give me a trailer made for two, a smoke and something borrowed but not blue
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Suddenly I See

Dr. Bob and Mr. Bill…both drunks…knew something that usually takes a great mind

…never see what has been…see remains to be done…

years to comprehend.

I could not relieve the demon and soul lost that lay within…

without first giving in!

Though lacking in organized religious thought…

The masses had been what I fought.

The release in pressure is what I sought.

On a day that not too long ago I…

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My Brother Forrest!

Sometimes I feel like Forest Gump.  Actually, if I were being honest…9 times of ten, Forest and I are like one.DSCN3405 He ran, however, I walk.  I walk and walk and walk and walk.  Sometimes I feel I am walking away from something.  Other times I feel I am walking towards something so significant…it will change my whole outlook on life.
I walk, essentially, and similarly to Forest, to feel!  It is my…

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I don’t think this about being gay.  I don’t think it could be…even if IT wanted to be!  That is  until today when I reminisced of the times when scar face had been my shadow.  When being gay was not only not okay…it was a sin.  And, the pain, the embarrassment and the guilt was as real as the day I had to put others beliefs in beauty ahead of my own.
I had been having some morning TV with my coffee.  Just about the only time I watch the crap they feed us is when I am not quite awake.  The lovely actress from 12 Years A Slave had been, very swimmingly, accepting accolades for her work.  Lupita Nyong’o stated very adamantly that as a woman of darker color than creamy cocoa… there had been a forever stigma attached.
That many richly emblazoned African-American women believe themselves ‘uglier, more standard and/or less lovable’ because of the stark darkness of their skin.
Not giving it much thought other than an empathic nod…I went about my day.
But bully the beauty must stop with me.  With what I can write and with who I can reach:
By the power of the cats, a prom photo from a loosened album lay upon my office floor.  I jokingly and unwittingly sent it to the young man who happened to draw the short straw for that date some thirty years ago, via FACEBOOK.
‘You could have been so beautiful’ had been the response from my mother.
And, there is where the whole bullied beauty started.
I tried to fit in.  I tried to be like everyone else.  I wore the prom dress. I smiled for the camera.  I hid inside my music, my writing and my mind what had been the truth of ME.
I became that scared and scarred child…all over again!
Lupita and I are not that different.  As I am sure many struggling with their homosexuality, feelings of being born into the wrong body do.  As I did so many years ago.
I had been given the gift of being a girl.  Why couldn’t I be a Beth?  I teen who played with make-up?  I child who preferred pink to blue?  And, where had my flawless body…so promised me…gone?
Why couldn’t I have just stayed straight?  Not been different?  Played by the rules!
I look at that picture now, long dress, heels and forced beauty.  I can tell right away that girl turning into a young adult was not real.  Not happy.  Not the woman I had wanted to be.
When I turn on FACEBOOK to tune the day’s events out I see skinny, cardboard boxes and cut outs of women that look just like the last woman I saw.
How hard it is to stay true to yourself when the only thing the world wants from you is to be like everyone else?
Though the years have hardened my skin.  It hasn’t hardened my soul.
Yet, I still believe that there was a night in my parent’s bedroom.  Clock nearing midnight, yellow wallpaper adorning the dusky silhouettes.  A man sits at the end of the bed and a woman prepares herself at the vanity.
I know down deep in their hearts this thought had crossed their minds:
‘Why does she have to be so different?  What did we do that was so wrong?’
Beauty, my friends, is around the corner.  It is in the woman you helped raise.  She is now a mother herself, encouraging her children to find grace in being unique.
It is in the friend who lives down the street making ends meet, building a house into a home and raising a bi-sexual teen the best way she knows how…with love.
It is in the partner you lay next to every night.  The woman who struggled for so many years with scars so deep the plunge she took to relieve them…only made her stronger.
I finish with this thought.  What if gay were okay?  What if colors were things we sought from a rainbow?
What if we didn’t bully beauty?  What if beauty is indeed…far deeper than the tone of our skin and abandonment of our someone else’s ideals?
And it’s alright if you hate that way
Hate me cause I’m different
You hate me cause I’m gay
Truth of the matter come around one day
It’s alright
-It’s alright/Indigo Girls

Bully the Beauty I don’t think this about being gay.  I don’t think it could be…even if IT wanted to be! 

Leave Your Penis Alone!

Leave Your Penis Alone!

I have to get this off my chest right now. As I am sure other dog lovers/owners/bitches will understand my plight:
the animal below when in an enclosed room. While everyone has there inside voices on…tends to make this horrible licking noise. It is almost pornographic. I am sure he is just cleaning his feet. But it unnerves me nonetheless. I keep having to tell him…there is nothing there!

Dear RandomwordbyRuth

Dear…

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**Warning the following post may contain material not suitable for those who do not understand the nature of the beast!

