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Memoirs

Submissions to this category are generally told in the first person and cover personal reflection, autobiographies and memories of the past. Rather than focusing on factual accounts, memoirs are more a recollection of moments in time that were either vivid or unique to the author.

3

Growing Up Ranch Chapter 12

Moving on

Growing Up Ranch Chapter 12 My School Just as I had a ranch version of other things, I also had "ranch" school. (No escaping it, IT'S THE LAW!!) I had the good fortune to attend Fawcett School, one of the Rural District Nineteen public schools. From the name alone you may perhaps suspect that this was not your ordinary public school and you are right. At six years old all children...Read On

Hope

That wonderous thing, hope. In the dark, find the light, that spark. Four letters that save lives or kill them with a lack thereof. You were always my best friend as I struggled every day.   Hope is the most beautiful thing and costs nothing. My hope saved me. I don't remember when or I started to hang on to it, my heart and soul clasping it like a lasso, I almost made it my slave when...Read On

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Growing Up Ranch Chapter 11

Special friends

Growing Up Ranch Chapter 11 Horsey Tales.   My growing up ranch was quite unusual even in its day. The reason was we were one of the few ranches that worked our cattle exclusively with horses. These “beasts of burden” became friends and companions, each with their own personality. Here are some short sketches of the regularly used mounts which amounted to about a third of our horse herd....Read On

1

And Pulled the Trigger

I'm naked and it's hot even though the ceiling fan is turning. I'm in bed. That's good. In bed sweating, and my mouth is parched like I had eaten a couple tablespoons of flour before I made my way here. The day's already warm and the sun is coming through the bedroom window where I hadn't bothered to pull the shade. I can see the neighbor on her back deck and wonder if she can see me. I'm...Read On

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Growing Up Ranch Chapter 10

A special treat

The ranch was an isolated place but that didn't mean we lived in total isolation while I grew up ranch. We had many visitors from far and near who enriched our lives in many ways. Often it was a family who came bringing with them the whole family including kids. Our Fox cousins from Denver were particularly fun to entertain. They, of course, wanted to ride the horses and ponies. After an...Read On

0

That Saturday Morning

This is a true story. It has been told many times and always gets a laugh. Now it was a typical Saturday morning at our house. It had to be sometime before Memorial Day because my parents were still at home, normally they are at our cottage. My mom who is a habitual early riser headed to the kitchen to make coffee and let the big orange and white cat up from the basement.   She opened...Read On

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Gillian and the Three Mole Stories

Mole Story One I can't recall when I first realized I had a mole under my arm. It was located in the center of my armpit. Early grade school is my best guess. For the most part, I was blissfully unaware of its presence. Doctors had assured my Mother that it was harmless and there was no need to remove it. It was in third grade that my awareness of it became more pronounced. In those...Read On

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Recommended Read

Obituary

Something I started when told I had cancer...

I wrote my obituary today. It feels strange to write that, a surreal experience to say the least. How does one take stock of his life? If it is by money and status, then I am very poor indeed. If it is by the number of his friends, then I again fail. Did I have the most toys? Take the best vacations. Drive the fanciest cars? Will people remember me in one hundred years? The answer to all...Read On

3
Recommended Read

My Eagle

He is so free and majestic as his white head and splayed white tail propel...

It never failed. I was never surprised anymore. I walk out here with my fleece throw, my cup of coffee in hand, and sit on the bench overlooking the lake. Then, without question, there he is, always soaring high above the lake fog. I swear I can see the wink of his eye as he turns that white head in our morning meetings. Sometimes, although I'm wrapped in a throw and enjoying my hot...Read On

7

R.I.P

Rest in peace, one of the only men who will ever live in my heart. From the first time I opened my eyes, you were there, with a grin so big nothing could erase it. When I turned 3 and mom walked away, you looked at me and said: "It's you and me against the world, baby girl." Every big event in my life, you were right there slightly behind me as if to catch me if I fell. The first time I...Read On

11

A Birthday Tribute For My Angel Face

The birth of an angel; A kiss from Heaven

 

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Growing Up Ranch Chapter 9

Play and Exploring become Work.

Growing up Ranch Chapter 9 Working and Exploring  Work. That four letter word we all grow to know eventually. Growing up "Ranch" meant that work started early in life and was intertwined with an element or curiosity that I will call "exploring". The line between the two was often blurred. Work was also so much a part of ranch life that it was something I looked forward to rather...Read On

2

Therapy

I just answered one of those calls that I get from the Vet Center the day before I go in for an appointment with my counselor. One of the nice things about having been in a war is that I get a free shrink for the rest of my foreseeable future.   I remember seeing Dr. Sydney Freedman on M*A*S*H when I was a kid. There was an episode where Hawk-Eye was sick with a cold, that was...Read On

5

The Lollipop Gangster

It was the turn of the century before bubble gum filled lollipops had become the obsession of every Zambian child. Cola flavoured lollipops were all the rage back then. I would never quite go as far as saying I would have done anything for one, but I did do something quite shameful once. It was a hot summer morning in the city of Ndola. My mother had just sent me to the neighbour’s house...Read On

