Art and the philosophy of life

Archive for July, 2018

Ghosts…a very short story

“Do you see them?” he asked.

“Yes.  I didn’t think there would be so many,” she said, shivering.

“People have been dying for a long time so, of course, there are a lot of them. And these are just the ones who have stayed behind.”

“What do they do all day long?  Stand still, or float around?  And why are they here?  Why didn’t they disappear after they died?”

“A lot of them don’t realize they aren’t still alive, but others stayed behind because they wanted revenge, or justice.  Some simply refuse to leave the people they love.  There’s no reason for them to stay.  Look at them,” he said, “they aren’t here, or there.  If they would just cross over, they could begin again, rather than simply exist.”

“Can’t you help them?”

“I try,” he said.  “Look at their clothing and you can tell how long they’ve been nowhere.  After a while, they forget who they are and why they didn’t move into the light.”

“That’s terrible.  To forget who you are,” she said, sadly.  “When the people they love die, can’t those people find them and take them with them, as they cross?”

“It doesn’t work that way.  Besides, the ones who forget, don’t actually understand how things work any longer.  They end up like blank screens.  I’ve been successful a few times.  But there’s a lot to be done.”

“You have a difficult job.”

“I do the best I can.”

“I’m sure that you do.”

“Does that mean that you will allow me to lead you to the light?  You’ve been here a long time.  I can help you.”



Bath Time — Petals Unfolding

I have to admit I’ve begun to believe I have the Luck of the Irish with me these days. I am stunned by all the encounters I’ve had of late that have required being in the right place at the right time. Grateful? Beyond words! I could weep for joy that seemingly the time has […]

via Bath Time — Petals Unfolding


Show Street Travel Man Art Music Live Perf

Why did we decide to call misery, sadness, and feeling melancholy, the blues?  We all know what ‘having the blues,” means.  We listen to ‘the blues,’ the music wailing out the downbeat side of life, through saxophones and low throaty voices, that tell us all about loss, cheating lovers, broken hearts, and broken fences.

Why BLUE?  With all the colors available, why did someone, somewhere, say, “I’ve got the blues, baby, so move aside?”  Red, has too much heat, yellow, too much sun.  White is far too sterile.  Green is way too grassy and black, too hopeless.

But what about gray?  Cloudy days, fog, mist, blandness, middle of the road, boring?  Gray is the perfect color to describe the BLUES. Blue is skyward, happy, beautiful, full of joy.  Gray just lays there, like cement, in the middle of the street, sighing, as cars roll over it.  Gray has no energy, it just is.  It’s a great accent color, but it’s the blues in real time.

“I got the grays, baby,” might make you think of aliens, with small bodies and big heads, but it’s a far better description of bleeding out from a broken heart.  Gray is no mans land, a place that exists in the ‘in between,’ while blue means the sun might be out.  Gray is thick, depressing, cloud cover that NEVER moves.  Gray goes perfectly with Nina Simone dropping her words into our lives, one at a time, telling us about her grief and the bad things in life.

Hey, all I’m sayin’, is that gray is the real color for the blues.



This plant is always loaded with flowers…it’s amazing…it loves to bloom.


Emily, after breakfast…



The Bookstore, A tiny story

“We can talk, if you promise to behave,” she said, staring at the fairy, sitting on the step

“You have my word,” he said. “I promise…I will behave.”

She walked outside and sat down next to him.  The dog padded to the doorway and flopped down to keep an eye on things.

“What do you want to talk about?” she asked.

“My sister, the princess, and books, not necessarily in that order,” he said.

“You think Bunny is your sister?”

“I do,” he said.  “She was taken by an enemy of my father’s, two years ago.  We have been looking for her ever since.”

“Fen said she was a Halfie. She can’t be a Princess and be a Halfie.”

“Our father is the King, her mother was human,” he said.  “Did the cat really eat Fen?”

“Yes, he did, and he has been trying to get the bad taste out of his mouth ever since. Are you a full blood?”

“I am.  My mother died when I was born.  My father met Bunny’s mother when he was in your world, getting a new treaty signed.   When he found out she was pregnant, he brought her to Fairy, to have the child.  He was going to put a forgetting spell on her afterward, but they fell in love.  She lives there still, grieving over her stolen daughter.”

“Yes, well, you can have your word back. I don’t believe you for a second,” she sighed, standing up.  “Now go away, before I call the cat.”

He grinned at her.  “I said I would behave.  I didn’t say that I would tell the truth.”

“Goodbye,” she said.

“I really do want a book.”

“Order it on line.”

“They don’t deliver to Fairy,” he said, frowning.  “You do know that, don’t you?”

The cat walked around the dog and sat on the top step.  “I’m hungry,” he said, staring at the Fairy.  “Really, really, hungry.  I just have one question…do you guys all taste alike?”