‘Do you swear to tell the truth the whole truth so help you and your spiritual advisor?’

Yes!

‘Place your right hand on the Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance and repeat after me…’

So often the topic of homosexuality falls into the following realm:

‘Hey, do ya’ think them gays came out that way or do ya’ think it’s the way their Momma dressed ‘em?’

Really, is that what it all boils down to?  Is it really that simple?  And, for that matter, does it really matter?

Having been born and raised in New Hampshire and having lived down in the heartland of the south, there is only really one question that should matter.

Northerners are true blue assholes.  Southerners tend like offer you a Mint Julip, shake your hand with pride on their faces and as you turn to make your way back home…the knife is placed ever so gently in your back.

I am cynical, sadistic, masochistic, sarcastic and socially unruly.  And, that my friends is solely due to environmental lack of control.

My grandfather, long since not among the living, had been the devil’s Jack of all trades, master to none.

He was an Irish beat cop from Boston.  His police profile making him look like one of Hitler’s youth.  Joe, I suppose never should have parent-ed, but he did and he did with an iron fist.

However, not to completely harpoon his image…there had been a softer side.   He enjoyed photography.  After all, it hadn’t been too long ago, say, 1960, where he had been promoted to Inspector of Fatal Accidents.  Training ensued.  A camera, a bag, a badge and a darkroom followed.  And, with little fanfare, JoePoe had become something of an amateur photographer.

I believe it was 1977, give or take.  The only reason I’m semi certain of the date?  Someone important had died…Elvis!  Devastated about the man’s passing and concerned about taking pills and using the toilet at the same time…life became somewhat lacking in grace.

The following Christmas we were due to head down to Waltham, Mass.  Home of nothing important, dirty and ugly and housing my grandparents.

Sitting ’round the dinner table: Winston’s smoking the air, Coors’ light filling the gullet and homemade Kahlua indulging the women folk, the scene was similar to the Walton’s on Crack.

As the under cooked still kickn’ Pot Roast and the over cooked watered down stewed yams made their way towards my young self, a burst of energy shot through dear ole Joe.

‘Wait, they haven’t seen the new pictures yet!  I’m really mastering the black and white theme.  Pulling in the linear sides and really making the most of the subject matter!’

Well, when a drunk Irish Cop totting a .45 magnum and a Polaroid tells you to stop?  You stop!

The following photo gallery have been taken from the archives of JoePoe:

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Not sure what I received that Christmas.  My father always got the same thing, a ten pound fruitcake and a pack of Garcia Vega cigars, which he did not smoke.

I do know that yams, Pot Roast and Ruth met only one more time after that…and that was ten years ago at my partner’s family Thanksgiving get together.  It had been my coming out to the O’Shaughnessy debut.

I cried, sobbed and shared my familiar story with my new In-Law family.  And, then I smiled and stated the following:

‘Not sure about that nature and/or nurture thing.  I guess I just am what I am…that is along with the 13 inch buck knife my grandfather left me in his will!’

Tough love?  Tough shit!

Tough love? Tough shit!

Cyncism: Nature or Nurture? **Warning the following post may contain material not suitable for those who do not understand the nature of the beast!

How to be brave without really trying by my cat?

Or,

I’m not Mrs. Doolittle but I wish I were!

A rainy night in a northern town brought this pillow talk question:

‘ If you had to choose one animal out of all the animals in the house…for whatever reason.  Say, you found yourself without a house, shelter and means of support.  Which one would it be?’

Awful I know.  What a way to go to sleep?  Can I choose another question?  However, it lead me to the topic that has tattooed itself to my thoughts today.

My house is full of brave, caring and wonderfully charismatic souls and here is why:

Excerpt from the book Distant Voices/Distant Rooms-

Suddenly a phone rings at a not so distant animal shelter, an

anonymous call. They usually are. No one really wants to get

involved, step on toes and what not.

Unexpectedly, this quiet little situation has become an all out

emergency. That is when the animal shelter worker is called

upon—then and only then, when the situation is out of control.

More math and morbidity! So finally all the cats are rounded

up. It is difficult at best because they had been promptly

removed from the living quarters by the elderly couple about

a year ago. They were placed in a dirt basement. During this

transition, many natural “things” occurred. So it is difficult at

best to dredge up the cats, two and a half years later, because of

the confined space.

Out of the flea-infested, ringworm-satiated, flat worm contaminated,

roundworm-polluted, parasite-ridden basement,

are Have-A-Heart traps, one at a time. Many domesticated cats

are simple enough to contain to a basic cat carrier. However,

these are no longer domesticated cats. They have been without

socialization for quite some time. And even before that, the

kindness and the light of day had been sporadic. They arrive

at this little hole-in-the-wall shelter, a non-profit animal welfare

organization based solely on donations from donors that want to

believe in “no kill” shelters. At this tiny little shop of horrors, the

long and tedious process of entering descriptions, dispositions,

weights, ages, sex, etc., begins. This is a long and tedious

process, but it must be done for statistics, statistics that aren’t

usually handed out to the public.

