Thursday, January 14, 2016

Relentless

"Define yourself in one word," I was recently asked.

Usually I don't have an answer, but my perceptive friend Gail Henderson has an adjective for me that I think fits better than most simple summations. She calls me her "relentless" friend. And I will claim that.

Relentless.

What success I've had in life, in publishing, in writing, is because I lower my head, grit my teeth, and keep on keeping on, swallowing the disappointments, the heartaches, the sorrows, the insults, the disregards, the sideways cuts...

Yeah, that means sometimes I tilt at windmills that really are dragons, but even if I go down, I will go down fighting, and the opposition is going to be really, really, really tired.

Relentless me. I like it.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Finish that sentence

"The more I work with people, the more I want to..." Finish that sentence if you dare.

Possible replies:
-- crush them beneath my booted heel.
-- create a global disaster and start over with a race of intelligent hamsters.
-- retreat to a beautiful island filled with only the people I approve.
-- love them until they are wracked with guilt about the way they behave and then withhold forgiveness.
-- ignore them until they fade from my perception.
-- a combination of several of the above.

Or ... write your own and share.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Advice from the front line

Try not to burn any bridges that you might need to cross again. And even if you think you would NEVER cross that bridge again, life is long and loves to break our certainties.

In my life, I have burned and even blown up bridges that I deeply regret. Bridges that I have wept over afterwards because of my short-sighted foolishness and pride.

Crossing a swift river without a bridge is cold and wet and even dangerous to your heart.

You can rebuild bridges. It takes a lot of effort and time and willpower. You can do it. If you have to. But it's a WHOLE lot of work. Try to avoid the necessity.

Just a bit of advice from the front lines.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Lunch

For lunch I'm having this huge 4-egg omelet filled with mushrooms, ham, and cheese.

And by huge, I mean diabetic potion sized.

By ham, I mean turkey.

By cheese, I mean low fat cheese.

By egg, I mean egg substitute with no carbs or cholesterol.

Look, it's yellow and lumpy.

Let's go with my first thought.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Wish I had said it first

I just wish I had said this first:

"The problem with today's world is that everyone believes they have the right to express their opinion AND have others listen to it. The correct statement of individual rights is that everyone has the right to an opinion, but crucially, that opinion can be roundly ignored and even made fun of, particularly if it is demonstrably nonsense!" -- Professor Brian Cox

Saturday, January 09, 2016

If only I could

If only I could stop loving you
my life would be better now
in more ways than I can imagine.

If only I could forget
the taste of your lips,
your face as you slept,
those blue, happy eyes,
the silly way you smiled,
I wouldn't feel so empty now.

If only I could stop hurting
when I recall those days
of loving and laughing
and yes even fighting,
crying, and arguing--
I wouldn't flee from love now.

If only I knew you, too,
had regrets when you
think of me--if ever
you do--and missed
me and our flawed love,
I could finally begin to heal.

If only you read these words
I'd know you'd finally know
I still carry the memory of us
and it's breaking my back
because you lack the courage
to share this heavy burden.

In more ways than I can imagine
my life would better now
if only I could stop loving you.


Friday, January 08, 2016

Bad concept

At the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas, going on now, Samsung introduced yet another "Smart Refrigerator." Listen, it's not going to be really smart until it locks itself when I'm a diet.

Smart fridges are introduced every year, it seems, but they never take off. The public doesn't want that type of tech in their fridge.

I know why Samsung made it -- fridge sales have been flat for several years now. They want fridges to be exciting, sexy, a must buy. It's not going to happen. They keep thinking if they add enough features, people will cough up $5,000, but the problem isn't the features; the problem is the concept.

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Wish I had said this first

I just wish I had said this first:

"We are all here on earth to help others; what on earth the others are here for I don't know." -- W. H. Auden

Monday, January 04, 2016

Book Review: "Empire of the Summer Moon"

I have been meaning to recommend this book for a week or so: Empire of the Summer Moon: Quanah Parker and the Rise and Fall of the Comanches, the Most Powerful Indian Tribe in American History by S. C. Gwynne.

I don't like history in general, but this book was gripping and exciting as it detailed the battle between the Comanches and the United States. It doesn't shy away from the atrocities committed by both sides and deftly and clearly explains the tensions and politics within both sides, which led to this war.

