Ever wonder what lies down the roads you never took? The lives you never lead, or abandoned for another. What happened to them. Of course we can think of the major ones. We all know that we wished we had a chance to live out those. Would it have worked out? Would I be happier? Would I be better off, or worse?
But what about the little ones? The little decisions. What if I'd gotten a different color? What if he'd not asked me to 'hurry it up buddy'? What if I'd decided to not run off, to make a better impression?
Sure it seems little, but that could have meant a load to that one person. It could have turned a normal friendship into something that totally changed your respective lives.
Chew on that.


If a man is broken, what does it take to rebuild? What will it take to put the pieces back together and get him moving again?
It's not as easy as it sounds. When he's broken, he falls. He falls from a world of bliss, a world of light and warmth to a world of shadows and cold winds. He lays there in the mud, soaked from the rain. The lightning doesn't even light this place, it's light is stolen and only the fierce crackles are felt through the air. He lays there, huddling in that shallow grave, cradling his broken heart, broken dreams, his tears mingled with the icy rain that pounds his weary frame. There are others there, but they don't see each other. They don't see past their pain. It blinds them, beyond just the eyes. It blinds them to warmth, to happiness, to the world outside their head. The water pours over open, unmoving, glassy eyes.
If you were to walk amongst them, you'd never sleep again. Their moans are the sounds of nightmares, their voices gone from screaming, only gutteral echoes of a past leak through their lips. The pictures of these broken bodies, once fine, strong men, will send shivers down your spine at every remembrance.
I have seen two of my friends here, in this dirty, hateful world. I was too afraid to help one, and I nearly lost him. This time, I will reach down, and pull him out of this premature grave. I will help him first to his knees, then to his feet. I won't let go until he can stand on his own. I will watch until the light returns, in earnest, to his eyes. I will usher him back into the world in which this soul belongs; one of light, not shadows: of warmth, not of cold. He will reach up, gather his strength from the storm, and become human again.


Hate. Pure, Dirty Hate.
It coursed through him.
Hate for this one, and that one. Over here, far away, everything. He wasn't in a good state of mind.
It got to him. It dug deep. The hate was just a seed for the tree of pain that was taking root in his mind. He had to dig it out.
Furious, he scratched at his face, trying to dig it out, trying to be like them.
But he hated them.
The slow pressure behind his eyes started to swell.
It was driving him mad, these feelings inside. He hated it. He wanted to kill it. Whatever it was. Hate? Sure why not? Why not hate that too? Let's hate hate.
Let's lash out needlessly at those we love. Let's ignore those close to us, because yeah, we hate them too. Let's strike pain and fear into the hearts of those we want to love us. Let's drive them away, so our demons can get in closer. Sure. Why not.
It wasn't like his life meant anything. It was just piles of ashes of pieces of other peoples lives that he had skipped to and from.
And he hated himself for that.
It itched again, that hatred in his mind. His knuckles white, he dug into his scalp until they came away bloody.
Someone, he thought, would need to happen along, or else this may be irrepairable.
And they needed to hurry.


If I was the devil, I'd have it made.
If I was the devil, I'd sit on parkbenches and watch people go by, all day long.
I'd watch people as they walked to their own destruction, day after day after day. They'd see me, pay their dues, and walk on.
I'd see them, doomed. Empty, zombies. It'd be so cool to me.
But then I'd see the good ones, the ones that are awake. They'd shine like a million fires, blinding me, burning me as they walked past. Each good deed would sting like hot iron in my flesh. Each smile, each quick prayer. Each time they reached down to lift another one up, I would cringe.
In the end, the bad news would wear me out. I'd go home, weary, scared for my reign. It wasn't gonna end soon, but I'd still have lots of work to do to keep what ground I had.



