Archives for January 2017

Will this happen here? The way things are going I believe it could.

It was on this day in 1972 that British army parachutists shot 27 unarmed civil rights demonstrators in Derry, Northern Ireland – an event known as “Bloody Sunday.” The protestors had been marching to oppose the new British policy of imprisoning people without a hearing.

The Northern Irish conflict stemmed from a peace treaty signed in 1923 after Ireland’s successful war for independence from Britain. The treaty partitioned Ireland, designating the largely Catholic south as an independent nation, while leaving six counties of Northern Ireland, which had a Protestant majority, as part of the United Kingdom.

On this day, parachute troopers were given the OK to fire on the protestors. The first person killed was shot in the back. Thirteen people

Reposted from Writer’s Almanac

No wonder he didn’t have any friends. 995 words

“We’re friends aren’t we Joe?” Billy said just before he stole my girl. That was when I began to think that my dad was right when he said, “The only friend a man has is the money in his pocket.”

My problem has always been not having any friends, in or out of my pocket. There were plenty like Billy who’d pretend to be my friend, but they always revealed their true intent when the time came. In search of a true friend, I went to the pound and found a dog that I thought would stick by me no matter what.

I paid the fee and got the dog as my own. It turned out he used me like all my other friends. He had an agenda of his own and ran away from home the first chance he got. I tried to befriend a cat, to no avail. I went to the Beehive bar and drank a lot of beer. I began to tell any who would listen how even my unfaithful dog had abandoned me.

A voice I didn’t know came from The End of the bar. “Hold on there Joe. Don’t you dare go around badmouthing dogs. Did you ever think that dog you got from the pound may have had a reason to run away?”

“No, because I gave him everything a dog needs,” I hollered down the bar.

A monster of a man with a shaved head, tattooed neck and muscular arms stood up and lumbered from The End of the bar up to where I sat by the door. I was tempted to run out the door before he reached me. But my beer muscles had grown, so I convinced myself I could match his strength if it came to a fight.

I stood and grabbed my empty beer bottle by the neck, ready to smash it onto his bald head. He strode up to me. We stood toe-to-toe, eye to eye, and he said in a growling voice, “Its people like you that require a dog to do things that aren’t natural.”

“Hold on there, King Kong, exactly what are you saying?” I eyed the door. If I hit him, I could probably make it to the door before he could respond.

“I’m saying that the dog that ran away from you only did what any true friend would do.”

“I’m not following you. If he was a true friend, why’d he run off?”

“I didn’t say he was your friend.” He stepped closer and our bellies touched. “I’m saying before he was put in the pound, he had a friend. In the dog’s mind, it was his duty to go and find the friend he already had not to make a new one and forget the old.”

I sat on my stool. I never thought of it that way. So a dog really was a true friend. “You’re right,” I said. “Let me buy you a drink?”

“Before you do, you’ve got to know, when I imagine a dog, I see one designed by Giacometti and then I see one designed by god. Both are assigned to a man. A dog is intended to be desired and designated as a friend to be loved. Instead they’re forced to fight, forced to kill, forced to breed.”

“That’s not always true,” I said, but knew it was true, and I didn’t like to think about it.

“We’ve messed up the world and the lives of many dogs too.” The big man went back to the end of the bar and I watched him for a while.

I drank five more beers and kept my mouth shut while thinking about the lives of dogs. I noticed the big guy had grown hair all over his head. Even his tattoos were covered with thick black hair. I looked out the door and the full moon had risen.

I looked back in time to see he now had a beard and his mouth started to turn into a snout. “Give him a drink,” I told the bartender. He gave him a beer and poured it into a bowl. I watched in horror as the hairy guy lapped the bowl clean with his tongue without ever touching it with his hands. I wasn’t surprised when I looked and saw his hands had become paws.

“Bartender, give me a shot of Jack Daniels to clear my head. I’m seeing a man turning into a dog.”

“Pay Rufus no mind. It’s that time of the month.” He gave me a beer on the house.

“Just a cotton picking minute, you mean to say this guy,” I pointed to the now hairy guy, “turns into a dog every month?”

“Only when the moon is full. If you notice, everyone but you has left.” He swept his arm and for the first time I noticed, every bar stool was empty.

“Why did they leave?”

“Nobody wants to be his friend when he changes like that. In fact you may stay, but I’ve got to go upstairs.” He went from behind the bar to the door leading upstairs.

