That’s All There Is…

Things aren’t as I expect…
What do I expect?
I don’t know…
But this isn’t it…
Something’s wrong, I think…

In that continuing query there’s an answer…

Life is filled with expectations and when you look hard enough there are none…
That’s the stop I’m at all the time and every time I get off the stops stay the same, nothing changes… There’s nothing but expectations…a voice says expect something, anything… That’s all there is…

Meet the Rose Hip Cell, a New Kind of Neuron

rose hip cell

Tamas Lab/University of Szeged
It’s been more than a century since Spanish neuroanatomist Santiago Ramón y Cajal won the Nobel Prize for illustrating the way neurons allow you to walk, talk, think, and be. In the intervening hundred years, modern neuroscience hasn’t progressed that much in how it distinguishes one kind of neuron from another. Sure, the microscopes are better, but brain cells are still primarily defined by two labor-intensive characteristics: how they look and how they fire.
Which is why neuroscientists around the world are rushing to adopt new, more nuanced ways to characterize neurons. Sequencing technologies, for one, can reveal how cells with the same exact DNA turn their genes on or off in unique ways—and these methods are beginning to reveal that the brain is a more diverse forest of bristling nodes and branching energies than even Ramón y Cajal could have imagined.
On Monday, an international team of researchers introduced the world to a new kind of neuron, which, at this point, is believed to exist only in the human brain. The long nerve fibers known as axons of these densely bundled cells bulge in a way that reminded their discoverers of a rose without its petals—so much that they named them “rose hip cells.” Described in the latest issue of Nature Neuroscience, these new neurons might use their specialized shape to control the flow of information from one region of the brain to another.
“They can really act as a sort of brake on the system,” says Ed Lein, an investigator at the Allen Institute for Brain Science—home to several ambitious brain mapping projects—and one of the lead authors on the study. Neurons come in two basic flavors: Excitatory cells send information to the cells next to them, while inhibitory cells slow down or stop excitatory cells from firing. Rose hip cells belong to this latter type, and based on their physiology, seem to be a particularly potent current-curber.
A microscopy image showing a rosehip neuron (top) connected to a pyramidal cell (bottom).
Tamas Lab/University of Szeged
The discovery was a team effort. Lein’s group at the Allen harvested frozen tissue from two donated human brains and isolated individual neuronal nuclei onto a plate—one per well. Then they sequenced the RNA inside each one. If DNA is like the blueprint for a car, RNA is like the parts list. Using clustering algorithms, the researchers identified several unique gene expression patterns and matched them to 16 different cell types: 11 inhibitory neurons, one excitatory neuron, and four non-neural cells.
While they were coaxing nuclei into 96-well plates, their partners in the Gábor Tamás lab at the University of Szeged in Hungary were analyzing live tissue samples from patients who had undergone brain surgery. By using traditional techniques like filling the cells with a special dye and then recording how they reacted to different electric stimuli, Tamás’s group spotted a group of hippy, well-connected neurons—whose molecular markers matched up almost perfectly with one of Lein’s cell types. When they went looking to see if a similar molecular profile existed for any cells in the mouse brain, they came up empty-handed.
“It’s too early to say that this is a completely unique cell type because we haven’t looked in other species yet,” adds Lein. “But it really highlights the fact that we need to be careful about assuming that the human brain is just a scaled-up version of a mouse.”
Because live human brain tissue is so difficult to get, the vast majority of work characterizing the electrophysiology and connectivity of neurons happens in mice. A transcriptomics approach, though, can be applied to frozen tissue. There’s plenty of that just sitting in biobanks all over the world.

Nearly 3,000 people died in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria

pr pic
A much-anticipated report out of George Washington University Tuesday shows that Hurricane Maria resulted in 2,975 excess Puerto Rican deaths in the six months following the storm’s landfall.
This latest death toll, gathered by a team of independent researchers, is more than twice the rate of what the Puerto Rican government admitted to earlier this month. It’s also an incredible increase from the earliest official estimate of 64 deaths, showing how the island’s devastation may have been underestimated for months after the storm hit shores last September, while Americans there languished.
The study is based on mortality data that compares deaths from September 2017 to February 2018 to years prior, according to the Washington Post. Puerto Rico’s governor commissioned the George Washington University report in February after advocates decried the initial death toll estimate as egregiously low.
Ahead of the hurricane, the researchers wrote that communication plans between federal and first-responder agencies and were not coordinated and led to “inoperable and disconnected emergency plans.”
“Overall, we estimate that 40 percent of municipalities experienced significantly higher mortality in the study period than in the comparable period of the previous two years,” the researchers wrote.
A much-anticipated report out of George Washington University Tuesday shows that Hurricane Maria resulted in 2,975 excess Puerto Rican deaths in the six months following the storm’s landfall.
This latest death toll, gathered by a team of independent researchers, is more than twice the rate of what the Puerto Rican government admitted to earlier this month. It’s also an incredible increase from the earliest official estimate of 64 deaths, showing how the island’s devastation may have been underestimated for months after the storm hit shores last September, while Americans there languished.
The study is based on mortality data that compares deaths from September 2017 to February 2018 to years prior, according to the Washington Post. Puerto Rico’s governor commissioned the George Washington University report in February after advocates decried the initial death toll estimate as egregiously low.
Ahead of the hurricane, the researchers wrote that communication plans between federal and first-responder agencies and were not coordinated and led to “inoperable and disconnected emergency plans.”
“Overall, we estimate that 40 percent of municipalities experienced significantly higher mortality in the study period than in the comparable period of the previous two years,” the researchers wrote.
The latest death toll is still lower than what Harvard University researchers estimated in May, at 4,645 deaths, although that study included things like shuttered hospitals and interrupted health care.
At the time Puerto Rico’s more recent estimate of 1427 deaths was made public, officials there were requesting $139 billion in aid from legislators to fix the various ills that have plagued the island for nearly a year.
Cover image: A demonstrator places a candle next to empty pairs of shoes displayed outside the Capital building during a protest against the government’s reporting of the death toll from Hurricane Maria in San Juan, Puerto Rico, on Friday, June 1, 2018. (Photo: Xavier Garcia/Bloomberg via Getty Images)


maxresdefault_45The world is watching,
everyone is watching everyone….
all of  our moves, whether you know it or like it or not…
The surveillance is constant so much so that it might make you paranoid…
Constant that,
not only by devices but people employed to do it without knowing it to divulge what they have seen…
what they know what they suspect and…
imagine that…
this has been constant throughout the history of human kind…