Music poured out of the windows of the house, mixed with cheers and laughter. This was seconds before the light came. The house was a light blue, with white doorframes and window sills. It was a warm family home. The toys in the yard had been picked up that afternoon, during the mad rush of preparations for the party. The kids had been washed, and there had been quite a few arguments about what exactly was going to happen.
“I don’t want that, yellow is icky!” Audrey yelled.
Sarah sighed. Of course it was icky, she thought, James likes yellow now.
Sarah had two children, a boy and a girl, with her husband Austin. Audrey had always been full of herself for the older child. She wanted James to listen to everything she had to say, and he did, but mainly because he couldn’t get a word in edgewise. She would regale him with stories of the Grown-Ups world, and explain to him why daddy wore a tie. “Because the boss likes pretty colors.” But if he ever tried to mimic her, she threw a tantrum.
Like now.
“Audrey, you have to pick something to wear. Our friends don’t want to see Tweety.”
Audrey’s face suddenly wrinkled up. Oh no, Sarah thought, not now.
“But I love Tweety!” And she did. Half of the stuff she owned was Tweety, including the underwear she now wore.
“And Tweety is yellow, isn’t he?”
Audrey looked up, “Yeah.”
“Then put this dress on and I’ll get James to change.”
She walked out of the room, glad to have averted another disaster. James would be okay with it. He was okay with everything. He was the polar opposite of his sister. She was blonde, brown eyed, bossy and very talkative. James was blue eyed, brown haired, quiet and laid back. He did what he was told, and liked to listen. They were both smart kids, but Sarah knew that James had something special inside him.
“James, honey, how about the red shirt?”
He looked up at her from his legos. He had built another castle. She was always fascinated at how much time he’d spend on these. Every time he’d finish one, he’d promptly take it apart, and start on a new one. She had helped from time to time, and she was always surprised at the intricacy. Each castle had different wings, different rooms, each with it’s purpose. His new fantasy was hidden passages. She knew that any smaller than average hall or opening was a secret passageway to escape when the ‘bad guys came.’
He picked himself up, and walked over to her raising his hands up. She lifted the shirt off of him, and replaced it with the red one, and let him get back to playing.


When he opened his eyes, she was gone. In a blink, he was alone again. He loved her. He would find her.
He had met her through a mutual friend. She was just out of a bad relationship, and so was he. They talked for a while, amazed at how well they meshed. Surely this was more than friendship.
But they took it slow. He knew she wasn't like the rest of them. She was pure. To hurt this creature would have stained his soul.
So he treated her like a queen. He listened to her stories, shared his, became her friend. And she trapped his heart. The more time he spent talking to her, the more he wanted to reach out and hold her. To feel her close. To press his lips to hers.
But it wasn't time yet. There was a greater plan involved. They shared one night that would stick in their minds forever. It wasn't anything special on the outside. They hung out at a diner, then took a walk through his neighborhood. They laid down in the street, to stare at the stars and clouds overhead, listening to the sounds of the night. He felt so close to her. Would this not be the perfect moment? Was this the time? But he chickened out, and it wasn't to be yet.
The next day, she went into the hospital. He worried, spending all day staring at his desk. Was she okay? What was wrong? Would he be able to see her?
He finally got through that afternoon. She was okay, not in much pain, but she was doped up. They didn't know what was wrong yet, but they were going to run some tests the next day.
Sleep did not come that night. It lay just out of his reach. He would drift off to the happy memories they shared, only to remember that those sacred times might now be in jepardy. He rose readily when morning came. Anything to keep him out of his own hell.
That afternoon, he called her father, and asked if he could visit her in the hospital. Once granted permission, he was relieved, but still more scared. He knew she was scared, and he had to keep a strong face for her, but could he do it? He didn't know what to expect, but he prepared for the worst. His preparation, it turned out, was just what he needed.
He stepped in the room that day, and never expected anything like what he saw. She was beautiful. She was lovely, even through the pain, the trauma of this place. And he saw his admiration reflected in her face. They were in love.
He spent every spare second with her in that room, keeping her happy. Anything to see her smile. They'd watch movies, they'd laugh, talk, walk around. Through her pain, they grew closer.
She quickly dropped her fear of showing pain in front of him. He came to realize when she was in pain, and what helped her through it. He'd distract her, talk her through it without even mentioning it. Needles and IVs were forgotten for silly jokes and long laughs.
And she got better. They sent her home, and he visited her there until she was strong enough to go out. He took her to a movie, a comedy, and they laughed together.
Then he slid his hand under hers. She didn't flinch, didn't tense up, but moved her arm to make room for his on the armrest. Their hands fit like two pieces of a puzzle. They walked out of the theatre holding hands, and he had never felt so proud of the girl on his arm.
That night, as he hugged her goodbye, he looked down into her eyes, and they were reaching for him. His soul reached out, and in a moment they would never forget, their lips locked.
As they tried later to describe it, words failed. Entire languages failed. It was like nothing they'd ever known. But each kiss afterwards carried the same love, the same awesome touch. When he asked her to marry him, she was surprised, but didn't hesitate. As the ring slid onto her finger, he felt his future coming into focus, and he was even more enamored by her than he had been before.
The first chapter of their life written, they joined hands and walked the path to their future together.


