Tuesday, August 31, 2010
our world is going nuts
i got cable in my apt
after one night of watching,,
it was the only way to get Internet,
so i got the cheapest cable package,
from religious programs to the Food Channel,
what the heck is going on out there?!
i heard one preacher say that 7 suitcase bombs,
are going to be set off at the same time in 7 major U.S. cities,
and then he said,
"I am not trying to cause fear.." ???
i heard a famous news personality say "I am still angry about New Orleans!"
so what Brian,
then i checked my emails..
got one from a guy I don't know telling me I worship statues,
upon which i asked if he had pictures of dead relatives in his home.
He did not not consider pictures "graven images"...huh?
I replied that I did not worship statues,
then he called the Catholic Church the great "Whore of Babylon"..
and said that I worship Mary...
i said he might should be careful calling the Church Jesus started that..
I told him I honor her as Jesus would want me to...
the only person I worship is the The Holy Trinity..
he kept insisting as if i didn't know what i believe..
then he said it was lie of the "Roman Pagan Church" that Christians should worship on Sunday.
he screamed with exclamation marks...
i told hm we are gong to have to disagree and for him to hang in there..
i turned the tv off and closed my lap top..
Monday, August 30, 2010
i saw "Get Low" yesterday..
Robert Duval and Bill Murray..
an incredibly fresh and timeless film.
Redemption, forgiveness, death, friendship..
Duval is incredible..
not many films deal so honestly with guilt and conscious..
based on a true story..
my uncle was scary too..
rumors still live about him,
though he died last year..
and he did scare the heck out of me..
i still wonder how much was true..
Saturday, August 28, 2010
the life we live is the life we are given
the life we are given is the life we live
we would know only fear and dread,
usually disguised as pride..
for without Him we can do nothing..
except screw things up royally..
but we have hope...
it is so simple
it is so hard..
this morning the crows were quiet when i left the apt.
they watched me but didn't say anything,
i waved with only two fingers..
seasons are changing
soon it will be cool again,
and the crows will caw with joy..
they are autumn creatures..
so am i.
Friday, August 27, 2010
last night i did the "Life on the Rock" show in Birmingham..
it went well..
i am always amazed at God's mercy..
He is full of surprises and gifts,
the best thing about my short time there though,
beyond the playing and sharing,
was the two Masses I attended..
after the show Fr. Mark took Doug (co-host) and I to a small chapel,
a chapel where the visiting priest hold private Masses,
the humility of the room was incredible..
Just me, Fr. Mark, and Doug..
i could have stayed there all night.
then we went and had Mexican food..
this morning before i flew to Nashville i attended the early Mass,
the reverence for God is palpable..
the love for Jesus is so precious and real.
i came away with the best part..
for this I am filled with gratitude..
He really is mad for us sinners..
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
I don't know what to say..
the hopes and fears we carry,
sometimes they are light and easy,
other times heavy and demanding..
i had dinner with a friend and his family last night,
his young daughter so curious about everything,
i told her many times and she kept asking..
it reminded me of when my son went through this..
the curious stage..
simply wonderful, fun, and annoying all at once.
i taught her some Latin..
"In Vino Veritas"..
she had fun saying it..
we should ever lose this curiosity,
of course we learn to embrace it differently as we mature,
but this sense of wonder is worth finding again..
we could become apathetic and bored..
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
this van Gogh was stolen from a gallery in Cairo
if i were an art thief,
i would want it too..
how could this "crazy" man capture such moments?
these color's so sublime,
so much more than real..
as if color itself has a soul..
there is a deep melancholy in this work
a feeling of summer coming to an end..
if i had stolen this i would just sit and stare,
Monday, August 23, 2010
Stan shot Harrison in the left bicep..
on the 2nd floor stairwell,
as Stan fell forward,
down the flight of stairs..
the back of Stan's head crushed in the shape of the fire extinguisher..
the bullet piercing Harrison's arm through had bounced off of something,
it was not a direct hit..
Stan also shot himself in the femur, hitting an artery,
so he died from the blow to the head or the bullet,
however, Stan would no longer play a role..
Harrison walked through the lobby,
Cara ran to him..
"Everything is ok sweetie, let's get out of here."
"What about your arm, you're bleeding!"
Outside the hotel he gave her the keys to his truck..
it was parked in the garage across the street..
she ran to get it..
she pulled up and got out..
"Do you have a t-shirt in your backpack?"
