I believe in Karma maybe a little more than I should.

My Moon

My Air

Original Photography by Pamela N. Brown

Summer
Original Photography by Pamela N. Brown

Summer

Original Photography by Pamela N. Brown

Dr. Seuss statues in Abilene, Texas

Original Photography by Pamela N. Brown

Before the Storm

Pizza

I took him serious, and he took me for a child. 

The first time I walked into the new pizza restaurant, I saw him building pizza boxes behind the counter. He talked to my mother, sister, and me. I batted my long, thick, black eyelashes up at him. He smiled as I stared into his green/gray eyes, and he said, “You’re kinda cute.” 

My heart soared, and I replied, “Thank you.” I had a new crush, and he had won my heart with those simple words, “You’re kinda cute.”

I would dress as sexy as I could in my red and white striped leotard, my red mini skirt, my red leg warmers, and my silver tennis shoes. My hair was teased high, toward the sky, with enough Aquanet to expand the hole in the ozone by an inch. Red, silver, and blue metallic streaks were combed through strips of of curly, crunchy hair. Hair clips with bright red satin ribbons braided through thru them with red, silver, and blue beads fixed on the ends of the ribbons pulled my hair back over my ears. I wore my long shiny red beaded earrings Grandma made for me. 

I would enter the restaurant to play Galaga, just because he was there. Many, many quarters were pumped into the machine in hopes that he would notice I was there again. He would stop to ask my score, and I would smile and say I received high score once again. I flirted, but he did not seem to notice. 

Now, I know it was just a twelve year old girl’s fantasy, but then, I would have sworn it was love. It was a love so fierce it burned in my heart and consumed my thoughts. I was lost if I didn’t see him every day.  

The summer was nearing it’s end, and I knew he would be leaving to New York soon. I wrote him a love poem and took it to the restaurant. Butterflies fluttered in my stomach, and a lump caught in my throat. 

I sat at a table this time because I was too nervous to play my game. He arrived to take my order, so I asked for a Dr. Pepper and a small thin crust pizza with Canadian bacon, onions, and bell peppers. 

He went to get my drink and returned to my table. As he sat across from me, he talked about him going home and how happy he was to be going back. 

My hands trembled with excitement that he was sitting there talking to me. Of course, other than his father who was fastidiously preparing my lunch, I was the only other person in the entire restaurant. 

He told me about New York and how different it is being in Texas around all of the empty space. He said he had never seen a bigger sky or truly seen the stars, as they were all blocked out by the tall buildings of the city. He said he had never heard a locust call or a cricket outside his window because the sounds of the city drowned them out. I learned how laid back Texas is to the point it was foreign to him, as the city people were always in a rush. 

He left his seat to bring my pizza. He sat back down and said, “Regardless, I love New York so.” He talked of how there is always somewhere to go and something to do unlike my small town. He said, “I can’t sleep here. It’s too quite. My city noises are like a lullaby. Here, the sounds of coyotes howls across the wind frighten me awake.” He sighed. 

I asked how much different his friends here are from his friends. He talked about them not being into farming or ranching, stock shows or 4-H, or driving. He said that if you knew the city well enough, you could get along with no car. He talked how his friend were into music and dancing. How they hung out at the skate park with their boards and bikes. He said the only thing his friends here had in common with his friends in the city was their love of basketball. 

He soon began to talk of a girl at the deli a block from his home, and my heart sank. He painted a picture of her beauty in a poetic fashion that sounded as if he were singing an ode to his muse. He sang of her long red hair and her milky white porcelain skin. He praised her bright green eyes that would swirl into an emerald abyss when she would anger. 

He said he planned to ask for her hand in marriage when he returned home. The lump in my throat returned, my blood ran hot beneath my skin, and my eyes stung. I had to fight to keep from crying.

He fished a solitaire diamond ring that he purchased from the local drug/jewelry store from his pocket. He asked if I thought she would like it.

I gulped some soda down washing the lump down before I answered, “She would be a fool not to.” I prayed the pain didn’t show in my eyes. 

I pushed the remaining pizza forward and told him I had to go. I handed him some money for the lunch and a tip before I bade him farewell. 

On the way home, I realized this was the most he spoke to me all summer. I didn’t really know him at all. Regardless, a sunless tear ran down my cheek leaving a streak in its wake. Empty handed, I arrived home and spent the evening alone in my room. 