The Gauntlet
by Ralph Pitre
A bloodied BEATEN MAN cautiously scurries through the streets
of a city. In the distance we can hear the calls for him. He
charges across a street and into a building. A PEDESTRIAN
looks back just as he disappears. The PEDESTRIAN smells the
air, inhaling deeply.
He’s here!! I can smell him!
The BEATEN MAN struggles up the stairs to the top floor of a
run down tenement apartment building. There he comes upon A
WOMAN standing at an open apartment door. They stare at each
other a long while. He looks at her, then the door, then
stands, leaning against the wall & stumbles into her
The apartment is sparsely furnished: a couch backed to a
large window looking out onto the street, a tall lamp & an
end table.
The BEATEN MAN stumbles across the room & into the corner
beside the large window. He listens. She listens.
You can’t stay for long. You have
to go before my husband comes home.
If he sees you he’ll beat you like
the others.
I understand, I just need a minute.
Would you like some water.
She leaves the room. The BEATEN MAN closes his eyes,
listening to the calls for him, from outside.
The WOMAN returns with a glass of water that he takes &
Why do they beat you?
Why don’t you?
I don’t know.
Neither do I. Why would your
husband want to beat me?
I don’t know. But he will, I know
She steps up to him and kicks him in the side.
WOMAN (cont’d)
There. I’ve done my part. How did
it feel?
Like a love tap.
I’m sorry.
She walks to the window & looks out.
WOMAN (cont’d)
Where do you go from here?
Nowhere in particular, just moving
on, running, hiding, I never know
where. It all depends on who’s
doing the beating and then I run
from there in whatever direction
will take me away from it. I’ve
made my way through so many cities,
beaten by so many, hiding in
condemned buildings, finding
benevolent people to hide me, but
who still hate me for what I’ve
How is it that you go on like this?
Did you kill someone? Is that why
they beat you? Because you’ve done
something so wrong?
I don’t know for sure but I seem to
remember having killed once a long
time ago. I don’t remember who or
when or why. I remember losing all
my strength, realizing the
magnitude of what I’d done. But
now, I just can’t imagine killing
anyone. This has gone on for so
long I can’t remember why I’m
tortured so. I imagine that I once
knew why, but now most of my
memories are gone. I’m not even
sure that the memories I do have
are mine and not just fabrications
to placate my burden.
A sound at the door.
She turns & there stands a man at the door.
Without saying a word, THE MAN, wearing a worn pair of jeans,
a dyed wife-beater shirt & a pair of black work boots, struts
over to the BEATEN MAN, stands over him for a moment, looking
him over & then begins to kick him. The BEATEN MAN drops the
glass of water on its side, recoils into the corner and
cowers while trying to absorb the pain. THE MAN continues to
pound away at the BEATEN MAN. The WOMAN turns away, holding
back tears, a scream. THE MAN tires quickly, each kick
needing further exertion. The BEATEN MAN moves quickly
between tired kicks, sliding over & away. THE MAN turns to
give chase & kick the BEATEN MAN but steps on the glass of
water, rolls on it & falls hard on his back. The BEATEN MAN
runs for the door & out of the apartment. THE MAN stands,
grimacing from the pain, turns to THE WOMAN with a look of
anger then runs out of the apartment screaming about the
BEATEN MAN. He chases The BEATEN MAN all the way down to the
first floor.
THE MAN runs out of the building all the while screaming, as
The BEATEN MAN charges into the streets, pedestrians suddenly
turn, pursue & capture the BEATEN MAN in a consuming swarm.
The WOMAN watches from the apartment window.
THE MAN returns to the apartment. The WOMAN stands at the
window, not looking out, not turning to see THE MAN.
THE MAN walks off screen, then returns with a handful of
paper towel, drops to his knees, takes the glass and begins
to wipe the floor.
What’s going to happen to him?
Same as always, nothing’s going to
change. He runs on, beaten wherever
he goes. It’s the first time I’ve
met him. I hope I don’t ever meet
him again. I hope I don’t ever
become him.
The BEATEN MAN is pummeled in the street by a crowd, each
person; man, woman and child, taking their turn. Until one
man grabs and holds The BEATEN MAN.
You are the sorrow in our world.
The agony. The pain and suffering
you bring with your existence. Why?
Why do we beat and pummel you like
some soccer ball, and you don’t go
away? Why can’t you just die?
I don’t know. I wish I did. I wish
I could. But everywhere I go;
everywhere I’ve gone, there has
been someone there to beat me.
There have been moments where I
have found that place, where I am
alone, but someone always comes
along, as if summoned to beat me.
Then kill yourself.
I can’t. I don’t have the strength
of body or spirit to beat another
person, kill another, let alone
kill myself.
Then I will do it for you!
The first man pulls out a gun and shoots The BEATEN MAN point
blank in the heart. The crowd is aghast.
What have you done? He’s going to
The FIRST MAN looks at them all, unaware of what he has done.
What? I’ve done what we all wanted.
To be rid of him.
The BEATEN MAN laughs, a menacing snicker at first that
develops into an all out choking guffaw. Blood dribbles and
spits from his mouth, the redness coloring his laugh. He
motions for the FIRST MAN to bow down close to him.
FIRST MAN (cont’d)
What is your name?
I am Benito.
Where are you from, Orlando?
Far away from here. The country.
I remember where I’m from now. For
so long I couldn’t remember where I
was from. But I remember now. I’m
from the city, from Brooklyn, NY. I
lived in a small studio apartment
near the bridge, with a beautiful
view. I remember that now. I
remember it all now. Orlando?
Do you remember where exactly it is
in the country you come from?
That’s none of your business.
You don’t remember, do you?
ORLANDO just stares.
BENITO (cont’d)
I understand. I understand it all
BENITO laughs, tears flow from his eyes. But it subsides as
he dies. A man slips in through the crowd, reaches down to
grab BENITO under his arms, and drags him away, out of the
ORLANDO is alone, surrounded by the crowd. They look at him.
Someone grabs him from behind, clamping his arms; someone
else takes the gun from him. They all converge, the crowd
swarms and they begin to pummel him as they did to BENITO.
ORLANDO gets away and begins to run, and run.
Ralph Pitre
We watch Rae dance nude on a hot dirty stage. She can see all
the faces, all these men, spending their money to see her &
her kind dance, their fly-catchers agape, silent foghorns
exhaling the cries of class sorrow, each one the same, but
for one, his mouth shut tight, visible only because of the
subtle smirk on his face, out-shined only by the bright green
glint in his eyes. The others salivating dogs, lusting for
her, this man, Green Eyes, no longer lusts but demands, for
something more than her body, something she could never give.
Rae avoids Green Eyes, focusing instead on an older fatter
John sitting up front, pushing the edge of the stage with his
belly, flashing dollar bills and calling for her to dance for
him. She does, hanging her legs off the side of the stage and
straddling The John’s girth, holding him close, his ear to
her mouth.
How about a private dance?
I can do better for you.
Yeah. Wait for me by the hall in
the back after I’m done up here.
She climbs back on stage and continues to dance, looking for
Green Eyes, who seems to have disappeared.
She finishes her dance, climbing off the stage at the far
end and makes for the hallway. She looks back, she can see
him, Green Eyes. She turns away to face her over-weight John
standing against the wall beside the hallway leading to the
bathrooms & dressing rooms.
Off duty?
Yeah. I need some protection.
A ride home?
Something like that. Wait here for
Rae walks past The John and down the hall into the communal
dressing room, crowded with girls in various degrees of dress
& undress under the watchful eye of their handler, Jerome, a
big guy who stands in the doorway, just across from the men’s
bathroom where the guys tread space to wait to take a pis or
catch a peek at some snatch before they slip into the
bathroom to blow it off. Rae steals a spot at the far end of
the room, away from the door. She begins to undress. She sees
Jerome talking to a man whose back is to the room, Green
Eyes. Still half naked, she slips out a second door into the
same hall as the other but behind a taut curtain. She looks
out to see the back of Green Eyes still chatting it up with
Jerome. Jerome lets him enter the dressing room. Rae steps
back aghast. She slips into the private bathroom unsure of
what to do, still half naked. She dresses & slips into a
stall & waits, listens. The bathroom door opens slowly, not a
