Carpe Diem #1773: Tanka: Bury Me on the Lone Prairie


when my time is done
I want my last breaths to be
on the lone prairie
not in a hospital room
I leave with the whistling wind

~Cie~


Notes:
You happier chappies are probably saying "ugh, there goes that gloomy old Cie with another gloomy poem." But I don't think this poem is gloomy. I think it's real.

I worked in long-term care for most of the 25 years that I was in the medical field. I think that people who work in this setting tend to become very adamant that we do not want to end up dying in a medicalized setting.

My father died in a hospice center. It was a peaceful place with a spacious, comfortable room. He was in constant pain and losing his capacity to think and remember things. It was much better than being in a hospital or nursing home. But for myself, I don't want my end to be even that medicalized. I want to look out the window and see my Lone Prairie before I rise up and walk away on the wind that constantly blows in these parts.




Ghost Town Grover Sez:
"Dagnabit, Ornery, ya morbid ole cuss! Ya done went and made Cactus Clem gloomy with all yer chatter about croakin'. Now, I know I'm a ghost, but I've been a ghost fer near to 110 years. We ghosts like to whoop it up on Halloween night, but I ain't gonna be doin' much whoopin' it up if I've gotta be tryin' to cheer Cactus Clem up. So, what the heck are you gonna do about it?"

Image by nancy sticke from Pixabay


Cactus Clem Sez:
"Aw, thanks Ornery! Them ghost puppies is jest the thing to cheer a feller!"

Carpe Diem #1772 + OctPoWriMo 2019 Day 31: Senryu: My Blue Bell


I sing an old song
remembering what I've lost
my dark-haired bluebell

~Cie~



Notes:
My inspiration for this lamenty-ass Senryu is an old folk song I found in an 1800s songbook belonging to my father (RIP) about a million years ago when I was sixteen or seventeen. The original song was from a young fella to a young lady. I sing it from the perspective of a broken old hag to her long-lost cowboy, because that is how I roll.

I was born in East Virginia
North Carolina I did go
There I met a fine young fella 
And his name I never did know

Well, his hair was dark of color
Cheeks they were like roses red
He said my breasts were like white lilies
Where he longed to lay his head

I'd rather live in some dark holler
Where the sun would never shine
Than for you to love another
And to know you'll never be mine

I don't want your greenback dollar
I don't want your silver chain
All I want is your love, Darlin'
Say that you'll be mine again

Since Adobe is foul, my copy of Creative Suite 6 which I purchased in 2012 no longer functions and for the time being my broke ass is using the free version of Pixlr because I refuse to pay blood money to Adobe for Creative Cloud. I made the following image of a broody, goth, vampiric-looking fellow by the light of the moon using Pixlr. I thought he went nicely with the poem. Then I thought of a new story idea. Brooding Goth Vampire Dude's tentative name is now Heath Montgomery. If nothing else, at least he has a great name.

Once Long Ago Version 9
Pixlr manipulation by The Real Cie

Carpe Diem Tan Renga Wednesday (3) + OctPoWriMo 2019: Day 30: Clarity


crystal brook
reflects the willow trees
birds sing their song
who I am is clear
where I'm going, not so much

~Yozakura & Cie~



Notes:
The Hokku stanza of this Tan Renga was written by Yozakura, the Unknown Haiku Poet. The Ageku (two-line) stanza was created by me. I married the Carpe Diem prompt and the OctPoWriMo prompt, and this Tan Renga is their baby.

Tidbit Tuesday 29 October 2019


Click the Bodacious Banner to share a Tidbit with the Horror Harridans Writing Sisterhood!

This Tidbit finds the Marquis Ciaran Kabral boldly introducing himself to Alien and Supernatural Search squadron agent Dale Dicking.

The Marquis ran a long, slender finger over Dale’s cheek.

“My good man, I am an artist and you have a most comely countenance,” he complimented, regarding Dale with obvious appreciation. “Might I have the pleasure of sketching you?”

