, find new loves, follow your dreams, and know that I am in a good place waiting for you. You will always have my heart and my love.

Gina

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Sadness came, lingered, as I read and reread Gina’s words, and slowly the tears no longer flowed. The heartbeat came back from its erratic behavior.

Why?

I don’t know, but outside that big plate glass window a beautiful twilight with a magnificent western sunset was showing.

Why?

I don’t know, but there are no timers on the stereo system and suddenly a calming and lovely palliative Sergei Rachmaninoff piece of music began playing enigmatically and peacefully.

Why?

I don’t know, but inside my total being there was a tingling sensation, an awareness, a certainty, and I knew that Gina had reached Eternity…

Why? I don’t know…

***

©Gina Malloy’s Secret

By BR Chitwood – June 23, 2020

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©️Filter Me

The-Cracked-Mirror-Reflections-of-An-Appalachian-Son-original

‘BUY SITE’ for above Author Bio – 90% True: mybook.to/B004ZGWQY8

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©️Filter Me

By BR Chitwood  

Filter from me the sad, weak spots of this Orb’s Voyage – filter away those memories that only reawaken strife, suffering, and thousands of stinging tears…  

The journey began on a lonely bucolic spot in Appalachia, its soil rich with it offerings, its mountains and green space alive with  snakes and wild beasts of prey whose nomadic nights of stealth searching were cut short by gunshots from the peasants who tilled the soil and raised their families with a roiling mixture of nascent anger and distrust both the displaced Cherokee and the stalwart, distrusting immigrants carried in their blood. 

These daring  immigrants who crossed the seas from England for better lives in a land that held the only promise open to them met the disgruntled red men and women and somehow forged a bond of sorts until the massive and deadly ‘Trail of Tears’ march forced by a government of questionable intent would bring the ultimate end of the Cherokee Nation.

That bit of history was important to me as it would be ultimately followed by ‘The Great Depression’ that would mark its time on my generation as it would on my parents. Because of the giant Economic impact of ‘The Great Depression’, no jobs, no stimulus plans in place, families were uprooted. A husband and father would often need to go into another state to find work to sustain his family, often in the process bringing divorces, suicides, crime waves and a societal near-collapse… The wealthy survived this period in our history, but this group was not without the awful tempo of the times.

My life began in the frantic after-period of the depression, a sad mistake I’m sure – not that a loving mother and an absent father would make that admission. I remember some of our living areas being in run-down neighborhoods in Knoxville, Tennessee and some of the terror moments when my Dad beat my Mom or my sister. I remember sitting in a paralytic fear, body trembling, my mind only able to stare catatonically straight ahead in fear. 

My parents were divorced, but my Dad came frequently to visit, and these were the times to dread and to fear. My Dad did not like my Mom’s family, felt they had caused a lot of the problems in the marriage, so he embedded those thoughts inside his head. I loved my Dad, and he never hurt me, but he did beat my Mom and my Sis…he was a product of the times, working out of state at times, always wanting to work for one of the rail carriers – which he did ultimately.

During the depression, I was sent to live with my Dad’s folks, and my sister, to Mom’s folks. It would not be too long until my Mom was able to bring my sister and me into a family environment. Mom worked as a telephone operator, in war assembly plants during WW2, and as a Boarding House Cook.

As one might easily conclude from this ‘Filter Piece’, life does indeed shape us. I have had a full life, so much for which to be thankful, beautiful ladies, love, acting, serving my country in the US Navy, and I’ve written twenty-one+ books. There, in that story-land world I find my ultimate peace and full satisfaction. Being fascinated by how life shapes us all, I have a fetish for fictionalizing true crimes, getting inside the heads of people who walk down those perilous roads.

My latest book, THE POWER MERCHANTS, was just released in May, 2020. It is a novel for our times, complete with the World Pandemic, Political Crises, Love, Murder, and a Billionaire’s evil penchant for ‘underage girls’ and currying favor from top-level politicians in the Federal Government.  

I hope you will buy a copy at your Amazon Location and leave a book review. The following AMAZON BUY LINK should take you to your own Amazon BUY location:

The Power Merchants (5)

YOUR AMAZON BUY SITE: mybook.to/thepowermerchants

BR Chitwood – June 5, 2020

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River, Flow For Me

Photo art by Nicholas Murawski – Unsplash.com

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©River, Flow For Me

By BR Chitwood

(1)

I look out over the valley

From atop this tall, tall, Pine,

And I can see the river flowing

Down through this land of mine…

(Chorus)

River, keep on flowing,

River, flow for me,

River, keep on flowing,

Take my Misery…

River, keep on flowing 

Over forgotten ground 

River, keep on flowing

Let my Peace be Found…

(2)

There, on the bank of the River

Sits a love that I once knew –

Her hair aglow in the sunlight,

Her eyes lost in the sky so blue.

Where does she go at Twilight,

The love that I once knew?

Does she go in search of tomorrow?

In the arms of someone new?

(Chorus)

River, keep on flowing,

River, flow for me,

River, keep on flowing,

Take my Misery…

River, keep on flowing,

Over forgotten ground

River, keep on flowing, 

Let my Peace be Found.

(3)

River, how far do you go?

Winding through the trees…

Do your muddy waters run deep –

With sad stories and memories?

Where do your troubled waters go,

Old River, at the final bend?

Do they go to the sea and flow

With All Life’s tears at the end?

(Chorus)

River, keep on flowing,

River, flow for me,

River, keep on flowing,

Take my Misery…

River, keep on flowing

Over forgotten ground,

River, keep on flowing,

Let my Peace be found.