sound seems to be coming from the club. She listens. The door
opens again and Trix, a dancer, walks in, the club noise
trailing in. Door closes.
Oh! Hi. Your not supposed to be in
The stall door just beside the one she is in opens, closes. A
gurgling sound. Slurp. The sound of a tongue lapping, lips
smacking. A rustle of clothing & body movement. Rae looks
down into the next stall. She can see Trix’s high heeled foot
stretched out. Blood dribbles onto the floor back near the
wall. Rae slips out & into the hall & all its noise, Dana,
another dancer, stands at the door.
You see Trix, Rae?
Anybody see Trix?
Rae goes into the dressing room. Looks for her things,
finding that someone else has taken her space. She finds her
things set aside on a chair.
Nikki you stole my spot.
You weren’t around hon, sorry.
Forget it, I’m outta here.
Rae shuffles her way through the dressing room crowd & out
the door.
RAE (cont’d)
Bye Jerome. Oh Jerome? Who was that
guy you let through the dressing
room before?
What guy? Baby I wouldn’t let no
man enter this room, ever.
But you were talking to him.
Maybe I was, but I talk to lots a
guys trying to crash the dressing
room to get a piece, but honey no
one ever gets through.
Sure, OK Jerome, later.
Night Rae.
Rae walks off into the crowd & catches a glimpse of the Green
Eyed Man standing, waiting at the front door. She turns to
see The John beside her.
They make their way through the crowd to the front door.
Green Eyes is gone. Rae and The John leave.
A cheap clock radio on the night stand is screeching out some
funk that Rae and The John are fucking hard to in bed. She’s
all over him, working her way up from between his legs to his
head, letting his head hang back over the edge of the bed,
she licks his neck, rears back up on her knees, gyrating to
the beat, holds her head in her hands, squeezing her palms to
her temples while squinching her face in a painful ecstacy.
You alright?
She looks down to The John, smiles, drooling…
… revealing her fangs, quickly coming down on The John &
thrusting her fangs deep into his neck, the blood so profuse
it pours onto the clean hardwood floor. When she’s done
sucking him dry, she gets down on all fours & laps up all the
blood on the floor, then settles back against the bed &
masturbates to a quick but powerful orgasm. She looks in his
wallet, photos of his wife & children. Like some hand model
she runs her bloodied hands gracefully along them, drops
them, takes the cash, stashing it in her bag sitting on the
floor beside the bed and then makes her way to the shower.
She stops at the entry door, leans into it and listens, then
looks through the peep-hole. Nothing. She goes in to shower.
The camera follows her into the shower where she begins to
undress as we pull away and back across to the entry door,
hold and then onto the bed where The John lays. A figure
walks into the frame, screen left, back to us.
Various panoramic shots of the city at sunrise leading us to
a neighborhood of depressed homes, tenements and public
Rae is greeted by dreadful poverty. Dirty dishes in the sink
& on the table. Clothing strewn throughout.
Rae enters the room finding Penny’s bed is still made. Rae
kneels at the night stand beside Penny’s bed, slips her
fingers into the draw, hesitates then opens it and rummages
through. A picture of Penny as a little girl, then another of
Rae & Penny in her teens. Digging deeper she finds a joint
half smoked. A needle kit, spent needles and emptied vials.
Rae is attacked from behind, thrust up against the wall
beside the bureau.
Rae’s eyes change color to blood red, her fangs start to
show. The attacker pulls her back and throws her across the
room into the far wall. Rae keeps herself from falling,
dropping into a crouching stance instead. She turns to face
her attacker, her daughter Penny. For a moment they face each
other, then Penny throws herself at Rae, crushing her against
the wall, then pulling her onto the bed, straddling her at
the waist and looking down on her, fangs full, gleaming.
Hello Mother.
All my life you’ve lied me to
believe you were just sick. Now I
know better! Now I know how you’ve
wasted all that power you’ve been given.
And I regretted it.
I won’t.
Penny rears back, looks up and howls, then slowly comes down
on Rae, face to Rae’s turned face.
PENNY (cont’d)
What happens when a vampire bites
another vampire, Mother?
Penny brings her mouth to Rae’s neck.
Let her up!
Silence. Penny closes in, mouth open and licks Rae hard on
the cheek.
VANDAL (cont’d)
Get off her!
Penny rolls off Rae and onto the bed. Rae looks over to see
who it is.
Green Eyes. Vandal, seated on the far side of the bed beside
Penny, looks down to her then leans in to kiss her on the
VANDAL (cont’d)
Get yourself cleaned up.
She’s left alone on the floor, Penny leaving her and getting
into the shower. As she cries leaning against the bed, Vandal
chats with her.
VANDAL (cont’d)
I came by the club to introduce
Are you her Master?
No, I just turned her. We met at a
party a bunch of us crashed. A
rather boring party until we got
there. Penny was sitting alone,
people all around her, but she was
alone. Before we stomped the place,
Penny and I talked a bit. Penny,
who never got a break in life.
Mother with a bad habit too hard to
kick. Its a bad habit when you
can’t accept it. A devotion when
you do. So my friends and I took
the place and everybody in it.
Penny was the only one to come out
alive, more alive than she had ever
been before, because I took pity on
her and turned her. Best thing that
ever happened to her. Maybe she’ll
make more of it than you ever did
Rae. I don’t get it Rae. You looked
for us. You begged my Master to
take you. Then you insulted him by
denying what you had become and
doing nothing with your power but
suffer. We won’t let that happen to
Penny appears all dressed.
I’m ready.
Vandal bows down to Rae and kisses her.
From our Father.
Vandal stands and steps toward the door. Penny moves in to
sit behind Rae and bows down to her.
I won’t ever see you again.
Penny kisses her and leaves the room with Vandal, leaving Rae
lying fetal on the bed.
The living room is heavily decorated in CATHOLIC
PARAPHERNALIA and lighted VOTIVE CANDLES. The window shades
have been pulled, the room dark.
MOTHER steps into the living room from the hall outside of
the apartment, holding a BOTTLE in her hands, close to her
bosom. Closing the door behind her she stands against the
door, using it for support. She looks down at the BOTTLE.
Angle on BOTTLE.
Reveals a close up of an OLD WOMAN speaking upper screen
Rub ointment on your childs chest,
then sprinkle holy water to relieve
your sons thirst for blood within
the hour.
MOTHER walks briskly to a door across the living room. MOTHER
steps into the room.
MOTHER enters the bedroom slowly, cautiously and afraid, but
determined, carrying the BOTTLE.
The bedroom is also decorated in CATHOLIC PARAPHERNALIA and
lighted VOTIVE CANDLES, the shade of the only window also
drawn. MOTHER walks across the room to the bed where a
teenaged boy, TOBE, pale and soaked in sweat, lies asleep.
She stands over him.
MOTHER sits on the bed beside him. TOBE suddenly lurches up
to a sitting position to attack her, revealing VAMPIRE FANGS
and saliva frothing at the edges of his mouth. MOTHER pulls
away, revealing a CROSS that she had been hiding in her
bosom, and holding it out to show TOBE. TOBE retreats,
sinking back into the bed, bringing the covers back up to
protect himself. Still displaying the CROSS, MOTHER settles
back onto the bed. MOTHER gently pulls the covers from TOBE,
enough to expose his chest. MOTHER removes a pinch of
ointment from the BOTTLE, that she gently rubs into TOBE’S
chest, while he grunts and squirms in discomfort, hissing and
growling at her, still eyeing the CROSS she holds in one
hand. MOTHER removes another SMALL BOTTLE from her pocket,
stands away from the bed, and sprinkles some of the liquid
contents (HOLY WATER) of the SMALL BOTTLE on TOBE while
saying a prayer. TOBE squirms in agony, writhing in bed.
MOTHER stops, watches him for a moment, waiting for the
anger to subside and then steps forward to sit on the
bed beside him. She holds his hand, looks into his eyes.
Suddenly, for a moment, the monster in him retreats, and
we see a little boy giving MOTHER a pleading look.
MOTHER takes her hand away, pushes the covers back,
tucking TOBE in to bed, caressing his face. TOBE turns
away and closes his eyes. MOTHER stands and walks
backwards away from the bed to the door, sprinkling holy
water & giving the sign of the cross until she has
stepped out of the room.
MOTHER has stepped out of the bedroom and stands with
her back pressed against the door, looking away.
MOTHER struggles down the hall to the living room.
MOTHER enters the living room, racing to the HOURGLASS
