What do the King of Pop, Queen of Comedy and Victoria Slotto have in Common?

•November 30, 2015 • 4 Comments
In case you’re aren’t as cool hot cool dope sick sweet cool whatever as I am…
King of Pop

King of Pop

Queen of Comedy

Queen of Comedy

Victoria Slotto and half her husband

Victoria Slotto and half her husband

Okay. So what do these awesome icons have in common?
No. They aren’t all dead.
Maybe. They all have innovative moves people will try (but fail) to copy for years to come.
Yes. November 30 is an important day to each of them.
These famous people never let 11/30 go by without a major celebration.
  • Lucy was married to Desi in 1940.
  • Michael’s landmark Thriller album came out in 1982.
  • Victoria got interviewed at Lorna’s Voice in 2015.
So I’m going to have to monitor Victoria during this interview because she has her party pants on and is, well, a little rootin’-tootin rowdy giddy.
We’re here to talk about her novel, The Sin of the Father.
I read this book, so I know it’s worth reading. Here’s part of my five-star review of it:

How would you handle shocking news that changed your definition of yourself and made you question everything about your life as you knew it? This is the challenge that Victoria Slotto presents us with as we follow her protagonist, Matt, through his journey of doing just that.

Matt, just like any person, is imperfect. He struggles with himself and with well-meaning friends from whom he turns away. He makes life-altering decisions out of fear and confusion–sound familiar? It should. We all do it. This is a book about what it is like to be human.

Victoria Slotto wrote about the difficult subjects of death, dying, betrayal, alcoholism, homelessness, abandonment, and self-doubt with the elegant touch she brings to all of her writing. This novel was artfully written and will stay with me for a long time. And isn’t that the hallmark of a wonderful book?

Can you see why Victoria and all her Peeps are all WOO!! WOO!!??

Can you see why Victoria and all her Peeps are all WOO!! WOO!!??