She found one and he tied off his arm.
He got in the driver's side and they headed toward I-55 North.
"We are going home."
"Are they going to come after you?"
"Maybe not, at least not anytime soon."
The death of Stan would send a message to the group.
Harrison knew how things worked,
they would lay low after the loss of their top hit man..
Harrison hoped against hope that he was wrong about Joe..
but if Joe was dead, this may appease them for good...
It was midnight when they crossed Lake Pontchartrain..
the moon reflected off the endless stretch of black water..
Cara slept with her head on the middle console curled up in the fetal position..
her rosary dangling from her left hand..
he set the cruise control on 75 and reached for the rosary.
the end..( for now)
Sunday, August 22, 2010
looked for something to jam it..
the fire extinguisher on the wall..
he stuck it between the lever and the door..
it would give them a few seconds...
"Cara!, go up two floors and take the elevator down,
when you get to the lobby wait for me.
I am going to make sure he follows me."
She didn't want to leave his side but she said nothing,
the man was pushing against the door..
she ran up the stairs as fast as she could..
Harrison went down the steps and waited..
the door flung open and the man saw Harrison,
bullets bounce and ricochet, without much sound, unlike the movies,
they began this journey on the 4th floor..
Harrison knew this man chasing him,
in fact, he knew him well..
They had been friends in the group he was undercover with..
Stan had killed many people, good at his job..
Harrison grabbed a fire extinguisher from the wall as he passed the 3rd floor,
he knew Stan wouldn't stop, even if they got away today..
and now he knew they knew about Cara..
Saturday, August 21, 2010
Hello folks, I am excited to announce I will be the guest this week, Thursday August 26th, on the EWTN show, "Life on the Rock". It airs at 7:00 CST, 8:00 EST, 5:00 Pacific.. It is an hour long interview show.. i will also be playing three tunes live..
Direc TV channel--370
also, you can watch it live here on line..
Please pass this on to your friends and enemies..
I hope you tune in, and even more, I hope you say a prayer or two for me..
Direc TV channel--370
also, you can watch it live here on line..
Please pass this on to your friends and enemies..
I hope you tune in, and even more, I hope you say a prayer or two for me..
The blue Mercedes pulled up in front of the hotel..
the man in the back seat got out and walked around to the trunk,
he removed a black golf bag..
his black Tommy Bahama windbreaker matched his black Bahama slacks..
the Nike baseball cap was also black..
he looked expensive,
fitting in perfectly with the other guest as he walked through the lobby..
Harrison and Cara were finishing dinner...
"When did you get the call?"
"I had only been in the room for a few minutes."
He dialed Joe's number on his Blackberry..
"He's not answering. We need to leave, immediately."
Cara walked to the bedside table for her rosary.
She had not unpacked her backpack...
the long twisting hallway was empty,
they moved quickly toward the elevators...
The man left the golf bag in the elevator..
his jet black machine-pistol in his left hand held low,
close to his side..
Cara and Harrison passed the door leading to the stairs..
"Wait a minute.." Harrison stopped walking..
"Let's take the stairs."
Cara was very afraid at this point..
she sensed fear in her dad, and he never showed fear..
Harrison was 46 years old and fit for his age..
6"2, 212 lbs
He had played football at Ole Miss in the 80's,
Cara was now a cheerleader there..
When they opened the door the man rounded the corner,
as they entered the stairwell he released a round in their direction..
Friday, August 20, 2010
The meeting Joe had went terribly wrong.
He was standing on Canal St. waiting,
the wind had brought rain, it was cold..
He was meeting an informant,
hopefully gaining information to help Harrison,
Joe and Harrison had been friends for 2 years,
they started together with the FBI in New Orleans..
He was in charge of Harrison's safety,
his go between.
Joe's cover was as a Bookie..
the man he was waiting on pulled up in an old light blue Mercedes,
"Hey Joe, get in"
Joe hesitated for a second, this was not the plan,
they were supposed to meet on the corner and walk..
"It's raining man, get in the car."
Joe had learned to trust his gut,
his gut said don't get in the car..
He glanced in the back seat and saw another man he didn't know..
"You go ahead, call me later." Joe backed away from the car..
in an instant the man in the back seat rolled down his window and fired..
Joe went sprawling backwards,
the buckshot made a red oval pattern across his chest..
The car sped away as Joe lay in a heap on the sidewalk..