on the mantle, turning it over so that it starts again.
MOTHER places the CROSS on the mantle.
Close on apartment door. A hand reaches into frame and
MOTHER struggles across the living room to the door. She
hesitates to open it, but then does so.
MOTHER steps back from the door, revealing the visitor.
A man FATHER, with a smile, he enters and calls to
MOTHER. She turns away from him, waving him away.
What are you doing here? I don’t
need you, your son doesn’t need
you. Go away!
MOTHER looks to the bedroom door.
FATHER motions for her to accept him, offers an apology,
even getting down on one knee. But she’ll have none of
it. She demands he leave.
I want to see my son! I want to see
MOTHER explains what has become of their son, once again
looking sullen and beaten.
Let the boy free. Nothing you do
will break him from his MASTER’S
hold. A Vampire is a powerful
MOTHER turns on him, suddenly strong, she orders him to
leave. She pushes him out the door.
MOTHER sits on the couch, lays back and falls asleep.
Close on door, a hand reaches in and knocks.
MOTHER awakens to hear the door knock. She looks at the
HOURGLASS. Time is almost out. MOTHER goes to the door
and yells for whoever, to go away.
Close on pale lips speaking.
MOTHER, embarrassed, opens the door.
The door opens revealing a tall man dressed in black,
looking frighteningly elegant.
MOTHER rushes off to look in a MIRROR hanging on a wall,
trying to fix her hair, but can see that the entry door
reflected in the mirror has opened and closed without
anyone there; the stranger has no reflection. THE
THE MASTER has closed the door is poised in a menacing
I want the boy.
MOTHER cowers, backing away, pleading with the MASTER, then
with anger, challenging him.
THE MASTER becomes furious and spells MOTHER. THE MASTER
floats toward MOTHER, his eyes drilling deep into her,
keeping her entranced. THE MASTER towers over her, bending
down toward her. MOTHER tries to fight him off with weak
hands but it is as if nothing can stop him. THE MASTER shows
his VAMPIRE FANG as he brings his head down to her neck.
TOBE’s eyes open, alert. He rises from bed and moves
quickly toward the door. He looks out.
TOBE races down the hall.
TOBE looks into the living room, seeing THE MASTER biting
MOTHER on the neck. Blood flows from her neck and down her
arms, pooling onto the floor. THE MASTER turns to look at
TOBE and smiles, mouthing TOBE’s name and laying MOTHER on
the floor in a pool of blood.
TOBE rushes toward them, pushing THE MASTER away and cradling
MOTHER in his arms. Her head falls limp, blood flowing from
the gash in her neck. TOBE takes her head in one hand.
MOTHER’S eyes barely open to look up at TOBE, her mouth
puckered, her tongue lapping, gasping for air. TOBE bows his
head, closes his eyes, lays her gently on the floor and
stands on all fours over her. TOBE looks back over his
shoulder to THE MASTER. THE MASTER looks back at TOBE.
I’ve come for you, Tobe, not for
The Mother.
TOBE turns quickly toward THE MASTER and lunges toward him,
wrestling THE MASTER to the floor and pinning him down as
TOBE shows his VAMPIRE FANGS, trying to close in on and bite
THE MASTERS neck. THE MASTER quickly brings his right arm in
between them, resisting TOBE, then throwing him over toward
and against the wall, causing the CROSS to fall from the
mantle onto the floor beside TOBE, away from THE MASTERS
view. TOBE turns over quickly as THE MASTER pounces on TOBE.
TOBE thrusts the CROSS into the lunging MASTER, stabbing THE
MASTER dead center in the chest. THE MASTER, stunned and held
in place, pulls away from TOBE, and falls back on his knees;
blood flows from THE MASTERS wound onto his hands as he
struggles to pull the CROSS from his heart.
THE MASTER falls forward, one arm stretched out to keep from
falling, the other still clutching the CROSS. THE MASTER
loses his strength and falls to the floor on his side, dead.
TOBE quickly moves toward MOTHER, kneels down beside her and
takes her in his arms, then rests her on his lap, stroking
her face. TOBE looks at his own forearm then places it to
MOTHERS mouth. MOTHER takes TOBE’S arm with both hands and
begins to suckle from the wrist. TOBE looks back toward THE
MASTER, then back to MOTHER. MOTHERS strength returns enough
to keep her alive. She opens her eyes and looks up at TOBE.
At Last
Ralph Pitre
Ralph Pitre
7 Leawood Drive, Briarcliff Manor, NY 10510
Camera at floor level pulls back from revolving doors. A
woman in heels and a winter coat walks toward us with
determination. We pull back and rise to follow her as she
passes the doorman.
Evening Mrs. Banger.
Evening, Benny.
Need help, Ma’am?
No thank you, Benny.
MRS. BANGER smiles and struts along with confidence, carrying
a large black duffle bag. She stands at the elevator door,
pressing the call button. BENNY rushes up from behind
offering her a building pass.
So’s things are proper and the boss
don’t take notice of the liberty’s
I take for you.
MRS. BANGER takes the pass, stuffing it in her coat pocket as
the elevator doors open and she boards.
Thank you, Benny.
Ma’am. Smells good what you got in
that bag.
Yes it does.
MRS. BANGER presses a button on the control panel then steps
aside standing opposite of the control panel, grasping a very
loose handrail that startles her.
Be careful, Ma’am.
I will.
The doors close.
Camera starts at MRS. BANGER’S feet then quickly tilts up her
body to a head & shoulder close up.
We follow BENNY back to his station where he dials the phone.
Mr. Banger’s wife is on the way up.
Close on papers handled by a pair of beautifully but overly
manicured hands, we tilt up and around behind a
breathtakingly curvaceous body to see MIGDALIA.
Too bad. He ain’t in a good mood.
(voice over)
Is he ever?
Got to go, handsome.
As the camera comes around, MIGDALIA hangs up the phone and
comes out from behind the desk, we follow as she struts into
MR. BANGER’S office with a small pile of papers.
We swing around BENNY as he hangs up the phone, to see him
screen right and the elevator background screen left. We push
in with a series of dissolving focal lengths until we come to
a close up on the floor number panel over the doors as the
elevator reaches the penthouse floor.
We push in behind MIGDALIA as she stands at the desk, placing
the papers in front of MR. BANGER who starts signing the
papers while still chatting on the phone and eyeing MIGDALIA
up and down.
Swinging swish pan left from MR. BANGER to MIGDALIA who
acknowledges his stare, looks away then turns back to look at
him with a smile then struts out of the office. We come
around and look through the door to watch MIGDALIA walk to
her desk and pass MRS. BANGER approach the office.
Evening Mrs. Banger.
MRS. BANGER says nothing, giving MIGDALIA a bitch side glance
as she struts into MR. BANGER’S OFFICE, and closes the door
behind her. She stands in vogue at the door waiting for some
acknowledgement from MR. BANGER, but receives none at first,
seeing that he is still on the phone chatting and playing
with the amulet hanging from his neck. He looks up at her,
without reacting and nods off screen a direction in which to
MRS. BANGER steps across the room to find a small table set
before a large fireplace, quickly clearing it of its props,
she drapes a white table cloth across it then empties the
contents of the duffle bag, setting down two elegant place
settings. Then taking out a heat pack from which she removes
two aluminum containers, whose hot contents she serves onto
each plate. She pours wine, lights candles, sits down &
waits. Moments pass as they stare at each other; she waits,
twiddling her fingers, straightening wrinkles in her dress,
while he talks on the phone. When his phone conversation ends
they just stare at each other a few moments. He continues to
toy with the amulet.
I have to work late. We’ll eat but
you should leave soon after we’re
Pause. MRS. BANGER looks away for a moment, then back to him.
Come and sit with me.
MR. BANGER walks across the room to a small refrigerator from
which he removes a bottle of water and then walks to the
table and sits down. Nothing but silence as they begin to
This is excellent. From Alfredo’s?
No, from me.
MR. BANGER looks up at her, somewhat surprised. She doesn’t
look up & continues to eat. He sits back away from the table
& turns away, sipping water.
I’m leaving you, Carol.
MRS. BANGER pauses for a moment, never looking away from her
plate, then continues to eat.
MR. BANGER (cont’d)
There isn’t anyone else. No other
woman, but you. You’ve become that
other woman. I don’t feel like I’m
married to the same woman I married
twelve years ago. Does that make
any sense? You’ve become that woman
who would break us apart. You’ve
done everything you could do, to
become the other woman, the woman I
didn’t want to marry, that woman
that would end up breaking up our
marriage if I were tempted to
