He Didn’t Listen

Callum did not like being told what to do. Callum defied authority. Callum did not like rules that did not fit into his mindset, his way of being, his comfy zone.

When Callum was told that the old Benson house was being demolished by the town council, the old haunted Benson house, the house where all those hippies died in the sixties, he took note. He decided that no, he would sneak in before it was gone.

When he was told by his parents to never, ever enter that “house of death” he took note and decided he would sneak in that weekend.

When he was told by Mister Johnson at the hardware store where he bought batteries, candles and matches, that he shouldn’t go there, ever, he too note. When he was told by mister Johnson that a group of klan members had secret meetings there in the twenties and thirties and murdered all sorts of “coloured” drifters there, he decided he would sneak in there Saturday when his parents went to play euchre at the pub.

When he went to the library, and Ms. Morton told him that back in the late eighteen-hundreds, the Benson family held black mass there, killed a number of young girls and were eventually killed to a one by local family members under cover of night, he decided to spend the night.

When he was told by the greasy old man in the library resource room (who overheard their discussion) that there were spirits there who sought out blood, evil spirits, many evil spirits who lived in the shadows he laughed.

Callum didn’t even sneak out. He told his mother and father lies about sleeping over at a friends. He told his friend that he was staying over at another friend’s house, a friend who had no telephone service, a friend with a similar name, because Callum planned ahead and knew confusion would cover his tracks.

He walked through the forest as the sun set behind him, casting a shadow on the leaf strewn path and eventually upon the doorway of the great old homestead. Its paint was all worn away. One could see between slats of wood into the main floor. One could see through it as one would see through ones fingers held in front of ones face to shield the sun. One could see when he entered the doorway that the main floor was bare and empty and dry and dusty and not a pane of glass existed thanks to young scared boys with pellet guns.

He climbed the stair to the upper floors after deciding that even he would not brave the dark, cold, wet basement. He found a room, the only room, at the top of the long dark stair. Unlike the building, this room was black. He thought it was paint, but after moment he could tell its surface was charred. He lay out his sleeping bag in the middle of the floor knowing his mother would be unhappy with the dirt that he would have to explain away. He lay upon it his book, his alarm clock, his batteries and flashlights. He lit his four twelve hour thick pillar candles and placed them in the corners of the room. He shut the door. He sat on the bag and opened his backpack, removed water and snacks and began to read.

At ten, a candle along the wall blew out. At ten and one minute he re-lit it.

At eleven, two candles along the wall blew out. At eleven and one minute he lit one, heard a noise behind his back and turned quickly. In the shadow on the far wall, he saw a shape. He heard a noise. He turned on his flashlight and it was gone. At eleven and two minutes he re-lit that wall’s candle.

At twelve, three candles blew out. He heard the sounds and saw the shapes and turned on his flashlights and scared them away. He retrieved all four candles in the corners of the room and placed them within reach around his sleeping bag. He turned on both flashlights and held one in each hand. He shone the lights around the room, supplementing the candle light. No shadows could be seen. He sat in fear but safe in the knowledge that the shadows, where the spirits, the evil spirits resided, the evil spirits that craved blood, his blood, were vanquished. He looked at the clock. Six hours remained till dawn would break.

At two in the morning, Callum heard the noises. At two in the morning Cullum heard the noises but saw no shadows. He stood and turned around and around. He shone the dying flash lights around and when they died he lit matches and threw them into the corners of the room until they were all gone. He spun and spun and wondered aloud where the shadows were but there was only light only brightness in the black charred room then at once on a thought, he looked down. Beneath his feet, in the twisted mess of his bedding, in the dark, shadowed folds, he saw them, the eyes, the teeth, the fingers, and the noise stopped except for the sound of four candles being blown out.


A Sample Chapter from my new book, And The Horse You Rode In On

So, a few very frugal people asked for a sample chapter from my new book.  Here you go.  Its a reprint but a fancy edited one.

Enjoy, then buy my book dam you.. its ten bucks.. four if you get the eBook.  jeesh.


Road Kill Bingo


My late sister and I had a game we would play when driving long distances.  We shared it with few others as often people did not appreciate our borderline psychotic level of black humour.  The game, as you can see from the title of this chapter, was called Roadkill Bingo.  I share it with you now in hopes that you, your friends and any children you choose to thrust upon the world can utilize it to pass the time and find a way to enjoy long, painfully tedious family trips.


The rules are fairly simple and we could never actually remember which one of us came up with the initial or rules.  Essentially, one need be in a moving vehicle, especially one that the players are stuck in for a long tedious distance as already mentioned.  During said drive as players take part in talking, listening to music or better yet, arguing about how one or another players boyfriends or more often girlfriends are skanks and/or losers, eyes constantly flit to the road ahead.  Scanning ditches (risky due to lack of a clear view), gravel or paved shoulders or inside shoulders between directional lanes, you search for, get ready, roadkill.  As soon as a player sees a dead thing they then as quickly as possible yell out “ROADKILL” followed hopefully by a successful guess at its species.  Other players have the opportunity to try to guess the species as well but to lodge a successful guess one must yell the word ROADKILL first.  This gives the initial spotter the chance to guess immediately upon saying Roadkill.  Guesses can go back and forth until species is verified or agreed upon.  Typically as the car gets closer and closer, the guesses fly faster and faster until someone relents and acquiesces to their opponent’s abilities.


