February 2014

Page 3

44 articles in February 2014

Eenough! I sometimes wonder if I am the only one who was sick and tired of winter! Anyone who has suffered through a winter has got to be exhausted by the snow, the cold and the winds but ask anyone who has lived here all their lives and they will tell you gleefully that we are experiencing a real Maine winter for the first time.

I respond to this comment by pleading for a fake Maine winter. There is nothing more frustrating than to come home from a hard day’s work and pull into the driveway with visions in mind of cozy slippers, a comfy chair and a warm – only to find that one can’t pull into the driveway because of a snowdrift the size of a truck.

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Fairies flying through the air with starlight on their wings,
are planting all the mushrooms carefully in rings.
While elves sit sentry-duty to guard the special place,
and spiders weave their magic spell to cover all in lace.

Sleep on then little child so sweet, and dream of this til morn.
Then you will see where last they were, by the circles on the lawn.

Dream by Wendy R. Chapman.

She can be contacted at: thetalewagger@hotmail.com

Copyright reserved. No part(s) of these publications may be reproduced, transmitted, transcribed, stored in a retrieval system, or translated into any language in any form by any means without the written permission of the author.

Uuncle Spike could never resist a bargain.
His home was always full — and I mean really full — of stuff. Stuff was an important, all encompassing word. It was the word used by his long-suffering wife to describe the otherwise indescribable. Mind you, Aunty Maureen was not a lot better than Uncle Spike.

She could fall prey to the beckoning charms of a bargain herself — worse, she was a hoarder, too. String, elastic bands, paper bags, plastic bags, carrier bags, cardboard, bubble-wrap, tissue paper, gift wrapping paper (birthdays, weddings, christenings, Christmas; I swear that, if any was ever made, she could have produced some funereal gift wrap!)

Uncle Spike, who was my Dad’s brother, and Aunty Maureen shared a tiny two-up/two-down in Jubilee Street, which was just around the corner from our house. My Mum and Dad are gone now, and the little house where my three brothers and I grew up is gone too, and in place of the houses there is now an Aldi. However, Uncle Spike never moved; he stayed on, refusing to move in with me, even after he lost Maureen a few years ago; she was coming out of the Aldi and got knocked down by a car.

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Tto watch the world through a spider web is as watching the future through the web of the memories; wishing that everything you know, about the dust of the ways you have ever walked on, would help you choose the paths of the future. However, the reflection of the memories web is cheating, like a dusty mirror ; the reflected image is never identical and only when you recognize steps you have made before, then you understand that you are actually walking on the tracks of your own errors.

Tthe same goes for the spider web; seen through its perfection, the world seems more beautiful. That is why you just admire it from behind the spider web. Because you are sorry to spoil its perfection, or because it is easier to watch the ways beyond it, than to walk on them. The spider web gets thicker with time and gradually your window towards a dreamworld becomes gray and dull. A window covered by curtains, beyond which nothing is to be seen anymore, except for an immense loneliness here, on the side of your heart.

Oonly the light of a candle can get through the spider web, sometimes, late at night. The flame, getting narrow towards the tip, takes the shape of a path getting lost at the horizon, reminding you of the ways that have uselessly waited for you but it is late; what has once been your window towards the ideal world is now your prison. All you can do is to fall asleep, thinking of the flame you barely can see anymore, and hope the path of light starting on the other side of the spider web will wipe away, at least in dream, your wrong ways.

The End.
The Spider’s Web by Lonely Shell

Copyright reserved. No part(s) of these publications may be reproduced, transmitted, transcribed, stored in a retrieval system, or translated into any language in any form by any means without the written permission of the author.

Tthe year I turned 50, I promised myself that I would try as many new things as possible without, of course, hurting myself. Well, the year my Debbie turned 50 she did the same. So here I am somewhere in Quebec waiting for my first day of a total Spa experience.

