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How I Saw A U.F.O.—Part II

One evening after work, I asked the German girl to come sit with me by the lake. I wasn’t particularly attracted to her, but she was friendly, and a conversation with a young woman, even one who is far from beautiful, is not a pleasure to be overlooked or to be taken lightly.
I was curious about what this blue-eyed girl wish short blonde hair thought about working in a pleasure camp for Jewish children and teenagers, but the conversation never went in that direction. We compared notes on the life in Europe and life in America as I understood it.
The night was cool enough to justify wearing sweatshirts, and the windless sky was clear. …

I'm writing today, and having problems describing a fictional garden. It occurs to me that it's probably because, even though my brain is emotionally engaged with how it feels to be in this garden, I’m lacking a physical focal point. Ever practical, I decide to draw it. First I'll practice by copying a page torn out of a magazine pinched from the waiting room of my doctor. I'm not an artist, so this brings out the MacGyver in me. There is leftover garage sale poster board in the closet. Pencils will do - only when I open my office desk drawer, there are something like 20 magic markers, 50 pens (ranging from really nice to antique dried up Bic, nearly all lifted I'm sure …

I woke up this morning to a call from my mom. This isn’t a rare occurrence, since I often sleep past the hour when most people deem it appropriate to make a phone call (work doesn't start for me until 1:30 p.m.), and my mom loves making phone calls. When she makes them, she likes to talk about a lot of things, many of them slightly trivial. So, I wasn’t all that worried about it; I didn’t panic and immediately assume something was wrong like many people do when they're awakened by a phone call from a family member.

But then I realized she wasn't speaking in her phone voice: the peppy, cheerful and energized tone she uses every time she speaks on the …

“…and we shall never reach heaven…”singing incessant sing along song to myself in my battle
weary brain laying awake in silence on hung over Sunday-just one of many-filled to brim with angry
angsty thought crippling hum of my screaming ears and brain-though this one finds me not the least bit
alone-camera pan to my left finds strange blonde nestled deep in Morpheus’ arms in the spot usually
reserved for myself in ugly stained mattress on corner of bedroom floor-whole overhead shot of both of
us now fully in frame an establishing shot which uncovers one very real fact which has gone from being
internal and is now slowly becoming externally obvious-that I am sick deep within my guts. Sigh-groan-Read more »

“…and we shall never reach heaven…”singing incessant sing along song to myself in my battle
weary brain laying awake in silence on hung over Sunday-just one of many-filled to brim with angry
angsty thought crippling hum of my screaming ears and brain-though this one finds me not the least bit
alone-camera pan to my left finds strange blonde nestled deep in Morpheus’ arms in the spot usually
reserved for myself in ugly stained mattress on corner of bedroom floor-whole overhead shot of both of
us now fully in frame an establishing shot which uncovers one very real fact which has gone from being
internal and is now slowly becoming externally obvious-that I am sick deep within my guts. Sigh-groan-Read more »

“…and we shall never reach heaven…”singing incessant sing along song to myself in my battle
weary brain laying awake in silence on hung over Sunday-just one of many-filled to brim with angry
angsty thought crippling hum of my screaming ears and brain-though this one finds me not the least bit
alone-camera pan to my left finds strange blonde nestled deep in Morpheus’ arms in the spot usually
reserved for myself in ugly stained mattress on corner of bedroom floor-whole overhead shot of both of
us now fully in frame an establishing shot which uncovers one very real fact which has gone from being
internal and is now slowly becoming externally obvious-that I am sick deep within my guts. Sigh-groan-Read more »

“…and we shall never reach heaven…”singing incessant sing along song to myself in my battle
weary brain laying awake in silence on hung over Sunday-just one of many-filled to brim with angry
angsty thought crippling hum of my screaming ears and brain-though this one finds me not the least bit
alone-camera pan to my left finds strange blonde nestled deep in Morpheus’ arms in the spot usually
reserved for myself in ugly stained mattress on corner of bedroom floor-whole overhead shot of both of
us now fully in frame an establishing shot which uncovers one very real fact which has gone from being
internal and is now slowly becoming externally obvious-that I am sick deep within my guts. Sigh-groan-Read more »

Tonight we had a church meeting, so we were rushing through supper because we had to pick up Brother Larry and take him with us. He was staying with the Trotters, which was a little out of our way. The Trotters were a fascinating bunch. They had at least 15 dogs, all of which lived in their house. I’d been in the house just one time, and it had been shocking in a way that only utter filth can be shocking. There were dogs on the counters, on the floors, on the chairs, even one on the coffee table in front of the TV. They were everywhere. Dog food — the same cheap kind that we fed our …

I have many memories of my grandparent’s front porch. It was the central gathering Mecca all spring and summer for the Jim Williams family.

Up until I graduated from high school, I spent all my summers at the paternal grandparents in London, KY. This visit was always the highlight of my year. I loved my grandparents dearly and my two unmarried aunties--Edie and Ruthie--who also spent their summers there. Since I was an only child and only grandchild, you might have an inkling of the princess life I led each summer. But, I digress.

In those days television and air conditioning were luxury items. We didn't possess them. but neither did anyone else in town that …

Once upon a time a long, long, long time ago in the mid-sixties, I made the acquaintance of a Ouija board. My husband played football for the Buffalo Bills, and we wives had a night out every Tuesday to play bridge or whatever we decided might be fun.

