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Idris Muntaqim Nov 2020
A shooting has occurred inside a shopping mall during the day;
Multiple customers were shot and injured and here are more things that I'll say.

The shopping mall shooter is at large and what I'm saying is right;
The shopping mall shooter is an evil man who's white.

When Britt Reid finds out about the shopping mall shooter, he knows what he must do;
At night, Britt changes into the Green Hornet, which is true.

The Green Hornet and Kato get into the Black Beauty, drive, and search for the shooter as fast as they can;
They find the lair of the shopping mall shooter who's an evil white man.

The two heroes stop the Black Beauty, get out, and break into the shooter's lair with the hornet's sting;
They confront the shopping mall shooter who's a ding-a-ling.

The Green Hornet and Kato lie to the shooter about helping him shoot whoever he wants, as you can see;
When the shopping mall shooter doesn't believe them, he tries to shoot the Green Hornet and Kato immediately.

Kato throws a dart into the shopping mall shooter's arm;
The shopping mall shooter has been harmed.

The Green Hornet uses the hornet's sting to shock the shopping mall shooter and I know you'll agree;
When the shooter is unconscious, the Green Hornet calls the police, which is excellent as can be.

When the police arrive, the Green Hornet and Kato get back into the Black Beauty and drive home, which is swell;
The next day, the Daily Sentinel delivers the news that the shopping mall shooter has been arrested and that's all that I'll tell.
JP Jan 2016
Shopping was the world first invitation to women,
a freedom to move out of her house. Initially,
Woman practiced shopping for vegetables and slowly
extended to garments/jewelry/white goods etc. Today,
the world has experiencing a better market due to
window shopping. The concept innovated by women,
the women who started window shopping has helped
the awareness of the market, The more the window shopping,
more the sales. The concept of window shopping  
helped the textile industries to understand about their products.
The textile industries has developed in terms of marketing
say readymade, exchangeable, trial rooms, gifts coupons
are coz of women. Its encouraged the women to do
shopping effectively.

Facts about shopping. Customer who shop with their friends
tend to buy more costly products than when they shop alone.
Next, In terms of clothing, General advises is to buy
one garment at a time coz If you buy few dresses, You tend the use
the first selected dress more than the others. Buying 'Take Away'
in (costly) restaurant was the blinder coz restaurant charge more
for the ambience less for the food. Using cash on shopping,
you tend to spend less and you bargain more. Don't increase
your buying to eligible for discount coupon.  A survey says
that 90% of the issued discount coupons are never redeemed.
Never shop on Discount Sale coz the best collection will be
taken off the shelf by the shopkeeper. The amazing fact,
If any one buy the best and costly clothes one size less than
the one normally uses, has brought down the weight
of that person.
Mr Ketchup Felt all alone Because Sweet Potato Face had gone to visit her Sister in Blue yonder valley, and Mr Ketchup needed to go Christmas shopping as it was so close to  December He really needed to get cracking
Mr Ketchup picked up the telephone from the small table in the hall, one of the legs from the old worn table became a bit loose and Oh dear Mr Ketchup hadn't been a ware of the wobbly leg becoming even looser. Just has he was about to pick up the telephone the cat became lodged in the middle of Mr Ketchup's feet and the leg on the coffee table gave way and Poor Mr ketchup went flying up in the air and
landed with a mighty thud on his face.
Some hours had passed and there was a loud knock on the front door.

"hello a voice required." it is Haggis and Neaps.
Lying on the floor in the hall way groaned Mr Ketchup, little did they know How long Mr Ketchup lay there before they arrived..
Haggis removed the key from under the roughened brown mat and put the spare key into the lock and let himself in with Neaps.
"What on earth has been going on here said haggis".?......
"I'd better put the kettle on, and make you a hot cup of sweet tea it appears you have had quite a bad shock with the fall."
"Now Now said Haggis do keep still so that I can control the bleeding
We may have to call a ambulance to take you to hospital"
"Oh please stop fussing," will you  am not going anywhere."

Well has you can imagine Mr Ketchup was quite a stubborn person
if he didn't want to do something he just shrugged his shoulders and simply refused to do it....
At last Neaps had made a brew and soon they forgot about the mishap.
they were planning next week to go Christmas shopping at yellow market
and for a bite to eat, but if Mr Ketchup has his way, he'd  not be paying for any of it except his Christmas shopping..


Finally Mr Ketchup felt much better, All morning he had looked for his wellington boots and his red  rain coat. He must have pulled out the whole cupboard of odd boots,     he stumbled across his   black wellington boots. At last he thought he counted all his silver coins, and he had twenty five pounds he put the cash into his pocket and quickly grabbed his coat and shut the door behind him.
At last Haggis and Mr Ketchup arrived at Yellow Market to do their Christmas shopping.
moments later Mr Ketchup picked up a beautiful locket for Sweet Potato Face, but changed his mind and bought her a neck-less instead, Meanwhile haggis waited patiently for Mr Ketchup to finish his Christmas shopping..

Oh bother replied Mr Ketchup as he pulled out empty torn pocket
and Oh Dearie me  all his loose silver had gone.
"Oh Dear what ever shall I do now I don't have enough to pay for the
rest of my Christmas shopping and what about my dinner, he sighed.? "
Come come now Mr Ketchup I lend you something until next week but please be more careful we don't want any more mishaps today, come and I will treat you to lunch this time."
Mr Ketchup secretly grinned to himself had he pulled a fast one just have to let you work that one out.....wont we ?
The shopping channel calls to me
It wakes me up at night
To sell me things I do not need
Nor would buy, if I was right
But apparently, there's something wrong
My brain should be re-wired
I only purchase things on here
When I am really over-tired
I have a room specifically
For things bought on TV
I've ginsu knives and shredding blades
And juicers!!!...ninety three!!
For some reason the kitchen things
Just seem to catch my eye
Especially at three a.m.
That's the time I need to buy
I've magic bullets by the score
Processors,  I don't need
But, if I ever put them all to use...
An army I could feed
I've got socks for diabetics
Things to make your ******* stand out
I've got exercise machines galore
I've got three things that help gout!
My credit card's at the limit
I know the numbers off by heart
The post man knows me by my name
I even have my own **** cart
To deliver all my purchases
They just load it and deliver
It almost comes here by itself
It's enough to make one shiver
I don't know how it started
I think the countdown clock...ah, yes
I thought it meant the game was ending
I phoned in and bought a dress!!!
I've got jewellery by Joan Rivers
George Foreman grills...they fill my den
I've got perfumes for the women
And lots of things that make you men!
My wife cannot contain me
She's sent me off to get some aid
But, if they sell it on the telly
I'll buy it sure as getting laid
I've bedazzled all my clothing
I eat dried fruit and jerky too
I get Christmas cards from Ronco
I'm a shopping ****** through and through
Each month we have a garage sale
I sell off some of what I've bought
But, then I go and buy it back again
Without a second thought
My friends have all but left me
I rarely go out of the house
I just sit here and go shopping
I don't even see my spouse
Set it and Forget it
That's a phrase I love to say
But wait, there's more...is another one
That helps me through the day
I used the last one on my wife
One night while having ***
She told me "Set it and Forget It"
I'm off to dreamland Tex!!
My shopping's an addiction
One I hope to beat some day
But now, the operator says...
I have to get my card and pay!
Jason Leimer Dec 2010
Shopping local means your putting money into your economy.
Shopping local means your helping your fellow citizen with their dream.
Shopping local means you are contributing to a good business.
This is shopping a local business.

Shopping local means Wal Mart loses out on your dollars.
Shopping local means Target loses out on your dollars.
Shopping local means big business loses out on your dollars.
Please keep local businesses alive by shopping at them.
Charlotte Aug 2013
I'm going shopping
For a boy with a smile
That can melt the ice in me
I'm going shopping
For a boy who can hold
My pain that's grown so heavy
I'm going shopping
And looking all around
For a boy who will pick me up
Whenever I fall down
I'm going shopping
With my big shopping cart
For a boy out there somewhere
Who will take care of my heart
judy smith Aug 2015
Laleli Fashion Shopping Festival kicks off, aiming to be a world-renowned brand Organized by the Laleli Industrialists and Businessmen's Association (LASİAD), the Laleli Fashion Shopping Festival will be held for the fourth time, starting today. Although it was previously announced that world-renowned Israeli model Bar Refaeli would take the podium as part of the festival, it has been reported that she will not be able to come to Istanbul due to illness.

LASİAD President Gıyasettin Eyyüpkoca held a press meeting with the festival committee prior to the festival's official opening today. Eyyüpkoca underscored that Laleli has been a dynamic and modern trade center for years despite ever-changing economic conditions around the world. He said this year's festival, which will continue until Aug. 30, would be more enthusiastic and exciting. He said numerous people worked very hard for six months to organize this festival, saying that they collaborated with 13 different countries along with the Ministry of Economy and the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce (İTO).


Saying that the festival is "bringing fashion together with shopping," Eyyüpkoca reported that the festival would be held around the same time every year, from now on. He also addressed the economic crisis in Russia and said: "We take turning this negative atmosphere to our advantage as a mission. Laleli is Turkey's door for export." He claimed that events such as the Laleli Fashion Shopping Festival contribute to Turkey's economy. He said they are making everything jointly and working on behalf of Laleli to promote it internationally and see its name in its deserved place.

Eyyüpkoca said their motto is "Creating a brand out of Laleli." He also praised his association and said LASİAD is an institution that can predict problems other countries will face and turn these problems into advantages for Turkey. He said that Russia has 27 percent of the Laleli market, while Ukraine has 12 percent, adding that they can compensate for the 40 percent gap with foreign target markets. He said that they would continue to collaborate with other countries and concentrate on local organizations. Eyyüpkoca later answered questions from the press, saying that the festival met the targeted financial figures last year. He said trade contacts made through the festival reached several million dollars within two days last year and that they expect the same performance this year. He later reported that top model Bar Refaeli would not be able to take the podium tomorrow, as was announced earlier, due to her medical problems. It is said that Refaeli will attend another event organized by LASİAD in the near future.

"Of course our contract included an economic sanction for canceling the event; however, we did not want to do it as she had health problems," said Eyyüpkoca and added the top model will later appear at another event. "I can clearly say that she did not cancel her program due to security reasons," said Eyyüpkoca. Although he did not offer insight about the payment that the top model received for the event, Eyyüpkoca said that they shook hands at a very low price with Refaeli.

read more:www.marieaustralia.com/bridesmaid-dresses

www.marieaustralia.com/evening-dresses
Terry Collett Mar 2015
And Helens mother says as Helen climbs down the stairs of the building mind the road and dont talk to people you dont know and make sure you get the right change from Baldys you know what hes like Helen holds the stair rail and takes one step at a time as they are quite steep and she doesnt want to fall down in her small palm she holds the coins for the shopping and they are becoming damp as she holds them so tight and in her other hand she holds a bag to put the shopping in and thinking over in her mind how much change she ought to have if her sums are right and she thinks she has got it right although Baldy will get it right no doubt but she must try and get it right or her  mum will tell her off she reaches the lowest stair and stands there looking back up the stairs and waits to hear if her mother has stopped talking and its all quiet and so she moves out into the street and the sky looks grey and rainy looking and that man is on the corner in his black coat buttoned up to his neck and the black trilby hat and he looks at her as she passes and she looks away her mother had said dont talk to people you dont know and she doesnt know him but her dad said the mans a bookies runner although shes not seen him run anywhere as yet although he may run when shes not looking and she wonders as she passes him what a bookies runner is and why he stares at her so he doesn't look friendly in fact he looks like a criminal as far as she knows what a criminal looks like the man turns away and gazes up Rockingham Street and she walks quickly to Baldys shop and climbs over the steep step that leads into the shop and it is quite full and so she waits her turn behind Mrs Knight who is a tall thin lady from upstairs who has cats and she smells of cats and when she looks out of her door when at home she looks like a cat too Helen sniffs yes cat smell she thinks and looks at Mrs knights coat and sees cats hairs and she holds a purse in her thin hand and a shopping bag in the other Helen being only eight years old cant see beyond Mrs Knight but at the side she can see other people at the counter and Baldy is busy and his assistant is rushing about quite madly Helen thinks she ought to have gone to the loo before she came out shopping because now she feels like she needs to *** but she doesnt want to go back home again so she tries to think of something else to take her mind off of the *** wanting feeling then someone taps on her shoulder and as she turns she sees its Benny the boy from school who lives up the road and whom she likes and who doesnt call her four-eyes or take the mickey out of her hello Helen says looking at Benny what you doing here? shopping for Mum he says holding up a brown shopping bag got a list or ill forget I always forget he says he moves close to her and shows her the coins wrapped in a paper list in the palm of his hand you shopping too? he asks yes she says looking shy and gazing at him got to get some things I can remember what Mum says and what change I have to get afterwards he studies her as she stands there her hair in plaits with a center parting and the wire framed glasses which make her eyes look large and cow like and the faded red flower dress and green cardigan with two buttons missing what you doing after? he asks dont know she replies why where are you going? going to the herbalist he says get some liquorice sticks and a glass of sarsaparilla could I come too? she says if Mum lets me and Ive done all that she wants? sure you can he says meet me by the Duke of Wellington if you can go about ten or so if youre not there by ten past ten Ill go without you he says she nods her head and hopes she can go and looks at him standing there his brown hair and hazel eyes and a cowboy hat at the back of his head and the six shooter in the belt of his blue jeans and she feels happy for the first time since shed got up and she says can Battered Betty go too? sure he says and she smiles and senses her heart go quickly in her chest thump thump thump thump yes Helen what can I do for you? Baldy asks her as she is next in line to be served so she recites what her mother had told her so much sugar in a blue package and a certain amount of cheese and a pound of broken biscuits and a loaf of bread and o yes a dozen eggs she says offering him an empty egg box and he goes off to fulfil the recited list and Benny is served by the assistant and he hands the man the list and the man reads it and goes off to put together the items on Benny list and suddenly Helen feels the need to *** again and hopes Baldy wont be long getting the stuff she asked for and o yes Benny says my old man says hes taking me to the pictures on Sunday did you want to come? he wont mind its a U film so kids can go too she pushes her knees together hoping Baldy will hurry up Ill ask Mum Helen says feeling the sweaty coins in her palm and having to pass the bookies runner and hope she wont do her any harm.
A 8 YEAR OLD ******* A SHOPPING ERRAND IN LONDON IN 1955.
Kurtis Emken Oct 2012
Alright,
I'm standing
in a rain soaked field
looking due North at the
stacked glorious nothing.