The weeks before we left I was a hero. My wife bragged to all her friends and family that I was traveling with her to Quebec, where we were going to experience the excitement of a Spa. I enjoyed this time of praise. Ridicule and humor replaced this praise when it came to my friends and colleagues. They just couldn’t believe that I would take the time and chance to go to a spa. I was jokingly told that I was going to be “touched” by a guy named Igmar, who had hairy knuckles. I became the brunt of jokes throughout my social sect. Reality came too soon and I had to come through with what I had promised.

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Tthere was no moon and the garden was dark. The security-light hadn’t come on, but it should have, because there was someone out there.   In the gloom, all I could see was the beam of a torch.

Burglars! I thought and melted back into the shadows. That’s all I need. The house is full of antiques. I’ve warned her often enough. But will she listen? The light was coming nearer and now I heard the crunch of feet on the gravel outside. The sash-window wasn’t properly closed. My fault. I was certainly making it easy for burglars.

Then came the sound of the window being raised and more slight noises as the intruder climbed over the sill. His flashlight played around the room, stopping every now and then on some old picture or piece of silver – valuable legacies, from rich relatives – Elaine’s relatives, of course.
How was I going to get out of this?

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Tthe holiday I enjoy most is Thanksgiving Day. I am not forced to go to the malls and look for presents for my loved ones. I don’t have to hear weeks in advance what they want and what they don’t want.

All I have to do is show up for a remarkable meal that lasts for the whole weekend and associates with the people of the family who I still like and who still like me. Christmas Day is a bit more difficult. I have to hit the malls in an attempt to buy the perfect gift so my wife and daughter can brag to the rest of the family and their friends how they have a caring and lovable father. I usually succeed in this task because, in reality, how hard is it to follow a list and a set of directions to the correct store?

The one holiday I absolutely abhor is Valentine’s Day. I am forced to buy overpriced plastic gifts to show that I really care. The bright red hearts with white doilies are cute but what is usually inside are candies left over from the Christmas holidays.

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Mmy father used to tell me that to achieve happiness in life one just has to survive the bad times and enjoy the hell out of the good. Unfortunately, it’s more confusing than that, and what are supposed to be the good times can leave you feeling really bad.

Like the recent visit of my daughter and her fiancé to look at places around York that would be suitable for her wedding reception. My daughter is a beautiful 25-year-old woman who lives in Boston and works as a para-legal. Her fiancé is a hard-working young man who obviously loves her and whom, I am ready to believe, will take care of her in the manner to she expects for the rest of her life. It was a visit that should have been wonderful for all of us. A day filled with exciting plans and bright expectations. What could possibly go wrong?

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“It was revealed to me many years ago with conclusive certainty that I was a fool and that I had always been a fool. Since then I have been as happy as any man has a right to be.” Alistair Sims 30th August ’76

Iihave recently embraced this quote of Mr. Sims and it has afforded me great comfort. I am now separated, after a long relationship, and have joined the multitudes of the unattached. The last time I was in this position, George Bush’s father was president and tattoos still meant you had served time in prison. Piercing was meant for the ears, now they are everywhere, it is much like the Earring Fairy has been cruising about the country since 1996, visiting young ladies in their sleep and causing them to awake with rings appearing in their bellybuttons.

There was also no Internet dating which has caused the genesis of this piece. Like so many of my peers, I have visited this cyber landscape with trepidation but also with hope. Being a parent, and having a career which occupies an inordinate amount of time, how can you meet other people? You place a singles ad online and try to get the essence of yourself in 2 paragraphs with a photo. Then you begin the laborious task of looking through other profiles, seeking those that strike some interest and ask them to look at your profile then respond and so the cycle starts.

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Wwinter’s white fingers
Frosting branches, trees and fields,
Move silently on.
—o0o—
Wwhite winter trees pose
Adorned in lace robes of snow,
Temporary guise.
—o0o—
Aasoft gentle sound
Carried on the evening breeze,
Whispers “He is here.”
——o0o——
Hhaunting melody,
Sad requiem for lost love
Always remembered.
——o0o——

HAIKU by Jean M. Lewis
© Copyrights reserved Jean M. Lewis February 2001