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©A Song by: BR Chitwood

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No Big-Boy Pants

Photo by Dayne Topkin on Unsplash

 

No Big-Boy Pants

By BR Chitwood

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After all the years, there are no ‘Big-Boy Pants’ to wear.

After all the living, there are no ‘Big-Boy Pants’ to fit me…

All the little-boy thoughts, the wakeful dreams,

All sizes I tried, searching for that pair of ‘Big-Boy Pants’ –

On the neon-lined streets of lonely people, artists, and me,

I found meaningless toys of life, romance, the shadows of hope.

*

Now, here, in the fading light, I think of all I’ve missed, or, lost,

Crying in the deep darkness of my soul for another chance…

Perhaps another, more enlightened journey through the neon –

This time, finding that missing link to a well-spent quest…

Yet, a bold bard was right about the end’s dark veil and its tears –

Regrets, sad memories of child, man, events, with no real claim…

*

So, with sagging flesh, wrinkles, and, suddenly, no vision left,

The old man rises from his tear-stained pillow, to seek modest

Sustenance from the only constant in his remaining heart ticks…

Perhaps his words can convey some semblance to his waning and Simple existence,

Never coming close to finding a pair of Big-Boy Pants

That will fit the size of his supercilious and ghostly girth.

BR Chitwood – April 1, 2020

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World View – ‘Mystery Castle’

World View – ‘Mystery Castle’

“There are times when life comes at you with ‘smoke and mirrors’ in a bold challenge to your carefully crafted World View.

“It is okay for you to raise your eyebrows and think, ‘Oh, my! another philosophical genius to enlighten our day and persuade it to go south’.

“However, with that thinking, you will close your ears and mind to a remarkable story that summons all your emotions…”

“Okay, enough with the preface. Get on with it, Milton – after you serve us another round of drinks.”

“You, Brett, and your three juveniles know the rules… I serve the first round, then, you are on your own. There’s my humble bar with beverage choices and mixes. Go for it, then settle in for enlightenment.”

With the noise of ice bouncing around inside the cocktail glasses, the jolly jokesters humming along with the background music of Paolo Mantovani, the guys reseated in the recliners, Bradley holds up his glass and speaks: “Okay, Miltie, lay it on us…it is your turn this week for ‘Most Remarkable Story of the Week’. Just, please, don’t be so pedantic and professorial in your spiel. We all know of your illustrious credentials…”

“How gracious of you, my once-good buddies…

“Okay, every claim I mention here can be verified on your laptops. In my humble…yes, humble…opinion, this is one of the great Human-Interest stories of our collective lifetimes…

“Bennet R. Chasen lived happily in San Francisco with his wife, Helene, and young daughter, Gabriela – nick-named, Gabbie. They were a close-knit family, took trips, went to the ocean, Bennet spending joyful time with Gabbie building ‘Sand-Castles’ on the beach. Not particularly rich in worldly goods, they loved and enjoyed their togetherness…

“The time was the 1930’s, and this loving father went privately for a medical examination for a condition he could not identify himself. That examination was to change the course of his and his family’s lives…

“Bennet  was diagnosed with Tuberculosis (TB) and given a short time to live. The doctor wanted to place him in ‘Isolation/Quarantine’, but the husband/father spent many hours in his own ‘mind-isolation’, emotions and tears colliding, so many ponderous thoughts turning his heart and mind into a maelstrom of grief and self-pity, into a kaleidoscope of pain and sadness. For days, he stayed away from his wife and daughter, fearful that any contact might transport the TB to them.

“After hours and days of isolation, the tears of sadness, his eddy of emotions, he made a fateful decision…he would, simply, disappear, lose himself in the world, notifying no one of his destination – including, his beloved wife and daughter. What, after all, could words possibly be worth in the final accounting? He knew he was to die. It was better to disappear than to introduce the concept of his immediate death to his wife and daughter. Let them think…he, just, disappeared, wary of his family life. That would be better than allowing them the truth of his decision. All the turbulence of his mind led him to the only solution he could make.

“The family would think what they would…he could not make it better for them with the truth. So, Bennet left San Francisco and would end up in Phoenix, Arizona

“In Phoenix, this incredible husband/father would ‘homestead’ a lovely piece of property in the South Mountain area, and, sand bucket by sand bucket, rock by rock, cacti by cacti, wood pieces by wood pieces, any item he could find on the desert floor, at a construction site to be thrown away. There was an old covered-wagon left on the property that he built into a bar, until, some years later, he had built a huge ‘sand-castle’ for his daughter that would become hers at this death…that event occurred some seven years after his TB diagnosis…

“So, you ‘malcontents’, what say you now? Except for the names I’ve lent them, this story can be verified and proven beyond any doubt. The daughter would live on this incredible land and in this awesome home until her death, known by the guns strapped to her waist she wore daily in this wild and beautiful desert…”

In unison and wide-eyed, the buddies went to the bar and fixed more drinks. Back in their seats, incredulous, Milton met their eyes, and spoke again.

“If you guys can afford a small ‘tour fee’, you can visit this incredible tribute to a man who weighed all his evidence, made the only decision he could make, and created what is now called, THE MYSTERY CASTLE.”

BR Chitwood – January 19, 2020

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You Are

You Are

*

You are the butterfly

That flits furiously

Inside this reckless heart…

You are a soft song

Of love I cannot

Find the words to convey…

You are the pages

Of a romance novel

That tremble with passion…

You are a Paris stroll

On the Champs Ėlysées

Amid sweet scents of Summer…

You are all the wishes

A humble fool can beg

When you are away from me…

You are all my thoughts

Merging, anticipating,

Your arrival home to me…

*

A poem by BR Chitwood – November  5, 2019

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