“Um…yes, certainly,” Dale replied, blushing. “I…um…I’d like that. I must warn you, though, I’m not a model, so I hope you won’t be disappointed or anything.”

“I will be the judge of your worthiness as a subject,” the Marquis countered, his piercing green eyes seeming to look directly into Dale’s soul. “You are a man of great mystery and great untapped power. I believe that there is much that you and I can accomplish together.”

~Cie for Naughty Netherworld Press~

Will this be the last Tidbit we share from Castle Necros? It's due for publication in just two days--Halloween 2019! 

Up Next: Carnal Invasion XVII: Duchess Daisy Delphinium’s Garden of Erotic Delights

Rules for sharing with Tidbit Tuesday:

There is no particular word or sentence count. Judge for yourself a natural start and endpoint.

There is no genre limitation. You can share prose from any genre, fiction or non-fiction, or a verse from a poem or song that you've written. You can even share artwork or photography. It's up to you.

Share Tidbits from your own published works or WIPs.

Feel free to share a link to your blog, ebook, or website.

Feel free not to share a link to any MLM programs. As Shakespeare said, Spam by any other name is still Spam.

OctPoWriMo 2019: Day 29 + Carpe Diem #1771 Lightness of Being the Firefly


longing for the grass
at the bottom of the pool
those fireflies.

longing for the grass
with lust almost immoral
they light up the night

at the bottom of the pool
they float free now of burden
solitude sublime

those fireflies
craving no deeper meaning
than being alive

Basho & Cie



Notes:
The "sleigh" of this Troiku was created by Matsuo Basho (1644 - 1694). The team of firefly horses was guided by me.
I just noticed this Emoji icon in the bottom right corner of my post. It looks all pissed off and frazzled. I laugh, as this is the first poem in several days that has been at peace with things. It's about fireflies, just doing firefly stuff, longing for grass, and lighting up the night. I didn't notice the Emoji thing yesterday or the day before. Maybe it exploded upon being exposed to the radioactive rage of my post.
Now it's a starched white shirt with a red tie. Apparently, the fireflies have gone into business and are dressing the part.




The Dark Delights of Climax Castle is FREE for Five Days!



It's the one that changed the Carnal Invasion series from brief "Hump of the Month" shorts to a nonstop wild ride filled with intrigue, peril, and lots of hot action between dramatic cliffhangers. Innocent film student Bernie Jaskolski and his gal pal Christy Ferdinand discover much more than they bargained for when they are invited to the scandalous Halloween gala at the mysterious Climax Castle.

Ulrich von Brandt, the King of Climax Castle, is a suave German hunk with a taste for both ladies and gents. Queen Samantha Zuniga, Ulrich's wife, is a petite blonde Spanish beauty who also appreciates both manly tricks and feminine treats. With a little welcome help from their Goth Samurai bodyguards Ahmose and Rhodie, Ulrich and Samantha will give Bernie, Christy, and their other guests a smoking hot Halloween ride the likes of which they never could have imagined, even in their wildest dreams.

What scandalous scenarios lie behind the doors of Climax Castle?

You can only find out by grabbing your own copy, which is FREE between October 29 and November 2, 2019. Don't miss the one that changed everything! Click the Preview link above to get yours today!

~Cie for Naughty Netherworld Press~

Ornery Reviews: Serendipity Mystery: Diary of a Snoopy Cat



Genre: Animals, Mystery (Middle-Grade)

Rating: Four out of Four Stars for the Online Book Club
Five out of Five stars on Amazon

Disclosure:
I received a free copy of this book for review purposes.
If readers purchase the book through the above link, I receive a small commission from Amazon.
This review is a duplicate of my review on Amazon.

Read my official Online Book Club review for this book here.