And the vapid brands that
stamped and covered these walls
are an echo of their vibrant
former hues.  

The people drive round
and down trying to get
to their brown house maybe.
The parking lots are planar
grey graves, commemorating
the former lives of the

ghosts of shopping malls past
dying ghosts of shopping malls past.

Right on, I'm
walking through the Holocaust
memorial with my coat buttoned
to my throat.  The dying lights of
the Sharper Image really makes
a mockery of what they left.

There is the shell of a Banana Republic.
There's Old Navy, Gamestop, Footlocker
Shoes.  This is the food court where I hit
on that girl who ended up being as
forgettable as a food court meal.

Okay,
now I'm
looking out just one mile south at the
excavators pushing the dirt and the rock
Digging into land bought by the City,
to build up a new store or twenty

This new real estate is assured to
bring "vibrancy" to our local economy.
Those old stores aren't the right location
so let's just leave, they never existed and

a single family of mallards swim is
circles in Yorkshire Lake.  Calmly watching
as the engines get closer, not really expecting
their time is over to bring in the future of

the ghosts of shopping malls past.
Another ghost of shopping malls past.
Patrick Austin Sep 2018
Our Backgrounds before we met...

I'm an only child born in Montana in 1983, from a divided home. Parents divorced at seven, Mom was unstable and unfaithful. Dad obtained custody of me and we moved to Oregon Coast to live with my Grandma. I had unhealthy visits and relationship with Mom thereafter. My Grandma died at 12 and at 13 my Dad remarried an alcoholic woman, I had a strained relationship with them until adulthood when she stopped drinking. I had exposure to trauma; alcoholism, mental illness, verbal abuse and juvenile troubles. I rebelled by using drugs in my late teens and early twenties, I lived on my own for a few years after high school but had little direction.

My bride is the eldest with two little brothers, parents stayed in same area of Portland during childhood with lots of family support and her parents stayed married. They had Christian values but some anger and anxiety issues at home. She was sexually assaulted at 17 and never had good closure with this. She told me her parents didn't provide her enough help with things like this growing up. Status quo was the backbone of the family dynamic, challenging emotions were discouraged. She rebelled by being reckless with herself, financially and sexually. She decided to join the Navy at 19. She lived alone briefly, but mostly with Grandparents & Parents before our marriage.

I loved how we both grew up reading Archie comics. No other girl I had ever met had that in common with me. I think we wanted a surreal life like the one in Riverdale.

2002

She and I were 19 when we first met in my home town on the coast at an arcade. We became friends and secretly liked each other. I was too nervous to ever make a move on her. We traveled together, she stayed with me, we used drugs together and drank at times. One night she drank too much and had *** with a guy I knew at a party. I was devastated by this. She was Navy bound and I didn't see a real future for us. The next morning she left and I didn't talk to her again for two years. I figured she would be gone with the Navy soon and that she must not have been interested in a relationship with me despite the time we spent together.

2003

I was depressed about this rejection. I dated an older woman who was interested in me but was no substitute. I eventually moved to the Portland area to work and live. I still had few plans and was lonely, in or out of the few brief relationships I attempted. I never found someone that I felt safe with or had a true connection, let alone true love. She ended up not following through with the Navy and continued working her way up in her job at the call center. She attended community college and dated a few guys. She dated one guy for a couple of years who was not a good match for her but stayed with him off and on despite issues. His family was wealthy and treated her well. He slept around on her as did she. At one point he gave her an STD. She also had an ongoing affair with a married man in the military that she went to high school with. He had a child and a wife with mental health issues. She was still hurting a lot at times and not always doing well.

2004

She reached out to me via email after two years of no contact. We emailed back and forth a couple times over the next few months. We talked about meeting up. We spoke on the phone and eventually met up in Portland. We had an amazing night getting to know each other again and work past the confusion of our earlier days of friendship. I realized that she did in fact like me before but since I was timid and trying to be proper and take things slowly she didn't understand my motives. She apologized for her actions at the party as well. She claimed she was in a really messed up place and was making bad choices at that time. Getting our feelings out in the open was good and she appreciated my attitude towards being slow to make moves on her when we first met. I was worried about falling for her based on our history but eventually I was determined to give it a shot. We soon after starting dating and being intimate. Our love was extremely powerful and beyond all others we had both experienced. She broke ties with other suitors and shortly after we talked about marriage and started planning a wedding for the next year.

I remember when we first held hands. We were so shakey and she was quivering on my couch as I had my arm around her. We felt so safe with each other. We could finally be ourselves and do what our hearts desired. We knew we were on to something new and so amazing. We were so patient with each other as we navigated our new love and emotional thresholds.

I remember when we saw Matisyahu in concert together. That was a once in a lifetime experience and a life-changing moment for us. I feel it set the tone for things to come in our future.

I remember how creative my proposal to her was, in the Arcade where we first met. I hid the ring in a prize container from one of those claw machines. Pretending I got the ring from inside by reaching into the machine on one knee I was so nervous and wasn't sure if I could pull it off before she caught on. She looked so shocked and surprised. I was so excited she said yes! We took pictures in the photo machine and had burgers afterwards, I'd do all of it all over again just to see her face in that moment.

2005

We found an apartment for us in Portland. I moved in while she was still living back with her parents until the wedding. She had to change her number because the married man she was previously involved with kept calling her about changing her mind about marriage and continuing their relationship. She was offered a job in Denver and we decided to move away together after our sandy wedding in Cannon Beach. I still had a very hard time and was embarrassed with my past history with her. Many of my friends knew what had happened at 19 and how much it hurt me but I was so crazy about her I think I tried to pretend it didn't happen or that it was not a big deal because we were younger. We got married and moved to Colorado soon after. We made friends at a church, I became more active as a Christian and really loved being married. We were very involved in keeping spirituality in our marriage. I began to notice her poor financial decisions and practices more. This caused conflict but we always tried to communicate and work on things.

I remember when we went down to my folks for New Year's in 2005. We sipped tea in my Datsun as we drove to the coast over the snowy mountain pass. We told them of our engagement. We were all so blissful and excited. We never knew what was to come. We didn't even know about the opportunity in Denver yet. Our story is amazing!

I remember when I wanted to go see her in Portland and the roads were iced over. I left my car at a park and ride before I caused a wreck. I took the light rail across town then rode a bus to the Eastside shopping mall. The bus to her house was not running because it wasn't safe so I walked the rest of the 4 Miles sometimes having to crawl on my hands and knees to make it up hills in the ice and then I finally made it only to just spend a couple hours with her and fall asleep on her parents couch. Her Dad drove us back the next morning to my car so I could get to work. It was all worth it just to see her for that little extra time. I would have done anything for her.

I remember when she was interviewing for the new position in Denver? I drove all over Portland trying to find little toy cars to help with her illustration about how a team is like a car having all four wheels and how they work together to accomplish a goal. I was so proud of her for giving it her all and succeeding at earning that position. Now that I think of it, that car analogy applies to our family and us. We all need each other to be better and keep on track and be a team. I am so motivated by that and our boys. I lose my way without that and I want to be her reflection and motivation as she has been that for me. I truly thought we brought out the best in each other when we were together.

I remember when we were given tickets to see Fiona Apple. That was so spontaneous and a great way to kick off our time in Denver together. We always used to watch our same movies over and over again. Like the Friends DVDs and White Christmas every winter break and The Wedding Singer. We walked everywhere and lived simply. "I wanna be the guy, who grows old with you"

I remember in our first Denver apartment when we took baths together in our claw foot tub in the big bathroom. We put a board over the top and played cards. I liked playing Uno with her in bed too. She was so funny being slightly color blind and in the dark, mixing up the greens and blues. We played Uno in Breckenridge too at that cool bed and breakfast in the fall.

2006

We had continued fun and adventure in our new home of Denver. She was doing well as a trainer for the bank and I started working in health foods. We went camping in New Mexico a couple times with friends and we both took individual trips to Oregon as well as one together for her uncle's wedding. We had marital spats on occasion but always bounced back. The issues we had seemed like part of a normal marriage and were far better than what I had grown up around. I realized that marriage was a lot of work but I was up for the task. She occasionally became aggressive throwing things at me or breaking things during conflict.  I believed I was the problem and tried to change for her in many ways. With two incomes we still had trouble making our bills at times. She had debts that I never knew about that started to catch up with us but I took care of getting them settled and we paid off her car and traded it for an older Volvo Wagon that we both loved, I even had it repainted her favorite color for a birthday gift. Overall things seemed like they were progressing in a positive way.

I remember when we saw Midnight in concert in Boulder. That was the peak of our hippy days. We were alive with pleasure in our healthy vegetarian diets and practices living in a time and place like no other. I want to be like that again. Reggae was our music. We had much in common.

2007

We really fell into our roles in our marriage and the community; church and culture, friends etc. Things seemed very balanced and appropriate for us at that time and that age (24-25). We had separate bank accounts and jobs. I had money in savings. We started the process of buying a house so we could invest in something. She became pregnant shortly after. I embraced the challenge with positive energy but we were both in for a big change. We started having more fights. I didn't have many friends and would write to old friends via social media just so I could to catch up and tell them things were going great with being married to make myself feel better than I actually did. She hated the dawn of social media and also felt isolated I'm sure. She felt I should be doing more for her and I didn't know how to do what she needed but I failed to ask a lot of the time. After one argument, she left the house. My instinct told me to look at ******* and ******* as a retaliation. I had not done this much once we were married because she always met my needs but when things were difficult between us I felt more emotionally isolated. She walked in and realized what I had been doing. She was very upset, and because she was pregnant, thought I was not attracted to her. The truth is I found her even more beautiful and in fact when I looked at ******* I tried to look at women I found less attractive than her so that I feel good about what I have. I mostly fantasized about how these women were more submissive and loving than her. That is the part I needed to feel good about and feel better about myself with because I felt very dominated and controlled. She has never forgiven me for this and I will never stop feeling sorry to her for my brokenness. During one particular argument that year she was getting close to being violent towards me again and I pushed her away on the chest with my fingertips. She got very mad and said I hurt her. I immediately felt terrible and apologized. I never let something like that happen again. I have always avoided violence towards others especially women and of course her. I was defenseless against physical and emotional abuse.

2008

Our eldest son was born at the beginning of the year, it was a traumatic birth for everyone. We wanted a natural birth with a midwife but we were transferred to a hospital and she ended up having an emergency C-section, nothing went as planned. We had a really hard time coping with the emotions of this experience. A lot of buried feelings and trauma from both of us started coming out. We moved a month later into our new home outside of town. No more walking or biking to places, we had to drive everywhere. This house was next to our friends from church. We thought this would make us feel less isolated but we didn’t really have the community with them that we had hoped for. They were upset that they didn't have a child of their own yet and being around us might have been hard for them. My wife stopped working and stayed home with our son. All these changes made for a very difficult time. I did my best to support them but this was the first time we shared a bank account and needed to follow a budget more than ever before. We had no debt at the beginning of the year with money in savings but then the hospital bills put us down about $7,000 and rising with new home and moving expenses and baby needs. My job could barely keep up. She and I had a hard time adjusting. We could not afford to travel home to Oregon and visit family as much and we felt more and more isolated. She started showing me more signs of instability, locking herself in the bathroom with kitchen knives and scraping her legs which continued off and on for years to come. Talks of divorce and suicide threats seemed to happen more than before. I felt responsible and tried to fix her ever changing issues with me.

I remember when herr ******* were full and swollen with milk. It is so beautiful the way she could feed our babies. I wanted her in every way, our bodies belonged to each other. I was there for her and our shared pleasure. I loved it when she told me that she was mine in the heat of passion. This spark could only be a bandage for so long but I didn't know that yet.

2009

I tried to promote within my company but was not selected, they were cutting budgets and employment all around me. I felt worried about our future. I had always thought the military might be a good opportunity and could move us closer to family back home. My father-in-law encouraged me to look into the Coast Guard. I felt this would be a good way to get moved closer to Oregon.  I ended up joining the Navy because we found out we were pregnant again with our second son and that was the only way I could join a military branch. She worked off and on as a nanny and later in the year at a coffee house working nights. We barely spent time together and when we did it was a lot of hard conversations or arguments about finances with making up intimately in the middle of the night between times of caring for the baby. She once scratched my neck with her fingernails during an argument. People I worked with noticed. It was a hard time and we knew change was on the horizon with jobs and moving. We did visit Oregon that summer though and had a great vacation at the beach with a borrowed 4x4 and staying at a hotel and picnicking out of a cooler as well as going to her brothers wedding. I was 26 and about to join the Navy to provide better for my family at all costs sacrificing myself for their benefit because I would have rather died than look like I didn't try my best for them.

I remember when our babies would kick and move around inside her belly. I loved laying by her and feeling her tummy. I would hum to the baby and hear them move and squirm. I loved giving our boys baths when they were babies too. We had our little bundles of our love, wrapped in a towel in our hands, so tiny and vulnerable. I miss those days and want to remember them with her, aside from this state of melancholy.