Woven in this was the fascinating and sad story of Cynthia Ann Parker, a white girl taken by the Comanches when she was nine and finally -- unhappily -- "rescued" when she was an adult. Her son, Quanah, would become the first and only Principal Chief of the Comanches and would fight the last battles with the U.S. before becoming a powerful force for Native American rights.

A friend loaned the book to me, but I liked it so much that I bought a copy from Amazon. It's no wonder the book was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.

Highly recommended -- even to those that dislike history.

Sunday, January 03, 2016

Listing forward

Been trying to recapture my momentum after months of ill health and sad thoughts. One of the ways I'm doing that is to make a daily list filled with manageable items.

By manageable, I mean items that I can actually accomplish in a day. No "Write a book" since that couldn't be done in a day -- at least, not by me. I don't write or think that fast! But I could write a page a day. Or five pages a week.

Likewise, I can't clean out my closet in a day. There are 20 years of junk and clothes in there. But I can make a little progress daily. I purchased two large plastic tubs that I'm going to fill with items for the closet. I hope one tube will go to Goodwill; the other will go into storage. I have a walk-in closet that I can't walk in. I want to change that this year.

I also want to cook more meals at home. I think home-cooked meals are -- for the most part -- healthy. Not cheaper necessarily because fast food is pretty cheap due to volume buying and low quality ingredients, but I should be able to keep a food budget with some effort.

I want to go to the library more. I've gotten out of the habit. Miss doing so.

I want to write each and every day, be it blogs or short stories or novels or even poetry. I must write. It's good for me. Good for my mental health.

I want to take a lot of photos. I have a good camera now. Why not use it?

I want to sing at least one song every day. Singing is good mental health because it's fun. I like doing it, and I want to keep my voice strong.

I want to watch some DVD courses from The Great Courses that I never have. They sit on my shelves full of knowledge for me. I need to keep learning.

I want to walk (exercise) at least five times a week. My health depends on me being more active. I'm not going to get any younger. Time to start.

All these things will improve my life and my ability to be productive and to be able to help others.

Yes, I will probably not keep all of these -- or any of these -- all year, but the effort is good for my soul. We don't grow unless we try to grow. And I want to grow.

Saturday, January 02, 2016

For a late Christmas gathering

When you've wrapped eight or 10 Christmas presents in a hurry, you realize three things:

1. Your wrapping looks like it was done by a drunk monkey.

2. Just about anything will fit in a gift bag if you push it hard enough.

3. You never have enough gift bags in the right sizes. You can put a small present in a big bag and fill it in with tissue paper, but that seems mean.

Friday, January 01, 2016

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

The Stable Boy's Tale

The Stable Boy’s Tale
By Stephen B. Bagley

NOW, OF COURSE, after all these years, I’ve heard the tale from other folks. It’s plain there be a few misconceptions about the whole happenin’ that I, Gregor Nikolas, intends to correct hereforth.

Let me start at the beginning with me being born. Perhaps that be too far back, but I won’t bore you with much detail other than to say that I was eighth in my family so it was no surprise when my pater forgot me at Keloe’s Inn when I was seven. Keloe has gotten some bad jawing about him due to the events that I am about to relate, but truthfully he wasn’t a bad or cruel innkeeper. He washed his plates once a week even if they had been wiped clean by travelers, and made us all take baths once a month whether we needed them or not. Still he fed me and his other workers fair enough and let us sleep inside when it rained or snowed, so we could forgive his unnatural obsession with cleanliness.

That particular night we was full up. His mighty hineyness Augustus Caesar had ordered that all folks return to their birthing place so that they could be counted and taxed. Them Romans be generally good at taxing and at building roads and bridges and have the appeal and personality of old dead, rotten fishes – ’specially if those fishes carry swords and spears and be pretty easy about swinging them in the vicinity of other folks’ innocent necks.

Anyways, a lot of folks had returned to Bethlehem. Folks usually left Bethlehem when they was old enough to leave since it was a one-donkey town at that time and didn’t have much to keep someone down on the farm unless they was just partial to drudgery. Galene, my sweetie except when she’s got her temper up and then she don’t belong to the gods or any man, said we were going to leave as soon as we saved enough for passage to Rome. Rome was a big city and sounded exciting except for having all those Romans there.