I saw her once, and my world was changed.
She warmed my heart, she was a light in the dark world. Her beautiful eyes, elegant body, great smile. It all hit me like a ton of bricks.
I am in the dark now without her.
I left her. You bet I regret it.
I walked away from her at an airport. I never knew the pain would be this intense. I never knew I would cry at night over the tears she had left on the shoulder of my tshirt while we waited for my plane to come.
I cried over the gentle touch of her hand on my face as I slept on her couch, head in her lap.
I cried over her smell, a smell that comforted me, even when I was troubled.
I cry today over the sound of her laughter, and the way her face used to light up when that smile came out.
I cry because she's not next to me.

But I know she's out there, waiting for me, as I wait for her. I cry as I praise God for creating such a creature. I cry as I see the light in my dark world. A faint light. Her light. It comes from the East, and if I close my eyes, I can imagine that scent, the smell of comfort in this harsh desert landscape. I feel the warmth of her touch, the soft feel of her skin. The tickle of her hair as it slid down my forehead, over my face, down my neck.
I cry as I miss her kisses, her touches.
I cry as I think about the long walks and the longer nights spent together.

But I smile as I see our future together.


So far away from home, I was lost.
There were so many choices, so many decisions, each with its own subset of problems and decisions. I was weighing the pros and cons of each, trying to make the best decision for me. My only problem was that I had about a second and a half to finish.
I dove left, into the heap of paper and cardboard, behind the metal trashbins. Sure, this worked in the movies, I'll just push it towards them, and they can't shoot through it.
Well, the bad guys in the movies never shot .45's and they never actually hit the thin sheetmetal of one of these things. Sure enough, holes were punching through the left side of the bin.
So I forgot to put that in the equation. Meh.
Sprinting further down the alley, I kept wondering why I was here.
Because you saw it in a movie, numbnuts.
I don't want you to think I'm crazy, I don't actually talk to myself. Out loud. He's right, it's more of a running commentary in my head. Keeps me level. It's almost like having two full capacity brains in my head. Example: My eyes were now scanning the alley ahead of me as I ran. I was concentrating on my footing through the garbage, and he would take note on what was ahead, so when I got there, I'd have a plan.
Like how about the back door of the deli? Dude was sitting there smoking and left it open.
He's good like that. Minor details are his forte.
Turned out the reason he left the door open was that he'd been hit by some of the metallic rain intended for me. Meh, win some, lose some.
This looked easy, but I knew I couldn't just barge out of the front of the store. Made that mistake once already. These guys were thorough. Besides the two chasing me, there was second car parked at the end of the alley. It was a Chrysler, and five bucks says he's waiting out front.
I know. I walked through the kitchen, pretending to belong there. But it's hard to fit in when you're wearing sandals and bloody skivvies.
Screw it. I grabbed a to-go bag, slid the knives off of the counter into it, and sprinted throught the door. Where he attempted to force the door through the back of one of their heads. After hearing his head split on the corner of the door, I chucked the bag at the other one, watching it hit him square in the face before ducking down to grab the gun out of the first one's hand. I swear, the thing weighed about 10 pounds. I turned around, following my sight with the pistol (hand cannon) like they do in the movies, and it was a good thing too.
I don't know if it's normal, but the first thing I thought after I watched that man's grey matter cover a particularly heinous painting behind him was that I wish I'd had earplugs. [To do for next escape from hitmen: Bring earplugs, pants and decent running shoes.] I grabbed his weapon, went back to the first one, grabbed his sport coat and headed for the door. The car - Chrysler - was idling on the patio, much to the chagrin of cheap table and yellow umbrella. The chairs escaped unscathed.
What's one count grand theft auto on top of two counts manslaughter?
Worth it. I already had the car in reverse.


I get distracted by beauty...
Me at work:
Customer: Burrito!
Me: What size? Freebird or Krystal?
Customer: What?
Me: Half-bird, sorry.
Me: Refried, black or Krystal beans?
Customer: What?
Me: Whole beans, sorry.
Me: Steak or Krystal?
Customer: Okay, buddy, you're creeping me out.
Me: Chicken, sorry.
Me: Is that for here or to go. Out there, where Krystal is?
Customer: Okay, nevermind. I want a burger.
Me: Krystal burgers...
Customer: Creep.


