The Horseman

     We all have fond memories of our childhood.  We remember those time times that were different and exciting or a time when we met someone special
     The horseman was one of those special moments in my childhood.  He was a tall lanky man with a haphazard short cropped beard and I was pretty sure his nick name was something like “Slim”.  It wasn’t.  It was “The Horseman”.  Naturally I assumed he rode horses.

     Of course the residents in the small Southern Utah never uttered the direct article “The”.  They simply said, “Horseman, how the hell are ya”, “Horseman, how the hell is old ‘Cabby’ doin” or “Hey Hoss, goin fishin today?”

      But I’m getting ahead of myself.  I was with my mom and dad sitting in one of the three booths at Judy’s Café when he walked in.  He nodded at my parents and squeezed my shoulder.

     He was a pleasant man with a warm smile that divulged a couple of missing teeth.  Judy had his breakfast ready as he slid onto one of the four stools at the counter.  He bantered back and forth with four road workers sitting at the booth behind us.  He drank a full cup of black hot coffee before he started on his ham and eggs with a side of hotcakes
     He didn’t waste any time with his breakfast.  He made small talk while he still had food in his mouth.  I was sure my mom was going to say something because she always did when I talked with my mouth full but she just looked the other way.  I knew his bad table manners would be a topic that I would hear about the next time we sat down to eat.  Also I noticed that he didn’t remove his hat when he sat down to eat.  In fact, nobody did except me and my dad.  ‘No hats at the table” was a rule at our house and it was strictly obeyed.  I decided that I was going to be real happy when I could enjoy a meal like they did.

     The tall man left just before we did.  As I walked out the door I heard him say, “Come on Cabby lets head for home.”

     The horse was nibbling grass next to the café.  It wasn’t tied to anything.  It didn’t even have a halter on.  I waited for the tall man to get a saddle and halter and put it on the horse but he didn’t.  He just started walking up the street and the horse turned and walked along beside him.

     One of the road hands walked out of the café and my dad asked him why the tall man didn’t ride the horse.

     “Old Hoss?” he answered. “Hell he’s never ridden a horse.  Says it’s cruel.  That old horse Cabby is his pet.  Just like a damned dog.  Follows him wherever he goes.  Some folks swear that they even sleep together but I don’t believe that.

     We call him the horseman because of old Cabby being a pet.  You know he lives 5 miles back up in that canyon.  He walks down here 6 days a week for breakfast.  Figger he has to leave about six A.M. to get here by eight.  Says the horse needs the exercise.

     Walks to church on Sundays and that’s near seven miles one way and that damn horse walks with him.  When he gets to church he sits in the back by a window and Cabby stands outside with his head in the window.  Folks say that old horse hears every word the preachers says and even laughs when the preacher comes up with a good joke.  And that ain’t the best of it.  When the preacher prays, folks say the horse says amen.  Now doesn’t that beat all.  Course I never heard him say amen because I don’t go to church but I’ve been tempted just to hear that horse talk.”

     By the time the road worker was through with his story, the Horseman and Cabby had walked clean out of sight.

     “Is that a true story?” I asked my dad.

     “Beats me,” my dad said.  “But I’ll never call a man a liar unless I know for sure.  What do you think?”

     “I don’t know,” I replied.  “But I sure would like to hear that horse say amen.”


My Home Town

Beneath a mountain
                above a lake
lies the town
               I chose to forsake
It has left my life
       But not my heart
Nor my mind
I dream
Of the small streets
Filled with love
Old friends of mine
They stop and say hello
How are you doing
How’s your uncle Joe
The words were real
Their hearts were true
When I think of what I left
My heart feels a little blue



whence cometh thou
Is it through
my eyes, my touch, my heart, my ears, my mind
 another dimension
 all dimensions

you cannot just be
how can I know thee

I must be you
I must let you be me
I must
climb for you…sweat for you
Feel your dirt…your rocks…your cold…your warmth
hear your winds sing the songs of life and love
hear your birds praise the universe above
hear your waters caress the earth below
 rise to the sky and let it wrap round me
climb your mountains and make them me
lie in your valleys and feel them caress your skies

You must
my aches…my pains…my breath
my eyes, my ears, my mind, my heart, my soul

I will be yours
 wherever you are, whatever you are
I will
see you, hear you, feel you, be you

you will be me, I will be you
We will belong

 to the earth, the wind, the clouds, the moon, the sun and the stars,
The stars, the sun, the moon, the clouds, the wind, the earth,
 will belong to us.