As he bussed my table, he noticed a crumpled damp sheet of paper beneath the edge of my plate. He opened and read the poem I wrote for him. He left the next afternoon. 

It would be a week before I learned he had found the letter. His father asked how my score was, and I replied it was the highest. He told me that Tony liked the poem I wrote, so he took it with him. He said they made a copy in case I needed one, and he handed me a paper stained with grease and oil. He told me that Tony really thinks that I am a good kid. The words stung, but my heart was fine.

Powerless

I can feel it
A burn
An itch
Just under my watch band
The thud of a pulse waiting to bleed
A voice in my head saying
Set yourself
Cut
And set yourself free


They don’t know I’m already dead
Just a lost soul tripping through this purgatory called life
A whisper on the wind
A shrinking violet in the harsh sun
Shriveling and desiccating to nothingness
A wilting summer rose in the fall left with only spiny pinpricks
A forgotten memory of a happier time
Cynical, cold, envious
Hateful
Enraged
Powerless

Original Poetry by ©2014 Pamela N. Brown

You’re only given a little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.

Robin Williams
Sleeping Beauty

Sleeping Beauty

Gravity

It’s too late now. Gravity has begun pulling at my bones, twisting and tearing at muscles and tendons, stretching them until they feel as if they will split. Sinew creaks and groans with every movement, sounding like old leather preparing for that eminent snap. Skin has begun to sag, wrinkle, and dry to an ashen pallor. A ruddy undertone, which darkens the freckling and birthmarks, fights its way through the snow white film cracking and peeling at the surface. The fissures in each heel have grown painful, rough, corse, and no amount of potions, oils, balms, tonics, emollients, or lotions can fill the crevices to heal the burn of air brushing against tips of nerves. Nails of fingertips and toes thicken, flake, rip, and tear despite careful manicures and clippings.

The right leg has begun to pull to the right as steps are made from one place to another. The mass of the flesh, tissue, and bone hinder the use of the hip, and muscles alone cannot lift the dangling meat below. With every misstep, with every pop of the joint in the socket, the raw nerves shoot pains to the ankle and into the bow of my back. Limping has become a daily routine, and often dragging the foot behind me is all I can manage. Muscles shiver and shake until all control is lost and the body tumbles to the ground. The weight of the fleshing piling upon flesh brings about thick purple and green knots upon the surface of the skin. At times, the use of arms is non-existent, as the shuddering has taken over and the heaviness of a simple writing utensil resembles that of a ten pound barbell. The heft of my bulk presses into my lungs and throat closing off oxygen leaving me gasping for a breath.

The right shoulder aches from day to day. A constant dull throb deep within between the blades of my shoulders is seldom acknowledged, as the hump on my back has continued to grow in width, girth, and height, stretching the skin. The stabbing pulsations are with me every minute of every hour of every day. Muscles pull at tender, raw nerves that wrap around my skull and into the tissue of the brain, drawing gasps. Gravity presses down on me building pressure behind my right eye. Every sliver of light sneaking through eyelids increases the throbbing in within my skull, builds the pressure behind my eye that draws the sensation that the swollen orb will explode from the socket. The spasms bounce on my nerves that reach deep within my gut, causing a swirling within the recesses of my stomach. I fight to hold down the bubbling bile creeping up my esophagus. I twist my body into my blankets like a cocoon with my curtains pulled tight shutting the brilliant light of day and busy world outside. Every minute noise of the outside world echos within my ears, dancing upon the nerves until amplified to a deafening roar.

The dark spot in the center of my left eye is growing, impeding my vision and pulling at my right. Vision often fractures into a crystalized rainbow through which only color is recognizable. The ringing in my right ear has intensified over the years to a constant and steady chiming that haunts my every waking moment until the time comes that the ringing stops but taking with it every sound of the world around me. For minutes and sometimes hours, tones escape me until the ringing returns only to become a magnified reverberation. I strain to hear words spoken softly or sounds that drift upon the air around me, seldom able to make out the conversations resonating around me.

Though this is my life, I still force myself to wake from the sweet slumber in which I can escape all suffering. I still roll from my warm cocoon and unleash my battered body unto the world. I still find happiness and beauty through all of the pain.

The largest genocide of human history.

The largest genocide of human history.