Lorna: Okay, Victoria, let’s settle down and talk about your book.
Victoria: I’d love to Lorna! What would you like to know? I’m just so happy to be here! You’re great! First question? I’m ready!
Lorna: (removing coffee, cookies and any sharp objects) How about some warm milk? Okay, where did the idea for this story come from?
Victoria: This is a bit of a believe it or not story…but it’s the truth. One morning about 3 AM I awakened from a deep sleep with the basic plot. I dragged myself out of bed, went into the family room and jotted it down. So, I suppose you could say it was a gift.
Lorna: You’d be surprised in what I believe in. So what happened after you got dream-zapped with the plot?
Victoria: Those cookies sure look good.
Lorna: They are, but you don’t need the sugar high, Girlfriend. Want some celery?
Victoria: Celery?
Lorna: Sure! The chewing will burn up some of the I-just-want-to-party-my socks-off-energy.
Victoria: I don’t think celery is going to help.
Lorna: (Offering a stalk of celery) You never know until you try. About your writing process?
Victoria: (Accepting celery with anti-celery face) A few weeks after the dream/gift, I went by myself to my desert writing retreat and outlined the story in detail (CRUNCH). As I fleshed out the plot over time, (CRUNCH, CRUNCH) the characters took on the project and told me where to go (with it.) I did character profiles based on the (CRUNCH) Myers-Briggs (CRUNCH) and setting descriptions (along with research and the help of a consultant Franciscan in Chicago) before I began to write. During the entire writing process, (waving last bit of celery stalk in air as if an orchestra conductor’s stumpy green baton) I edited as I went. Maybe I’m becoming the victim of OCD, but this worked so much better for me. The first novel I just wrote with no idea of where it would take me.
Lorna: Well, live and learn…or dream and learn, right? And no more celery for you, Missy! Who is your favorite character in the story and why?
Victoria: Oh, that’s easy for me: Father Uriah. He is my ideal of what a person who follows a spiritual path should be…for me, as a Christian, the embodiment of God’s loving kindness and forgiveness. He’s a human vessel of goodness. I think, because of the exposure of so much scandal in recent years, I want to remind my readers that there are so many good people who minister in so many spiritual traditions. I’ve been blessed to know many of them over the years.
Lorna: You watch Scandal, too? Isn’t Olivia Pope awesome in that complicated, strong-but-vulnerable, smart-but-stupid kind of way?
Victoria: (Shaking her head and tapping her toes) I wasn’t talking about the TV series Scandal.
Lorna: Do you hear music? Oh. Well. Hmmm. Forgive me for trying to bring in a bit of popular culture into this interview. Speaking of forgiveness, the theme of this book is clearly forgiveness. Which do you think is harder to do: forgive another person for something they have done to you or forgive yourself for something you have done to another person? Why?
Victoria: I believe self-forgiveness is harder because we are so programmed to expect perfection of ourselves. It’s a bit of a pride-thing. We know others are messed up, so we can let it slide by. Not to say it’s always easy. (Humming now)
Lorna: Hey, you looked right at me when you said that bit about others being messed up. Okay. I know I’m quirky. But, shizzle my dizzle, how boring would life be without the quirks of the world? Wait. Don’t answer that. Oh, heck fire, let’s have some cookies!
Victoria: Finally!
Lorna: Don’t get too excited. They’re vegan.
Victoria: Oh. I forgive you.
Lorna: Hey! They’re good, especially when you haven’t had butter in 20 years! You might learn something new. And speaking of learning something new, writing is a process during which you learn and grow–at least that’s what I’ve experienced. How did writing this book change you or what did you learn from writing this book?
Victoria: Well, this is something important to me, quite personal, even. I’d separated myself from the practice of the faith I was raised in and lived intensely for many years. I explored–studying Buddhism (still consider it a beautiful influence in my life), Mystical Kabbalah, New Age spirituality, American Indian Spirituality. I drifted for a number of years and it was a wonderful experience in my spiritual development and I still embrace many aspects of these practices, incorporating them into my Catholic Christianity. But in working with characters like Father Uriah, I knew I was missing something that is too much a part of me to ignore. And so I returned “home.” I think of something I heard Thich Naht Hahn say once…that eventually we need to go back to our spiritual home. Maybe that is why this gift was offered me…even if no one else would have ever read the book, it changed me. And these cookies are quite good!
Lorna: (Smiling, chewing, swallowing) So Matt, your protagonist, transformed by the end of the book and so did you. I read it and felt transformed. You could say there was a whole lot of transforming going on. Egg-replacer. I never bake without it. Everything comes out much more moist than if you use eggs. You should try it. So do you have any other stories in you waiting to be told?
Victoria: I’ve been waiting for that inspiration to appear. I do plan on putting out another collection of poetry. Poetry is a passion for me. But very recently, I met an incredible woman who wants me to write her courageous story. We have recently begun discussing it, beginning to work out details. No details, yet, though. Egg-replacer?
Lorna: Yup. Even if you aren’t vegan, use it for moist and delicious baked goodies. Memoirs are challenging but fun to write. Let me know if you need help. I have some experience in that genre. (Winking)
Victoria: (Getting up and doing huggy-twirlly dance with me) Thanks for the baking tip, offer and for the interview, Lorna. You really are a treasure!
Lorna: No, no, no, Victoria! You are the treasure. And I’m getting dizzy!
To find out more about Victoria’s books (novels and books of her amazing poetry), visit her blogAny one of her books would make a great holiday gift!
Aw, come on Victoria. I This twirling is making my head spin. I know you're over the moon about being interviewed, but a dizzy blonde has to take it easy...

Aw, come on Victoria. I this twirling is making my head spin. Is Michael Jackson available to cut in?

Coloring Outside the Lines

•November 23, 2015 • 30 Comments
Now that there bear has talent!

Now that there bear has talent! I’m assuming he’s alive and sitting up that straight waiting for a treat. Not many children are capable of this trick.

Nobody loves artistic talent more than I do.

Okay. Maybe other people love artistic talent a lot, too. Fine.

Maybe I should have said nobody appreciates artistic talent more than I do.

No, that’s not better.

I’ll stop now.

You probably have surmised that this post has something to do with artistic talent.

And you’d be correct.

Sue Clancy is an illustrator extraordinaire (that’s almost French for awesome).

I met Sue when she took a writing workshop I taught recently.

Not only is Sue illustratorious, she writes well, too. If she wasn’t such a nice, positive, happy person, it would be easy to be miffed at her for being so darned talented.

Sue, being the sweet person she is, showcased me on her blog recently and sketched some adorable pictures of me and the furry/feathery companions that I mentioned in my memoir.

I’m returning the favor and introducing you, my Lucky Readers, to Sue Clancy–an artist who has had her work in national and international art exhibits and in selected scenes during Season 4 of Portlandia!

Sue is always busy doing something constructive, but she's willing to chat with us today, yeah!

Sue is always busy doing something constructive, but she’s willing to chat with us today, yeah!

Lorna: Hi De Ho, Sue! How are you doing this fine day?