2010

The Navy recruiters would only take me if we rented out our home and had her stay with family during boot camp and training. We moved to a furnished apartment in Denver and put our things in storage. She was 5 months pregnant and our eldest was two. I shortly after was let go from my job. Our second son was born in April. I got a contract with the Navy at the last minute but didn't leave until August. We sold our beloved vehicles and lived off retirement funds for six months and moved down to Florida where her parents had just moved out of the blue for work, to stay with them until I left for boot camp. I applied for temporary work in Florida at a dozen places but had no luck in my three months there. I took care of our eldest a lot while she took care of the new baby. Being in Florida was a culture shock for us but we had our moments of romance and made the best of it. Eventually I left for boot camp in August. It was really hard and sad to be gone. She stayed in Florida and came to visit me with the baby at boot camp graduation in October. I then went to Connecticut for five months of training. It was also hard but at least I could call home every day and be in the same time zone. I visited Florida during the winter break and saw my boys and her. We went to Disney world and had a great time on her parents. We also made a romantic home movie I could enjoy while away from her. I flew back to Connecticut and tried to make the best of things. My roommate was very abusive of substances and I resisted the temptation for a long time but the threat of being submarine service bound and missing my family pushed me to drinking every weekend and getting messed up to escape before I left.

I remember when we drove to Key Largo, Florida and stopped at a crazy bird wildlife center. I remember our oldest was so amazed hearing a bird say hello back to us. It was so foreign and fun there. I am glad we all shared that experience together.

I remember our trip to the citrus grove in Florida. That was such a great day for our family. I always look back on that with really fond sentiment. I felt like I was in a beautiful family music video with them.

2011

I finished Submarine Training and got orders back to the Northwest. The plan was all coming together. I arrived first and bought a car and got our items moved from storage in Denver to our townhouse rental in Washington. She and the boys joined me a month later. I didn't report to my Sub for another month as they were at sea. She became pregnant again with our third son right after arriving. We had just bought a small car and were not planning on another child. Towards the end of the year I was working a lot and having a really hard time, being bullied and treated poorly at work plus our financial situation was still very difficult. Adjusting to the military was hard among younger men being 28. I dreaded each day in that environment but I tried to endure it for my family. I went to sea for a couple months at the end of the year stopping in Hawaii and California. During this time She reached out to her ex married affair partner after six years of no contact. She didn't tell me until later. She said she needed closure with him, we were not in counseling yet but she decided this was appropriate. I flew home early from sea and wanted to surprise her. The stress and trauma of this quick transition home after being to sea for the first time (which was also traumatic) made me want to drink and get messed up before flying. I arrived home and surprised her but I seemed off to her which I was but didn’t explain why, I have never done that since. I got to be home for two months almost work free while we celebrated the holidays and prepared for the new baby to be born. She started getting more involved with a church and building a community for us which was great. Our financial struggles almost led us to foreclosure of our home back in Colorado but by the grace of God we got it sold with a short sale just in time.

I remember when I came back from Hawaii and brought her a beaded necklace and she wore it naked with her big beautiful pregnant goddess belly and we made passionate hippy love together. I want to grow out my beard again and spend my life making hippy love and feeling free again.

2012

Our third son was born in January. It was a very positive birth experience and much less stressful than the other two. Shortly after I flew out to finish the other half of the deployment I had missed. I really focused on being positive and spiritually connected by reading my Bible at sea which was helpful. I called her when I arrived in Japan halfway through being gone. She was upset because she tested positive for an STD while trying to get on birth control. I became suspicious of her yet she was suspicious of me. We both got tested again and I was clean, she told me she had a false positive after all. This put a big strain on our trust, especially being so far away. This forced us to be honest with each other about some things such as her contact with her ex lover and my drinking to cope. We were both very upset until I returned home and we could start some counseling to work through things. Forgiveness seemed to be difficult for us. It brought up hurts of the past when we were 19. She also had severe postpartum depression that became worse after each birth. I was still having a hard time with work and the submarine environment. Our church friends tried to counsel us but it was not the most helpful. My submarine was scheduled for extended repairs and not going to sea for three years, I would be transferred before the end of that period. I used this time to bond with her and my boys. I wanted to get better involved in our community and do volunteer work and side jobs to earn extra money. Our boys were all given diagnosis's for autism which begun to fill our lives with appointments and challenges for years to come but we were a good team in dealing with all of it. It gave us something to work together on but took our focus away from working on our own personal issues and relationship with each other as much as we should have.

2013

We had new years with both sides of our family in a snowy mountain setting in Oregon. It looked like it was going to be a great year until her Grandpa passed away suddenly. It ripped our entire family apart but especially her. He kept the family grounded and she was very close to him, he really loved all of us. She and I started going on dates again because we had Navy sponsored child care. It was the beginning of a really good thing for us. Tragically one night after a date we were dancing with the boys on the patio and I tried to pick her up and I lost my balance and fell on her, breaking her collar bone severely. She needed surgery and was very mad at me for years to come. She has a scar, a metal plate and numbness in her chest. We worked through it with our community from church but she still is very mad at me. I feel more terrible about this incident than she could ever know. I would lose a finger in place of that incident if I could. I continued having a really hard time in the Navy and I didn't want to stay in but She insisted our boys needed care only the Navy could offer. She also said she would divorce me if I ever left the Navy. I took this threat seriously even though she assured me later that she would never actually do that. Against my own convictions I reenlisted because I wanted to do the best thing for my family. We moved into base housing at the end of summer and didn’t go out to do things as much anymore. The house was nice but it ****** us in, we also had less community with people around our home. I started volunteering at church more and doing work with special needs people. I felt like I was doing good things and that I had purpose all around. I think she appreciated this about me.

2014

We started seeing a professional counselor together and individually. It became a regular event. I worked on myself and she worked on herself. I had a lot of issues with my Mom and eventually broke off communication with her for my own well-being and the betterment of my family. I got past a lot of the bad feelings I had. She worked on her traumatic experiences and our relationship dynamics. Just when things were going well I got a new boss who made things hard for me and others at work and I started messing up more. I got in trouble for messing up a job at work and was given strike one on my record. She lost respect for me as a provider but I tried to stay strong showing her that I would continue to do my best.

I remember when we had an appointment in Tacoma and we had a brunch date together afterwards. She looked so beautiful that day, I took her picture and was so proud to enjoy  huevos rancheros and momosas with her. I remember going to the Tacoma Art Museum seeing the Georgia O’Keefe exhibit, we have a great time together doing new things and feeding each other's interests. I loved laughing with her too, sometimes we just bust up like nobody's around. I loved the sound of her laughter. I loved watching Portlandia with her, it is so funny to remember the funny place where we became close and be able to relate together.

2015

I kept working hard and being involved with family and appointments for my boys and her. I still maintained my volunteer work and part time side jobs. I got strike two with the Navy for messing up again... I had just gained orders to leave the sub for local shore duty. I could not get out of the extended repair situation soon enough. She was very disappointed in me and not so understanding. I worked through this situation with our counselor as did she. He always told her I am a good man and that I do a lot for her and the boys. It's true, I care more than anything about them, I made mistakes and I feel bad especially when I cause my family stress. I left for shore duty in April. It was a hard time adjusting to the new routine but eventually we seemed to make it work. That summer we took a trip to visit Texas where her parents had just moved from Florida. We spent a great night together for our 10th anniversary in a hotel in Texas and went dancing. We had a lot more time together as my work schedule was less. The more people we had in our home working with our kids on issues the less useful my input seemed. I was not included as much in making family decisions because they all seemed to happen while I was at work, despite my objections. We tried to get our budget under control but she still had anxiety discussing spending. She continued to struggle with depression and was put on medication because she had still been harming herself. She was put on Prozac daily and anti anxiety medication as needed. He family members were not very supportive of medication which upset her but I always tried to be supportive in seeking help and continued care for both of us.

2016

We had a busy routine of kids in school now and home school and preschool and appointments for all of us. She wanted to go to church less and less. I started drinking a couple beers at night almost every day. I tried to mask my stress from her mood swings. She decided not to go to church at all anymore and focused teaching the boys about Jewish traditions exclusively which was hard for me to adjust to and confusing for the boys. I loved her and wanted to be supportive. As usual I was submissive and removed myself from the Christian church and some friendships. I feel like we lost our community at that point. We searched for a good place to have a new community with Jewish people but it was like starting over. I felt like I converted to Christianity for her when we got together and now I had to convert again, either way I would have done it for her because I loved her that much. The kids were confused by this change. After trying and failing at many synagogues we finally found one that seemed right for us.

2017

We finally had some money in savings because I kept it a secret and ended up planning a trip to visit her parents in Texas but it fell through due to lack of military flights. Instead we spent three nights away in a nice hotel resort as a family in February. We had three days of pure family time. Playing Battleship and other games in our room as a family, watching movies and eating at all the different restaurants and getting room service. Going swimming everyday in the foggy pool. I love our family and how we can have a great time together doing nothing but at the same time so much. That was so peaceful and relaxing. I wanted to keep doing things like that together as a family before our boys got too old. Shortly after this vacation she wanted to go back to school, then we bought a third vehicle so she could. Shortly after this she changed her mind about school and wanted to buy another house instead. I went along with it to please her and we practically killed ourselves trying to get the move accomplished with not much help or money. We had a good year over all. We got away for a romantic anniversary together in the summer. Just before the boys were going to start public school in the fall, her parents moved back to the area. She had anxiety with this and cut off contact with her parents and brothers for a while. Her Dad called me very upset and I tried to keep the peace until they reconciled. I was doing better with work and made up for lost progress as well as making arrangements to change jobs in the Navy to something more fitting. Since the boys started public school, I planned on leaving for Navy training in my new position after the beginning of the new year when they would be at a more settled place in their routine.

I remember when we went to the Olympic Club for our anniversary and we stayed there for a night away. We drove the long way through the countryside talking about new music that she wanted to share with me and she made notes of it on my phone notepad. We brought our own cooler and picnic that included Session Lagers and chocolate. We checked in to our room and made noisy bohemian love on the edge of the creaky bed in our small European room inches from the door. Then we went to the theater downstairs and watched the late showing of a really interesting Sci-fi movie "Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets". We took showers and slept sweetly together. We made love again in the morning before we had a delicious brunch outside on the patio. We took the long way home and drove around on new roads and found our way out of cell phone reception. We figured out the road less traveled to get back to our home. We loved being alone and away together, just one night can make such a difference and mean so much.

I remember going to the Forest Theater to see Tarzan with our boys. That was such a great time. I would love to get our boys into theater and go see them someday. I wanted to keep our dreams and goals together alive and not lose opportunity and fall short by losing our partnership.

I loved going camping in Seabeck. Loading the truck with all our gear and getting away. Archer got sick from the cowboy caviar and I had to clean him and the tent up in the night. I was glad we had each other to be a team in our marriage in that situation as with all the other times. These sorts of things are what escape a person's mind when they are determined to get a divorce.

2018

We had a lot less money than the year before, again buying a house took its toll on finances as did the boys school and after school activities. I stayed very involved taking the boys to appointments and sporting practices. We stopped going to synagogue but tried to practice Judaism at home as much as possible, which I was very supportive of and involved with. She was still depressed and talking about suicide at times. I encouraged her to get help as I always had. Eventually she was diagnosed as Bipolar 2 and manic depressive by a new provider. She started taking new medicine for this and was worried I would want to leave her. I assured her I would never leave her and that I always wanted to work on things with her and help her. I left for training in Mississippi February 8th. It was going to be hard but I thought it might be good to have some time apart from each other to miss one another and reflect on things as well as prepare for times when I would be away at sea. I got in trouble in Mississippi for giving junior personnel a ride and being negligent of people who might be underage and possibly drinking, this became strike three. I never thought this could happen. I became recommend for separation from the Navy shortly after and was stuck in Mississippi for six months instead of six weeks. She was supportive through most of it but seemed to fall into hopelessness. Money was spent by her that we didn't have without discussion. She quietly leased appliances and tires and purchased a vehicle as well as having a secret bank account and email address. I discovered through our insurance company that she wanted to leave our policy for divorce. I didn't know this and she had even told the boys she wanted a divorce before I even knew. I was caught off guard and confused. I kept trying to communicate and reason with her but she didn't want to talk. I refused to give up and wrote emails and a letter but it only seemed to push her away further. By the time I left Mississippi she had filed for divorce and a restraining order against me saying I was unstable and a threat. I couldn't return to my home. My whole life fell apart in just a couple months. I found out she had been talking to other men in the Navy and keeping more secrets. I assumed this was her way of taking control during a difficult situation. I really needed her support during this hard time of transition out of the military. I became homeless, jobless and without my family in a month. I prayed to God that given time things might change between us but it was of no use. Bipolar had consumed whatever was left of my bride and there was no turning back.

I felt that our love was not one to be cast away. Other people might not understand or agree but what we had was truly special. We may have surely needed some time and space to get counseling as well as reconfigure and repair our marriage but I didn't feel like our relationship was irretrievably broken. She was so important to me and I thought she was the love of my life and would always have my heart. I wanted to be her partner in love and life, watching our boys grow up and being there to support each other. Being that she is Bipolar I knew she will need a lot of help and I was more than willing to assist her in making sure she was taking care of herself and not throwing herself into harm's way, ensuring she sticks with a plan we agree to for consistency. I cared about her deeply and had much compassion for her. I didn't believe she was thinking this through or thinking about the future. I really wanted to look at the long and short game with her, neither seemed appealing to me if we progressed but here we are. Things are not going to be easier. She will still have to face her problems and deal with me on a regular basis for the rest of our lives no matter what happens. She can believe her lawyer when they promise she'll get the moon and stars out of this in the end but they only see half of the story. Above all they want our money. It would have been good for her to face me in person and tell me she wanted to divorce and we could have started talking about it with a counselor to figure out how that could even work. Instead she chose to avoid as much responsibility for her actions as possible by doing everything in my absence as if I am not a real person. I had to find out about it from our insurance company and was last to know.

Immediately after I hear the word divorce I looked into her cell usage history and find she has a new military boyfriend that she talks to 20-30 times a day. She felt she owed me no explanation for this and it was none of my business. A mature person would have let me know about this months before and I would have seen it coming but there was no sign until it was seemingly too late. She strayed down a dark path and never turned back.