When she turned around, the fairy was gone.


Coffee and books…

“How many languages do you speak?”

“Does Pig-Latin count?” she asked, sipping her coffee.

“I’m not sure,” he laughed.

“Why? Do you have an overwhelming need to tell me how many languages you speak?”

“Only if you want to know,” he said smiling.

“Oh, good, because I truly couldn’t care less.”

“Wow, not very friendly, are you?”

“You mean because I didn’t ask you to sit down and talk to me?  Or because I’m not saying the things you want to hear?”

“No wonder your alone,” he said, shoving the chair against the small table,  before walking away.

She took another sip of coffee and opened her book.

“Can I assume he wasn’t Prince Charming?”

“And you are?” she asked, turning the page.

“Are you kidding?  You need a Prince like an elephant needs ice skates.”

She turned another page.

“What are you reading?”

She held up the book.

Dark Days, by James Baldwin?”

“That’s what it says on the cover,” she sighed.  “It’s short.  I thought I could read it while I was having coffee and minding my own business, but people keep interrupting me.”

“Have a nice day,” he said, backing away.

She didn’t answer him, she just kept reading.

“Sorry, Lacy,” said Danny.  “This one’s on the house, for all the interruptions you’ve had.”

“Thanks,” she said,  “but it’s not your fault.  I don’t know why guys think they can just talk to any woman they see.”

“How else are we supposed to meet you guys?”


“If we don’t talk to you, how can we ever meet you?”

“But I don’t want to meet anyone,” she said, closing the book.

“I’ll make a sign for you, that reads, BACK OFF I DON’T WANT TO TALK TO YOU SO GO AWAY!  You can put it on the table and save yourself all this grief.”

“I’d love that. You’re a good friend, Danny. Thank you.”

“Lacy, it was a joke,” he said, shaking his head.

“Then I’ll make my own sign, but thanks for the idea.”

“What if you miss the right guy, because of your sign?”

“There is no right guy,” she said.  “Thanks for the coffee.”

“All the tables are full,” said the man in worn jeans, and a white shirt, with the sleeves rolled up.  “Can I sit here? Not interested in conversation, just want to read.  I can see that you have a book as well, so if it’s not an imposition, I just want to share the space.”

She nodded and went back to her book.  An hour later, they both looked up and smiled.  “Thanks,” he said, “that was perfect.”

She smiled.

“Maybe we can do this again.  If we share a table, no one will bother us.”

“Good idea,” she said.

“See you tomorrow, same time?”

“Yes,” she said. “Tomorrow, same time.”

Danny stood behind the coffee bar watching them.  He smiled, as they left.  “Yeah, Lacy, there is no right guy,” he whispered.









Quote: H. Jackson Brown Jr., writer

Trammpolin, Feather, Web

Watch the sunrise at least once a year,
put a lot of marshmallows in your hot chocolate,
lie on your back and look at the strs,
never buy a coffee table you can’t put your feet on,
never pass up a chance to jump on a trampoline,
don’t overlook life’s small joys
while searching for the big ones.

–H. Jackson Brown Jr.

Love…a tale

“Is this seat taken?” he asked, smiling at her.

She looked around the empty room and said, “Yes.”

“How about the one on the other side?”

“That one’s taken too,” she said.  “I’m early for a meeting and I’m saving all the seats in the entire room, for my friends.”

“Wow!  Impressive  I don’t think I know anyone else, who has that many friends in the workplace.  Perhaps I’ll just sit here until your friends arrive,” he said, sitting down.

“Who are you?”

“I’m the guy who wants to know if you’re busy this weekend.”

“The entire weekend?”

“Yes.  I thought we could get married and have a short honeymoon before getting back to work.  Or, if you like, we could quit, take a very long honeymoon and find new jobs when we run out of money.  I vote for the second idea, but I’m good with whatever works for you.”

“I have a cat,” she said.

“So do I. Her name is Becky.”

“”You named your cat Becky?”

“That was her name when I adopted her.  I didn’t want to change it and cause her more stress and confusion, so Becky is her forever name.  What did you name your cat?”

“Stella.  Her name is Stella.”

“I like it,” he said, thoughtfully.  “Did you name her after the cookies or the movie?”

“I named her after my great-grandmother and the cookies.”

“Good choice,” he said, nodding, shoving his long legs, under the chair in front of him.

“Who will care for Becky and Stella while we’re on our very long honeymoon.”

“Maybe one of your many friends,” he laughed, sweeping his arm around the still empty room.  “There is no meeting, is there?”

She sighed and shook her head. “No.  No meeting. I just needed a break and this room wasn’t being used, so I thought…”

“You thought you would just duck in here and regroup?”