Since folks left town as soon as able, there wasn’t much need for lots of extra rooms or inns for that matter. In fact, there were just three inns in town, if you counted ours twice and Nero’s Inn of the Seven Seas once. (They served a tasty salad dressing there, I hear told.) So we was jam-packed with folks, so much so that I saw the fleas leaving.

I was out getting more water to water down the wine. The night was cold and clear. Away from the inn, it was as dark as a soldier’s heart. There I got my first suspicion that somethin’ was up. No, really, somethin’ was up. A star as it were, shining pretty bright. In fact, as I stood there, I realized that it was almost bright enough to read by if those folks who claim to be able to, really can and aren’t just foolin’ the rest of us.

I got the water out of the well, nearly freezing my hands off, which would have been fairly inconvenient and I’d have to become one of those beggars at the gates. ‘No Hands Gregor’ they would call me, I’d bet, and then Galene would come and see me and weep at her handsome man and cuddle me and hold me.

The cook yelled at me from the back door so I woke up from my daydreaming and took the water bucket over to him. He half-heartedly cuffed me for taking so long, but I’m quick and young and he be old and slow, so he only hit the side of my head and bruised his hand.

I slipped past him and made my way to the common room, which was filled with smoke and noise. Galene was serving ale to some merchants and  easily avoiding their hands. She smiled at me and then frowned. She did that a lot. She’d see me and think that she loved me and then see something on me that she needed to be changing, like me washing my hands or getting the manure off my feet. She also had an obsession about cleanliness. I just hoped it wasn’t catchin’.

Keloe hollered at me. He was standing at the door, letting in the cold or maybe letting it out. Hard to tell. He was mighty stingy with the fire wood.

“Take these people to the stable,” Keloe said smugly. “We have no room in the inn.”

A man stood there. His clothes were simple but clean. Behind him patiently stood a donkey on which was a woman who was, as they say in the market, with child. Of course by that, they meant she was going to have a baby, not that a child was with her holding her hand or nothin’ like that. I frankly don’t understand folks sometimes.

“Follow me,” I told the man. I waited until Keloe had closed the door before I added, “Actually, you’re lucky. The stable is much warmer and has a better class of rats than in the inn.”

The man darted a look at me and then smiled. He looked back at the woman, and he was serious again. She was young and pretty in a quiet sort of way. I led them around back to where Keloe had dug several rooms into the hill to make a place for the animals. We had one empty stall, though.

I grabbed a pole and raked the fresh straw over the area.

The woman gave a little gasp.

“Mary!” the man said.

I realized then and there that she was ‘bout to give birth there and then.

“Help me,” the man said. We both helped his Mary into the stable. I found – no, borrowed clean blankets from some of the packs of the inn’s guests and spread them out.

“We need light,” the man said. “And water.”

I ran to the inn and snatched up an olive oil lamp. The cook tried to stop me, but I ducked under his arm and was outside and back at the stable before he drew enough breath to bellow.

I gave the lamp to the man and then went to get water from the well. I felt a real urgency about this that, looking back, should have surprised me, but it was like the whole night was expectin’ somethin’. I felt my heart leap and move in my chest in a strange new way.

I brought the man the water bucket and then backed away from the stable. Overhead the star poured out light like it was a river of brightness.

“There you are,” Galene said. “What are you up to? You have cook so mad–”

“Shhh,” I said, reaching out and taking her hand.

“Now, I already told you that you won’t be getting no sweetness from me until we’re wed so–”

“Be quiet,” I said. “Listen. Listen.”

She was silent for a few moments and then quietly asked, “What are we listening for?” Her eyes were wide.

The night was still and quiet. The stars whirled above.

“For the world to change,” I said, not really understanding what I was sayin’ but knowin’ somehow it was true.

From inside the stable came a baby’s first cry.

(From Tales From Bethlehem. Copyright 2012 by Stephen B. Bagley. All rights reserved.)

Monday, December 21, 2015

Bells

"Bells"
By Stephen B. Bagley

Go ring the bright bells.
Sing this joyful morn.
Go speak the good news
of our King newly born.

Release your dark sorrows,
your times so forlorn.
Rejoice all ye people;
no more will we mourn.

Dance wild in your houses.
Dance wild in the streets.
Dance wild in the Son light.
Taste the song sung so sweet.