All anyone really knows and can be sure of is one thing: Out

of these forty domestic short hair and domestic medium hair cats,

all with varying tones of gray fur, many will have wished they

never left the basement. The fact remains: most of the elderly

couple’s cats will not have the ability to fight off common feline

illnesses such as upper respiratory infection, flea anemia, Calici

virus, feline HIV and what not. These unsuspecting animals

have been inbred to the point that there are outward appearances

of disfigurement and internal disfigurements as well. This clan

of brother and sisters, mothers and uncles, fathers and daughters,

this brood will be wiped out before the entering of their “live”

data is completed!

On any given day, at any given animal shelter, when a

phone rings, an animal will have just been “put down” for many

reasons. The most commonly used rationale: they were put down

because they had been un-adoptable.

I found myself questioning this whole who are we theory.

Who are we to know what is adoptable or not? What gives us

the right or privilege to take a life? I found myself met with the

same curt and thick-skinned response; we kill the few to save

the many…

In the shelter business, if you’re lucky enough, you can do

the actual “putting down” of an animal on sight, less mess, more

cost-effective. The tool of demise is frequently known as blue

juice, and in fact, it is a mild blue liquid, a pretty tone really,

that is if you’re into that sort of thing. Blue juice is actually

what many anesthesiologist use for sedation. Little known fact!

The quickest way to euthanize a cat is an injection directly into

the heart. Some say, it’s the most humane. I, personally, never

injected but I held the victim.

I wonder which makes you feel worse. Ruth has held the

needle, injected,

and held the victim, sometimes, all by herself.

Obviously, it would be best if there are two staff members in this

process. Often times that would only happen in a perfect world.

Sick, injured, feral and unappealing cats do not come from a

perfect world. And they most certainly don’t keep bankers’ hours!

 

We are fooling ourselves into believing that there are No Kill shelters.  Until the day that there is no illness, no aging and enough volunteers/adopters to go around the world twice…there will only be Low Kill.  And, that is only with the help of Trap, Neuter and Release Programs.

Animals Save Lives Everyday…it’s about time we returned the favor!

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ADVERSARY:

All the participants in this post had at one point or the other been slated for an animal green mile.  Either due to behavior, age, health and/or lack of shelter space.  They are currently being home schooled.

Meaning, they are at home schooling me!

‘I WONDER WHAT WOULD HAPPEN IF WE ALL START SPEAKING UP?’

 

How 2 B Brave…by my Cat How to be brave without really trying by my cat? Or, I’m not Mrs. Doolittle but I wish I were!

Fruitcakes at Wal-mart?

If it's broke fix it...how hard is that to figure out?
the Bridge too Far

the Bridge too Far

The beautifully sedate city, Concord, inhabiting the mundane state of ‘first in the nation primary’ New Hampshire, in the late 70′s and early 80′s seemed oblique to a young and restless youngster such as myself.

the NORM

the NORM

Yet, there were a few townie characters to which I owe my vivid imagination.  One such customer, Norm, traveled with a shopping cart, an old army sleeping bag,…

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I don’t go to fast but I can go pretty far!

I don’t go to fast but I can go pretty far!

I don't go to fast but I go pretty far.

I don’t go to fast but I go pretty far.

As a crowd of lesbian Hell’s Angels gathered ’round the square…you could hear a handcuff drop…the larger than life group had been just that quiet.

After all, they had traveled thousands of miles.  Put up with the man handling pervert at the security point and allowed the ‘freakish’ strange male flight attendant to buckle them all in to their seats.

Japan…

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The Living Years

I know that I'm a prisoner  To all my Father held so dear  I know that I'm a hostage  To all his hopes and fears

I know that I’m a prisoner
To all my Father held so dear
I know that I’m a hostage
To all his hopes and fears

My life story in a line…believe in me because I don’t believe in anything!

Or, better yet, there is a fine art to life.  And, that is simply in between the things we choose to see.
As a child, we all long to be, the next president of the United States, an astronaut, Cher and/or Barbra…

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L is 4 the Way U Look at Me

L is 4 the Way U Look at Me

It had been awhile sense the LOOK.  I had seen it coming ’round a corner at the local grocery store.  It is usually accompanied by a person who does not know me but feels that know enough about my kind to cast a LOOK!

The LOOK is notorious amongst my ‘kind’ and needs little introduction.

My partner knew of which I spoke. She had seen that ‘Look’ before too! Let me describe for you the ‘Look’ and…

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