You are not Serious, are You?

You are not Serious, are You?

Integrity once viable has become inherently unreliable like the men I could mention. It is not my intention to show a reaction for their own egotistical satisfaction.

These men who report on what they are commanded. From where I stand they should be reprimanded for the baseless claims that ignite the viewers every night when assumptions are presented as truths without the regiments of proof.

When men that no longer care what is wrong nor right should consider taking flight with the rest who before them left. Do take care on your eastward direction where you may find nothing there but your own ignorant reflections.

The time now has come to pity the dumbed down people with smartphones that are used as weapons of mass confusion by the constant bombardment of fake news by you know who.

drip… drip… drip…

100% Perplexed by Her Behavior

100% Perplexed by Her Behavior

A few weeks ago I was grocery shopping.  For years I have shopped at the same market, usually purchasing the same foods as last week and the week before that, and well, you know. 

The produce department is my first stop. Unfortunately, standing 5′ with socks on, I have trouble reaching the plastic bags and ties so usually I will tear off ten plus ensuring I will have enough. Afterward, I will stand next to my cart and struggle to open the obstinate plastic bags. I open all the bags before I proceed because apparently, you need wet fingers to get a good grip for twisting and pulling on the plastic before it gives in. 

The produce department is separated with fruits and vegetables laced with poison on one side and the organic produce and juices on the opposite side. Perhaps, because the grocery store is located in Merced, there are no plastic bags available on the organic side. On this particular trip, I did not tear off enough plastic bags to venture over to the organic side. I reached up high again and tore off two more bags, one was for mushrooms and the other was for mixed organic vegetables.

With one plastic bag in hand and the other hanging from the first, I  headed back to the opposite side of the department. I was directly in front of the mushrooms when I attempted to open the top plastic bag. From somewhere a woman around my age and height came forward and stood right beside me yet she remained silent. I felt uncomfortable as she watched me so I spoke up and said, “these bags are really hard to open.” The women took hold of the second plastic bag that was hanging and tore it from the one in my hand.

I stopped my attempt to watch how she quickly opened the plastic bag, as I was about to thank her … she put other items into the bag! Stupefied by her actions I stared in disbelief as she continued to fill my bag with her items. In shock I asked, “Seriously, are you taking my bag?” She spoke not a single utterance. I looked around to see if anyone noticed what just happened. “Okay,” I said, “I get it, It’s Merced.” 

She turned and walked away leaving me holding the unopened plastic bag.  I started laughing, this was too much to believe even though it happened. I got the plastic bag opened and filled it with mushrooms then pushed the cart back to the opposite side, stretched up to reach another plastic bag and returned to the organic vegetables wondering if she was mentally ill.

Long ago, I developed an aversion to making lists. Not to forget something I need, I go up one aisle and down the next until I reach the end. At about the sixth aisle I saw the woman who stole my plastic bag. Only now she was speaking in English with a man about what brand of cereal he wanted. She saw me but looked right through me.  As I slowly passed by shaking my head in disapproval, I deliberately turned to her and said, “Only In Merced.” 

I cannot place this incident into a category, but it sure makes me laugh only because I still cannot wrap my head around the mentality of people in Merced that many have this low standard that reasons it is okay to  wear your pajamas to Wal-Mart or kick a stranger’s dog because it barked at you or steal a shopper’s bag just because. 

There is one thing I am certain of, I really am out of my element. 



Better be Moving Along

Better be Moving Along

“That’s Merced,” after three years, I still use these two words to brush off the reality some people I experience leave on my psyche. It is like the series Twin Peaks you should not expect anything resembling normalcy here in Merced. For example:

My two dogs and I started out for an early walk before the hot weather imprisons us in the house for the rest of the day. I visit the park often to chronicle the still falling Eucalyptus trees. Somebody, online,  actually rated the park  4 stars, he commented, “a great park with three felled tree bridges and one man-made.” Was that meant to be a joke,  but it is true?