stray. But I didn’t have to stray.
At least if there were another
woman I’d have you to come back to,
but you are that other woman and
there’s no you for me to come back
to. I’m sure that I’ve changed,
perhaps as much as you, but not in
the same way that you have.
Still toying with his amulet chain, MR. BANGER eats & drinks,
letting the wine she poured for him sit still on the table.
MRS. BANGER finishes her glass of wine in one fast gulp,
almost choking and then wiping her lips with the napkin.
MRS. BANGER reaches across the table to hold his hand. He
stops, startled by her initiative and looks up to her.
Tears trickle down her cheeks as she takes his hand and uses
it to wipe the tears from her cheek.
Camera tilt up from dark below chair to, lit from above, MRS.
BANGER rising up from between MR. BANGER’s legs, his pants
top evidently undone & open, her dress top evidently undone &
open, she pushes up to meet him face to face. He holds her
head, bringing her lips to his & they kiss passionately, cut
MIGDALIA leaves the floor, looking back at MR. BANGER’s
closed door.
We see BENNY standing at the exit door. He looks off to the
elevator. We snap tilt down from the elevator floor display
to see MIGDALIA coming off the elevator. We swing around to
see her walk away from us to the front lobby door, where
BENNY waits holding the door open then locking the door as he
leaves with MIGDALIA.
BENNY looking up from the street, smiling & nodding up to the
only floor with a light on. BENNY turns to smile at MIGDALIA,
she smiles back and they walk away down the street together.
We push slowly toward MR. BANGER’S office door. It swings
open. MRS. BANGER struts toward the elevator with the duffle
bag. Camera stays low, letting her come to us, comes around
her legs to follow & rise to see her in medium shot, still
floating around her to see the office door in background,
MRS. BANGER in foreground. She is nervous, somewhat spent of
energy as she stands at the elevator door waiting. She looks
back at MR. BANGER’s office door. The elevator comes. She
The doors close as MRS. BANGER presses the lobby button. The
elevator creeps down ever so slowly. She presses a button.
The elevator picks up speed & races to the lobby, scaring
MRS. BANGER as she grabs the handrail. The elevator stops
short on the lobby floor, lurches then holds for a moment.
She puts the duffle bag down in the corner of the elevator
with the control panel & presses the door open button, which
does nothing. The elevator lurches again. She presses more
buttons as the elevator suddenly rises & heads up faster &
faster. Leaning back against the wall, sliding over to the
corner & holding the rail, she looks up, first at the floor
number panel, then to the ceiling, noting the roof access
panel, back to the number panel, seeing that the elevator has
reached the penthouse floor, where it eases to a subtle
pause, she presses the door open button again. The elevator
rushes back down. She looks at the control panel, then down
to the duffle bag, sliding even further away into the
opposing corner from the duffle bag, grabbing the loose rail,
she looks sick & starts to scream for help.
Up at MR. BANGER’s office we look around, taking note of the
dinner place settings left untended on the small wooden
Floor level tracking shot moves slowly toward the penthouse
floor elevator door. No sound.
Floor level tracking shot moves slowly toward the first floor
elevator door. No sound. Camera rises to a close up of the
number panel. Elevator reaches first floor then starts back
Struggling against gravity as the elevator rises, MRS. BANGER
breaks the rail loose from the wall & struggles to use it to
break open the ceiling access panel which flies away as the
elevator light blacks out, and the elevator stops just below
the penthouse floor, where she can see the elevator doors.
The only light is from a red safety light at the top of the
shaft. She looks down at the duffle bag. The elevator light
begins to flicker intermittently. She takes her heels off &
tries to jump to reach the opened ceiling access, once,
And on the third try, the elevator suddenly shoots back down,
throwing her up into the ceiling, then crashing her to the
elevators floor, where she lays still but awake & hurt,
looking across at the duffle bag as the elevator rushes back
down to the first floor, pauses, then gently rises. The
elevator lights continue to flicker, the red & orange shaft
lights swing past.
She carefully sits back against the wall, a bruise evident on
her face. She is bewildered. From a wide shot tilting down to
a medium close-up looking down at the floor area obscured
from her view by the duffle bag, we see blood flowing from
the bottom of the bag.
MRS. BANGER finds her cell phone in her coat pocket & makes a
call. At first the signal is weak but as the elevator rises,
it gets better. She looks up into the shaft. But the elevator
stops midway, the signal still weak.
Carla? Carla? It’s Carole. Can you
hear me? Carla? I need your help.
If you can hear me, call the
police, I’m stuck on the penthouse
elevator in Carl’s building. If you
can hear me, hang up and call the
police. Carla, call the police!
MRS. BANGER looks down at the phone.
MRS. BANGER whimpers but stays resolute. The elevator hasn’t
moved. She crawls to the panel, reaching over the duffle bag
with her right hand to press a button & keep upright by
planting her left hand down on the floor between the wall &
duffle bag. She stops. The floor is wet. She leans back on
her knees to look at her hand & the blood dripping from it.
She looks down at the duffle bag. An eyeball looks back at
her. A very deep, guttural & low volume voice says, “Hello
Carol.” A bloodied arm thrusts up from the bag to grab her
arm & hold it for a moment. The elevator starts to rise.
Shocked, she breaks loose, falling back away from the bag &
leaning back against the wall to see the arm standing erect
from within the bag. Camera close on arm and hand in
foreground, MRS. BANGER against the elevator wall compressed
in background. Camera trucks in as lens zooms wide
decompressing the depth of field, pushing MRS. BANGER
optically away, the arm now prominent in the foreground of
the shot.
Camera pans right along MR. & MRS. BANGER’s bodies pressed
against each other, she on top of him. We start at their
groins & pan right to their heads then passed to follow MRS.
BANGER’s arm reaching beyond MR. BANGER’s head & out of
frame. Looking down at the table, her hand reaches into frame
to take a large chef’s knife & slide it out of frame. Looking
up at MRS. BANGER, she raises the knife in both hands above
her head & immediately hammers down. Close-ups on both as the
slaughter continues, agony, ecstasy & blood splatter
everywhere, drenching. Close on MR. BANGER, shock & pain
wrench his face. The camera moves up & left to white
tablecloth, blood soaking its way across the frame, MR.
BANGER’S arm falls limp across the frame.
The elevator stops at the top & immediately starts down. In
the elevator, the camera cranes down bringing outstretched
arm up into frame foreground, MRS. BANGER in the background.
Dolly back & zoom in to compress the shot. The arm snaps down
out of frame. Close up on demon hand slamming down onto the
floor for support beside the duffle bag. The amulet chain
falls into frame beside his hand. Wide shot as we watch the
demon rise bloodied & slimy from the bag. MRS. BANGER watches
in shock, sliding back against the corner opposite & as far
away as possible from the duffle bug. The demon rises,
lacking strength it struggles like a limp marionette to stand
& move forward to MRS. BANGER.
Close on MRS. BANGER’s face turned away, terrified & pressed
against the wall as the demon approaches. Her eyes look away
then shift across to take a peek at the demon. Close on
eyeball & demon reflected in it. She looks down & is suddenly
surprised by what she sees. Cut to her point-of-view & the
broken handrail. She reacts. Reaches for the handrail, grabs
it & swings it back hand across to hit the demon, slamming it
against the wall, shocking it & causing some damage but not
enough, so she stands & hits it again, and again, and again,
splattering blood & body parts all over. The demon collapses,
limbs & parts falling & flying away. MRS. BANGER stands over
the demon, hammering down at it then falling on knees to
straddle the demons torso.
The elevator suddenly stops. A ping sounds. She looks up at
the floor display panel showing “1”. We tilt down to the
doors as they open to a close-up shot of a woman.
Hi Carla.
I heard you, Carol. But you
couldn’t hear me when I said I
would bring help! Oh my God! Carol!
The camera zooms back to a wide shot of those with her, a
POLICE OFFICER fumbling to pull his gun, two FIREMEN & an
EMS. MRS. BANGER stays in place, dumbfounded & bloodied.
CARLA’S scream continues into black.