Once he went through it, I heard locks snapping shut. It was just me and a two hundred pound dog sitting in the bar now. I looked into the dogs round brown eyes and I felt love. I walked down the bar and ran my hand over his hairy head in a friendly pat. He laid on the bar and shook his leg as a signal for me to pat his hairy back. I did. A doggy smile lit his face.

He jumped up and licked my face. I finally found a friend. I scratched his neck and he rubbed up against me. Then he sniffed my hand in a friendly manner, then my crotch and butt. Before I knew it, he was humping away. No wonder he didn’t have any friends.

 

Choices

Live the life you believe in and begin

to sin, because if you don’t you’ll

die full of regrets and without cigarettes

despite the health threats.

 

Though gaunt you’ll never go for a jaunt

when muses haunt and you try to resist not

to make the choice you know is right. Rejoice,

or pay the price. To suffice, that won’t be nice.

 

Choices are hard to make when you’re

half awake and not sure if it’s poor or

maybe premature, but take a chance

even if you’re in a trance go ahead and dance

 

if it feels right or suffer for the rest of your life.

Memories of the choices you didn’t make will

be of concern if you didn’t learn the trouble you

made when you didn’t choose right, and you sang.

 

If you were wrong you knew all along you’d sing

your last song, so be strong, nothing is worse than to

live and not be alive because you were scared

to make a choice and couldn’t rejoice

 

for choosing  to  live  the life given to you

 

Chulhuly exhibit in Phoenix Botanical Gardens

http://buff.ly/2ieAnbT

Cement Face

Sunlight crosses my face

in my empty house where

feeling good has moved

beyond my reach and

 

no reason to rise has

entered my mind or to

open my eyes because

the day has arrived.

 

I’m wondering why I’m alive

When I’ll never regain the

desire to love or to live

like I had when you let me

 

love you night and day.

With you gone a smile

can never break the

cement covering my face.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I write every day and never get paid!

 

Addicted

 

Just a little I thought,

and then a little more

now I know

 

it has me in its grip

promising me what I need

there’s no letting go.

 

blinded by claims of fame

and in pain I believe

what I have done

 

is okay to even try

to fill my needs

my desire takes money

 

and eager to please I

don’t need any drugs

to work but know

 

I shouldn’t have become

blinded by fame

and girls

 

everything I need

to even try to  fill

my needs came and

 

there was no letting go

when stupid and getting

screwed went together

 

and a book with.

my name on the

cover said addicted

.

and dopes will suffer

when they discover

they’ll never get paid

the end

 

Excerpts from my memoir, Life Begins At 66

Lying down on the couch next to the cloth covered frame, I went to sleep instantly. In the morning when I woke, I looked out the window behind the couch. Andy, my brother who had recently died was floating on a cloud coming directly toward me, he and the cloud flew right through the window glass. He got off the cloud, sat next to me on the couch. Stunned I was speechless.  I clearly saw the threads of his shirt.  He didn’t speak either.  Just gave me his crooked smile that showed he was happy.  Then he sat back onto the cloud and floated through the window, disappearing into the sky.

Not a believer in God or spirits, I looked for a logical reason for the vision.

 

 

The next day she required our class to read The Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler. The book describes rape and mutilation of women. Researching rapes I discovered that more men than women are raped in the U.S.A. making the United States the first country in the world to count more rapes for men than for women.

 

A guard unlocked Gus’ cell to let a big black dude in who intended to rape Gus. To his surprise, Gus had a piece of pipe in his bed and almost beat the black guy to death with it. Sounds horrible, but that’s how you have to be when in prison. No one protects you. So you protect yourself any way you can. If Gus hadn’t done that, the rapist would have been selling him to other prisoners for a few packs of cigarettes. This story confirmed that what I read about prison rapes was true.

I wasn’t alive until I hit sixty-five.

Born without food a diaper or a bed of straw,

I wanted to know who did this to me, but

couldn’t display pain to the makers. I swore

someday I’d make them pay for what they did to me.

Until then, I paid the price like everyone else.

 

All through the years, I wracked my brain

while I sweated and worked the only way

I knew how. No skills were bestowed upon

me by the architects. I couldn’t sing, color,

or draw, but to think, I could think, and

 

that ability became a great gift, and I thought

how to make the powers who gave me a

life of worry and work to pay for what they

did. The world they made is dog eat dog,

but if it became nirvana for everyone who

lived, those up above would lose everyone

 

of the prayers sent to them. Petitions to make life

better for the oppressed, the sick, the weak, the poor.