Her proposed parenting plan was cruel and had no thought put into it. Two hours a week with supervision, no holidays but father's day? She said she’s not trying to keep me from the kids but this is the exact opposite of what she’s saying with the paperwork she filed. She seems very mixed up and still you continues to make rash and sudden choices. Like a completely bogus restraining order against me that contradicts so many facts she has stated herself on record during my Navy retention process. She was so bold as to want to change her identity and even put it in ink on the divorce paperwork as well to a whole new name. That is not the actions of a stable person. She has since changed her mind again on that just as quickly as everything else in her recent life choices. I can't trust that any decisions she is making right now are for the right reasons or that she is of sound mind. I have never seen her so conflicted and confused, grasping at straws and running scared from herself.

Using the legal system so carelessly and going back and forth makes me feel like she is not ready to be making big choices and changes for her and our family. It is very unfair that she can’t consider my feelings on things and what I wish for the boys as well. Very reckless behavior. She can’t anticipate that the day would come where she has to face me and talk to me like an adult. She wants to hide behind the legal system which only leaves much to be unresolved. Ghosting me is not really an option in a marriage of 13 years with children.

Having relationship conversations is too difficult for her at this time and she would rather avoid it and skip to divorce because she thinks that will somehow be easier. I suspect she knows she is making poor choices, possibly out of fear and lust for something new and less painful than the reality of things right now. Our marriage was nowhere close to divorce when I left. She was sad to see me leave and woke with me at 3:30 am to say goodbye, making me coffee and cookies for me to take with.

Our community and accountability seems to be gone due to the continued trend of isolation that she is drawn to. The God fearing loving committed wife I thought I had is gone or trapped inside a terrified shell of herself. She cut me off from her family members and I can't discuss my concerns about her with them either. She only seems to have community with those who are not going to discourage her from these destructive choices.

I understand we have had issues and struggles but we are no worse off than other couples during challenging times. I think that because we loved each other so much it just hurt more when things got hard. I can't accept or believe this is justified or the right choice based on the positive trend we were on before I left. This was the longest break we have ever had from each other and I think she just needed someone to be there more for her, no matter who it was. Time can heal all wounds and I hope that is true for our relationship as co-parents.

She still refuses to tell me about why she wanted a divorce or talk about anything beyond caring for the kids. I have fought the restraining and I can see my boys again but I am still not allowed to my home without her permission.

I have risen from the ashes in just a couple months. I rent a room from a nice couple from our old church and obtained a good paying job while I continue paying the household bills.

This is a really hard time, this difficult spell could have been a tool to better our relationship. I wanted to experience more beautiful memories with her. We had so many more beautiful memories and dreams left to create. This is what marriage looks like to me now as I lower the casket.
This is a timeline of the major events during my 13 year marriage. Amidst the reality, I injected all the lovely memories that refuse to leave my mind.
secret amanda Nov 2014
they had just been painted and the air was full of paint and shopping carts and hot dogs from a hot dog stand. it's my job to collect shopping carts for the shoppers and once i pushed 2 shopping carts at once but never more than that. i wish my job had more to do with hot dogs and less about shopping carts because i like hot dogs but at least i get to work around the smell of hot dogs, which i like
Terry Collett Jul 2016
Milka and Benny
get back from shopping
in the town

she with a few items
he with an Elvis LP
he bought

there is no car
outside the farmhouse
so they assume
her mother's
not back yet from town
and go in

Milka says
if we are quick
we can maybe in my bed

Benny isn't so sure
what if your mum
comes back and sees us?

Milka looks at him
if we're quick
and not arguing
she says

she grabs his hand
and takes him up
the stairs to her room
and begins to undress
come on then
she says

a car comes up
the drive from the road
passing the fields

it's your mum
Benny says
looking out the window

what? already?
Milka says
putting her clothes back on

I’ll go downstairs
and keep her talking
Benny says
and goes out the door
down the stairs

he sits at the kitchen table
just as Milka's mother
comes in the back door

o hello Benny
you're back
where's Milka?

Benny smiles
a call of nature
he says

Milka's mother puts
her shopping bags
on the table
and begins to unpack

put the kettle
on for us Benny
she says smiling

sure I will
he says
and gets up
and puts water
in the kettle
and puts it
on the stove

he stands watching
Milka's mother
putting away
her shopping
watching the sway
of her hips
the motherly *****

Milka comes down
the stairs sulking
her face unhappy

you're back early
she says to her mother

could say
the same to you
her mother says
Benny's been
a good boy
and put the kettle
on for us
isn't he good?

Milka pulls a face
behind her mother's back
as her mother puts
away the last
of her shopping

yes he is
Milka says
eyeing him
wanting him alone
by herself
sitting beside him
squeezing his leg
under the table
touching him
the best
she is able.
A BOY AND GIRL AND HER MOTHER IN 1964.
Mateuš Conrad Apr 2019
.you can never really write any poetry by not covering the "heartbreak" the loss of your own "printed" words: how much different is the internet, from "real" life? just asking... since: internet banking & internet shopping... to lose a poem / pre-scriptum is not exactly the same as losing a person to mind: father's day... i cooked the dinner, i took out the trash, i wrote an invoice... i guess that's much better than leaving a card of greetings... and, come to think of it? why are we the sort of people subjugated to nostalgia, with but also "without" a history? aren't we subjugated to nostalgia and a history as a "fiction"? the beginning of the 21st century, the end of the 20th century... the 19th century germans associated themselves with a nostalgia for ancient greece, we're the only people who have an inbuilt nostalgia "safety-mechanism"... the only people in time who are nostalgic about the life surrounding their own existence slot, which doesn't have a trans-temporal dynamic... i remember times when we would be teenagers... spitting on people from car-parks on imaginary tonsures, buying *****-magazines from indian cornershops, or belgian freebies of non-insinuations, white lightning cider while sleeping over at youth centers playing snooker throughout the night... even at school: attending a catholic school with the irish east enders... uniforms, sure... a chequered shirt: blue, red, white... tag? made in canada... and if only capitalism worked as it once did, made in canada? lifetime of a shirt? 20 years... now? made in china... not exactly real cotton, is it? 2 years... before ironing the shirt *****... once upon in gants hill, st. valentine's park, and the pub, recently closed, decent karaoke... in the park? golf, basketball, rowing boats in the large ponds... when the jews were there... gants hill roundabout... the hanukkah torches... jews scuttling wearing trainers come rosh hashanah: jews can't wear leather on rosh hashanah (judgement day)... shy like rats... when the jews were there (gants hill, ilford)... the park looked great... tennis courts... now, when neo-Bangladesh moved in? ****** place. what else do i remember from my original pre-scriptum that i lost? oh, that once time in gants hill... walking into a kosher bakery with ****** knuckles, having tested them on a canvas of a brick wall, buying some dough-fused-sweets? with the girl selling the sweets bewildered by fear? i like the look of fear in people when tested by uncertainty, and bleeding knuckles? later? climbing over the park fence, taking a **** while squatting in the darkened palace of the park, walking into a brothel, having my wallet stolen, not reacting in what would have been justified... high school... we wore uniforms... so no high school h'american culture trap / culture... school uniforms are the best idea, there's no chance to "shine" in telling apart the rich kids from the poor kids... there's only the standard... walking to a supermarket, past a thai surprise... sports bra, short hair... walking back... she's still there pretending to talk on her mobile to someone... you take her home with a few beers... play her some jazz... take her into the garden, the moon is a beauty... you **** her... hand in her underwear and you're still gambling... before the emergence of the nag hammadi library and the whole androgynous vogue, the thai were already readied with the lady-boys... when i reached in and found nothing but oyster... would i have stopped finding a wink-wink slouching worm? slap a trans in the face? no, not really... a thai surprise is, a thai surprise... i would have considered doing my first ****... "lucky" for me she was a she... a girl... ****** her in the garden under the moonlight... gave her my hoodie, which she drowned in... finally... the level of interaction where the female is not a mantis, i.e. a female larger than the male... she drowned into my hoodie as i walked her home... i like the familiarity with the mammalian, not resorting to insect superiority of females... these days... i find that males are strictly mammalian... while females? they are borrowing insect-esque ontologies... well, darwinism allowed the time-frame... males are mammals... females are insects, behaviour-wise... two time frame i do not appreciate the english for... darwinism is prime.... cultural-marxism my ***... what about cultural-darwinism?! no?! that doesn't exist?! cultural-darwinism is as real as cultural-marxism, and, in the former sense? it really does belong to the conservative right-wing politico spectrum! might i add? isn't psychology merely pop philosophy? i find psychology riddled with rubric cohesion, it's all oh so "self"-evident! i abhor psychologists... these gypsy philosophers... medicine-men with no pharmacological shadow of power... to prescribe drugs... arguments, persuasions, but no dialectics... psychology will forever be, for me, a philosophy primer, short-cut... pop philosophy... psychologists can treat people who have never read a philosophy book... r. d. laing... i remember this one instace... me and a fwend of mine travelled into central london, went into a bookshop shy of trafalgar sq., i spotted an edition of: the scarlet and the black by stendhal... i told him: i will trade you linkin park's debut album, if you buy me this... the transaction was made... the one book i read after seeing a film adaptation starring rachel (rakhel) weisz and ewan mcgregor... ra-kh-el: not ray-chel... we used to be humans once... at high school getting bullied back... putting pins on chairs once we got up, sitting on them... playing bulldog in primary school, slap-ball, tag, playing cards at lunchtime... 16 fatty boy... one summer in poland, comes back aged 17... the irish girls take an interest while eating a pomegranate... what was the success of your diet? don't go to the gym... excess skin, an aesthetic surgeon is not what you need... there are only two ways to lose weight... either via swimming or by cycling... cycling is the best... lose weight by also toning your body... gym is a bad idea... by going to the gym you are straining exclusive parts of your body, either the torso, your hands, etc., jogging? unless on soft ground, bad idea on concrete, arthritis... cycling or swimming... lose weight... tone at the same time, the skin is allowed the required time to adapt to shrink, and forget what propped it up in plump form with all that excess flab... ugh... i hated being attractive to the opposite ***, i never used it to my advantage! imagine... an irish lad comes up to me, on behalf of some girl while i'm donning a french braid: you look just like johnny depp in blow, impersonating george jung... 14 year old girls walk up to you asking what shampoo you're using... herbal essences... i never used my looks... *******... now i'm a heavy drinker... so much for looks... first girlfriend? a fwend had to call me telling me she called him that she felt butterflies when i dropped her at the train platform after a day's worth of dating: tate modern, edward hopper exhibitions, cinema: troy, starring rose byrne (briseis) - honestly, a man can go crazy over curly hair... and then a restaurant date... that **** just flew over my head... i wouldn't have noticed... honestly though... i missed the whole h'american cultural excavation genesis in high school... catholic... uniforms... jesuit army-esque formation... now, i'm ageing... i'm starting to find the company of cats to be: clingy... my shadow included... i once thought that dogs were needy... i'm starting to think that cats are worse, esp. the maine **** breed... "lonely" or "loneliness" doesn't really resonate with me, esp. when thinking something "feels" like a variation of claustrophobia: hence i write... without a dialectic in place, ever since plato wrote his dialogues... what is philosophy, primarily? isn't it an off-shoot of "claustrophobia"? we write because we are seeking escape from congested thinking, a variation of "claustrophobia"... now imagine a schizoid character... having to focus on an imaginary dialectic, actually... having dialectics enforced on him, with no clarifying exodus to posit a gensis with! now, a clingy dog i could understand, given the overpowering status of the leash... but a clingy cat, when there's no leash involved?! shoom! right over my head... gone, somewhere into the distance!

what, this is the part...
were i cite...
   the weimar ******
critical condition...
       a daft punk troop
of a song,
  end of line....
blow-up a hot air balloon...
worth of blaire whire...
play the tambourine
like a ******* video...
there are,
quiet, simply,
no nazis coming...
fashionista faux pas
examples...
i'm alive,
but i'm dead,
i just forget to don
a strap-on...
  "oops"?
   that **** go down well
with
the "in"-crowd...
usual... metropolitan...
verbiage surge of answers....
   many a fetish after...
we arrive at the sensible
aspect,
"toxic masculinity"...
when guns n roses wasn't,
and nirvana was just plain
gay...
              and then...
whatever that happened,
happened..
                 and people were like:
come to the "new" tomorrow,
there's always a yesterday,
in a dream,
in some phil collins
wannabe
studio...
or... some other random ****
that
excluded peter gabriel.

                 i died:
and just about right:
my harvest had come.

great book reviews...
"toxic masculinity"...
so all masculinity is
about a clockwork orange?
   if it is?
can i be pro abortion
anti mongolian horde?
yes? no?
  which is it?!
neither...
   **** me... that's just bad
luck...

                               sundbeds,
sunflowers,
tulips,
sunglasses,
    plenty of staged
eager nights...
boring political affairs...
and...
         when gaming was
more about the narrative...
and never,
ever, about the microtransactions...

point being...
it's a game within a game...
time, is the prime concern...
you play a game,
by waiting...
you wait: by playing a game...

  microtransactions
are...
you ever move a sim3 avatar
to a computer,
and make it play a computer game?
what's on the macrocosmos spectrum?
you....