After running their free spirits away, my tired dogs and I started the walk home. A few seconds after this photo,

Buddy and Mitzi
Heading Home

I clipped each leash back on their leads; Mitzi tends to not like to share the park. Sure enough, here comes Merced, she was about 24 years old, 150 pounds, 5′ 8″, and broad at the hips.  We noticed each other.  She swayed her shoulders side to side. The “I’m bad” double step many Mercedians do. Without fail, I look straight down at my phone so that she knows I care less about her performance nor her presence.  I looked back up as Mitzi started to growl so I pulled her in by the lead until she was within three feet to my left side. The girl gangsta walked past Mitzi who then barked, and to my WTF, the girl kicked Mitzi in the ribs; an abused shelter rescue dog under my care was kicked for barking. Mitzi howled in pain and ran behind me whimpering. The girl stopped and I stood there giving her the death stare.

Past experience had taught me there is no heated argument, interlude, nope. You skip that and go right into getting beat up. Having been attacked once for being vocal in Merced, I knew better not to say a word. Yet I felt my heart beating and begging for me to say something. My stare never wavered until finally, the girl said, “I’m a wolf, a wolf, I eat shit like that for breakfast.” “Well, my! Guess we should be moving along,” I said as I created some distance between wolf girl and me.

Looking back I felt she was far enough away that I could run if necessary. So, I let my rage out with my face raised to the sky I howled like a wolf over and over, adding, “I’m a wolf.” I laughed as I heard her profanities echo through the trees across the park.

When I called my girlfriend in Colorado later that night she replied, “I told you not to irritate the natives.” I just cannot keep quiet. If I see something I inherently know to be wrong, you will hear me speak.

Dredged up From the Sea (For Joseph)

Dredged up From the Sea (For Joseph)

Across the expanse of the darkening sky, in a sparkle of stars is the prize for the fledgling that asks him not for permission to test the waters.

The horizon in the distance reveals the earth as flat. If one is not fearful of falling such an illusion can be taken as fact. Who would care to lie in the most foolish time of their life? Absorbed by the static waves of grandeur in the hours that arrive are pleasures that should not become a divide.

She does not attend to his silence nor he to her speech though they travel together each to the other has become out of reach. At the edge of an abyss, she does not fret nor consider imaginary sea monsters for they are far behind and cannot exist where they do not belong. 

At dawn, she awakes to the icy choir that cries out a threnody from his heart all for not. By virtue and conceit, it is easy to pause and measure the score of this rhapsody. Ask her to heave lamentable throwbacks over the leviathans. She would, but, not stay long to ponder what will or will not float for she has no doubt of reaching her destination with him or without. 



Simple is as Simple Was

Simple is as Simple Was

Remind me of simple times that I might recall the fun I had with you

When I was a young girl who plucked petals from a Daisy

Needing a sign whether you loved me or you loved me not

How many times did we roller skate in the school’s parking lot

Did you fill a Yellow bucket with seawater to build me a sand castle

I have a picture that was finger painted once bright in colored hue

Blooming strawberry plants stretched in rows two by two

Remind me how simple is or how simple was before we grew


… I Am Just Tired …

… I Am Just Tired …

Do not be concerned by my tears, by my lack of enthusiasm, my withdrawal from what is outside my front door… I am just tired. 

What is the meaning, I am just tired? I will let you know, it is when my wall of excuses is breached and the truth washes away my delusions of grandeur for why my life is meaningful. In truth, I am full of hate and contempt for the betrayal of my brothers. I am a good person, compassionate, and never once did I turn my back to any one of my three brothers, but my being to them has become worthless. That includes the psychopath who raped me when I was thirteen. The images of those moments are so vivid I want to throw up. I have never confronted him on this. We grew up over the following years as if it never happened.

My mother was in the last weeks of her life. She was sitting at my dining room table with her lawyer when she called me into the room and said she was leaving the psychopath out of her last will and testament.  I protested and argued she should not do that, “it was not fair,” I said.  She was persuaded and he was put back into the will. Afterward, as she predicted, he conned me, trick me out of my inheritance that is now worth over a million dollars.  When I asked how he could forge my name on court documents, he said, “I am the only one who can afford to keep the estate.” We have not talked in over ten years. 

My eldest brother by six years, Ronnie, was the brother who was always there to listen as I was for him. He joined the Air Force at Eighteen-years-old. I would live with him and his wife from time to time. When he retired twenty-two years later, he settled in North Carolina. He was employed as a jet engine mechanic by a company that was an hour drive each way. At least twice a month he would call me to talk during his drive home. Then the following happened, I wrote to him many times before this last message, none have ever received a reply.