Bells shout the blessed news;
morn sweeps the bitter past.
New made our hearts and hope,
born our King at long last!

(From Tales From Bethlehem. Copyright 2012 Stephen B. Bagley. All rights reserved.)

Monday, November 16, 2015

November 2015 Currents & Tides

November 2015 issue of the Many Rivers Harbor Newsletter
Currents & Tides

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Big News! Undying by Stephen B. Bagley and Gail Henderson is now available on Amazon and other online retailers. We're both excited to offer this book of intense, funny, dark, sexy poems for you to enjoy.
Buy on Amazon by clicking here!

Tis the season for Tales from Bethlehem. You've heard the story a thousand times: glorious angels, lowly shepherds, brightly shining star, three Wise Men, and wee babe in a manger. But have you ever wondered about everyone else in tiny Bethlehem on that marvel of nights? What did they think? What did they do? In these funny and touching tales, you'll meet a stable boy, a serving girl, an honest spy, an astounding clerk, an empty innkeeper, a mighty ship of the desert, and many others as they share their amazing Tales from Bethlehem. A perfect gift!
Buy on Amazon by clicking here!

Maybe you like a bit of murder to season your holidays. In Murder by the Acre, Bernard and Lisa stumble on the body of a local jeweler and ladies' man in an underground house. As the couple and Chief Donaldson investigate, they find themselves drawn into a confusing mystery of lies and alibis that involves the upper crust of Ryton, Oklahoma. Questions abound: Who killed him and how? Why doesn't the widow care that her husband is dead? Why doesn't his mistress? What does the mysterious Aventura Corporation have to do with the murder? What is the corporation hiding? Soon events spiral out of control as the killer strikes again and again. As the three dig for the truth, they upset powerful, vengeful people. The chief might lose his job, but Bernard and Lisa could lose their lives in this suspenseful, fast-paced sequel to Murder by Dewey Decimal.
Buy MBTA on Amazon by clicking here!
Buy Murder by Dewey Decimal on Amazon by clicking here!

Big ebook sale! The Blackbirds Second Flight ebook is on sale for .99 cents until December 1 for your Kindle! Enjoy thrilling dark fantasy stories and chilling poems from Stephen B. Bagley, Wendy Blanton, Gail Henderson, Ken Lewis, Jean Schara, and Heath Stallcup, including a new Justina Grave mystery and a new sidhe story featuring the return of Maeve.
Buy for Kindle by clicking here!
Buy print version on Amazon by clicking here!

Need a laugh? Got two nuns and a goat? Do you enjoy Sabbath Night Fever? Or own a flying robot monkey army serving our Alien Masters? If you do - and even if you don't - Floozy and Other Stories is the book for you! Enjoy humorist Stephen B. Bagley's views of our world in more than 80 hilarious tales from his decidedly different life.
Buy on Amazon by clicking here!