               "back in the day"...
you'd spend a saturday morning
engrossed in a gaming narrative...
metal gear solid,
tenchu, final fantasy solid...
20 quid...
and you played the narrative...
and a game became equivalent
to the worth of a book,
resident evil,

            you paid for a month's worth
of gaming,
you exchanged tips,
you sometimes bought a cheat book
because of the homework,
and that was your saturday morning
before hitting the shopping mall
or, whatever...

the current dynamic of
microtransactions in gaming?
i never, ever, do...
i'm an old gamer type...
i see the potential of extending
the life-expectancy
of a game...

   as long as you don't buy into
the microtransactions gambling habit?
as long as you play the "game"
within the game?
the game is an assured classic,
akin to chess...

              you have to play
the waiting "game"...
             time...
                           that's all it is...
whether war robots,
    or dawn of titans...
        comparison...
  you know that the best fruit,
is fruit, allocated
to the geography of it being sourced
seasonally...
you can't actually get better
strawberries,
than english strawberries...
from england, come june / july...
no ******* point sourcing them
from spain in late march / april....

    same thing with gaming...
the modern games haven't made any
elaboration...
apart from dislodging the player
from the concept of narrative...
**** me... that's almost an improvement...
given that now: time is the counter
measure, and the gamer...
   is having to invest,
in a narrative, outside of the confines
of the game,
once upon a time,
games had time-narrative
constraints...
     now: there's time,
and there are gamer narratives,
excluding them from time-narratives,
of a game...
         it's almost a faux pas...
more like a wet-*****...
****** pinky lodged into an ear,
an april fools' day scant...

        if you hacked passed
the microtransactions hype...
and didn't?
and instead took to patience?
it's free...
   where once,
a game would cost you 20 quid,
and a month's worth
of narrative,
back then, when games
resembled books,
when the gaming industry
was heavily influenced
by literature...
and now?
   the game's free...
sure...
it's "unfair", it's biased...
when you don't engage
in imported gambling
of succumbing to what, this is the part...
were i cite...
   the weimar ******
critical condition...
       a daft punk troop
of a song,
  end of line....
blow-up a hot air balloon...
worth of blaire whire...
play the tambourine
like a ******* video...
there are,
quiet, simply,
no nazis coming...
fashionista faux pas
examples...
i'm alive,
but i'm dead,
i just forget to don
a strap-on...
  "oops"?
   that **** go down well
with
the "in"-crowd...
usual... metropolitan...
verbiage surge of answers....
   many a fetish after...
we arrive at the sensible
aspect,
"toxic masculinity"...
when guns n roses wasn't,
and nirvana was just plain
gay...
              and then...
whatever that happened,
happened..
                 and people were like:
come to the "new" tomorrow,
there's always a yesterday,
in a dream,
in some phil collins
wannabe
studio...
or... some other random ****
that
excluded peter gabriel.

                 i died:
and just about right:
my harvest had come.

great book reviews...
"toxic masculinity"...
so all masculinity is
about a clockwork orange?
   if it is?
can i be pro abortion
anti mongolian horde?
yes? no?
  which is it?!
neither...
   **** me... that's just bad
luck...

                               sundbeds,
sunflowers,
tulips,
sunglasses,
    plenty of staged
eager nights...
boring political affairs...
and...
         when gaming was
more about the narrative...
and never,
ever, about the microtransactions...

point being...
it's a game within a game...
time, is the prime concern...
you play a game,
by waiting...
you wait: by playing a game...

  microtransactions
are...
you ever move a sim3 avatar
to a computer,
and make it play a computer game?
what's on the macrocosmos spectrum?
you....

               "back in the day"...
you'd spend a saturday morning
engrossed in a gaming narrative...
metal gear solid,
tenchu, final fantasy solid...
20 quid...
and you played the narrative...
and a game became equivalent
to the worth of a book,
resident evil,

            you paid for a month's worth
of gaming,
you exchanged tips,
you sometimes bought a cheat book
because of the homework,
and that was your saturday morning
before hitting the shopping mall
or, whatever...

the current dynamic of
microtransactions in gaming?
i never, ever, do...
i'm an old gamer type...
i see the potential of extending
the life-expectancy
of a game...

   as long as you don't buy into
the microtransactions gambling habit?
as long as you play the "game"
within the game?
the game is an assured classic,
akin to chess...

              you have to play
the waiting "game"...
             time...
                           that's all it is...
whether war robots,
    or dawn of titans...
        comparison...
  you know that the best fruit,
is fruit, allocated
to the geography of it being sourced
seasonally...
you can't actually get better
strawberries,
than english strawberries...
from england, come june / july...
no ******* point sourcing them
from spain in late march / april....

    same thing with gaming...
the modern games haven't made any
elaboration...
apart from dislodging the player
from the concept of narrative...
**** me... that's almost an improvement...
given that now: time is the counter
measure, and the gamer...
   is having to invest,
in a narrative, outside of the confines
of the game,
once upon a time,
games had time-narrative
constraints...
     now: there's time,
and there are gamer narratives,
excluding them from time-narratives,
of a game...
         it's almost a faux pas...
more like a wet-*****...
****** pinky lodged into an ear,
an april fools' day scant...

        if you hacked passed
the microtransactions...
       and didn't have the chance...
microtransactions are like
the old school cheat hacks...
but not quiet, but somehow quasi-,
       a modern microtransactions,
would be a cheat magazine
thorough-through
a game like final fantasy VII...
you have homework,
but you still want to complete the game...
modern games...
modern games...
there's an "end gole"?
  what modern game is worth
"completing"?
    
   again: tron, ready player one,
back to the future...
star wars just became dead
to me...
   sick people will plague hard-working
people, with a quasi-gambling
addiction,
needing to make microtransactions...
and they will,
my father was plagued by
an impostor, claiming to be a
tax office official:
and what if, that person had
an authentic position at the tax office?!

when gaming was for gamers,
the games were bought...
there was a narrative...
but now... now games don't have a narrative...
why would they?!
   who the hell plays games for
the narrative these days?
i know that on the crapper,
i need a game that allows me
to experience live-stream
interaction with non-bots...

       and these old gamers,
who still invest their money
in literature-esque-games?
so i was the sad one,
investing in vinyl?
   aren't the classic ******* gamers
just as bad,
investing in prepackaged
narrative gaming
experiences?
             a game with a narrative...
yeah... me buying vinyl
is: b'ah b'ah bad...
       what sort of game is alive and well...
when there isn't a crowd pushback
for the currency of microtransaction?

the narrative is time,
   the longer you endure the inadequacy...
the more you realise:
you're basically playing
the same game,
but in your scenario:
it's free...
   in some other ******'s scenario:
it cost him 70 hundred quid...

personally?
   i love this microtransaction dynamic...
concerning the people who
do not engage with it...
it's the perfect antithesis
   of what ruined the music industry
with genesis: napster...

you really are, playing the ultimate
game,
time...
         the one sort of commodity
that games,
without a clear narrative construct,
"forgot" to mention in terms
of them being exploited...
to their full capacity
of the one "commodity"
they "forgot", or rather,
couldn't "sell"...

              a tenchu PS1 game could
have lasted me a month...
now? a free game,
like war robots...
with absolutely no NPC?
hell... i'll be 90 and still be playing it;

what else? applause!
Lazhar Bouazzi May 2018
The rain ticks on the curb
Like a chronometer
Held up to a short race

As a man entering the mall
Feels his pocket for his
Wallet,
A grimace cracks his face.

© LazharBouazzi
AvengingPoet Nov 2014
i walk inside the shopping mall
with all of the stores
and the brands
and i don’t have much of an interest
in anything here at all
why am i pondering my life
and being existential
more than ever
as i walk alone in this mall
i’ve never been this low
in months
what the **** is going on
stop buying **** you stupid *****
do something else
is my thought
because you do not need all this ****
find someone to hug
or hold
or talk to
that’s the only way
you’ll probably be okay
because we all need someone to hold us when we fall down
but as much as i love a book
it is one-sided
it does not respond
a video game
does not play back to you
a movie
cannot watch and comment with you
a piece of clothing
can only be worn
stop buying so much stuff
you’re making me all so insane
and i feel more alone
and depressed
in this shopping mall
than i have in months
oh god
i cannot stop you
and it is your personal choice
and i respect that
but i still will question and ponder
all this pointless *******

just find some people to hold onto…
we’ll endure and survive...
i hope?
Lawrence Hall Jan 2019
Lovers disappoint each other in time
The protestations of eternal love
Those breathless kisses on a summer night -
They leave no lipstick on a shopping list

Lovers disappoint each other in time
The protestations of eternal youth
When even the sell-by dates have faded away
From the shopping lists of our yesterday

We mourn the lips we’ve kissed, the lips we’ve missed

But still…

Would you leave lipstick on my shopping list?
(Dang, that's sappy...!)
Cee Jun 2016
I'm driving down the street
Taking in the sight & sounds.
I see a disturbing sight
A family pushing a shopping cart around.
Their clothes are *****
They look like they haven't eaten in days.
But somehow it doesn't bother them
They don't seemed to be fazed.
People walked & drove past them
As if they weren't there.
They acted like, it isn't my problem
Why should I care?
I wanted to get out my car
& offer this family some encouragement.
Give them a few bucks
So their kids could have some nourishment.
I didn't, I kept driving
& stopped looking their way.
I was like everyone else
I didn't care anyway.
I started thinking of my own children
Could I put them through this?
Could we fit all we own in a shopping cart
& still live in bliss?
Would our pride allow us
To ask strangers for change?
Would we suffer from culture shock
If our lives were that much rearranged.
Would we be able to deal with
The weather, the hunger, shame?
To be amongst the nameless
Where no one knows your name.
I started to feel bad for this family
So I turned my car around.
I went to look for them
But they were nowhere to be found.
I got home & got on my knees
& began to pray.
I asked God to shine his light on them
& give this family better days.
I prayed for those 3 children
Who looked tired & worn out.
I prayed for their mother too
Her eyes were so filled with doubt.
I prayed for their father
Who felt like he failed his family.
Who am i to judge them
Hell, that could of been me.
For some reason that family
Stays on my mind.
I never saw them again
They're just a memory in time.
I often wonder what became of them.
Did they ever get through this?
They are stronger than my family
There's no way we could ever do this.
When I start thinking life is hard
& my world's coming apart
I just think of that family pushing that
Wal-Mart shopping cart.
Mike Hauser Apr 2013
I needed to do some shopping
On poem ideas I was running low
So I checked out the local flyer
To the downtown poet store

Just to see what they had on sale
Some of my friends they call me cheap
But why pay full price if you don't have to
On all the rhyming words I need

The front page slapped me in the face
With the Spring Cleaning Sale Galore
Everything I needed was half price
So I headed straight to the store

I ventured up and down the isles
Filling my basket with the best of rhyme
Getting a few extras of every word
So I'd have them when the time was right

I stocked up on love and encouragement
The right words I carefully chose
Because in my experience
You can never have to many of those

I even took a few from the back
Down a darkened isle where the lights were low
Being a poet my mood can rapidly change
And what words I might need you never know

With my basket full of wonder
I felt my day of shopping done
Confidant and ready
To go home and continue writing poems
thelemonpolice Jul 2018
What a pretty holiday
I wish that I had gone
But did you know that all they did
was post it on their phones?

What amazing friends they have
I wish that I had more
but actually these people have just met
and are a bore

What a funny club night
I feel left out again
Well maybe its another way
to drown out all the pain

What a lovely boyfriend
He bought her lovely gifts
but do you know that hes repaying
her for all his sins?

Pretty pretty wedding pictures
for everyone to see
did you know he sometimes
"accidentally" makes her bleed

happy shopping family
filling up a cart
did you know the parents
can't grow love in their hearts?

Happy, smiling faces
I wonder what they've seen
and why they have to force a smile
on pictures on this screen

Lovely posing woman
why do you hold your breath?
How many pictures did it take
to make you look your best?

Is it worth it? Is it needed?
to get approval from your 'friends'?
Are we worthy? Are we needed?
does it matter end?
Wow thank you so much for all the attention of this poem. It really means a lot. If you liked this, check out my YouTube channel too https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=pjcwyTocBqI ❤️
I'M A SHOPPING CENTER SANTA CLAUS
FOR THREE WEEKS EVERY YEAR
IT PAYS MY RENT AND BUYS ME FOOD
AND BUYS A CASE OF BEER
I NEVER REALLY LIKED IT
'TILL ONE DAY TWO YEARS BACK
WHEN ONE SMALL CHILD ASKED ME
JUST HOW I FILLED MY SACK

I THOUGHT A BIT AND TOLD THE WAIF
THAT MAGIC FILLED IT UP
HER EYES GREW WIDE AS SAUCERS
JUST WAITING FOR A CUP
I TOLD HER HOW MY ELVES
MADE THE TOYS FOR ME TO GIVE
TO TAKE AROUND THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD
WHERE ALL THE CHILDREN LIVE

SHE ASKED ME THEN WHY DID I NOT
FULFILL HER WISH LAST YEAR
I NOTICED THEN, HER EYES WELLED UP
AND I KNOW I SAW A TEAR
SHE SAID THAT HER POOR MOTHER
HAD LEFT AND RUN AWAY
SHE PACKED HER BAGS A YEAR AGO
AND LEFT ON CHRISTMAS DAY

SHE DIDN'T LEAVE ME ANY GIFTS
SHE SAID IN HER SMALL VOICE
SHE ONLY LEFT A LETTER SAYING
SHE HAD NOT OTHER CHOICE
SHE ASKED THAT WITH MY MAGIC
I MAKE HER WISH COME TRUE
I'D SAID I'D TRY TO DO IT
I WOULD SEE WHAT I COULD DO

I WIPED MY NOSE AND DRIED MY TEARS
AND PUT THE SMALL GIRL DOWN
SHE TURNED TO LEAVE AND WALK AWAY
HER COAT WAS CHOCOLATE BROWN
IT WAS A FEW DAYS LATER
THAT SHE CAME BACK TO MY CHAIR
HER EYES WERE BRIGHT AND SPARKLING
AND SHE WORE RIBBONS IN HER HAIR

THANK YOU SANTA FOR WHAT YOU'VE DONE
THERE'S SOMEONE YOU SHOULD MEET
THIS IS MY MUM, SHE'S COME BACK HOME
SHE'S MY EARLY CHRISTMAS TREAT
YOUR MAGIC WORKED A MIRACLE
YOU MADE MY WISH COME TRUE
NOW I BELIEVE IN SANTA CLAUS
AND THE EASTER BUNNY TOO!