Sue: I’m great, Lorna! Thanks for inviting me over to your wonderful blog. I’m honored.

Lorna: My pleasure, Sue. I’m just happy you carved time out of your busy schedule to chat with me. You seem to have many irons in the fire or wear many hats (and any other idioms that are appropriate–remember “idioms” from class?). Tell us about some of your projects that best define Sue Clancy.

Sue: I wasn’t prepared for a quiz. Can I just talk about my projects?

Lorna: Sure, go ahead. I was just teasing. An idiom is an expression that means something other than the words used to create the expression. They are figures of speech. But go ahead…

Sue: Thanks, I remember now. As an illustrator, I help other people tell their stories visually by creating custom-made fine art for specific places and people. I’m currently creating a scene of a Schnauzer and a Labrador that tells a metaphoric story of a lawyer and a judge. I’m also working on a set of large art pieces for the lobby of a children’s center that will help tell (at a glance) the story of what the center does. I’m shipping some completed artwork that contains stories to cheer people up destined for a hospital wall on the east coast. My client base is mostly lawyers, doctors, hospitals, libraries and restaurants: places with spaces open to the public. Of course regular people who like humor, animals, books and food see my artwork in galleries and acquire it as whimsical decorations for their private homes. For example, a recent client got my piece “Taking a Leek” for her bathroom! Here’s a picture of that artwork.


Lorna: Oh, Sue, that’s cute. You do know I love puns, right?

Sue: I do now!

Lorna: I’m thinking you’re pretty famous. Do people come knocking at your door to commission you?

Sue: I wish! No. I have to do all the social media stuff and social networking during gallery openings. I’d rather just do my art, but I have to put myself out there.

Lorna: I know the feeling. I wish someone would discover me. Well, a few someones have noticed me, and that’s nice, but I’m still living quite a few blocks away from Easy Street.

Sue: Me, too, but that’s okay. I’m having fun!

Lorna: You would be, Sue. Do you ever not smile? No. Don’t answer that. So, what’s a normal day for you look like?

Sue: I get up in the morning; have coffee and breakfast, read a while, chat with my wife Judy. Then I walk to my studio–a room in my house–and dye, cut and glue the cut paper pieces together to form my visual story images. When the artwork is finished I make sure it gets wherever it’s supposed to go. If the art is an illustration or a story, I send it to a publisher. During my day, I take breaks. What I see on a walk, eat during a meal or read in my books often inspires new art. I record my thoughts (and recipes) in my sketchbook. Then during the night I have more thoughts which I jot on a notepad by the bed. Often my sketchbook is the last thing I work on in the evening and the first thing I consult in the morning. On my blog at www.sueclancy.com, I post my sketchbook pages. Here’s one:


Lorna: Seems as if you really live and breathe your artwork. That’s dedication! Is art what motivates you to get up in the morning and start your day?

Sue: Oh yes! I wake up excited to explore the stuff I’ve written/drawn in my sketchbooks. Thoughts of colors, designs, story ideas I thought of during the night and scribbled on my bedside notepad. I wake up thinking about a current project in progress. And coffee!

Lorna: I’m thinking you don’t really need coffee.

Sue: Oh yes I do!

Lorna: If you say so! To date, what do you define as your biggest success and what did you learn from it?

Sue: It’s hard to name just one “biggest” success. The first illustration sale I did when I was in high school and I thought “Hey I could do this for a living!” Discovering my art style. Getting my first gallery representation. The first $10,000 painting I sold and I thought “Hey, this is for real!” Having 8 paintings in one exhibit sell before the exhibit even opened. Moving to the Northwest and getting 3 one-person art shows scheduled before we were completely unpacked.  Then there are the small daily successes that I think are even more important successes:  resolving a difficult area within an artwork, meeting a deadline, being organized, making a submission to the right place at the right time. My biggest success of all is showing up every day to do my best artistic and literary efforts.

Lorna: Sue, I said ONE success. You artists! You never seem to be able to color within the lines!

Sue: I know! Isn’t it wonderful?

Lorna: Depends on your perspective…Let’s try this again. To date, what do you define as your biggest failure and what did you learn from it?