Having my Baby

It has occurred to me that writing is just another form of creating a baby.

Every time we write something new, we have sired another baby or child.  True to actual life, a lot these children are created and then abandoned.

An idea, a child, is created and then because the creator, the writer, has created more than he or she can deal with, the fetus is aborted.

We write half a page, half a chapter, half a book and then because we haven't planned properly or prepared ourselves properly, we are not fit to be the parents of what we have created.  We lament that the child is not doing well.  The child is not what we had hoped for but that is not his or her fault. (is the gender of an unborn article male of female?)
The fault lies in our inability to be master creators.  We would like to be gods in the world of writing but alas, most of us are not
If, by some quirk of fate we are actually able to create a story or a book in its entirety, we are then left with the responsibility of raising our creation.

 But as in human children, we need help.  Someone has to clean up the poop.  By "clean up the poop" I mean the story needs to be edited and proofed.  Editing and proofing is like picking up the poop in your back yard.  No matter hard hard I try I always miss a pile and it's the same way with writing.

When we write we know what we mean to say and it is easy to leave out words or use the wrong word in the wrong places and when we reread what we wrote our eyes see what we think is there
Have you seen the email that goes around where all the words are misspelled?  It is very easy to read what is written and that is what we do with our own gibberish.

It is wise if you can beg or pay someone else to do the poop picking.

Once the poop is taken care, hopefully our child will move from grade school to high school where editors and agents may be lurking to grab the little bugger and make sure he or she (there's that gender thing again) stays on the straight and narrow.

If, and that is one big frigging if, (I have a love-hate relationship with the word frigging) it makes it with an agent and then a publisher, it may graduate from college and go on to bigger and better things.

Bigger and better making money to support us in our old age.


Nanny State

It has to make one proud to be part of a state that leads all other states in the creation of new laws

I live in the Nanny State (California) and our latest endeavor is to crack down on the populace for eating and driving.

That’s right…eating and driving!

The Nanny State can and will give you a ticket for eating and driving.  That is the CHP  (California Highway Patrol) has decided that eating while driving in the Golden State between 6 a.m. Friday December 30, 2011 and 6 a.m. Saturday December 31, 2011 could mean as much as a $1,000 fine if it impairs a driver's ability to operate a motor vehicle.

While there is no law saying someone can't eat while driving, a distracted driver is in violation of the law.  Under California's vehicle code, a driver can be ticketed $145 to $1,000 for having "wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property."

There are a couple of things that grab my attention.

The first is the reference to “the Golden State”.  That is the official Nickname of California (since 1968) and I think it refers back to the California gold rush of 1849.  However I have been told that it may refer to the fields of Golden Poppies that cover the state each spring .(I have lived here 40 years and never seen a golden poppy…I guess they are something you have to go out and look for.)

I have to believe that while we may prefer to call ourselves as the “Golden State” others may prefer the name I have chosen for this article.  Maybe we can keep our nickname by saying it comes from all the gold that state extracts from its citizens.

The second item that grabbed my attention is the date that the CHP chose to impose its food crack down.  Why did they choose the day before New Years?  I can only guess.  I assume it’s because they feel they will be too busy with drunk drivers to worry about arresting or ticketing drivers that are caught eating but as I said, it’s an assumption.

If you should decide to spend some time in the Nanny State please be aware of our Golden rules:

  ·         Do not drink and drive
·         Do not text and drive
       ·         Cell phone hands free only
·         Do not eat and drive

I must confess that I am not sure whether the eating rule includes coffee and sunflower seeds.  I guess it would depend on the whim of the CHPofficer.  

You would be wise not to flip them off.

About Me

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So Cal, United States
I am an apprentice writer of short stories and I also attempt a little poetry.