On one particular November night in 1966, the talk at our get-together was all about the Bill’s chances for the AFL championship playoffs. There were two teams left: the Kansas City Chiefs and the New York Jets. If the Miami Dolphins lost to the San Diego Chargers the next weekend, and the Bills pulled off the near-impossible task of beating both the Chiefs …

AxeMan is an anthropomorphized alter-ego. He is who he was and is, a somewhat fictionalized me, not an avatar looking to be a different him. He is a myth-busting steelhead drawing references to art and political venues from the late 1940s through the early 2000's. He/we bounce along from the McCarthy era to the Eisenhower/Stevenson/Mad years to the to the Kennedy saga to the Viet Nam and Anti Viet Nam epoch followed by an on again, off again relationship with the Labor movement and the Art World.

I had a jar of marbles. Some of them were very old and had belonged to my uncle or even my grandparents. Most of them were the cheap kind you buy at Jo-Ann's Fabrics to fill vases with. When the cousins came over, I would corral Ryan into my room to play a war game I'd made up. There were flat, green marbles that were mines and a precious handful of flat red marbles that were probably super-mines or something. The light blue iridescents were enlisted men. The clear were...I forget now. Cobalt were cavalry. And the old ones, the cats' eyes and aggies, were the generals and lieutenants. I had half a dozen walnut-sized novelty marbles that were the shooters. We'd spend perhaps half-an-hour …

At last! It was morning! I threw off the sheet concealing the fact I had slept in my clothes and headed outside. I hadn’t slept a wink and neither had my parents judging from the whispering wafting from their room all night. It was June 1, 1953 and the first television in our middle-class neighborhood was about to be installed in my living room. Maybe not at 6 a.m., but this ten-year-old would be ready whatever time it showed up.

At ten o’clock neighbors began moseying in and out our open front door and several could be found mulling around the porch smoking cigarettes while waiting. My dad sauntered from person to person to soak up their congratulations as he laughed and joked …

I have a lightweight mauve-colored robe I bought on sale at Nordstrom’s that I used to cart everywhere with me around Denver, Boulder and Manhattan. It lives in a bag with toe-holed suede ballet flats that are perpetually covered with dirt or stone dust. The robe itself has traces of oil and acrylic paints, most in light smudges or strokes. This is my pre-work uniform when I prepare to pose for a group of artists. My actual work uniform is not so much what I put on, but rather what I take off. I’ve seen classes, books and trainings offered in art modeling, but really all it is dropping your clothes and holding your body still till the buzzer rings. …

I am only 46 years old and I recently discovered I have weeks to live. If I hang on until the trusted CIA Fact Book's life expectancy estimate of 78 years, the 32 years difference from my current age equals a mere 1,664 weeks. Time is ticking away. My fiancé introduced this concept to me one day, trying to be funny. Instead, she induced panic. Prior to this revelation, 1664 was just a number I read on the side of a Kronenbourg beer bottle, boldly declaring the date the company was founded. Now it represents the final countdown to my inevitability.

Reflecting on my life in weeks made me anxious about my mortality in a way I had not …

Out driving today I met the ugliest dog I’ve ever seen and a dog whisperer who made me cry. This dog, he was the product of some back alley bad gene pool with a DNA strand longer than the Riemann hypothesis. He was a mashed-face, half-tailed bundle of too-many-daddy parts about five inches high and twelve inches long with ears the size and shape of two hand-held fishing nets. Seriously, if you lost cable in my neighborhood this afternoon, this dog probably walked by your house and interfered with your signal.

It was raining, and there was a Jeep Cherokee stopped where a car would not be stopped unless something was wrong, and in this case a small animal beneath it was …

Far be it for me to disagree with Buddha, but I must question his accuracy when it comes to his notion that “if you want to learn about love, start with plants and animals, they’re easier,” because if that is the truth I fear I’m destined to die a spinster. The attempt to give myself a green thumb came on the heels of a particularly bad breakup. Happening upon Buddha’s quote absolved me of my latest perceived failure and convinced me that the error of my ways lay in the fact that I was ficus-less, not in my tendency to fall for the wrong men.

The unintentional massacre began with a phallic-shaped cactus that a friend had given me as a joke. I promptly …

All four of us are returning to the car this night, around the end of day three. We had stopped in Little Rock, Arkansas to check out the city area. Night life was questionable at best. We approached a nifty stage-like structure not being used. We practiced martial arts while people either watched, came up to dance behind us, or even make out behind us. I went to a club-like place, spent five dollars to get in, five dollars for a Jack and Coke, chatted and realized I spent ten dollars for a very iced up, half alcoholic drink. I did talk to a shirtless band member—he was strange.

As we approach the car a street light goes …

Friends have been asking me to tell my story of my life, including the loss of my children. It is the story of a tragic and surreal road traveled told in the words of a person who has the tenacity not to be defeated. The past five years have slipped like water through my fingers as I struggle to grab a firm hold of the future, but my grasp I will ultimately accomplish will be one of triumph. Mine and my children's futures have changed many times over from the original vision of the story I thought would be, but that is also part of the struggle, .... to be molded and changed for the better as I grow and accept …

She looks comfortable, cuddly, as if curling up is the only thing she needs to comfort herself. Around her are hands playing with a piece of string. There’s an interesting power discourse of male presence and voyeurism, because although you see her completely naked, you never see his face or his body. Just his hands, and a piece of string wrapped around his fingers. He is there without being there. And he’s watching her curl up without gazing directly at her.

I’m standing in the middle of a jazz club, looking at myself. Sure, I’ve seen dozens of drawings and paintings out there of my naked body, and of course I've seen my fiancé, Rene, sell nude paintings of other women, but this painting …
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