Sue: I think “mistakes” and “failures” are the artist’s path. Obstacles are the path to any success. What I try to do is fail well, to be wrong as quickly as I can and pay attention to what’s happening as it happens. I think 95% of an artist’s job is being able to nimbly make, learn from and then correct mistakes without letting it stop progress. Early in my art career I made the mistake of thinking an artist had to “suffer” for their art, that somehow the “suffering” related to making good art. By trying to do large pieces of metal sculpture I learned that I enjoyed designing the sculptures on paper but I did not enjoy the physical process of welding the cut metal pieces together. My trouble with large metal constructions was that at the time I weighed about 125 pounds if I wore a sopping wet wool coat and held a stack of encyclopedias. The physical work was exhausting, but I persevered because I suffered so I must be making good art. Pretty soon I realized how this thinking was getting in the way of my own success and switched my artistic focus to works-on-paper. That fit much better. I learned though all of this that by making my day-to-day working processes a joy and a delight –rather than something to suffer through – I would get a lot more done! I began working with joy, love, humor as my motivation rather than a puritanical set of self-flagellation “must” and “should” rules. My artwork still has a 3-dimensional quality to it. When I do a “painting” it is layers of cut paper on cradled board and sticks out from the wall almost 2 inches. I do art on all edges of the board. Here is a photograph of what I mean.


Lorna: It’s good to know that artists don’t have to suffer to make great art. I prefer not suffering. Let’s pretend for a moment. You’ve been granted one “do-over” from your past. What would it be and what would you do differently?

Sue: It’d have been nice not have been born into a family very strict Southern Baptists in the middle of fly-over Oklahoma while being gay, artistic, intelligent, female and deaf. I’d have picked a family of laid back Humanists, Buddhists or Atheists on the West Coast–and still been gay, artistic, intelligent, female and deaf. Growing up might have been easier. But I strongly suspect I wouldn’t be the person I am now. And I’m glad I am the person I’m becoming.

Lorna: Wow, talk about building character the hard way…but is there any other way?

Sue: No. Not the kind of character that matters, anyway.

Lorna: Artistic, intelligent, and wise. Okay, Wise One, what project(s) do you have on your drawing board (literal and figurative)?

Sue: I have lot’s of things on the horizon. Two fine art exhibits in 2016, a special commission, an article/illustration I’m contracted for, possible updates on my eBooks “Dr. Bob’s Emotional Repair Program First Aid Kit” and “Coffee Table Book”… and the exciting possibility of collaborating with a wonderful dizzy blonde writer I met during a workshop I just took from her. We’re talking about doing some children’s books.


An illustrated a series of teaching stories and concepts for a psychiatrist.


An experimental guide for my exhibits attempting to answer the “what inspires you” question in a smart phone friendly way.


Lorna: Yes, I know something about this. But first I have to figure out how to write stories for children and release my inner child.

Sue: I can’t wait to work with you on creating magical children’s books. With your words and my illustrations, they’ll be great!

Lorna: That’s the plan! Well, thanks, Sue for sharing your time and talent with us. I have a feeling we’ll all be seeing your work in a book, office, gallery, or home near us–no matter where we are.

Sue: That’s the plan! Thank you, Lorna!

Sue’s work can be seen at these galleries:

Caplan Art Designs www.caplanartdesigns.com

23 Sandy Gallery www.23sandy.com

Joseph Gierek Fine Art www.gierek.com




Ten, Nine, Eight,…

•November 19, 2015 • 53 Comments
Please, don't make this post as long as the last one or as much of a bummer as the short one before it.

Please, don’t make this post as long as the last one or as much of a bummer as the short one before it.

Time for another round of flash fiction compliments of  Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers challenge.

Time is slip-sliding away, isn’t it?

It’s like, poof! One minute it’s now and the next minute it’s now, only a week later. This time poofing is something someone should study.

These fellas look as if they know something about poofing.

These fellas look as if they know something about poofing.

Anyhoo, C.E. Ayr provides this week’s inspirational photo. My flashy fiction (all 99 words) is totally made up this time.

And it’s not quite the downer that last week’s contribution to global depression was.

You’re welcome.

What? You don't find this photo inspirational? I bet you could write a flashy fiction piece based on this picture. If I did, you can.

What? You don’t find this photo inspirational? I bet you could write a flashy fiction piece based on this picture. If I did, you can.


Ten, Nine, Eight,…

Children scattered as Anna slowly counted down. “Ten, nine, eight,…” her hands firmly over her tightly squeezed eyelids. The countdown completed, she shouted, “Ready or not, here I come!”

She exposed nearly every hider she sought. Once discovered, the former hiders became Anna’s Seeker Gang in search for one notoriously clever hider. Derek never hid in the same place twice and he had a knack for spotting Scheherazadian hideouts.

Twenty minutes and still no Derek. “We give up.” Anna and her Seeker Gang sat on the curb, defeated.