The (un)True Story of the First Thanksgiving
By Stephen B. Bagley
from Floozy and Other Stories
     I hope if you have to travel for Thanksgiving that you drive carefully. Or if you take public transportation, bus or train carefully. Remember only you can prevent forest fires. So stay out of the forest! The chipmunks don't want you there. They plot against you, they do. 
     Most people know the story of the Pilgrims and their long, perilous journey across the ocean. To tell something new about them, one would have to do months of hard research and consult learned scholars. Instead, I'm going to use an easier way that nonetheless is prominent among Congressmen: I'm going to make it up. 
     The Pilgrims left Plymouth, England, in 1620, crossed the ocean in the Mayflower and landed at Plymouth, America, two months later. How lucky is that? They left Plymouth and ended up at Plymouth. 
     The Pilgrims were fleeing religious persecution from the governments and churches in Europe. The European establishment was a bit looser about sin, considering the Ten Commandments to be the Ten Suggestions and the Sermon on the Mount to be a Chat with Tea. The establishment, however, was steadfast in its beliefs, burning heretics at the stake. What a happy time was had by all, not including the burnee, of course, who sometimes complained loudly. 
     The Pilgrims were led by John Alden or maybe Miles Standish. I'm a little unclear on this. It could have been Flappy Slapdashy. Look it up. On the trip over, several sailors died. This could have been seen as a bad omen, but the Pilgrims didn't believe in omens. They also didn't believe in baths. No, that part is true. They thought baths were sinful and should be taken only once a year -- say for instance when your undergarments were capable of walking to the water by themselves -- and you were never to enjoy the warm water splashing on your naked body. Sigh... 
      Some modern-day scholars have taken this to mean that the Pilgrims were dour, sour people, but this simply isn't true. In 1637, Warwick William "Willie" Wipingnose smiled in public at a Pilgrim gathering. He was immediately flogged and pilloried, but he did smile. 
      Soon after the Pilgrims arrived in the New World, they discovered, due to bad planning, all the supermarkets were in the Old World. Food got scarce. Several Pilgrims disappeared, but were found in various cooking pots in the Donner home. 
      The winter was cold, the wolves were gathering, and the pantry was bare. Disease struck the colony. The colony tried to strike back, but Disease was too quick and ran around town, skipping and singing Climb Every Mountain
      But help was just beyond the horizon, or actually just inside the woods. Chief Acornugger of the Whatchamacallit Tribe (names could be wrong) had met the Pilgrims some time ago. He hadn't liked them, finding them "stinky and dour." His medicine man Pokeineye (almost certainly the wrong name) had warned of the white man, saying, "They come in long ships to take our forests and our lands and will drive us before them. Do not let them. Invest in casinos. Grow tobacco  and wacky weed on the side. Don't buy Enron." 
      For a while, Acornugger led his brave braves against the white man in daring raids, taking tools, clothing, and an entire case of moist towelettes. 
      Once he or some other chief captured several white men and were putting them to death by cutting off their heads. The last victim was a man named John Smith (possibly not his real name). They pushed Smith down on a tree stump and started to chop off his head when the chief's daughter Pocahontas threw herself on top of the captive. The chief was overcome by this display of emotion and ordered Smith released, although Pocahontas kept insisting that she had just tripped. 
      Anyway, Chief Acornugger saw that the white people were starving and felt his heart swell with pity, but it turned out to be just gas. A completely different tribe led by some other chief actually brought food, including corn and Twinkies®, to the famished Pilgrims. 
      The Pilgrims and Indians gathered for a goodwill feast, giving thanks for the food and friendship shared by all. The Pilgrims were so grateful that they didn't steal the land of that tribe until 45 years later. 
      And that's almost exactly not the story of the First Thanksgiving.

From Floozy and Other Stories. Copyright 2010 by Stephen B. Bagley. All rights reserved. Thank you for reading.

And now, I will let you go cook your turkey and pumpkin pie, but be sure to get the traditional Twinkies. They make the holiday! Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Undying on sale now!

Undying by Stephen B. Bagley and Gail Henderson is on sale now at Lulu.com! Save 20 percent off the cover price through Wednesday, Oct. 21, using Coupon Code: OCTFLASH20
Buy Undying at Lulu.com!


Monday, September 28, 2015

A poem from "Undying"

If I Had Known
By Stephen B. Bagley

If I had known the casual mention
of your name would hurt no more
and I could smile at the good memories...

If I had foreseen enough time
would erase the pain and sorrow
of words meant to lay waste to me...

If I had realized I would be better
without your selfish, demanding love
and your need for all things right now...

If I had known all these things
I wouldn’t have buried you
and your lover under the new garage

Sorry.

(From the forthcoming book Undying by Stephen B. Bagley and Gail Henderson​. All rights reserved.)

Friday, September 25, 2015

Playground Rules

I'm offended that you're offended by the offensive thing I said in response to the offensive thing you said when I said something you were offended by.

And you're a stinky head, too.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

What Survives

It's amazing how lies become the accepted truth. The spin overpowers the truth, and even intelligent people will parrot it because they won't take the effort to find out.

Examples?

Napoleon: the short man who was so upset about his shortness that he decided to conquer Europe to prove he was as great as anyone else? Not true. He was 5'7" tall, which was 2 inches taller than the average height. His enemy, England, put out the short story. Cartoons and editorials by English papers continued it. And it stuck.

The Crusades: horrible wars caused by Christianity. Certainly that was the press put out by the kings, princes, knights, and popes, but in their war talks, they discuss spices and land and gold and jewels. No reputable historian discusses Christianity as a primary factor these days, because it's plain from historical records that greed motivated this thrust into the Holy Lands. But Christianity made such a better story than saying, "We want their money."