Without the mental energy created by those begging

for help from the Deities, they’d lose clout when people

realized prayers sent up above were turned into

energy that the Gods ate to stay alive. As devotions died,

so did the weaker Gods, and with so few prayers

 

the surviving Gods turned into dogs and had to act

like humans and heaven became a dog eat dog place,

just like Earth. Without a paradise to offer, the immortals

lost it all and became mere men who had to work as I

did. I became boss, and every surviving Idol worked for me.

I was as kind to them as they were to me and didn’t mind if

they didn’t eat or keep warm when I sent them out

in the cold to shovel snow even though they were old.

 

At sixty five I became like a God,

and those that once were divine

tried to fight back with threats

and curses,  but they didn’t

have a prayer because they

were just too damn drained

from eating requests for years

and never responding.

 

 

 

Testosterone Listening to Pandora I hear ads for this every few minutes.

“If you’re over forty, it’s not your fault that

your testosterone is low and you’ve shifted

into low and are ready to stall. You’re not

alone you know, and can still change gears

 

by smoking reefer and making young girls

sniff cocaine. Drink some whiskey and have

some fun, cause it’s all going to end, when,

no one knows, but it will, so enjoy

what you can,

 

while you can, because, once time has passed by,

you’ll wish you had and all you’ll have is dreams

that you’ll wish were real and not something that

happened yesterday.

 

When your music and your life comes to an end,

you’ll have no regrets if you’ve smoked, drank and

gave cocaine to girls who always gave something

in return.

 

It’s too late now. Too late to change your mind

if you haven’t drank whiskey and loved a lot of

women who sang and sometimes screamed when you

gave them plenty of pleasure.

 

You inherit a whiskey store and the women

come back for more, so you hate it when

your testosterone gets low and you’re ready

to stall and you’ve paid the price for living life

 

like you committed a crime by loving a woman

more than all the rest and when she left, you wondered

how she could, but inside you knew, your testosterone

ran low.

 

Past years have turned on you, because now you

know how wrong you were when testosterone ruled

the actions you took, but when you hear the radio say,

Testosterone restored for $40 a month,

 

you let the gas bill go and buy the pills that make

your heart run cold and any love you have is ready

for a rerun and melts in your veins that are being

refilled

 

with the hormone needed to function as a young man.

Smoking reefer, making young girls sniff cocaine

and drinking whiskey is still a lot of fun, and now you know

there’s no end until you die

 

and then there’ll be a smile on your face

when at 99 you go,

with a woody in your hand

 

UPCOMING – SPRING 2017 —- T h e – C o n t e s t

Inspired by the works of international artists, this Young Adult / New Adult collection of dark fantasy, slipstream, magical realism and fabulist tales (with a connecting novella) is collaboratively authored by Joe DiBuduo and Kate Robinson:

 

Peter John Rizzo, an emerging creative writer and 1960 graduate of Yale University’s journalism program, inherits Classic Art Exposé, an established but floundering art journal, from his uncle, John Rizzo.

 

Pete’s father, Peter Rizzo, is a banker who hates his late brother, jealous of his sibling’s influential relationship with his wife and Pete, and scornful of his work in the Arts and Humanities.

 

Pete and Jason, his Uncle John’s devoted but unorthodox editorial assistant, and two local English student interns, sisters Shirley and Evie, start a monthly short story contest with artwork prompts, hoping to increase Classic Art Exposé’s readership and settle its debt.

 

As the short stories are vetted and published over the following eighteen months, Pete discovers a sordid family secret as he battles his father’s nefarious attempts to jeopardize his business and ruin his reputation.

 

::~Acknowledgments~::

 

“Cheater” first appeared in Western Weird, Volume 4, Manifest West Series, (Western Press Books – Western State Colorado University, 2015).

 

“Night Café” won the quarterly New Short Fiction Award (Jerry Jazz Musician, 2012).

 

“Lost Memories” first appeared in The Memory Eater (CP Anthologies, 2012).

 

“A Twisted Garden” first appeared as “The Yellow House” in Say Goodnight to the Bad Guy (May December Publications, 2011).

“The Snow Globe” first appeared in Best Served Cold: An Eye for An Eye (Runewright LLC, 2011).

 

 

 

Stay tuned for a fundraiser promo for this fun and educational literary endeavor.

Tootie-Do Press