Dolor, De Los Niños

resting infant hands
Passed this point, to get passed this point…
That’s what she thought… get passed this…
Then Inez’s life would be at rest…
She had imagined, a journey upon a sea of black…
Nothing where she imagined the shore to be…
The children she left without a care…without a life…
Sobbed within the darkness of the waves…
Lost as a child…
No Mother…she thought, never found…
No Father, never sought,  just as lost…
She pondered the emptiness of her imagination as she held remnants…
Inez examines a young Puerto Rican woman showing scars…
The scars of a badly performed abortion evident…
Surrounded by the memories of children aborted…
Washing up on shores of living limbs…
Reaching out from the depth of misery and sorrow…

Inez awakens…
Perhaps, sixty years of age…
Home alone… the room is black and all she can hear is the dark of the night…
A home she purchased alone years before…
Using the wealth she gained as a doctor…
Performing abortions…
She had been married but Charlie, her husband, aptly died while they were still in medical school….
The house sat on ten acres of land surrounded by hundreds of acres of protected park land…
She lived alone as she had always with a daughter, Alma, a few pictures on the wall showed the girl was in her twenty’s…
Inez’s hand moved quickly across the page as she wrote her notes to recall…
The other hand held the probe of the stethoscope bell against her chest…
Catching the resonant beat of her heart…
The only light in the room was an old desk lamp…
Darkness surrounded her….
A thumping sound came from the basement…
Inez looked down the hall at the dark stairwell from where the noise came…
The noise continued as she stepped down to the basement…
Holding the bell shaped probe of the stethoscope to her heart…
She walked down the stairs approaching a thumping, dull wooden sound…
The sound of dull objects pounding on metal…
Down in the basement she turned on the light…
Revealing an expanse of priceless artwork…
Passing it all she walked to an open large, heavy wooden door at the back wall of the basement…
Musty air exhaled to escape and mingled with fresh air in the rest of the basement producing a queer smell…
She reached up into the darkness turning on the lamp that hung from an old mangled wire….
The noise continued as she approached the room at the back wall it was coming from…
Lining the rotted walls of the unkempt secret room were a series of old wooden file cabinets that bore a likeness of a the city morgue…
Row upon row of the dead were kept in coffin draws…
Rolled out when needed like files in a filing cabinet…
It sounded as if an animal was in the cabinets and were daringly trouncing about inside…
An animal?
What kind of an animal would get into this room? Rats!
She had rats!
Damn it! she thought…
The pounding continued until it came to settle within one of the draws…
She listened carefully trying to pinpoint the source…
Sounding as if the animal were running from draw to draw and settling…
The arrhythmic pounding seemed to be coalescing into the heartbeats of many coming from a single draw…
Inez stood before the draw listening to the slow, muffled drumming…
Holding the stethoscope probe to it and listening carefully…
As she had done so often when listening for the heartbeat of a child in it’s mothers womb before…
Hearing the soft heartbeat thump, thump, thump…
An animal?
She ran into the main basement room, found a hammer and a screwdriver…
Inhaled a deep breath and counted down as she pulled the draw back quickly…
The fetus folded, lay still, dead and moist: Aborted… one would assume…
Threw herself away from the draw, ran out of the room and locked it…
Stepping back from the door, her eyes fixed on it’s stillness…
Pressed the stethoscope bell against her chest, listening to her heart…
Standing at the wooden door of her basement…
Listening, as the draws alone opened one by one…
Listening as the sound of whimpering children’s hearts murmuring filled the room…
She imagined the death of her husband the moment she let him go to find his end and her freedom…
Raising herself from his death as she let him die…
The door resonating, pounding the door from the other side of their existence…
“You have hurt us…” they said.
“And we will hurt you…”