Thursday, August 19, 2010
Cara grabbed the receiver and pressed 0..
there was no answer..
she hung up the phone..
the knocking became more urgent..
she walked slowly to the door..
she stood on her tip toes to look through the peep hole,
to her amazement,
it was her father..
she opened the door and fell into his arms..
"How did you find me?"
He brushed back her tears,
"I followed you and Joe from the Cathedral.",
"Did Joe know?"
"No, it would have been to risky for both of you if I had told him.
It was better to do it this way."
He ordered room service and sat down on the leather couch,
Cara sat down next to him..
"What did Joe tell you?"
She told him what Joe had said and he seemed pleased..
"When your mother and I split up two years ago,
I moved here to do some undercover work for the government.
I had no idea it would become this serious.
Thankfully, i don't think they know about you and your mom..
They don't know my real name."
She listened intently, amazed at what she was hearing..
"what's going to happen daddy?"
There was a knock at the door..room service..
They ate Seafood Gumbo and Crawfish Étouffée..
Cara hadn't realized how hungry she was..
"Did you call a few minutes ago and hang up?"
He stopped eating, "What?"
"Did you call earlier, did you call the room?"
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Joe had to meet a man on Canal Street..
He took Cara to the Windsor Court Hotel on Gravier st.,
he knew the concierge well and trusted him..
The Windsor is a Four Diamond hotel,
busy with high end customers,
Joe felt it the safest place for her to stay the night..
Cara had never been in such a fancy hotel..
the room was like nothing she had seen before..
it was larger than the apt. she and her mother shared in Oxford..
Joe told her to order room service, not to leave the room,
He would be there early in the morning to take her to the airport..
Cara reached for her rosary in her purse..
she placed it gently on the bedside table..
her world was upside down,
fear she had never known rushed over her..
she wished Joe had not left her alone..
she walked to the window,
the view overlooked the Mississippi river,
ominous and foreign in the silver moonlight..
was this a dream?
the phone rang breaking the frightening silence,
she was startled,
she ran to the phone..
there was no answer..
"hello, who is this?"
she hung up the phone and ran to the door,
locking it with both dead bolt and slide lock..
she called down to the desk and asked for the concierge..
"Yes, this is Cara, Joe's friend,
someone just called my room,
do you know who it was?"
he said he didn't and would call Joe immediately..
as she hung up the phone,
There was a knock at the door...
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Joe walked her to his car,
it was turning cold..
a bitter wind blew from the direction of Lake Pontchartrain..
Cara was confused and anxiety grew within..
"Why are these men after my dad?"
Joe opened the door for her..
"Get in, we can talk in the car."
He started it and turned on the heat..
"It's better if you don't know too much,
but i can tell you this,
Your dad is in trouble for doing the right thing."
Cara turned to him when he said this,
"What do you mean?"
Joe removed his hat..
she could see his eyes for the first time..
he was older than she had first thought,
he carried himself much younger than he was,
"The men after your father are criminals,
they are part of the New Orleans Mafia,
your dad has been working with the FBI,
he was undercover and they found out.
That is all I can tell you."
As they pulled away from the curb,
a black Cadillac Escalade also pulled away a few spaces behind them..
Monday, August 16, 2010
Cara looked around for a priest,
but no one else was in the sanctuary,
only the teenagers, and a few older ladies..
she took a deep breath and walked toward the man.
He raised his head and stared at her..
"Who are you? Why are you following me?"
the man reached in his coat,
he pulled out a white envelope,
it had her name written in blue,
"Your father knows you are looking for him...
He hired me to keep an eye on you.."
she took the envelope and opened it,
"Dear Cara, I am sorry I can't see you..
I really want to, but it is not possible right now..
Joe is the man I hired to keep an eye on you..
This is a dangerous town for a young girl all alone,
you can trust him, I have known him for a long time.
go back home and when I can I will contact you.
I love you very much..
Cara sat down next to Joe..
Why can't he see me, where is he?"
Joe told her that her father was in a situation where he must stay hidden..
some very bad men were looking for him,
and she was in danger as long as she stayed in New Orleans..
Saturday, August 14, 2010
the man did not pray
he did not genuflect before he sat down
he did not remove his hat
his eyes did not close for a moment
he watched Cara.