Manifest destiny: Those horrible Indians will be better on reservations. We want their land, and we deserve it. It's our destiny. Thank you, newspapers, and Horace Greely. "Go west, young man! Don't worry about all those people you will kill on the way."

Slavery: "We have to have slaves so that our crops can be sold at competitive prices. We have a way of life to maintain. They're savages. We're their kindly masters." The newspapers and novels and movies portrayed slaves as being grateful, and masters as being kind and benevolent. For a long time, the American people bought the story. Some still do.

Environmentalism: crazy people who rather let other people starve to protect a snail darter. They also hate jobs, eat bark, live in huts, and smoke pot. You wonder how they ever get anything done.

WMDs: ...

The list goes on and on and on. The oldest human profession is actually that of an liar ... leaders who lie for the sake of money and power. Why must we continue to be so gullible?

A friend of mine recently said something that has stuck with me: "The lie is all that matters. It's all that survives."

I hope not. Dear God, I hope not.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Us

Politicians and other shysters like to divide us into camps: Republicans, Democrats, Independents, Libertarians, etc. It's easier to point a finger and to place blame and to say it's someone else's fault. But we are all Americans. We are interconnected. What we do reverberates throughout our society. There is no "them." There is only "us." Never trust anyone who attempts to tell you otherwise.

Yes, I have a political party affiliation, but first and foremost, I am an American. You are, too.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Attack of the Badgers

My house was clean yesterday. Completely clean. Today it looks like an army of angry badgers battled the peaceful but strong beavers for control of my living room. How did that happen? I don't remember being messy. And why is there a pair of my socks on the lamp? Who used all these cups? Why are the trashcans overflowing? Where did this laundry come from? Why am I asking you? Unless ... maybe you're responsible. If so, do the right thing and come and clean up your mess.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Grouping

Any time you maliciously or offhandedly group -- you say, "All whites or blacks or gays or Christians or atheists or whoever" -- the odds are that the rest of your statement will be wrong for a large number of the people in the group you are maligning.

Unless, of course, I'm doing the grouping. And then it's completely correct.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Why My Diets Fail

I just ate a handful of Raisinets. Maybe two. Heading for three, and four will follow soon.

Someone needs to stop me before I eat any more. But no one can get here in time. Woohoo! I mean, dang it.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

If Wishes Were Wisdom

There are some things that don't need to be said.

Sure wish I'd learn how to not say them.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Bask

Bask

Sometimes I must be still.
Letting worry slowly subside.

Sometimes I have to sit in twilight.
Listening to the swelling silence.

Sometimes I need to not need.
Floating in the quiet darkness.

Sometimes I drift along with the wind.
Watching the clouds move across the dimming sky.

Sometimes I am simply here.
Basking in the joys of life.

Copyright 2015 by Stephen B. Bagley. All rights reserved.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Quicksilver

Let us pray.

Power Who moves the universe
Who makes the mountains speak
and the skies sing hosanna
and the waves give praise

To Thee we offer thanks
for these quicksilver moments
brief and infinitely precious
in which we live our lives

We sparkle but briefly
against the unbound night
motes of lights bright
before fading into shadow

In these fleeting moments,
we weep in sorrow
dance and laugh in joy
passionately love

So we give many thanks
and ask You to bestow
Thy endless blessings
and unbounded mercy

In Thy Myriad Names
We ask, always giving
You our devoted praise
and unending glory

And we all say amen.

Copyright 2015 by Stephen B. Bagley. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Forbidden

There are stories we shouldn't tell.
      Wise men know this.
There are lies we shouldn't hear.
     Wise women learned this.
There are hearts we shouldn't break.
     Angels weep when they see this.
There are souls we shouldn't touch.
     Demons smirk at this.

Walk down there;
-- the hallway grows dark.
Stop over there;
-- the shadows watch.
Rest yourself there;
-- the earth takes you.

Some knowledge burns the bearer.
      You were warned.
Some secrets can only harm.
     You didn't listen.
Some love brings only ruin.
     Everyone warned you.
Some tears can't be avoided.
     Into every life, they fall.

I wanted to save you;
-- the clock ticks like thunder.
I wanted to spare you;
-- why were you willfully deaf?
I watch only to witness;
-- you chose your fate.