“Alma, go see your mother…”
“How would she know…?”
“Your dreams are the result of your own life… there is so much to learn from her…”
“But I love you so much…”
“Do you Michael?”
“I do… That love no matter how real or sincere doesn’t result in the relationship we have…”
“There are so many assumptions to consider…”

“Don’t you recall mother?”
“I don’t…”
“You called me…”
“I recall falling asleep in the rocking chair, having a terrible nightmare…”
“Really? Why?”
“Mom, you always wanted me to have a child…
A husband…
Listen to the order you prefer,
That’s not what I wanted… do you recall?”
“I don’t…”
“Mother, are you alright?…
Mother, this isn’t the life I wanted, this is what you want…
You wanted us to marry and have a child…
I’m not even sure I even want to be married at all or marry Michael…”
“I wanted your life to be the life I wanted for myself when I was a little girl…”
“And now, this is the life you wanted?”
“No, I never had a life that I could  grow from…I had to choose my life along the way…
No directive or guidance…No one was ever there for me… To accept the choices made for or left for me…”
“Which is the life you now want me to have with which to have my child…the life you imagined for yourself you wish for me without a say?”
“No Alma…”
“You already have chosen that existence for me…”
“There is so much joy in giving birth…to nurture….a man can never have what you can…”
“Mother, I don’t want that, I hope to have what I want.”
“But you do…”
“I why would I want what you feel I should?”
“Don’t you also wish for the child to have a life with a mother who wants the child as well?”
“No mother.”
“But you will Alma…”
“Like you wanted me?
“Of course, love…”
“Are you sure?”
“Yes…you have doubts?”
“About you and my existence mother?”
“I had a dream, a nightmare of children hurt and in pain, they knew nothing else…
“They expected nothing…”
“They lived in that very moment…”
The love they needed was forever to be one of sorrow…
They stood about waiting…
Watching, knowing where the children were going and rising from the black ground…
And they could see nothing they would want of birth…
Imagine the life they were becoming a part of not being the end result of their birth…
They imagined more so but they couldn’t turn back…
They couldn’t turn back the life offered was one they couldn’t turn down…
But live it as is best and worse they could imagine…
Nothing to fulfill, nothing to chose but accept death and fall where they must…”
“Do you understand what you are, Alma?
You are the child of a woman whose wrath is the scorn and hate of others…
You are the child born of a woman who blamed and aborted the children of others for her childless life…
Aborted the lives of others out of vengeance…
Realized she could steal another’s to have her own and rid herself of a useless man…
Having a child is the joy of seeing it appear from the womb, the joy of watching that child grow up.”
The child poured forth, its birth, its spirit now free of any restriction of any afterthought was lost…
As if to stretch and awaken from a deep sleep…
To rise from a sleep that was never complete…
The children, risen from their sleep angered to rise…
Risen to become anger from a sleep of hate
Alma calls from the room…
The sores erupt as births…
The emergence of a child born, from the body of its mother…
Blind from birth…
To be born like cancer, to be born from death…
These children are triggered to fruit by the very death of its mother…
I am a child of misery poured forth.
Looking in the mirror, Alma’s puss filled sores cover the whole of her body…
Embodying the dead children, becoming a mass of ill-formed arms, legs, heads, eyes and mouths from the fetus’ of the children she aborted…
Witnessing the army of ill formed children rise up from the open land around her…
A woman stands across the field watching…
A child speaks, the wraith, speaks as the the wraith form for the woman who watches from across the field, and was a patient of the doctors.
This child appears from the composite of aborted fetuses that embodies Alma… the children aborted are the victims of Inez who are the deceived minority patients, convinced to abort what they thought were deformed children, only to satisfy the animal within her that sought to restrict other minority women from having children… her anger ran deep…why should she not have a child.
Having killed her husband, we learn that Inez killed her husband believing his impotency kept her from having children….
But it was her that was sterile…
The anger drove her to open a practice in a depressed neighborhood where she performed abortion after abortion…
Killing the children she could never have…
She re-imagines the sensation of life within the mother’s belly…
Quivering with anxiety dying in her hands…
While still within the body of the mother…
Alma, is a stolen child.
Alma knows now that she is not her mother’s true child, but a child left and disposed, a replacement for her mother’s twisted dreams.
Alma had been summoned by the ghosts of those whose suffering and death we’re not allowed to live because of her mother’s quest for sacrifice, a more suitable punishment for a vengeful woman, who cherished her daughter more than anything else in the world…
Alma, finally consumed by the dead children, consumed…
The mass undulates in the bed…
As her daughter calls as if from far away…
Inez runs off down the steps… She slips and gets hurt…
The house shutters, the floor shakes, the walls quiver in a giant wave…
The faces of children suddenly appear from the fabric of the wall…
As if they were pressing through from the other side…
She runs for the exit door…
Grabs the knob…
The little hands reach out and grab her, pulling her down…
She yanks at them, pulling the door off of it’s hinges.
She falls back to the floor and looks out through the door, across the field…
An army of children appear, standing in line across, like land mines laid across a field.
Inez rushes the door and charges through the army of children…
She runs out onto the field where an army of angry of children, who slowly sink into the ground, dragging her with them…
The house weakens and is consumed by the Earth, then falls into the darkness…
Punishment for the divine…

A cruel and scornful  woman, is haunted and subjected to divine punishment, retribution and ultimately death, for the horrible things she did in her .
An older woman is haunted by the ghosts of the children she maliciously aborted when she first operated her practice in El Barrio. Seeking revenge, the ghosts have lured her only daughter, stolen from a woman she killed in surgery and adopted by her, to the house and turned her into one of them; an aborted life form. the doctor dies, taken away by the ghouls she brought into the world.