She went through each sorrowful mystery slowly,
praying for her estranged father,
for her hard working mother,
for her best friend Isabel who was still in Mississippi,
as she meditated on the wounds of Jesus,
she prayed for herself..
for guidance in finding her father,
it had been two years since she saw him or spoke to him,
now she was alone in a city of strangeness..
only her faith, her prayers, the Eucharist,
these were the things that gave her strength and hope..
she finished the prayer, crossed herself, stood..
there were three teenagers a few feet away to her left kneeling,
she was glad to see them here..
then she noticed the man..
his head was down and the bill of his hat hid his eyes.
she realized he was the man on the street..
Friday, August 13, 2010
she walked through the crowd
the atmosphere festive
some people were dancing
the phone in her pocket vibrated
"this is Cara.."
as she spoke to a friend,
she noticed a man watching her from across the street..
he lowered his gaze,
turning to his right as if not interested..
she moved on toward the church,
the St. Louis Cathedral was only a block away..
it was beautifully silent inside the amazing structure,
the smell of incense calmed her mind..
a different world from the streets of New Orleans,
a solace in the storm..
candles were lit throughout and one red candle near the Tabernacle..
she made her way to the kneeling rail,
her rosary clasped between her hands..
"Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee,
blessed are thou among women,
and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, Jesus."
the man entered from a side door,
made his way to the back pew and sat down..
Thursday, August 12, 2010
there is something very fascinating about living..
in an apartment complex..
hundreds of people so close,
possibly more distant than anyplace else on the planet..
eye contact is almost always avoided,
and it feels as if someone is always watching,
like when you go for the mail, wash clothes, get in your car,
a very odd feeling..
i have new neighbors,
they moved in a week ago.
they are Oriental, i think Taiwanese,
we have said hello once,
and this was when the locksmith was drilling through their door,
they are incredibly quiet folk,
i never hear anything..
my last neighbor made the normal noises of living,
cabinets slamming, tv, etc.
so far, i have not heard a thing,
but one thing is for sure...
i want to eat dinner with them!
every time i walk up the flight of stairs leading to our adjoining balcony,
I smell the incredible aroma of whatever they are making for dinner..
the essence of soy mixed with other spices,
i am tempted to knock on the door with chopsticks in one hand,
and Sake in the other!
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
i was watching a story about a pianist..
he was 90 years old...
hailed as one of the greatest to ever play.
the person interviewing him asked,
"How have you been able to sustain this ability for so long?"
the old gentleman said simply,
"I still do not know how to play."
He went on to say he learns something new everyday..
this is brilliance...
a childlike heart..
humility is painted right before our eyes..
He also said,
"Imagination and curiosity are vital to staying fresh in the gifts we are given."
"For they are simply gifts,
we can either be good or bad stewards."
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
the segue from sleeping to waking was smooth sitting in the office now waiting for coffee the sound of silence engulfs this cave, this bunker... i have to admit i like it.. in one corner i have a reminder of God's mercy, in another, books of poetry and a few novels.. in another corner a painting by the artist, accordion player, Jeff Johnson.. and then finally a photograph of my loves.. mercy comes in many disguises for me, it has come before as sickness, also , it has come in not being sure how to pay bills, once it came as great anxiety that shook my world.. and sometimes it comes painted bright blue like a cool autumn sky.. and in all of this, we are children with a Father, our elder brother has gone before us.. mercy came to Him disguised as a cross, and he chose it without waver, in a garden.. even though he was scared, sorrowful, filled with anxiety, he stood up and said what his very own mother had said 33 years before, fiat! wkm Nasville
Monday, August 9, 2010
the music we make is the love we share
i have learned one thing while living alone in Nashville,
we are who we are because of who we love
we are not our gift
not our talent,
not our ideas or beliefs,
not our successes or failures,
we are who and how we love..
this paints our beliefs, gifts, talents..
and when we do not love,
we cease being human...
we become something less than human..
i was watching television this weekend,
in between my personal non-stop home film festival,
yesterday the tv preachers all had one thing in common,
they were bathed in sarcasm and witty parlance's of self righteousness,
i wondered aloud,
"is this what Christianity has become in this America?"
an angry right wing political, out of context biblical, bully?
this was not the media I was watching,
it was religious programs..
what is going on, who has kidnapped our religion?...
maybe like King David when he was attacked by the stone thrower,
hurling insults at David for his perceived bullying,
maybe Christianity has become this image to secular America??
David's men wanted to lop off the head of the accuser,
but David said no,
Because maybe God had sent him..