I DID NOT TRY TO FIND HER MUM
TO LIE WOULD NOT BE FAIR
BUT WHEN I LEFT THE MALL THAT NIGHT
I SAID A LITTLE PRAYER
I PRAYED TO GOD THAT SHE WOULD FIND
HER MOTHER BACK IN HER LIFE
AND THAT THIS SMALL, YOUNG CHILD
WOULD BE FREE FROM ANY STRIFE

I KNOW THAT IT'S A PIPE DREAM
LIKE WISHING ON A STAR
BUT I WISHED ON ONE A FEW YEARS BACK
AND SOMEONE HEARD ME FROM AFAR
I'M A SHOPPING CENTER SANTA CLAUS
FOR A WEEK OR MAYBE TWO
BUT LITTLE GIRL, WHEREVER YOU ARE
I STILL  BELIEVE IN YOU.
Donall Dempsey Aug 2018
SHOPPING LIST

after the funeral
your fingerprint lives on
in a jar of Pond's Cold Cream

a shopping list
dug out of a drawer
now a precious artifact

I an emotional archaeologist
unearthing a smile
buried in the past

all our I wills
become the past
tense

the touch of your skin
still so real to me
a teardrop trickles into my ear

Death
unreals you then
makes you more real

I call your mobile
just to hear you say
you are not there
Showman Jun 2013
Shopping.
Relaxing?
That's new.
Batman shirt. Pow! Wham!
You get the Superman one.
Cream skinny jeans? Yes.
Najwa Kareem Aug 2017
Ramadan 2017 in Sarajevo, Bosnia                      

The first day and the second

What a blessing!!!

Brothers and Sisters in the Old Town speaking the words Salamu Alaikum

Sisters wearing veils with colors like in the bright rainbow appearing before me and my two new friends from Bosnia in a sky above a bussling bazaar, there a smaller group of humans watching and a larger group of tourists capturing a rare moment in Sarajevo on photo

Many brothers wearing kufis and many brothers with trendy hair styles paired with Western outfits gathering in the courtyard of Gazi Husrev-Bey Mosque, the largest in Bosnia and sixteen centuries old. Tourists from Africa, America, Europe, and other landscapes and many locals exchanging words and gestures in a month better than a thousand

Families spending time together at the Grand Mosque and at smaller mosques and in other places surrounded by picturesque hills and green plush trees

A father, a mother, their toddler son...he practicing walking on a masjid's cobblestone, and their young daughter...she smiling at her father as he walks by. Each family member physically at a distance from each other. Each family member at a cell's distance in communion with each other.

In the mid afternoon on a Ramadan's day, a sister from Munich and I having met for the first time at Bey Mosque ride together in a taxi up a steep hill to see a guest house she knows

A smell of lingering cigarette smoke permeating the air within the house so thick beckons me to leave politely and quickly. Unaware of the smell's degree, the owner learns of its' offensiveness as I disclose my sensitivity to & the dislike of the smell of cigarette smoke, both acutely heightened while fasting

Careful steps back down the steep hill to the city center, me avoiding stumbling on a large rock or being runover by a speeding automobile, interestingly instead I stumble upon a beautiful grave yard of uniquely shaped white gravestones and a charming mosque with a high minaret

At the bottom of the hill sits a crafts and artistry shop, one of many in Sarajevo's Old Town. Upon entering and a brief conversation with the owner, a piece of generosity is handed to me, a square shape piece of wood with Ayat tul Kursi in hand calligraphy

During the late afternoon hours, a time for reading Quran by many at mosques in the city. Sisters and brothers sitting on carpeted floors, some with backs supported by mosque walls, some with bodies sitting in chairs, fasters occupied with the most perfected Divine Scripture

A brief leisurely stroll with my two new friends Dzenita and her sister Amina through part of the Bazaar, they sharing opinions of their favorite restaurants, best eating experiences, and other things

In the early evening, a time to buy food to prepare for the Iftar meal. Showing me how it's done in Sarajevo, Dzenita and Amina invite me to join them on an excursion up a hill to buy Somun, a Bosnian flatbread topped with black seeds from the city's famous bread maker. Standing in a line longer than Georgetown Cupcake, Dzenita surprises me with a gift of Somun for myself

Two dates, one cube of Bosnian delight, and one cup of water to break our fast with at the Bey Mosque. A canon bomb sounds off to announce the time for Magrib prayer and Iftar, customary in Sarajevo during Ramadan

Startled and alerted by the bomb's depth and volume, I stand up to join the congregation for communion with God, The God Most Gracious, Most High

Out of nowhere I'm invited to Iftar at a shop nearby the Grand Mosque, about 8 of us guests being served by the warm owner, she offering a meal for Iftar at her shop every night during Ramadan, a big-hearted tradition of hers

Cevapi, Cevapi, Cevapi...I'll say it once more, Cevapi -- sold in Bosnian restaurants, cafes, bazaars, and made in many homes, eaten happily by many fasters at Iftar. Served with freshly chopped onions, some served with a soft white cheese, some with a red peppery sauce, many served with Somun, all ways tried by me and tasting as scrumptious as my first experience with Cevapi in Germany, then falling in love with it

Cold winds at night from the surrounding mountains, a refreshing air yet taking my breath and power away from the chill of it, completely disappearing with my start of Isha prayer with other Muslims and the declaration "Allah hu Akbar"

9 Muftis with impeccable Tajweed each taking turns to recite the words of our Grand Lord before sunrise, me weeping from God's messages, the reality of His greatness, my servitude to Him, and a recognition of sounds similar to that of my Mumin Father's, those familiar to me since birth

Three dear sisters, university students from Turkey and I journey together on foot after Fajr from the Old Mosque to a street train, along the way stopping by a community center, our destination - their home an hour or so away to rest, the four of us coming to know each other and each others' thoughts with every step. Contempleting my desire to spend more time in the city over sleep, the three sisters showing great generosity and I embrace and exchange Salams at a stop near the main station, the three walking with me to an open place before continuing on

In the land of a marriage between the East and the West and where newspaper is used to clean a cafe window, on the list of to-dos -- shopping for gifts for family and for souvenirs, window shopping done along the way, asking myself Shall I buy a Dzezva, a hand-made Bosnian coffee set, or a vintage wood Sarajevo box, or a woven wallet, or Bosnian sweets.

In a bazaar walkway, Maher Zain's song "Ramadan" playing loudly. At another moment, lyrics about a month of devotion and sacrifice from Sami Yusuf echoeing. Shop owners in Old Town with dispositions of calm and quiet grace greeting me and others cordially and respectfully. Shopping a few hours more until near sunset for post cards with a real version of the Grand Mosque, finding only less than satisfactory versions. Time running out for shopping, another reason now to return to Bosnia, God-Willing

Magrib prayer a second night at the Gazi Husrev-Bey Mosque. Observing the crowd, a striking occurrence taking place, a teenage boy walking a small length behind a man on to the mosque carpet. There the boy approaches an older man giving him a respectful hand shake. After prayer, a native of Sarajevo shares with me in wholesome conversation, "You are known in the town not by what you have. You are known by how well you behave."

Another invitation, this time for a cup of a tea at a cafe. Overflowing with people mostly young adults, men and women sitting at tightly packed small tables inside and a few outside, conversations merging into each other with a loud volume flowing throughout, Shisha being smoked by some, cigarettes by some, smoke in the air and the temperature inside melting away heavy make-up on sisters' faces. "This is Ramadan in Sarajevo." Madia says. "One aspect of it." says I. Not having a good feeling right away when walking in and not wanting to stay, the two of us leave quickly.

My two new friends Dzenita and Amina aka angels of hospitality and kindness reciprocating my gift to them of Milka chocolate give me a gift before departing the next day. "Tespih!!" A burnt red and yellow colored set with sparkingly gold thinly cut wrapping paper looking stripes purchased at the Gazi Husrev-Bey Mosque gift shop. Not knowing then I collect Tesbih, their gift is now my most favorite of my Tesbih collection

Husbands and wives, men and women both young and old, well-groomed and well-dressed, some holding hands as they stroll through narrow pathways in the Old Town on a Ramadan's night. Families talking and eating at restaurants, friends in groups sharing laughs, so much to see, so much to experience. At a cafe where baked goods, ice cream, and other sweets are sold, a lady sitting with a group of others initiates speaking to me, stopping me in my tracks. Bidding me farewell, she extends me a gracious compliment

Ramadan 2017 in Sarajevo, Bosnia to Remember

The first day and the second

What a blessing!!!

by Najwa Kareem
Rachel Talley Mar 2012
Strolling along in Venice
With a shopping cart as home
Traveling through the city’s streets
Not homeless alone.

“This is it, Jerry!”
Then a shot rang loud
Our shock was spoken
Then we looked around

Our shopping cart was stolen
Our little turned to none
With little arguing or discussion
The chase had now begun

Running through the streets of Venice
Without a shopping cart or home
Frenzy in the city’s streets
Shopping cart-less alone.
Written in 7th grade and recently rediscovered.

Copyright © Rachel Talley
Terry Collett May 2016
Helen's mother said,
to get the shopping first,
then to go see Benny,

so Helen climbed down
the stairs with a handful
of coins, and a shopping list,

and along the street
to the grocer shop,
and waited there

behind Mrs Folkes
who had the look
of grim death

on her features,
and the smell of something,
Helen couldn't decide,

on her old fur coat,
and waiting there
she looked

at the small area
of sweet jars on the shelves,
all sorts of sweets

from fruit gums
to sherbet lemons,
and those Flying Saucer things

she liked to ****,
and she sighed because
she didn't have enough money

for even one,
not and get Mum's
shopping too,

and the shop assistant
served Mrs Folkes,
and that meant

Helen was next in-line,
and held the coins tightly,
thinking of meeting Benny

afterwards, and to go
some where, but Benny
didn't say where,

and she thought of him
his hazel eyes,
and brown hair,

and that quiff of hair
in front, and wondered:
where we'll go?

She mused,
last time they went
to Camberwell Green,

and saw shops,
and the hospital
Benny was born,

and before that
they'd been
to the herbalist shop,

and it rained,
and they stood there
watching the rain fall,

and Benny said
about some battle
where it'd rained,

but the place
or name
she couldn't recall.
A 7 YEAR OLD GIRL AND SHOPPING AND A BOY IN LONDON IN 1955
little tommy turtle he just loved to shopat the local store tommy he would stopthen pick up a trolley and push it round the floortommy he just love to stroll around the store picking up his shopping he wanted from the shelfhe did it all alone he lived by himselfwhen he filled his basket to the checkout he would goit would take some time for a turtle it was slowthen pull out his wallet so tommy he could paytommy he just loved it when it was shopping day.
Purcy Flaherty Jan 2018
Initially she began contacting me over the course of a year or so and increasingly over the last few months she started visiting me, helping me, caring for me and occasionally employing me in different ways.

She’d just had a break up a few weeks before, explaining that things hadn’t been right in the relationship for some time!

She presents herself as respectful, thoughtful, gentle, kind and considerate and after what seemed to be a very short length of time; unexpectedly declared that she had feelings for me; regarding love, admiration, desire and some other adventures.

She then began to bombarded me with love talk; occupying around 70% of my time gaining my trust, I was swept off my feet; she took a great deal of interest in me, learning everything about me, what I liked, where I would go, always asking what I was thinking feeling, how she could help and I was flattered and she was charming, though a little awkward at times.

As our friendship grew she started sharing her back story, including some tragic life experiences; she vilified her past lovers, and ex-partners and branded them as crazy, or bitter liars and troubled souls; slowly gaining my sympathy, whilst securing my allegiance, and keeping me on side; keeping me close; drawing on my compassion loyalty & trust!

During intimate moments she would sometimes seem a little awkward, false, over enthusiastic, or a little insincere and I made allowances for this given my knowledge of her backstory. Re: (The tragic life events & experiences)

She began to choose and buy me clothes; outfits, take me shopping, gradually altering my outward image and appearance.

She introduced me to her friends; but was careful to keep me and them at arms-length, I realise now that she was building an alternative profile of me in their minds and that the people she introduced to me rarely exhibited the behaviours or characteristic that I was led to expect.

She soon started to embroil me in her own rituals and compulsive behaviour’s, explaining that tasks needed to be performing in very specific ways to prevent her getting distressed!

She made many promises : ‘Hooked’ It was my expectation i.e. waiting for some of those promises to materialise that kept me hanging on; This increased her control and exited her too. (None of her promises came to fruition!)

She gradually had a hand in almost every aspect of my life i.e. my home, my work, my friends, family, my finances, the way I dressed, the food I ate and many other things besides, much of which I didn’t realise until our relationship was finally over.

She often took immense pleasure in duping, individuals or companies out of something through theft, shoplifting, or getting something for nothing, a profiteer, a chancer!


To question or challenge her authority would result in seeing her façade slip and watch her decline into meltdown. It's at that point, she would lose composure, and I would see her irrationality come to the fore; revealing the real person underneath; childish, contrived and very fragile; It’s as if control is the glue that holds her together, without it she just falls apart, during this time she can’t be consoled and it’s impossible to calm this escalating situation; in fact; at this point that she would attempt to regain control by ‘gas-lighting’ me, she would distort the truth; who said what; in an attempt to damage my self-esteem, to make me question my own mind, my words, my intention and any actions, apportioning blame, pointing fingers, making me feel guilty, use rejection, or using hurt, sorrow, tears, shame and even threaten liable or legal action, and then use *** to pacify or regain control over me and my actions.

These episodes would appear often; though irregular and without provocation, I would always be deemed at fault! I found silent compliance was less stressful than engaging in discussion.    

She never took responsibility or made any apologies for her conduct.

She would set me tasks and go out a lot and lie or bend the truth as to where she had been; I never challenged this behaviour!

When the relationship was finally deemed over! I was both devastated and relieved.


I began to see my new position in the cycle; as she immediately begin to vilify me in order to give credence to her new backstory, I felt very confused, disorientated and emotionally fraught, shell shocked! questioning, how much of our relationship was true and how much was a lie? For everything I thought I knew was now knitted together with a very complex web of loyalties, lies and half-truths.