I Want To Talk To God

The church, much larger than any building Billie had seen or ever been in.
Billie had spoken to his friends concerning his problems who suggested that if God isn’t answering your prayers,
then maybe you have to go to see him yourself.
Where does God live?
So Billie walked his skinny 6yr old frame around the neighborhood he lived,
not finding a church or even knowing what it would or should look like he asked the boy named Troy, his brother’s friend.
“A church? What you want a church for?
I never seen your mother near a church can’t imagine they’d let you seeing’s you prolly not even been baptized.”
“I need to find God.”
“Yeah. I pray to God every night cause I been told if I do, then he might help me out.”
“Ain’t no one going to help you kid. Lotsa people pray to God and you see how the world is for all over. Pray to your self cuz you is the only one’s going to help you.”
“Well I can always ask, in person.”
“In person? Kid, maybe you’ll find a priest, and if he cares can help you but you won’t find God in no church.”
“Maybe the priest can help me find God.”
“Like I said, if the priest cares…”
“Do you know where the church is or don’t you?”
“Right behind you kid. Been there all the time you standing in front of me,
been there a long time in this neighborhood too, like any other building,
just standing there doing nothing but takin’ up space.”
Billie turned…
“Let me know if you find God kid, I got a few questions for him like you.”
Bigger than any building that he had ever been near, giant wooden doors having to struggle to push open, he did and slipped in before the doors shut back on him. Rows of benches stretched forward from him, more people could sit on them than he could imagine but there was no one in them. No one here. The benches stretched away from the doors toward an enormous ceiling and a really big man, a white man nailed to two giant pieces of wood that crossed each other. He was sad, the man on the cross, his eyes closed, sad maybe cuz those nails must hurt, but this must be God he thought, someone kept him nailed to the cross so he wouldn’t go anywhere seeing’s how so many people pray to him. Doesn’t anybody ever come to see him in person? Guess not, he thought. It was cold and windy in the church, you could hear wind whistling from outside and it was still summer.
“Hello God? Hello God? Can you help me?”
Just ask, he thought.
“God? I really love my mother and she loves me back cause she says it all the time but she’s not been very good to me. She hurts me a lot, with her words and sometimes with her hands…”
The voice was a man’s voice and deep, but it wasn’t God as he thought for a moment. The man wore black clothing, all black with some white around his neck.
“Are you God?”
He laughed out loud, so hard he almost choked and coughed so much he had to sit to catch his breath.
“Am I God? Thats funny. Its sacrilegious for me to say but I sure wish I was cuz there’s lots I think I would do to help the world.”
“Can you help me?”
“Well I ain’t God but maybe I can, now boy-“
“Billie, my names Billie”
“Okay, Billie… did I hear you say something about your mother hurting you.”
“Yes, but she doesn’t mean to, sometimes I think I deserve it, I’m just a kid, I don’t know nothing.”
“But you know it hurts.”
“I thought he was God, be he didn’t say anything – “
“Thats just a statue – “
“Of God?”
“No, of Jesus, he’s the son God.”
“God has a son?”
“Yes he does and thats a statue of Jesus.”
“Who’s Jesus, and why’s he nailed to that wood?”
“That’s a cross! For all the good people see in him he was a trouble maker to important people… Don’t you ever come to Church boy – “
“Billie, yeah well don’t you ever come to church, your mother never brings you here.”
“No, she sometimes comes by herself, on the way home she tells me and she prays for us, she prays for good to come. But it doesn’t, not ever cuz I know cuz how she hurts me and she cries a lot except when she takes a needle in her arm that makes her feel better, she leaves me alone and its quiet in our room for awhile. But she prays to God and he never answers and I figure why can’t I talk to God in person cuz maybe he’ll listen to me. My friends told me he’d be living here in the Church.”
“Well if he actually lived in a Church don’t know if it’d be this one, and there are so many which one would he choose! The Vatican I guess.”
“The Vatican? Are there a lot of churches?”
“Millions Billie, millions all over the world and he doesn’t really live in any of them – “
“But you said maybe the Vatican.”
“Well maybe not there either, the pope lives there.”
“The Pope? Who’s he?”
“The Pope’s the leader of the church.”
“But i thought God is the leader of the church.”
“God is the leader of it all…”
“All what?”
“All you see and hear and feel and think and imagine.”
“Well where does he live?”
“Everywhere? Well why can’t I see him?”
“Cause you have to believe.”
“In what?”
“But I do believe in God.”
“Maybe God just don’t want to see you.”
“The man turns and walks away…”


I should’ve been lucky I haven’t been to a great extent…
likewise I am alive and have been fortunate enough to capitalize…
that’s where the skill and ability come in to play…
A baseball player starts with luck but must capitalize on that luck with skill…
Like all we know, to have, get all I want…
Life is almost over, not complete because I feel like I haven’t started much to complete, but I’ve written quite a bit but not released to much to show accomplishment…
but I wasn’t wealthy to begin with nor middle class, but I could act like I was, instead…many do… Mother kept us content…
Never been told I had to get a job and what the job was supposed to be…
my mother once suggested a job as an engineer…
there are so many positions within the broad blanket of jobs title qualifying engineer; Sanitation Engineer…
She might have imagined something more important than just garbage collector…
The job I should’ve settled for was a plebeian gig with no hope…
a Subway conductor…or a con ed manager…pretty much what I ended up with… But I settled for wanted to do, I went for what I enjoyed doing… Minus the hope…
Hope for what?
A great treasure?
Who benefited?
A recent article pointed out the wealth we hope for is a benefit, the wealth and benefit others result from is luck…
We should always be ready for the benefits that seem to never come…
I’ve stepped in this hole before…
So many have been here in a deeper hope than I am in now… No where near the worst…
But I want better, who doesn’t, I’ve had better, I want better…I write my way out of this and try imagine the potential for me to capitalize on…
Capitalize on luck, develop skill…

God Is Dead

God is dead.
God remains dead.
And we have killed him.
How shall we comfort ourselves, the murderers of all murderers?
What was holiest and mightiest of all that the world has yet owned has bled to death under our knives:
who will wipe this blood off us?
What water is there for us to clean ourselves?
What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we have to invent Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us?
Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it?”
— Nietzsche, The Gay Science (1882)
God Is Dead
I receive a call from Emily, an old girlfriend…
Nervous and anxious she asks me to rush over to see and to talk…
Emily was due back at work but never showed up…
Emily had been missing for several days when she called…
I rushed over to her apartment…
Anxious to know how she was…
Where she had been….
Emily was careful and reluctant to let me into her apartment…
She looked gaunt and exhausted…
Her eyes were mad, her eyes moist with tears…
We sat on the couch and she said, “I killed God.”
“You killed God?”
“How – what do you mean, you killed God?”
“That’s just it. I killed God.”
“How did you kill God? How did you meet God
“I beat him over the head with a long piece of wood I had found further down in the forest, that I had used as a walking stick to climb up the mountain.” “Emily, you went on vacation to Central America, right?” “Yes I did. Belize actually.” “Belize. Did you find God in Belize?” “No. Not exactly.”
I found a path…
I found a walking stick…
That I used it to climb the mountain…
And used it to kill god…
So you met God…
You killed God with a branch?
And God did nothing to stop you…
No, not one bit of protest, God is dead…
How do you know it was God…
I was told by the elders in the village…
And why assume they were telling you the truth?
I traveled a long way because of what I’d been told about by many of the villagers before…
How remote it was in a place so far away…
And what had you been told?
Magic, the village held secrets and magic was one of them…
And that I could find God…
Jeremy, I was a broken woman…
Space and time, I needed space and time…
I couldn’t interact, I couldn’t work with you or others…
I considered life as it was and it made no sense so I left…
And looked for God.
For all intent, I am dead…
Said God…
I tried to care so much…
Too much that I became an angry God…
And my children turned away from me…
Having lost all memory of me…
There was no son…
An embellishment by those who thought I should…
One of the hundreds who spoke as if they knew me and of my power…
I am dead to humankind and they are dead to me…
I must remain as the essence of humankind though…
I leave and will wither without me…
I must wait until humankind throws itself into the fire…
I must wait until they release me…
The chain keeps me here…
Chained to a stick in the ground…
I make no choice…
I have no choice…except to be killed by the hand of one of my children…
You can free me…
Instead perhaps I should let you suffer, bring you within a hairs breath of death…
Why do you hate me so?
I don’t hate you…but I don’t love you…I don’t need you.
Are you sure?
I don’t know.
I recall once as a child I would serve God…
How could God ever die?
The universe is greater than you can ever imagine…I am a layer among layers…
I represent a greater power…Humankind called me God and I am not for there is a God above me…
And I’m sure above that…the hierarchy seems endless…perhaps it is…
Perhaps, I am not needed?