Saturday, August 7, 2010
the barn was smaller than i remembered
i had not been back there since i was 12,
34 years ago..
memory's dream-like flooded my mind,
bits and pieces of moment, shadow, and emotions,
the dog pens between the house and barn had vanished,
as if never there..
along with Quarter Horses,
we raised German Shorthaired Pointers,
the sire was named Rock..
he was a liver spotted regal gentleman,
as noble as they come..
at one point we had 25 dogs,
not counting the five faithful mutts that followed me everywhere I'd go..
the wood barn was bleached by the sun,
sad, worn and tattered..
i used to climb up in the loft to drop hay down to my horse,
i found my dad asleep on an army cot in the loft,
i was quiet as a mouse as i dropped the hay through the hole above the stall,
i wonder now what i must have reasoned as to why he was there..
i think i was 10 at the time..
i had a vivid imagination,
i probably pretended he was a G.I. Joe on a mission or something..
i had no idea it was the beginning of the end of the only life i had known..
redemption's story always begins with upheaval,
and losing one's way.
Friday, August 6, 2010
we were in the little fishing boat
my dad, my mom, and me
Hazel was fishing off the shore about 50 yards away...
our lake was 5 acres and it had a long levee
along the levee were numerous willow trees,
it was actually very beautiful and dreamy.
but it was also dangerous because of all the Water Moccasin,
they sunned themselves hanging from the trees..
the best spot for Bluegill was a log sticking up close to the levee,
my mom tied us up and we got our hooks in the water..
it was hot, Mississippi hot..
the fish weren't biting where we were,
Hazel was having better luck off the shore..
we watched her catch five in a row..
my dad popped the top on a cold Budweiser just when my mother pointed..
a Water Moccasin that was hanging from a limb fell into the water..
it started coming toward our little boat..
my dad seemed a little concerned which made me a little concerned,
my mom put her pole in the boat and was trying to untie us,
the snake was about 10 feet from us when he fired the first shot,
he carried a 22 pistol with a pearl handle when we fished,
the snake then tried to get in the boat!
my mom was screaming,
my dad held his Budweiser in one hand,
and tried to hit the snake with a paddle in the other,
i don't think he spilled a drop..
I sat there as in a dream
he knocked the snake from the side of the boat,
when it surfaced a few feet away it turned and came back toward us..
by this time my mother and I were paddling while my dad re-loaded his 22
it chased us
when we got to the shore my mother grabbed my arm and jerked me out of the boat,
Hazel helped us both onto Land..
the snake headed for the bank and slithered out of the water,
he emptied the 22 again,
never even came close..
Hazel grabbed a paddle and with one swing killed it dead..
my dad still had the beer in his hand..
Thursday, August 5, 2010
i remember riding in his Cheyenne Super 10,
it was two tone, blue and white..
he had put glass-packs on it,
dual exhaust that sounded like a race car..
my dad was still a kid in a few ways,
i would go to work with him during the summer,
hanging sheetrock was no fun
all he let me do was clean up the scrap,
and "spot" nails..cover the nails with drywall mud..
to this day i hate the smell of dry wall
there was always a little radio plugged in to an orange cord,
country music blaring all day long..
whenever Merle Haggard would come on,
somewhere in the house my dad would shout,
"Sing it Merle!"
he even looked like Merle Haggard..
my dad didn't like politicians, preachers, or painters
except for one painter he became good friends with,
he liked hard working people, local cops, and a few country singers..
he didn't like "new country"..
said it had lost its way,, lost its soul..
said "they don't sing about anything worth a damn."
i used to daydream of being a country singer,
maybe it was because I wanted my dad to like me..
i never thought about it like that before just now..
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
there was a very old pony named Chester
Hazel kept him after Paw Paw died.
she sold the red mules and the goats
Chester lived for many years in the field,,
he became like a wild animal,
as invisible as a Buck,
he would only come out of the thick piney woods to see Hazel..
he wouldn't come if anyone was with her.
he seemed very happy to me as a child,
he would run through the field bucking and playing..
being an only child i also had to learn how to play alone..
one day in winter i was walking through the field,
the brown grass was high and the wind blew cold,
the dried alfalfa made a soft rustling sound in the quiet of the day.
I felt someone was watching me,
I slowly turned and saw Chester was following me..
i slowed down,
soon he was right behind me..
he put his nose on my back and nudged me,
he smelled wonderful,
like winter, earth, and soil..
clean and wild..
i put my hand on his neck and he let me pet him,
i did so till just before dark..