Her pattern of repetitive and controlling behaviours have seemingly remained unchanging throughout all her relationships!; (I know! as I was contacted by many of her previous partners and other casualties since I shared this account.)

Within two weeks of being apart she told me that she had fallen in love (My replacement) someone she’d had her eye on for some time, some-one she admires, someone kept in the background, a friend a mutual acquaintance, and thanked me for bringing them together.
The grooming of her new lover would have come about in exactly the same way as previously described. It's her M.O. (Her pattern of behaviours, her techniques have remained fixed.)

She’s incredibly self-conscious, her biggest fear is that other people will find out about her true demeanour, her image and appearance is everything to her. She's afraid that people will shun her for being so very different. She is a wolf, that’s not a malevolent creature par-say; and quite beautiful and beguiling in her own way but you don’t want to be her pray.

Full circle:
I too have joined the ranks of the discredited; labelled a liar, troubled, bitter and crazy. (I Know this because secretly contacted members of my, family, friends and some fellow musicians; and they shared these conversations with me.) I suspect that she may even attempt to vilify me with authorities or threaten some form of legal action; as she has to others in the past!

I'm still drawn to her despite my knowledge of her sociopathic nature, and all the things that go with it, her charismatic boldness, her ****** power and her Svengali like intelligence.

I’ve had to block all means of contact and cut her off entirely to curtail my pathological interest, for despite everything that’s transpired, her lies, her infidelity, her deceit and appalling behaviour, I feel no malice towards her; quite the opposite, I'm drawn, intrigued, bewitched, beguiled by the person hiding underneath the façade!

Now the dust has finally settled; I’ve somehow remained sound of mind, and I don’t feel guilty anymore; I’m aware that I’ve been manipulated into thinking and acting in ways that don’t truly represent my character; and that I’m just one of many people seduced by a sociopath.

She’s just another natural human variant , an attractive person devoid of empathy for others, that’s developed a narrow set of skills and mirroring behaviours, that allows her to blend into mainstream society in order to feel safe, secure and in control.

She would have preferred to keep me hanging on, like many other dependants, adding me to the hareem; a bank of beguiled individuals that she occasionally calls upon to perform simple tasks, or to simply monitor and re-assess her handwork.

The last time I saw her she opened with nervous politeness and finished with veiled cruelty, I left feeling drained, uncomfortable and quite fazed.

I’ve written this account to help further understand what had transpired during this complicated relationship, I’m not sure publishing this account will be useful as to others.

But I’ve not mentioned any names; and at any rate the next person targeted; will ignore any pre-warnings as just bitter ramblings, and most individuals are driven by the natural pursuit of love, *** and romance rather than following advice of some seemingly bitter ex.

Bittersweet! The reason you and I might attract the attention of a sociopath is because we shine like stars; stars are both attractive and further enhance the image and status of the sociopath and the people around them; a sociopath will orbit a shiny star and use its energy to slingshoting into a larger more attractive orbit, either stealing a bit of its shine or destroy it in the process; To these people love, *** and desire is simply a tool for manipulation and gain.

Expect high drama.
She loves to watch you *** unstuck!
Robin Carretti Aug 2018
Breaking up is hard to do
       let's rise take it easy
       Waking- up don't be lazy
My morning glory spiritual stretch
Soothe me like a tranquilizer
His words are my pacifier
The shooting star sprinkling shot

Stars work dot to dot
They connect get rid of all
broken heart subjects
Soothe me star even if there
is nothing to do

We need to do something
Earth wind and fire just
knock-me-out
Don't lock me and throw away
the star key is it going to Key- West
 Daylight no broken light in my
        Star stuff- sight
Light to the dark twilight

Those zillions of stars my
eyes closed I suppose
Take another look lovely rose
The same spot share the good stuff
I saw the soothing words
Star pointed toes who knows
Even
or to out-win the odds?

Not the starry night
Going through something
It's been a hard day night
One star light years to fight
Breathe in and soothe me
It was up to me not to blind me
My cool spirit meditation table

The New York soothing menu
Rendezvous all talk but delicious
She is tough walking
The hardest avenue
The *Positive me
even if its the
broken up me that's the only me
No one can take his place to soothe me

French fondue it suits her another clue
Red White moody blues the statue
Do you all agree? Another feel good
shopping spree are the stars true
I cannot even say soothing-word
Your home is your oasis love stuff
                Venus

Sooth me star stuff no one to minus

The hard stuff is to better yourself
The feel-good smooth flowing
Even if you missed your star
You're the no star he's is always late
Soothe me star may be my fate
Cafe warm running lattte late

The forever flight hit so hard
  Got_  Thrown brick harder
They say remorse is the
poison of life
And divorce could be the best
change in someone's life

OH! Lord The new? Hard cushion/night

"The winding rough road see the light"
*It may be tough but make it good deed
Athletic Girly curve walk
The pep talk she had the tough birth
The Preppy he's training the puppy stuff
You don't have to be a star it doesn't matter

Who you are
Never get in the middle of a dare
Show the whole world you care
Puff the magic dragon
Harder side of logic is the mission
Been Moonstruck light flick
Both mouths a volcano

Hard star stuff ham and swiss hero
Exploring new stuff
Please take it from pointed star
beware?
She walks like she is hot stuff
Those color forms of love stuff
Things and stuff
Stuff and things

Walking through the end of
the exit
It a hard position of the angle
Tough to be single even more
to deal with lotsa stuff to be married
Being the first online
I am getting a handle on my stuff

Indie Pop like Ice Queen Pop
Going mainstream
She's Brook long stream
He's under the influence
She doesn't nearly have
the up to par patience
Gifts of curiosity

Adjusting to reality
Hard life too much focus
On our happiness
He's coming home
breadwinner of money
Just one loaf of
bread she blossoms
Disavows humanity

The harder the words
How it challenges our sanity

Dark crayon hard stuff
Heavy_Rough__Tough
Wild Hawaii Say Hi to all our
blissfully but soothing hearts
She is like a hard sandpaper
He is so cool reading his
worldly carefree life

He is inside the newspaper
Big Ben London guard
How mindset like Hallmark card
Too much Holiday Turkey going
****** tunes when there is I tunes
So powerless word hard ingenious
Be thankful for what you have
But feeling too much
of the dry spell that rain fall
Going to that heavenly gifted secret
Like an Elephant, you are

the tough one the smart one magnet
No-one is perfect to be the
brilliant one
The star way of the fantasy
Nothing fancy doesn't make you jump
Presidential Trump Roger Rabbit
My lucky tower rabbit foot
Between a hard rock meets her sexuality

Having bad luck long shot solitude
Hallucinations all dark things hurt
My imagination world is sometimes
belly overstuffed Santa Claus
I love the hard candy bitter- sweet metal
Who gets the Metals and honors
The Terminators better leaders

PJ-Clarkes Princeton NJ
Superman Clark Kents
We need more therapy events
Princeton pancakes no remakes
And tons of maple syrup
***** Tonk women at the rodeo
Her horse lucky hoof sooth me

Stars real stuff
New York City roof ruff ruff
A hard rock and critters
And then you wake
back to the hard stuff

Soothe your pain the goodness of the rain
Hard life or its way too easy what is truly better I know my moods change in this hell of a gun weather. Let's keep our spirit high and heal our minds to get better don't you want a better life or something in the middle of the road make sure you don't kiss deeply inside of a hard binding book of the fairy tale. You are worth so much more than kissing a toad but we are talking about the hard stuff please go easy on me
Kenna Marie Feb 2016
Some days you have the ability,
others on a shopping spree.
Dressing clean, ultra supreme.

To live is just a dream that only you can see with binoculars.
I live in our own aura, the World and I. Where we can kickback, sleek the ruffles out of our curtains.
With blood sleeking down the glass window pane, the beginning of a crystal clear scheme
with crimson stains.
A passing by expert, I have yet to earn what removed hastes to which I should come to a slower pace.
Push you into my fool, a clown to a stalemate.
Copping everything on a shopping spree, my feet don’t touch the ground, they elevate.

Now I’m trying to jam using these hands, but one grips at fear.
I don’t have time for tainted misused feelings.

I have to make them squeal for me. Hide in the bushes, they want to be seen with me. Using correct of muscle, I hold me. Carrying all these packages, I’m the one you want.
Pete van Loon Oct 2009
Shopping mall close to closing time

Neat rows of carefully designed family packs

10 000 square meters and me

Sweet serenity

At the counter - sudden confusion!

Failing to pack the things in a smart way

Thinking of what the bag lady just said

"Moose postcards! Do you have moose postcards here??"
Paul Hansford Jul 2016
I write my shopping-list in rhyme.
It doesn’t take me too much time,
and always helps me to remember.
(I’ve been doing it since last September.)

Wholemeal bread
low-fat spread
strawberry jam
dry-cured ham
Cheddar cheese
frozen peas
free-range eggs
chicken legs
grape jelly
pork belly
lamb chops
lemon drops
fillet steak
chocolate cake
cookie mix
seafood sticks
tortilla chips
salsa dips
instant coffee
treacle toffee
dried sultanas
ripe bananas
runner beans
a bunch of greens
new potatoes
vine tomatoes
and (really urgent)
liquid detergent.

Now that I've written my shopping-list,
I hope there's nothing that I've missed.
And if you don't think much of the verse,
Consider this - it could have been worse!
Yes, I know "tomatoes / potatoes" doesn't rhyme in British-English.  Just take it as a concession to our transatlantic friends
Robbie carter wanted to drive hid Australian car from Australia to the USA so he can watch a Broadway but there was no way he could do that and every time
He suggested it to his mates they just laughed at him but Robbie came up with a good idea, you see he will raise funds to build a tunnel under the ocean linking Australia with the USA and also to keep him relaxed he would build a few towns under the ocean As well
You see Robbie wanted this so bad, but both countries governments didn't like the idea
Because the distance was too far and the water will cave in to the tunnel but then both countries changed government and suddenly Robbies dream became a reality, you see the will open the tunnel from the Aussie end at Brisbane and then open the other end at Florida and they will build 45,000 towns under the water
With motels and restaurants and houses and truck stops
As well as an underwater version of Ayers Rock  And to makes sure it was good to go
Robbie helped designing this under ocean adventure from Brisbane to Florida with towns
Which were just like the towns on earth and they intended on building a Broadway stage where they will play all the latest musicals they were playing in New York and this could make the journey a pleasurable one for each patron who starts the trip and in about the first 4 months they had 60% of the new world completed and Robbie was asked to inspect the area and this meant checking the area and then imagining how the world would function under the ocean and what he noticed they   Built a shopping street on the first street with a fun park on the first turn and then a Broadway musical theatre a few blocks down and Robbie took one look and said this is fantastic and then went further on and saw a very big under ocean shopping mall and Robbie was impressed in how
Each area of the under water towns is going to look and then Robbie went back to Brisbane and in about 5 more months
The entire under ocean tunnel and towns were completed but they couldn't open the tunnel at either end unroll Robbie and the safety inspector have checked it out and originally it was made so you could drive from Australia to America but they had coaches and trains and yeah this was looking great
And the under ocean Ayers Rock looked fantastic and the Broadway musical theatre looked great as well and the roads were as dry as a bone
Despite being under the ocean
And the fun park and each shopping mall were really looking great as well  and Robbie was very impressed with how his town under the ocean really looked and it has a few town parks where the kids can play and mind you it can make you wanna leave your life above ground and make you wanna live here and Robbie left getting ready for the big grand opening where the first car is going to drive right from Brisbane to Florida stopping at every truck stop and restaurant and take away along the way and Robbie will ride the first motor bike under the ocean from Brisbane to Florida and this was going to take 7 months to complete and then the under ocean world will officially be opened and Robbie pulled his bike over at the broad way theatre to catch a show and then rode his motorbike up and down the Main Street of each town and also rode his motor bike up Ayers Rock and down the other side and it wasn't as big as the rock in the centre of Australia but still was a great climb and rode into the fun park
And the zoo and took a photo of the monkeys and the rabbits
And then rode off to the motor bike through the truck stops and parks and rode through each city and then arrived in
Florida and as he entered the crowd cheered for Robbie as he reentered the top of the earth
And then all the people started driving under the ocean to start
A new life beneath the earth's surface and there will be cost that each driver in Brisbane and Florida has to pay so the under ocean village can be safe from poachers and bad people
You see you have to have a reason as simple as you are driving to the USA will cost $700 and visiting the under ocean town will cost $650 just so the village can be safe from predators you the $650 will give you a red ticket so you have the right to every shop and motel in the village and the $700 will give you a red and white ticket giving you the access to visit the shops and truck stops and letting you out the other end, and there is a $1000 fee for cars with caravans to visit every part of the village and allowed out to both ends of the countries Australia and the USA and Robbie carter was very impressed on how this village is going and Robbie made a once a year thing to go down to the village to catch a show on Broadway and then had a meal in a classy under ocean restaurant and yeah this was a success
little tommy turtle he just loved to shop
at the local store tommy he would stop
then pick up a trolley and push it round the floor
tommy he just love to stroll all around the store
picking up his shopping he wanted from the shelf
he did it all alone he lived by himself
when he filled his basket to the checkout he would go
it would take some time for a turtle he was slow
then pull out his wallet so tommy he could pay
tommy he just loved it when it was shopping day.
Terry Collett May 2017
My mother
is out shopping
but Benny
can't come around
as he has to work
as do my brothers.

I am left alone
in the house.

I lay on my bed
staring at the sky
through the window.

It is a warm morning
I can hear birdsong
and cows moo
from the farm.

Why did Benny
have to work now
of all times
I muse.

I remember
that time
when he came
and my mother
had just gone
out shopping
and we made love
on my bed.

This bed where
I lay now
and even though
I knew my mother
had gone out shopping
there was an odd thrill
that she might
come back
and it added
to the excitement.

But she didn't
and Benny had
just gone
when she drove back
in the car
with the shopping.