Lilting guitars can only say so much.
Crying violins have such a limited vocabulary.
The boldest of basslines has nothing on me.
I can take the world with my words. I can show them the man I am. I will show them what I am capable of.
I will show them that no one can stop me, no one can hold me down. You're either with me or against me, you make the choice. I have those whom I know won't hide. They'll stand behind me, as I'll stand with them.


For what it's worth, I never saw her coming. But you can't really blame me. Amazon Goddesses (for once in my life) were the furthest thing from my mind, as I was in a forest of rabbits. Not bunnies, mind you. Rabbits. Like, rhymes-with-rabid-so-it-must-be-bad rabbit. Kinda Steven King-esque, not that I'd know, I never actually read the books, but the red eyes looked like something off of one of his book covers, so it fits. It's also quite possible that you lose yourself in my train of thought. This is your problem, don't bother me with it. Please.
Anyway, the forest of rabbits was exactly what it sounds like. A large open space, with a bit of grass growing, but everywhere you looked, there was soft fur, sharp teeth, and beady eyes that glowed creepily in the low light. As I'll state often, this isn't too odd. Just creepy.
Anyway, there really was a forest of rabbits. No trees, everywhere you look, rabbits. Then the Amazon Goddess. Now that was a surprise. In all of these adventures, I'd never had a girl show up. At least not a good looking one.
At this point, one of my two heads took over, and it wasn't the one with two eyes.
I noticed her every move, the beauty and grace in the leaps she took, felling rabbits left and right with her mighty sword.
Okay, this is retarded. I have tons of scary adventures, and I choose to tell you about the one with rabbits in it?
Start over.
I didn't get out much as a kid. Not that I never had the chance, I really did. Just wasn't interested. I lived with both parents, nothing abnormal, everything good, coasting through high school. Hit college, and it went downhill. Did the freshman alcoholic thing. Got plastered to the point where nothing made sense quite a few times. That's a good point to be at. I miss it. Really do.
Then one night, I just kept pounding them down. Beers and coffee. So I was a very wide awake drunk. I started noticing things. Things like the pain of a fresh wound being streched. You know, that feeling when you have road rash, and you have to bend your elbow, but it feels like a hot poker is now residing in the wound? Yeah, that. Only there wasn't any such wound on my back. Ever. Never had one. But it was there, every time I raised my arm. Creepy non-existant wounds, it would turn out, weren't going to be anywhere near the top of my list of problems anytime soon.
Anyway, after that, I became what I liked to call hypersensitive. Basically, I could feel everything. The air molecules. Close my eyes and walk, drunk, through that messy apartment, and not hit a thing. Now that's a useful freakshow.


The time flex of these pills make me mad. The past is gone, hidden, but it was, it lived, naught but 6 minutes ago. But that 6, and now the 7th minute are gone.
Mention a week? My mind wanders to lost times and places.

Even yesterdays news is both BREAKING NOW IN YOUR FACE CANNOT ESCAPE ASIANS WITH MICROPHONES TALKING IN YOUR LIVING ROOM, and rocky hillsides with moss and relics of ages past.

The dimensions, they are all amock. Vision is tied to everything, so that I hear it and see it. These rolling rocking hills of the past! I fly through time like you cross a plain in a plane. heh.

Elevated! Elevated! Sometimes single words make more sense when the pills talk for me.

Fluids stop flowing and freeze. Repitititititions go on forever. And all end oneday.
Things flow, moving screens of death. Can I see it? Can I see it!
These are the very answers that we seek from you before you leave. Two Bridges closer, they are. We can smell the dust they bring. Their inferiour lifestyle is no good to us. Only their souls. Souls, yes, the very souls that have been taken from you, and from me. without knowledge. We will further the crime along.


Ah, to run away from it all.
At times, that's all I ask.
I want to travel the country in a worn out Jeep, taking crappy jobs as they come.
But I owe someone a better future than that.
All I ask is to know where I belong, and for once, be able to truly appreciate it.


Hey, It's life!
Hey, it's realizing that someone is closer to you in ways you never imagined.
Hey, it's sharing embarassing stories, but not being embarassed.
Hey, it's walking on the beach, holding hands, watching a lunar eclipse.
Hey, it's eating dinner just to spend more time together.
Hey, it's holding hands that feels better than everything you've ever known.
Hey, it's you.
Hey, it's love.