Don’t Take My Mad

I like my mad

it suits me just fine

Don’t try to take it, or break it

 it’s mine.


I’m Tarzan on a swing

Foreman in the ring

my ire shoots out

like a natural spring


I like my mad

it keeps me sane

Don’t try to grab it, can’t have it

That plain?


I’m the big Head Cheese

master of the seas

call me Poseidon, Zeus

or Hercules


I like my mad

it’s something to do

not bored, this chord

strikes a charge or two


I’m a fine deal breaker

head dough maker

truth be told,

an emotion faker


I like my mad

what’s wrong with a vent?

Just bent not knowing

where everyone went.


photo credit


Calf Slobber


Cono Dennis

My father is a worthless, sorry son of a bitch, no better than calves’ slobber. I’ve tried to find reasons to believe otherwise, I really have.

How can a piece of apple pie be so good and so bad at the same time? Maybe it’s like Ike’s jalapeno, the price for eating one is steep. But at least Ike got a little satisfaction from those hot bites, the taste being worth it.

I think about Hicks Boy, how I never could beat him, and I wonder if it will ever be me who is standing up at the end of a round with my right hand held up by a referee. “And the new boxing Champion is Cono Dennis.” The crowd cheers.

I want to look down at the calves’ slobber lying bloodied on the boxing ring canvas. I want to spit down on my father and say, “There ain’t nothin’ worse than bein’ woken up in the middle’a the night to the feelin’ ’a yer balls bein’ squeezed, and hearin’ the sound of a pocket knife bein’ opened up at the same time.”

I want to walk away from the ring, the crowd still cheering.

Excerpt from No Hill for a Stepper, my father’s story


I just spoke to the Prez

He sent me this email. I know The Affordable Care Act has it’s issues. Still.

IMG_0807.jpgHere’s my response.

I should have asked him to tweet a response back. Something about blood coming out of my you-know-what. Dammit! Why do I think of these things later?!

She Mopes Loud!


I tried to ignore the crash from upstairs—the third one now. Reba shook her head, her smile fading. “She still up there caterwauling and hurling things ’cross her room. Poor chil’ don’t never seem to get a leg back up ’fore it drops back down again.”

But Sadie Dubois was damn good at spreading them. Employed at the bordello longer than any of my other girls, Sadie brought in the most money. But last night, she had morphed into a puddle of anguish when her best friend left with Harry Longabaugh. Better known from the wanted posters as “the Sundance Kid,” he had hefted giggling Etta on the back of his mare and trotted away. “Other girls still sleeping?”

“Don’t know ’bout now, but when I went upstairs to check on things, three of them bedrooms was quiet. But that first one on the left? Phew! What a racket.”

“She’ll be fine, Reba.”

“And a hen’s gonna grow teeth. Her waters run deep. ’Sides, you knows well as me that after Sadie’s done with her conniption fit, she gonna keep spewing a pout.”

“She’ll buck up when she needs to.” Even with a sordid past, Sadie could pull a charade better than most.

Three years ago, when Sadie was seventeen, she arrived dressed as a boy during a ferocious storm, her aquamarine eyes pleading for entry. I knew then that Sadie could wear a flour sack and still be a looker—curves in all the right places, blond hair that Reba called “thick as good gravy.”

Excerpt from The Last Bordello


Dear Russia,(note to self, omit “dear”)

I have your number in more ways than one. The tour company gave us this card before entry into your country in case  of an emergency. I kept it, taped it to my Mac, the one you will probably hack.



Although my husband and I had to be caged during our tour of Moscow a year ago last summer (not allowed to roam around on our own without the Russian guide, who by the way, was more informative about you than you would have liked), we tasted some nice vodka.

But Russia and President Putin? Don’t puff up just yet.

Many buildings, except for some like this one —img_7411

were beautiful.


President Putin, below on the far left, was that you? Trying to mix in and identify with your peeps? Doubtful.



I said, was that you?

I think it was very kind of you, Russia and Mr. Putin, to post these signs of caution.


WATCH YOUR BELONGINGS, your sign said.

Well, I want to tell you this.

Watch your own damn belongings. Keep your paws off my country, out of our democracy, out of our politics and our elections. 

Perhaps the Trump is your string puppet.


But I’m telling you this: Most of us Americans have VERY sharp scissors.

Oh, if you don’t hear from me again, I’m under Federal protection. I’ve heard the accommodations aren’t that bad, considering.