Beneath them, under the grate, Derek chuckled. “Great hiding place, huh?”


I’m a pun-nut. The groanier, the better. I know the first step in resolving a problem is admitting you have one, but I’ve known about my pundereliction for a long time and I refuse to do anything about it. Where would the world be without one-liners like this: “It’s hard to explain puns to kleptomaniacs because they always take things literally.” Too intellectual? Okay how about: “I’m glad I know sign language; it’s pretty handy.”

What’s your opinion about puns? Got any puns you think I’d like?

Fozzie Bear loves puns and bananas. Why are not bananas ever lonely? Because they hang around in bunches. Ha. Ha. What did banana say to Fozzie Bear? Nothing! Banana can't talk, silly! But banana phone? Hmmm.

Fozzie Bear loves puns and bananas. Why are not bananas ever lonely? Because they hang around in bunches. Ha. Ha. What did banana say to Fozzie Bear? Nothing! Banana do not talk, Silly! But banana phone? Hmmm.

Dark Jade, White Jade, Screenwriter James Jade

•November 17, 2015 • 36 Comments
Trust me, this will make sense soon. I hope.

Trust me, this will make sense soon. I hope.

Once upon a time in a galaxy far, far away, I met a blogger named Dark Jade. He did cool things like host writing competitions and invited me to judge them, so I immediately knew he had great taste. Even though his first name was Dark.

Then he decided to get all artsy and crafty. Dark wrote some books. I supported him. Because that’s the kind of gal I am.

You probably have a good reason for hiding your identity, but, be brave enough to take off the mask as be yourself. I'll support you!

You probably have a good reason for hiding your identity, Dark, but, be brave enough to take off the mask and be yourself. I’ll support you!

Then he got even artsier and craftier. He got into filming things.

Anyway, flash forward to the future, or now, and he still has a blog, but it’s different.

I’m going to let Dark explain his most recent project because:

1. It’s really impressive (as you saw).

2. I have no idea how he did it.

And, by the way, Dark’s real name is James. Not that there’s anything wrong with Dark…

Is she every going to let this Dark James person get a word in?

Is she ever going to let this Dark James person get a word in?

Lorna: Hi James! Thanks for stopping by.
James: Hey, Lorna! Thanks for inviting me. Long time no see!
Lorna: Yeah, I know. I’ve been stuck in the two-dimensional world of print and you’ve launched yourself into whatever dimensional world you’re in with web-series stuff and movies. Kind of blows my mind, which isn’t all that hard to do. Even the name of your project confuses me.
James: What do you mean?
Lorna: So, you used to call yourself “Dark Jade,” right? Now you’re involved in this awesome web-series project called “White Jade.” What’s up with that?
James: Great question!
Lorna: Thank you.
James: Um. You’re welcome. Okay. Let’s see. Jade has been with me since I created her when I was 11 years old. She’s a strong female. Strong female characters have worked their way into many of my stories, probably because I grew up with a single mom who I admired very much (Freud would love this, I’m sure). In 2002, I created a production company called DarkLight Films. I came up with DarkJade as my writer’s pseudonym for my creative writing blog, which is where you met me. “White Jade” is a real gemstone, but it’s also the name a brotherhood of monks in the web-series. My main character’s father belongs to this brotherhood. Does that help?
Lorna: Kind of. James isn’t a bad name, you know. Jim, Jimmy, Jimbo…The possibilities are endless. Well, moving on. Seems as if film-making is your heart’s desire. When did you realize this? What there like a “ta-da” moment or some specific inspiration?
James: Yes! But when I was a little kid, I wanted to be a pro baseball pitcher. Even at 6 years old, though, I knew it wasn’t going to happen.
Lorna: Why not?
James: I lived in a remote canyon with a single mom who couldn’t possibly take me to practices.
Lorna: Sounds like a Stephen King movie. Poor you. Kind of like my original dream job when I was 5: being a nurse. Then I realized I couldn’t stand the sight of a needle in anyone’s flesh. So I decided to become a good witch. I just wanted t help people and jobs for girls were limited back then. Mr. King, are you reading this? So back to you and your film-making dream after the pro baseball pitcher thing struck out…
James: A witch? Really?
Lorna: Focus, James. Film-maker?
James: Oh, okay. In 1977 when I saw the original “Star Wars,” I knew I wanted to make movies. “The Empire Strikes Back” just confirmed my aspirations. Rather than the stunning special effects, I fell in love with the fantastic story concept coupled with strong, memorable characters. I try to emulate that combination in every story I tell, be it in book or movie form.
Lorna: Yeah, me, too. I avoid special effects in my books and in my life. Too over-stimulating. So, James, think about your creative journey so far. What has been your biggest surprise so far…besides meeting me?
James: Ha! Meeting you has been a wonderful surprise, for sure.
Lorna: (smiling a self-satisfied smile, twirling my short hair) Go on…
James: I’ve been surprised at how many people have supported my creative efforts. I’ve always done things on my own and to have people rally behind my projects has just blown me away.
Lorna: Well, James, people do recognize talent when they see it. So it’s probably good you didn’t go with the pro baseball pitcher plan. I’m just saying…And speaking of potential mistakes, if you had a chance for one “do-over” in life, what would it be?
James: I don’t have any regrets. Really! I have had some rough times, especially with my physical health because of some decisions I had to make when I was going through a financially tough time and couldn’t get some critical medications I needed. But, hey, during that time I met the most amazing woman I’ve ever known and we’re together now because of all that crap I went through then. So no “do-overs,” thanks.
Lorna: Not even regretting eating too much fast food, huh? Fine. Whatever. Let’s try this: do you have a favorite saying/quote/motto? And don’t tell me it’s “Hold the pickles, hold the lettuce. Special orders don’t upset us.”
James: You’re funny!
Lorna: Thanks.
James: “Never tell me the odds.” Han Solo (“The Empire Strikes Back) I love this quote because people tend to undermine themselves or others when they believe that something is too difficult. They won’t even give it a try. If you don’t know the odds, you’re more likely to forge ahead.
Lorna: I like it. And you sure have lived to make Han Solo proud! The White Jade web-series trailer is awesome and the series looks amazing. What other projects are you working on?
James: Thanks, Lorna. I’m very proud of the White Jade web-series and the trailer I created. The web-series consists of 16 8-minute episodes, which I will be directing, editing, producing, and possibly acting in. That will keep me very busy. I’m about to release a sequel to “I Died Once” and I’m working on a fantasy novel, which I’m co-authoring.
Lorna: Wow, James, you’re one busy guy. I’m surprised you had time to chat. I’d better let you go.
James: Hey, Lorna, It’s been fun, as usual. Thanks so much!
For more information about James’ projects, click on the following links:

Hope you enjoyed this interview. I have a few more planned in the near future. And if you have a project you want to promote, let me know!

I'm not sure if I could handle an interview with this zany dizzy blonde!

I’m not sure if I could handle an interview with this zany dizzy blonde!


Mommy Said So

•November 12, 2015 • 75 Comments
I'm baaaaack! Surprised? Yeah, me, too!

I’m baaaaack! Surprised? Yeah, me, too!

I haven’t participated in Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers challenge in quite a while.

So I’m going to jump in with a thoroughly depressing little ditty.

You can hardly blame ME. The photo prompt is of a graveyard. I mean, really!

At least my entry falls below the 100-word limit (93 words). I had a death word dearth. You’re welcome.

Photo prompt courtesy of J Hardy Carroll. Thanks for the perfect Veteran's Day tribute photo!

Photo prompt courtesy of J Hardy Carroll. Thanks for the perfect Veteran’s Day tribute photo!

Mommy Said So

Daddy went away too soon if you ask me. “Not soon enough,” Mommy said to herself but I heard. “That man was troubled six ways to Sunday. And he had three daughters…” Mommy confused me sometimes.

Daddy probably figured dying was easier than living. Now my Daddy’s somewhere down there, in the dirt, while I’m up here trying not to mess up my white dress because Mommy hates messes. Daddy’s dirty; I’m clean. Mommy said so.

Where’d Daddy go? He’s gone; I’m here. Can I still be his little girl?

Mommy won’t say.


This story is memoir-ish. I suppose that is both linguistically atrocious and also incorrect. My father (who served in the army, but was dishonorably discharged due to the “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy back in the late 1950’s) killed himself when I was four. I was not permitted to attend his funeral. Indeed, I didn’t know what happened to him until I was much older. So, as a little girl, I couldn’t have had these thoughts at his grave. My mother never had a harsh thing to say about my father–she rarely mentioned him. The part about a father who killed himself is true (memoir); the part about a little girl who understood is fanciful but based on truth (memoir-ish or fiction).

Okay, enough of this uplifting chit-chat.

Don't know about you, but I'm ready for the train to Happyville. All Aboard!

Don’t know about you, but I’m ready for the train to Happyville. All Aboard!


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