I ought to get up
and wash
and dress
but I want to lay here
a bit more
and imagine Benny
is here
and he's
beside me now
and undressed
and we kiss and touch.

I sense the electric
run through me
and I want him
and we do.

But of course
we don't.

I lay alone
staring at the sky
listening to birdsong
and cows moo
not making love
and nothing to do.
A GIRL ONE MORNING 1964
Mitchell Duran Sep 2013
The retainer where she was put
Was made of concrete. My father told me they had
Dug the grave first, then poured the concrete in, waited for
It to dry and harden, then hammered in six
Circular spikes in the four corners, two on either side
Of the middle. They lifted the concrete cast out with a crane.
My dad was going to be charged 300 dollars a day for the rental,
But because of the circumstances, Home Depot let us have it for free.

-

Where was she?
Where had she gone?
Would I see her face again?
Would she want me to
Meet her on the other side of the river?

-

I answered my cell phone.

"Make sure to bring flower's."
She had been crying. Her voice wavered the way sun light
Does on moving water.

"Make sure to bring flowers," she repeated, "And
That you wear what your father and I bought you."

I nodded my head with the receiver pressed up against my ear.
We both let out a sigh. My mom hung up. I put my phone in my back pocket.

-

Lately, I had been seeing a shrink about repetition. He liked to use the word cycle.

"Everything is repeated," I would tell him.

"Life is a cycle," he'd disagree so to get me talking.

"Can cycles be identical?"

"Technically not. Some cycles are extremely similar, but no two cycles are
Completely the same. Are two people's lives ever exactly the same?"

"I wouldn't know. I don't know that many people. Maybe."

"You know lots of people, Camden. You have told me about many of your friends."

"Are we talking about the seasons?" I asked, changing the subject, "Like fall, winter, spring, summer? We are born, we live, we die, and we are born again?"

"That's a very natural way of looking at it."

"I know it is." I inhaled deeply, swallowing air and wondered what time it was.

"If you are so sure, why look for validation from me?" He liked this one, I could
tell. I imagined him shopping for clothes and then exploding in aisle 16 because of a sale on jeans.

"The word cycle is used by people too afraid to use the word repetition. Everything is
Repeated for the next generation, the next group, the next of the next of the next. We shift things
Around, give things to one another to shift life to make it look different, but, things remain the same. Everything contains the primal function we were all doing and living from the very beginning, only now, there is more of a separation. Music is still music, words are still words, paintings are still paintings, love is still love, death is still death, only done differently and more intensely."

"We are talking about man furthering technology because we, as people and creatures, are
Statistically more prone to flee than fight?"

"Why do you think it has caught on so quick?" I touched both
Corners of my lips with my tongue and suddenly realized I hadn't eaten breakfast.

"It is a theory," the psych nodded, "A theory with, I am sure, many
Palpable facts you could make a very nice report with to prove...something." He
Was at a lost for words and I felt guilty that my mom was paying him $75 an hour.

"We are very split. There are too many of us. Too many hands spinning the china."

"Who is we Harry?" The psych hadn't looked up from his pen and pad of paper, until now. I could
Tell he was annoyed with me either because he was making no progress or because the session
Had just begun and I was already digging into him.

"Culture. The government. You, me, my dad, my mom, the taco bell cashier, the geniuses at Apple computers, a paper weight, my dead sister. We're all apart of these shifts, all putting in a certain amount of energy and lies to keep the protection of the projection going. The question I keep asking myself is: do I want to use my strengths to be apart of this cycle or not?"

His eyes flared open for a moment like he'd swallowed a firefly, not at the question I had posed for myself, but from what I would soon see was from the mention of my sister. He had something.

"I was notified by your mother that you may not want to talk about your recently deceased sister. Is It O.K. if I ask you some questions about her?"

I was leaning forward on the couch with my hands clasped in between my legs. The psych had looked up at me now. He was sweating at the top of his thin hairline. Observing that I was staring at his building perspiration, he, trying to be nonchalant, took out a thin, white napkin from his grey shirt pocket and dabbed the top of his head. The napkin looked like cheap toilet paper. I'd have offered him some water, but I had no water to give and I didn't know where the sink and cups were to give him any. I figured he did - it was his office - so I asked him for some. He pointed me in the direction of the bathroom. I got up and found a stack of paper cups. I poured myself a cup and went back to the couch, but instead of leaning forward, I sat back, relaxed, and let the expensive leather couch take the weight I had been carrying away.

"So," the psych maintained cooly, "Would it be alright if we were able to discuss your sister?"

I lifted the paper cup over my head and the psych's eyes, after I poured the water over my hair, my face, and clothes, was a mixture of what my mom's eyes looked at the funeral, defeated, confused, and with a loss of faith and hope. My father's eyes had only held hate, anger and the need to lash out at someone, but the only someone that would have fit the bill would have been God.

"Sure," I answered, "Let's talk about my sister."

-

I finished drying myself in the car. The psych had let me keep the towel.
I leaned out the window to look at myself in the side mirror. I looked fine.
Presentable. Accountable. Like I had been through something where I had
Faced my soul. Like I had used and abused my emotions. There was comb in my glove compartment, so I took it out and rushed it through my damp hair. Slicked back. The sun
Was out, no clouds, burning up the inside of my car. That taste that comes after
Finishing something that's supposed to do you good didn't come. I was left with an unsure hand.
Putting my keys in the ignition, I turned them, and felt the engine rumble in front of my legs.
The sun sat in the sky like a lazy hand and I had nowhere else to go but home.

-

"Let's go to the river today," my dad said over coffee and two over easy eggs on top
Of burnt wheat toast. "I'll drive and you and your sister can sit in the back and sing."

I looked over at Ally. She was gazing into her fruit bowl she had prepared for
herself because dad didn't understand the concept or how to make it. The lamp light above us
reflected in the smooth apricot yogurt and the flecks of granola scattered on top
looked like beige, jagged rocks. My dad's offer hung in the air and neither
of us bit the lure. I had just woken up and was unable to speak clearly, a decent
excuse. Ally was simply choosing to ignore him.

"What you think there Ally?" I asked her. I sipped my coffee. It needed more cream. I got
U, got it and brought the carton to the table.

"We can take the truck down there and load the back with the fishing poles and tackle
And inner tubes. We haven't...done that...in a long time," he said, chewing his food as he spoke.

Ally poked her fruit bowl with her spoon, silent.

"What you think, Cam?" My dad was desperate. He knew I'd say yes.

"Sure. I've got no plans this weekend."

"No schoolwork?"

"It can wait till Sunday. Only math and some reading."

"Ally, what do you think?" my dad asked, leaning over to her. I could see he was
Trying to be as courteous and gentle with her as he knew how to. I felt bad for him.

"Sure," she muttered, "That sounds like fun." I could barely hear her, but somehow,
I could tell she sounded happy.

"Perfect," my dad smiled, "We'll pack the car up Friday,
Drive up Saturday morning early, camp one night, then get back Sunday afternoon." He
Took a long sip of his coffee and swished it around in his mouth, then dug
His fork into the dry toast and ran his small steak knife over the eggs. A silent pop came from
The egg and the light orange yolk spilled out. "Perfect," he repeated, "Just great."

Ally poked a grape from her fruit bowl and dipped it into the yogurt.
I took another sip of my coffee and looked up into the fan, spinning above us.
We were going to the river.

-

"Your sister turns five today," my mom told me, "And that means
I want you to be on your best behavior."

I nodded, unsure what the point of a birthday was. I had had one before, or at
least I thought I did, and all I remembered was that I got presents and the colorful balloons
and the cake we all ate with fire kind of floating and burning above it. Somewhere
in that moment I remember thinking that the cake was going to catch on fire, then they, everyone,
some that I knew and some people I had never seen before, yelled and shouted to
blow the fire out, so I quickly did, but not because it was for a wish, which I later found out it was supposed to be for, but because I truly thought the cake was going to catch fire and they wanted me to take care of it. At that point, I was unsure what it meant to be alive or why to celebrate it all.

"This is her day, Camden," my father told me, "So I want you to be happy for your sister."

"I am," I said. I was wearing my favorite white and blue striped t-shirt and
New shoes that my mom had bought me for the party.

"Sometimes you have to think of other people," my mother continued, "And today is one
of those days. I don't want any crying because you didn't get any presents or that none of your
friends are at the party. There are going to be a lot of Ally's friends there, but not many
of your's...do you understand?"

"Yes, Mom."

"Do you understand, Cam?" My father repeated. His skin was the color of a burnt
pancake and he smelt like stale sugar and sun tan lotion. He was in front of me and was
holding a thin magazine with a man in a boat holding up a fish on a line on the cover.  

"Yes, Dad," I said again. I was hungry. I wanted mac n' cheese, my favorite food.

I had been on the floor, laying on my stomach watching Ren and Stimpy. They were standing in front of the television and I remember trying to wish them out of the way. Behind them were two, large bay windows where three palm trees stood in a row like tropical soldiers. I could see there was no wind because the three of them stood still, as if posing for someone. Their leaves were bright green, a mixture of the neon green Jello I used to love to eat and the orange Jolly Rancher my dad would always have in a tiny tray in the middle of the dining table. My mother hated having them there because it always tempted Ally and I, but he never moved it until he moved out.

"Do you like your show?" my mom asked, turning to see what I was watching.

I nodded, absently. Ren was licking Stimpy's eye because he was complaining about having
an eyelash in there. Stimpy was completely still and smiling like he does - dumb and content.

"Interesting..." my mother trailed off. She walked to the kitchen behind the couch and
Opened up the pantry for something. "You hungry, Camden?"

"I'm starving," my dad said, "Let me go check on Ally in the bedroom. She should be up
from her nap."

I got up from my stomach and sat back on my legs, "Do we have mac n' cheese?" I asked.

"Let me check."

She reached up for the cabinet over the stove where I could never reach and
Opened it. I rose slightly up from where I was sitting to see if I could see the glorious dark blue and orange package, but wasn't able to see over couch. I hovered there, still like a humming bird.

"You're in luck," I heard her say, "We've got one box left."

"Yay!" I screamed and got up, running into the kitchen.

"But," she smiled, stopping me, "You'll have to share it with your sister."

"No! I don't want to! I always have to share."

"What did we just talk about Camden?" she said, lightly stamping her foot.

I tried to remember, but couldn't. I shrugged.

"You need to learn to share, Camden. You also need to listen better when your father and I are talking to you. You and your sister are going to know each other a very long time and I want you to learn how to share now, so you two can be happy in the future."

"The future," I asked, "What's that?"

She paused, then said, "It's a time," she paused again, "Ahead of us."

"Do we know where it is?"

"Not exactly," she sighed.

"What's it look like?"

"No one really knows. People can only imagine it."

"Is it very far away?"

She opened the top of the blue and orange mac n' cheese box and poured the dry macaroni into a large silver ***, lifted the faucet, and let it run inside for five or seven seconds. She placed the *** on an unlit burner and turned to look at me. Her eyes looked far away and right there with me.  

"Closer then you think," she said and turned the burner on.

-

I turned into the taco bell parking lot. There was something I was trying to remember that was in my trunk, but I couldn't recall the picture. A haze blew over the windshield that was a mix of heat and wind; I wished to be somewhere else, someone else, someplace else, but, there I was, sitting there underneath the sun, like everyone else. If I was able, I would have unlocked the door to my car and opened the door and walked out - but - there was something else lingering underneath my fingernails, something I couldn't name.

"Two tacos," I said into my hand, "And a water."

"Pull to the window," the voice buzzed over the muffled speaker.

"Yes," I said through my split fingers.

In front of me, over a patch of clean cut green grass and a yellow, red, and orange Taco Bell signature sign, was a fresh gas station with a willow tree *** near the front entrance. He had a sign that hung around his neck that read Juice Please - Very Thirsty. How I knew this was because I had seen it every time I had been asked to fill up my dad's car every other Sunday. I had never given the tree a dollar, yet, I felt that I owed him something. I tried to pull up to the window, but my clutch was grinding and a cloud slunk overhead. I was tired and only wanted to eat.

"That'll be a two twenty-five," the voice said through the thick, clear glass.

"Yes," I said to myself, digging into my wallet for three dollars.

I ****** the three onto the thick plastic platform. A quick sweeping plastic brush pushed the bills toward the asker, and the bills were gone. I had no food. I had nothing. My money was gone and all I had was a gurgling car in front of me and an empty front seat beside me. A pair of clouds waded by my front shield window. A shadow drew itself out in front of me like a **** model. A beep. Sudden and behind me. There was sound. I looked over my shoulder and a black  2013 Cadillac was sitting there, windshield tinted grey, the driver a shadow. I was unsure what to do...so I pulled forward six inches, hoping the offer would be enough. I wasn't in the best neighborhood.

The window to the left of me slid open. An arm erupted forward with a plastic bag,
"75 cents is your change."

The hand dropped three quarters next to the plastic bag. I grabbed the bag with the two tacos and three quarters and quickly wound up my window. The face in front of me was a dangerous blur: smiling, frowning, not caring either way what happened to me next. The hands had gobbled up the three dollars and I was happy to see it go. Who needed money? I tossed the plastic bag onto the passenger seat and sped off two blocks for my grandma's house. Salvation. The holy land. A place with free hot sauce and two dog's that were stolen without paper's. Eden.

-

"What are you learning right now?" I asked Ally.

She hesitated, then said, "Something to do with science." She paused," Lot's to do with rock's."

"Rocks?" I stammered, not remembering a time when I learned about rocks in school, "What kind of rocks?"

"I don't know," she grinned, looking up at me, "All kinds."

I laughed and kicked a stone into the river. The sun was out and reflected on the water like an unpolished diamond. We had grown up a quarter mile away, but still, it felt foreign to us.

"I like it. There's some things you could see that you would never think to read about it in books."

I had read plenty off books. Most, I took little from, but Ally, I could see, had taken plenty.

"What are you doing in school?" Ally asked me.

"What do you mean?" I

— The End —