9/12/2016 > Two years ago you called me worried about having your pacemaker replaced. To make sure everything went well, I told you I would call the next day. However, I have not spoken with you since. Two years and I have no idea why you stopped loving me, two years and I have no idea what I did, two years without a clue of why you didn’t want a sister anymore. A while back, I would sometimes worry you might die before I learned what happened to separate our lives. I feared my last memory would be the day you called and never did again, Within these last years, I have been able to reconcile this event of the heart. The emotions that I had after your rejection have been compartmentalized so I’m okay with you not wanting me to be in your life. I am sure you have your personal reasons for not caring about me and if those reasons help you to live a happier life then it is okay with me. Recently, I visited your page, once I saw your photo a flood of emotions and that familiar ache of sorrow filled my chest. There are so many memories we shared that I hold in mind, made more valuable by knowing there will not be additional memories.  What did I say, Ronnie, what did I do?  You broke my heart and you think that I don’t deserve to know why? I’m so tired, I am going to say Goodbye, Ronnie.

When my mom was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, she had no reaction. Not once did she speak of her impending death. Not one tear was shed. I understand why because my life is a mirror of her life; no friends, no family, ignored by her children, disabled by mental health issues, and treated as such by the professional community. She was tired, I understand now because I am tired, too.




Alive After Death

Alive After Death

I confess, my mother was abusive both verbally and physically from my first memory. At the same time, when I needed her to bail me out of trouble, she was there. It is a fact that she held disdain for my being born and because of her emotional neglect, I grew to hate her vigorously.

One time on Mother’s Day I gave her a card written in Spanish, a language she cannot read. She carried the card in her purse for several months and would pull it out to show people when I was present. She would hand them the card as she said, “Look at this card my daughter gave me on Mother’s Day. She knows I can’t read Spanish.” The expressions on their faces made me feel horrible.

Worse than that was what I did to my mom on April Fool’s Day. I was sixteen and had been drinking beer at my friend’s house. Sometime in the afternoon, my brilliant idea of a joke came to mind. I phoned my mom at “the shop”. The shop was an upholstery business my parents owned and worked together since I was three years old. When she answered the phone, I spoke in a serious and matter of fact way, “Is this Mrs. Pulver?” My mom replied, “Yes, it is, can I help you?” I followed with the question, “Are you the mother of Cynthia Pulver?” You could feel the dread when she confirmed that she was. I then repeated what I had heard on television many times.

“Mrs. Pulver, this is Nurse Morgan at Cottage Hospital. Your daughter, Cynthia, arrived by ambulance about an hour ago. She was involved in an automobile accident (pause).” “I am very sorry, Mrs. Pulver, we did everything we could, but she didn’t make it.”

My mom screamed to G-d, the sound of the phone receiver hitting the hard floor filled me with instant regret. “Mom, mom… it’s a joke, mom it’s me!” I could hear my dad’s stressed voice asking her what was wrong. “What happened?” he repeated. I glanced at my friend sitting in the chair; she was laughing. I wanted to hang up the phone, but I also wanted my mom to know it was a joke and I was sorry. My dad picked up the receiver and asked who I was. “Dad, it’s me,” I said. I cannot remember anything more about that day.

Often, in my teenage years, I told my mom, “One day you’re going to be old and dying. Don’t come knocking on my door because I won’t answer.” She was not old nor did she knock on my door, instead, she phoned. My mom died the day after Mother’s Day twenty-five years ago today. She died six weeks after her fifty-fourth birthday.

I needed to know why my mom was abusive to me as a child and critically mean to me when I was a teenager. When I asked her, she answered, “I did my best.” I did my best, she said, and I stood there looking at her dumbfounded. I turned my back and walked away with the word liar on my lips. She would die the following week.

My hate and anger toward my mom were left at the cemetery the day we buried her wrapped in white cloth as is a Jewish custom. My mom died without me saying I loved her and without a hug. My daughter was born and now carries my mom’s name proving her existence and death were not in vain.

Despite everything, my mom became alive after her death. I want to believe she knew that she would be forgiven and she knows I am sorry for what I did and for what I could not.