Points are determined before game starts.  Sometimes it is simple, five points per roadkill call and a further five for an animal correctly identified.  Sometimes stakes are higher, like money high.  Incorrect identification is a negative five or more points against your score however this only counts against the initial caller (so as to prevent someone calling roadkill randomly every time you see something at the side of the road).  Usually a point score total is shot for i.e. 100 points for a long drive with the winner not having to drive for an hour they would normally be entitled to or (more safe on long drives)  something innocuous like liquor or beer purchases at the next stop.


When we were kids, we were forced to go camping on and off, at least (or so it seemed) three weekends out of four from May till September.  It always started out fun but as the mind numbingly long drives to the campground wore on and on, stops were made very infrequently (unless Dad thought he saw a UFO) and one of us would get bored and it then turned to fighting.  Dad would pull over, threaten to kill us and dump our bodies in a ditch, we would quiet down and the drive would continue.  A détente would be in silent effect till one of us decided the risk level had lowered enough to poke the other in the head (my sister would do this) or call the other one in hushed whispers “Lardass” (this being my insult of choice as it was Dad’s painfully hurting pet name for my sister which lead to anorexia later on in life).  Aside: when my sister was at her lowest and skinny as hell I still called her Lardass as I was by that time allowed, it accepted that I was being sarcastic.  Had anyone else said it she or I would have killed them and left their body in a ditch.  Then most likely we would punch if not call the cops on each other.  It’s how we “rolled”, Lardass and I.  Had we developed this game in our early childhood we probably wouldn’t’t have suffered the threats of physical violence and post-death abandonment that likely caused all sorts of psycho-social issues to both of us in our adulthood.


Another aside: When my sister was at her LOWEST of low, talking suicide and such, I told her that if she killed herself I would personally make sure her dogs were put to sleep the next day.  Kept her from doing herself in for a good four years.  Damn, I should write books on suicide prevention.


One weekend in the late 90s, Lardass and I were driving the hour long trek to our hometown of Dirtville from the much larger metropolis she had moved to a year or so before.  I was driving her home to visit my mother and it was just the two of us in the car.  After the usual arguing, teasing, laughing, snide remarks and threats of violence and post-death abandonment if she lit up another cigarette in my car, I noticed that she was hanging her hand out of the car window.  I told her that if I let go of the wheel (it was a straight stretch of highway) and she stuck both hands out, palm toward the wind, she could steer the car to the shoulder.  She opened the window and tried.  The car shifted ever so slightly to the right.  “Holy Crap, that’s awesome!” she yelled and did it again and again as I kept re-straightening our travel path in between.  Then she on an insane whim stuck hands, head, arms and shoulders out the window. I grabbed the wheel and on the busiest highway in Canada, swerved the car about ten feet onto the gravel shoulder screaming that we were going to die as I did.  She screamed, yanked her body in and I steered us back into the lane laughing and trying desperately not to slam into a transport truck that was passing us at the time.  She swore, she punched me, the usual. 


A few minutes later after the fear and violence had subsided and we both laughed at the situation, I noticed her bouncing in her seat, mouthing words and not making noise, pointing ahead, excited, frantic and unable to speak.  I looked forward.  I could see a police car with lights flashing.  I could see an ambulance, the cops and paramedics standing beside a stretcher with someone on it covered up, talking, waiting.  Our father had been a paramedic. We knew the business. She found her voice and before I could say a thing and blurted out “ROADKILL… HUMAN!!! ROADKILL HUMAN!!!”. 


We looked back and forth and passed the scene of a horrid crash.  I looked her way and we both smiled and cheered!  She was granted an immediate 1000 points and the title of champion.  She had won the ultimate game of Roadkill Bingo. 


We never played again.


Percy was a monstrous man
So said the neighborhood kids
He lived with scrawny unfed cats
Snooped under our garbage pail lids
We once saw him eat and entire dead groundhog
Hit by a big passing truck
Someone heard him scream all alone in the night
Parents said he’s just down on luck
Local dogs disappeared, a local zoo’s deer
Lots of cats, songbirds, squirrels and a pig
And a few passers through, a hobo or three
So in his cramped backyard, a dig
Police found the bones, the police found the clothes
Police found a lot c’ept for him
He escaped in the night, going where we don’t know
Maybe off to LA on a whim
We burned down his house after a quick night recon
In his basement, star on the floor
Books all arcane, pickling jars full of things
We could not ident, ‘hind a door
Ran to our homes and through blinds watched the blaze
Watched the fire work to cleanse all the place
But we do not feel safe no not one bit secure
For in the smoke we saw his face

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Queen of the Wood

She raised her hand, the Queen of the Wood
She spoke to assembled all
She raised her voice, the one who was good
She issued a frantic loud call
Animals came and the watched the young Queen
Animals who understood her words
Animals who knew of the threat she had seen
Animals chattered out to the birds
When she finished they fled and the flew and they ran
When she cried her tears flowed as a stream
When she walked through the mist and she called the Green Man
When he found her encased in sunbeam
And the creatures spread word and the gathered in wait
And two monarchs returned with the rain
And together lay waste to the men of the field
And they died in machines wracked in pain
No ground would be turned, no shovel dug down
No homes be built on sacred ground
No man cubs would play in a man built stone town
No peaceable village be found

Posted from WordPress for Android by that guy that runs the place