Sunday, September 30, 2012


                                                             GIVING A HOOT  

Love is like a fragrant Rose
Whatever shape or form                            
As solid as the first new bud
In the light of perfect dawn
And when the morning takes its flight
As noontime sets the stage
This Rose unfolds its petals
On Nature’s scenic page
Then as the twilight lengthens
And darkness settles in
Its fragrance lingers in the air
To cheer our hearts again

By Jackie Hand in memory of her husband Berkley (6/11/12)
Member of NLAPW, Jacksonville, FL
Jackie has been a member of NLAPW since 1974. Jackie has won numerous awards in  her branch and in FSA for her music, poetry and short stories.Pen Woman of the Year  at the FSA 2003 Biennial Conference in 2003, and won First Place for the newly named Jacksonville Review newsletter. Two of her patriotic songs were recently used by National on two occasions, for the 200th Birthday Celebration of Abraham Lincoln 1809-2009.

Published on Front Page oft heir newsletter Giving a Hoot

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Memories of a Trip

Scared out of my mind
Heart thumping
Chilled to the bone under layers of blankets
In my surgical gown and silly cap
I wait to be knocked out by Ketamine
The human horse tranquillizer
Headed to a 'Happy Place’
A medically induced coma to interrupt incessantly firing nerve networks
Causing me migraines on end
Shutting down continuous pain signals that have outgrown their usefulness
But keep creating havoc and agony.

I of little faith am afraid

One minute I was there
The other I’m disintegrating
Reduced to a molecule, an eye
Flung into a white room square and empty.

Space Odyssey without the music
Residual Me is propelled forward
Hurled into corners of bright nothingness
My frontal cortex is dissociated from my body
No hands to hold on to safety, no legs to stem the fall
Catapulted down a slide
Another white chamber with infinite boundaries
Unlike the mystical bright light at the end of a tunnel.
Is this dying?
No peace and calm but
Howling pain and fear
Real sensations override where oblivion should rule.

Resurfacing from the vortex
I get a grip
Of my doctor’s hand
Regaining consciousness
The pain never went away
Keeps torturing me
Costlier than an acid trip, but FDA approved
Another hope shattered
Leaving me with this memory
where there should be none.


©   9-13-12
Siggy Buckley

The recent experience of a ‘Ketamine intervention’ triggered off my first foray into poetry. This procedure sends the patient into an artificial coma; used primarily on burn victims, it makes the pain bearable that accompanies the changing of their bandages. For them it’s proven to work.
It is now tried also on chronic pain patients diagnosed with a centrally mediated pain syndrome where pain signal- sending nerves are out of whack and make life a torture. It was an attempt by highly trained pain management experts to interrupt my pain cycle and reset the brain to normal.
In party circles it’s known as the ”K hole” when a user takes too much of the drug and goes on a wild trip.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Champions Who Walked Among Us

(Article 11 – The Ice Breaker)
It was three years before the ending of the nineteenth century, as this young infant opened her eyes, to see the light of the world, outside of her mother's womb.  The month, the day, the year, February 27, 1897, and her birth herald something new, something, which had not happened before, was about to take place.   A seed had been planted in this baby, who would later become a woman that would cause her to seek the expression of her God-given gift, on  stages outside of her own nation of birth.

What would you do, if you had been given something extraordinary that made you stand out?

Born in the state of Pennsylvania, in a family whose father was self-employed, and whose mother had the opportunity of attending the Virginia Seminary and college in Lynchburg, Virginia, the young girl grew up with a love for music.  It was a special innate gift, a seed that had been laid before she was born into the world,  which would define her life.  Her voice was unusual and began to manifest itself soon,  and her aunt ,who had noticed this peculiar gift, convinced her to join the church choir–– she was only six years old.  It was unusual, this Contralto voice, significantly different from other voices.  Peculiar, because this contralto voice set her apart from others, not only in her race, but across all races of people.  Unaware of the role she would play on the world's stage, the lively young girl, who loved to sing, stood on the side of her aunt singing duets and travelling wherever her aunt would take her, singing songs of inspiration.
It was her aunt,
     Who influenced her childhood career,
     Who contracted venues such as the YMCA, or concerts at local churches, or local community events,
     Who made sponsors  aware of her voice for certain special events they sponsored.
Three weeks before Christmas, tragedy struck. Her father was accidentally hit over the head while working. It was an accident, which came with complications that would demand his life a month later, and the young woman, who was now twelve years old would be left fatherless, along with her two younger sisters.

My lord what a morning,
My lord what a morning,
My lord what a morning,
When the stars begin to fall.
You'll hear the trumpet sound,
To wake the nations underground,
Look in my God's right hand
When the stars begin to fall,
When the starts begin to fall. {1}

Her mother, left with three daughters to bring up, had no time to mourn the loss of her mate.  She moved into the home of her father and mother-in-law, who themselves had already impregnated the history book with their new beginning.  Benjamin Anderson, born before the Civil War, was a freed slave and the first Black African- American to move into a neighborhood in South Philadelphia.
It was her grandfather;
     Who vaccinated her with the vaccine of equality,
     Who through the daily doses of self-esteem he poured into her character, built up her self-esteem,
     Who opened her eyes to see the significance of the gift she had been given,
And The Ice Breaker with the contralto voice was born.

Can't you see her People?

See the young girl being prepared to go on the world stage to change history!
See the young girl as her grandfather prepares her mentally to greet the world!
See her as she sits at his feet, and he imparts in her the ability to stand with the wind against her face!

The hypothesis that Africans had limited brain capacity was a theory, which circulated for years throughout the scientific community of the United States. That the Negro lacked the ability to take care of himself was one of the main reasons for the continuation of slavery in the Southern parts of the United States. Even though the Negro spirituals, which were born out of  captivity and imprisonment in the South, were beginning to become known, no one had thought that a Negro could sing classics, or sing in another European Language.  That feat was considered impossible––that is until The Ice Breaker came along.

With the passing of her grandfather, one year after her mother had moved in with her and her sisters, finances were sparse in the family, and The Ice Breaker knew she would not be able to attend high school, or take those music lessons she so desperately needed.
     What do you when your lack of money stands as an obstacle on the road of your destiny?
     How do you deal with the mental anguish you encounter within yourself, the emotional ups and downs, which throw you into a whirlwind of what ifs?
     Where do you turn when the road does not go any further?

Patricia Pierce-Garcia Schaack