We choose our destruction;
-- this is the wisdom I know --
so I leave you to yours.

Copyright 2015 Stephen B. Bagley. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Time

     It's a nice day here. The sun is shining, but a cool wind is sweeping through town. The summer wanes, but still has teeth. Fall approaches. I find myself thinking about time.
Relentless.
      The odds are good that I have lived more of my life than I have left in front of me. I feel pressured by that. I still have so many things I want to accomplish. Books to write, places to see, people to meet.
Heartless.
      We lose people along the way. Loved ones fall to accidents or disease, and while we believe in life beyond, we miss them here. Eventually our past sorrows travel with us, a dark companion to remind us that everything ends.
Unstoppable.
      People live longer these days. We take vitamins and supplements, exercise and eat healthy. We try to stay active and live longer. In the back of our minds, we think that maybe scientists will offer a better drug next month or next year and we'll be as we once were -- young.
Conquering.
      Everything falls. Even the pyramids lose a bit of their substance each year. Wind and sun and rain will eventually reduce all that we've built. Every mountain peak will become a prairie given enough time. Our greatest fame will be forgotten or the subject of dusty books. Even infamy fades. Time makes footnotes of everything.
Precious.
      So while the sun is shining, meet me for lunch. Let's laugh and enjoy this fleeting moment. And when the night falls as it will no matter what, hold my hand tightly and gaze out over the horizon to the endless sea.

Monday, September 07, 2015

Where YOU can buy MY books!

Blackbirds First Flight 
Anthology - Enjoy chilling poems and dark tales in this collection from Stephen B. Bagley, Kent Bass, Wendy Blanton, Gail Henderson, Jean Schara, & Tamara Siler Jones.
Buy on Amazon
Buy on Barnes & Noble
Buy on Lulu
EndlesS
By Stephen B. Bagley
Poetry - Enjoy more than 50 sensual & moving poems, including the award winning "Non-Communion," "Torrent," & "Endless."
Buy on Amazon
Buy on Lulu

Floozy & Other Stories
By Stephen B. Bagley
Humor - Laugh at these hilarious tales from the author's decidedly different life.
Buy on Amazon
Buy on Barnes & Noble
Buy on Lulu

Murder by Dewey Decimal
By Stephen B. Bagley
Mystery - Who killed the librarian? Who's next to die and why? 1st in Measurements of Murder series.
Buy on Amazon
Buy on Barnes & Noble
Buy on Lulu

Murder by the Acre (Second Edition)
By Stephen B. Bagley
Mystery - Who killed the ladies man? Bernard, Lisa & the chief are back! New expanded edition. 2nd in Measurements of Murder series.
Buy on Lulu
Buy on Amazon

Murder by the Acre (First Edition)
By Stephen B. Bagley
Mystery - Who killed the ladies man? Bernard, Lisa & the chief are back! 2nd in Measurements of Murder series.
Buy on Amazon
Buy on Barnes & Noble

Tales from Bethlehem
By Stephen B. Bagley
Inspirational - Have you ever wondered about everyone else in Bethlehem on the night of the Nativity? These charming and touching Tales will tell you their stories.
Buy on Amazon
Buy on Barnes & Noble
Buy on Lulu

Sunday, September 06, 2015

Kindle Short Stories

I have several short stories up on Amazon for the Kindle devices and app. (More are coming.) Here is info about each story and the link to purchase. Enjoy!

Duel in the Sky
In a futuristic sports dome, wind duelists battle for the ultimate prize: their lives. Includes bonus story, "Garage."

Grave Matters
Justina Grave, Knight of the Trivarutham, tangles with new, more powerful revenants and their bloodthirsty master, and discovers an unsettling truth about their origins.
The first Justina Grave Mystery.






Grave Concerns
A blood shaman invades Tulsa, and Justina Grave, Knight of the Trivarutham, is standing in his way.
The second Justina Grave Mystery.







An Unattended Death
Who left Aaron Brody out in the woods to die of a drug overdose? What does his dealer girlfriend know? And why does Daniel Bias, radio advertising salesman, stick his nose in where it doesn't belong? Daniel's investigation leads him to places he has never gone before, including the infamous Stuttering Rooster, the best gentleman's club in western Oklahoma. If Daniel's smart mouth doesn't get him killed, his questions might.
The first Daniel Bias mystery.