3

Alberta Clipper 2: We Are All Flawed

I am not who most think I am and I am not a traitor to those and those things I believe in, and I know there are worse things than death and carry my mistakes as I try to hide all of my regrets. I have dropped my guard rarely, and it is time to make peace with that one essential truth feeling now a days as if I am on the run. These might be the thoughts you and I both have that may be...Read On

2

Alberta Clipper 1: Down The Highway

The streets are getting’ empty, and I’m keeping a low profile as I head on down the line, out here on the fringes of the night as the last midnight train pulls out and won’t be back. Finding myself thinking of when I was in that North Country where the lakes and streams ran so free, and of those few friends I have had that were like good old bricks and stood the kicks, and never...Read On

10

stars of passion

The stars shine Lighting up the sky For me I see The stars in your eyes Messages like sweet perfume You send me love each day Making me know happiness and good cheer For when I have you with me Out of sight you never are Watching you while you sleep Shave and dress Is such a loving treat Our love grows each day With each passing hour I never get tired of you Our passions...Read On

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Memories

 

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Blue Days

Every day seeing those passing looking like a chain of fools, and looking up at those blue skies above knowing that those blue days have arrived with every day seeming the same right now, and all the people are the same. Knowing when those blue days descended when I woke up with that blue moon in my eyes just about the same time these days dropped those blues down here on us and they...Read On

4

Growing Up Ranch Chapter 8

Acontrast of town and ranch

I was fortunate to have both sets of Grandparents alive while I was growing up. My Dad’s parents were “ranch” and lived just over the hill about a mile away. My Mom’s parents were “town” and lived in Douglas, the full forty mile drive away. Naturally, I was much closer to my “ranch” grandparents than my “town” grandparents. Grandma Ruth and Granddad Art were my ranch grandparents. Grandma...Read On

7

I Was Almost Abducted By a Serial Killer

Re-written for clarity and to include new information

In 1986 when I was 23, my parents divorced and my mother, brother, sister and I moved to the city of Fontana which was about 30 miles from where I grew up.  We were really struggling just to keep the lights on in those days, so I began to work full time at a Jack in the Box, about five miles from our home.  I couldn't afford a car, so I had to walk to and from work, along two roads that...Read On

4

Living Years

On their birthday a tribute to two loved ones I lost

Wondering if you would still know my name or who I was if I saw you in Heaven? I know I don’t belong there and I need to continue to honour that promise you had me make all those years ago, and be strong like you asked and to continue on in whatever I find myself undertaking. I know there is no more pain or tears there in Heaven, and would you still be the same person I knew before both of...Read On

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Growing Up Ranch Chapter 7 My Parents

Meet my parents

            Growing Up Ranch Chapter 7 My Parents “Growing Up Ranch” or growing up period isn’t possible without parents. Because of the ranch, however, my relationship with these two special people was unusual. I was blessed with a full set of two and a stable home compared to many, but our special circumstances did make for big differences. Because the ranch was by western standards...Read On

4

Temple of Thought

Chills have come racing down my spine as I sit here and with shaking hands I know that everything is about understanding, and feeling the chills raging like a storm in my mind spreading like a fever through my heart down to my legs. Time to let go of fears and wondering who will stand with me if and when I breakdown? I know all I think and say seems to be understated with dreams or is...Read On

4

Growing Up Ranch Chapter 6

Different but similar

Having a brother wasn’t unique to growing up “ranch,” but it will help you fill in the big picture if I introduce him to you. There were some big differences in how we related to each other because we grew up “Ranch” together, but far from other playmates. Paul came along when I was three years old. I was very used to being the special son/grandson. I got highly pampered and felt this was...Read On

4

Growing Up Ranch Chapter 5 My Pool

Better than a cement pond

Growing Up Ranch Chapter 5    My Pool Now most parks or playgrounds didn't have free pony rides, but I could understand that. What I didn't understand, or rather resented, was paying to go swimming. All I had to do was walk down to the creek, slip out of my shoes and a wading I would go. Swim trunks on I could splash and play all day and often did. My pool was more than just a pool it was...Read On

1

The Junction

The things I see around me.

Sometimes, it’s nice, being able just to look out on the world; to see the sunrise, to smell the freshness of the morning, and to experience the evaporation of the dew. Then, at the end of the day, to experience that special sunset; you know, the one that displays the brightest oranges and reds that set below the silhouetted trees. Then there are the arcs of brightly coloured rainbows that...Read On

2

Snoring in Love

Does your wife love you ?

        Snoring In Love                                                                                                                                                                        “ We had the experience but missed the meaning, The approach to the meaning restores the experience. In a different form, beyond any meaning, W e can assign to happiness.” T.S. Eliot -...Read On

4

Csárdás

This is the first one written in 2017

Finding myself out here feeling the wind, as I try to find some sort of shelter and thinking of the coming storm that’s being heralded by the wind. As I finally get myself into what appeared to be an empty station near some rusted and unused tracks, and when I walked in I could see someone lying there on a chair. I made my way to where he was in the gathering gloom and asked him what was...Read On

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Growing Up Ranch Chapter 4

My Playground

Growing Up Ranch Chapter 4 My Playground   One of the more significant differences in growing up Ranch concerned play. The isolation of the ranch meant my brother Paul was the only playmate within walking distance. The next nearest neighbor with kids was at Esterbrook seven miles away. On the busy ranch, there was no priority to carting kids back and forth just to play. The nearest...Read On