She nodded.  “Exactly.”

“It’s quiet in here,” he said.

“It was quiet, until you came in,” she laughed.  “Why did you come in here, anyway?  Were you trying to get away as well?”

“If I tell you, you’ll laugh at me.”

“Maybe, but tell me anyway,” she said, turning toward him.

“I was walking down the hall, on my way to a real meeting,” he chuckled, “when I felt this pull on my heart.  The closer I got to the door, the happier I felt,” he said, looking at her. “I knew that when I opened the door, something wonderful would be waiting for me, on the other side.  Something that would change my life forever.  I knew I was in a red flag moment, and I didn’t want to screw it up, because this was going to be a once in a lifetime chance, a chance that I would never get again.”

“THAT was the best line I EVER heard,” she said, looking into his eyes.  “I mean that, sincerely.  Women don’t have lines like that.  Well, maybe  a few, but that was…”

“It wasn’t a line, it was the truth.”

“Do you think the cats will get along?”

“They will.”

“Where will we go?”

“Wherever you like,” he said.

“What’s your name?”

“About that,” he said, squirming uncomfortably.  “Let me just tell you upfront that my parents were hippies, as were their parents before them.”

“What is it?” she snickered excitedly, drawing closer to him.  “Is it Moonbeam?”

“No, it’s not Moonbeam, although I think my mother would have liked that one. It’s Reed.  I’m named after the reeds that grew by the pond, next to which, I was conceived,” he sighed.

“My name is Willow, named for the tree under which I was conceived, during a rock concert,” she muttered, shaking her head.

“Willow and Reed, kindred spirits,” he said, taking her hand.  “So, will you marry me and take that never ending honeymoon?”

She withdrew her hand, opened her bag and took out an old fashioned date book.  She leafed through the pages, making little noises, until she said.  “Sure, why not.  Let’s get married and make kids by the side of ponds and under trees.  If it was good enough for our parents, it should be good enough for us, right? And besides, I don’t have any plans for this weekend, other than caring for Stella, that is.”

“Would you like me to make the arrangements?”

“Let’s go to Paris.  We can stay in cheap hotels and stay out late, singing songs to the Seine and sleep late in the mornings. We can add a love lock to a bridge, shop at outdoor bookstalls and eat crepes, three times a day.  I love Paris. It will be fabulous.”

“Sounds absolutely perfect,” he said, happily.  “I actually have a place in Paris, but I’m okay with staying in cheap hotels, if that’s what you’d like to do.”

“You have a place in Paris?”

“I do and I know where to get the best eclairs and brownies.  I also know where all the bookstores are.”

She pinched him.  “Just checking,” she said.  “I mean, Paris, eclairs, brownies, cats and books?  I had to make sure you were real.”

“I think you’re supposed to pinch yourself, not the other person,” he whispered, kissing her.  “Is that real enough?”

She shook her head.  “I think you better do it again, just to make sure.”

“So, it’s settled then?  Married Saturday morning, leave for Paris.  Stay away forever, if we like, and have kids outside.  Works for me.”

“Is your place an attic room with a slanted roof, no heat, but a window looking out over the rooftops where you can just see the top of the Eiffel Tower?”

“You’ve been reading too many books.  It’s nothing like that at all.  Although you can see the Eiffel Tower from the window.”

“Good enough.  Are we really going to do this?”

“We are.  Do you want to keep your name or take mine?”

“I was just going to ask you the same thing.”

“What is your last name?” he asked.

“James.  I am Willow James, no middle name.”

“Reed James,” he said, “I like it, but if I took your name, they would have to change the name on the front of the building and that would be a bother.”

“Right.  Your Mr. Dean,” she said, grinning.  “THE Mr. Dean.”

“I am, and before you run away,” he said, panic in his voice, “it’s not my fault that my parents were hippies AND brilliant.  I’ll get a different job, for minimum wage, if that will make you happy. You will NEVER, ever, have to SEE anyone in my entire family.  I promise. Although I think you’d probably like some of them.”

“I have to go,” she said, picking up her bag. “It was nice meeting you.”

“Please,” he said, softly.  “I can’t help being who I am, anymore than you can.  I meant everything I said.  If you walk away, we will both be turning down a chance to be utterly happy.  You were going to marry me, a few minutes ago, when you thought that I was just me.  That’s who I am.  That IS me.  I’m not a name.  I don’t care about any of this.  We can live in an apartment, a cottage, or a hut, but don’t walk away.  Don’t….”

She stood there, looking at him.  She knew that what he was saying was true. She reached for his hand and said, “I won’t fit into that world,” she said.  “I have to be free.  Can you walk out of here with me and get lost?”

He put his arm around her and they left the building together.




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