Although this wonderfully imaginative story is especially excellent for young girls with its self-reliant and plucky feline heroine, it is also a fun tale for any mystery lover, young or old, boy or girl. This decidedly not-young reader (age 54) received a review copy and was delighted by the antics of Inca. This determined little Siberian cat leads readers through an educational adventure as she solves the mystery of a sword stolen from the Colombo museum in Sri Lanka.

For an adult reader, it was nice to be able to focus on the aspects of intrigue and suspense without having to worry about overt violence cropping up. Besides, it's hard not to smile about a mystery-solving cat.

~Cie AKA The Ornery Old Lady~


Free use image from Pixabay




Ghost Town Grover Sez:
"I tried to tell Cactus Clem that the Old Lady's cats would jest use him fer a scratchin' post, but he insisted on readin' 'em this story anyways."


Cactus Clem Sez:
Heck, Grover, I don't mind. I've got a tough hide, and I reckoned that maybe if them cats heard this here story about a cat that solves mysteries, it might inspire 'em to make their own detective agency and earn some money to pay fer their tuna fish an' stuff.






About Me Monday: The Dark Half

Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

Trigger warning/content warning/warning warning/danger danger:
Discussion of suicide ideation. 
If you don't want to read about that, don't read this post.

Would you like to know the practical problem with being thrown on a downward spiral?

Have you guessed that I'm going to tell you anyway?

"With" is correct in this case, Grammarly. Not "of." Fuck off.

Anyway...

The practical problem with falling down the hole is having to re-establish my productivity patterns after making a break with them in favor of Netflix and Brood While Hoping the Asteroid Obliterates The Earth Soon So I Can Quit Feeling Like This.

Seeing as my brain is (as I have explained before) like one of these fucked-up spiderwebs...

Click to enlarge

"Like" is correct in this case, Grammarly. Not "as." Fuck off again.

Anyway, my brain is a Peyote spiderweb or an LSD spiderweb. Those look normal at first, but on closer examination, they aren't.

I think it's freaky that the Peyote and LSD spiderwebs look more normal than the Caffeine spiderweb. I drink coffee and tea all the time for "mental clarity." Or maybe just because I like them, seeing as apparently in a person with ADD, caffeine really doesn't do jack shit for your mental clarity. This is why I can drink coffee and then go to sleep, no problem, except for the fact that I am perhaps a bit more likely to wake up having to pee two hours later. Which might happen anyways, so it's kind of a crapshoot.

Anyway, enough about my caffeine consumption. The OCD part of my synaptic fuckery (yes, I really do have OCD, I'm not using it as a euphemism for "hyper-organized," which I am not) hates like a motherfucker when my patterns get disrupted. I don't have an exact time of day for getting things done--the bipolar part of my synaptic fuckery hates the fuck out of rigid deadlines--but I do like to have certain things done on certain days at a certain period in the day. For instance, I like to have my Monday morning "share this shit around with these certain blog hops" post done in the morning. Not "at *8:15 sharp" or even "by ten," just "in the morning." Because that is how I roll.

When my shit psyche has decided to take me off the rails into "fuck everything, it all sucks" town, and I have gotten nothing accomplished, my pattern is fucked for the day, possibly for the week, and I am anxious as fuck.

This is why I start wanting to throw shit whenever some clown-ass shrink sells a book claiming that people can be "cured" of mental illness if you just follow their sage wisdom, which is probably the same fucking "sage wisdom" that some other fucker touted in some other book, and it probably involves Stopping that Stinkin' Thinkin' and instead Thinking Positive, Say Halleluja, and Boy Howdy, You are Cured! And if you aren't you're doing it wrong. Kind of like with all the cabbage soup Special K Weight Watchers Jenny Craig Nutrisystem Medifast Slimfast Alli Atkins Detox Tea Shit Your Pants In Public and Be A Fucking Grouch that No-One Can Stand To Be Around Because Your Ass is Fucking Starving And This Shit Only Works Long-Term For About 5% Of People diets out there. If the millionth one of these crap-ass bullshit not enough nutrition to keep a fucking ant alive diets doesn't work long-term for the dieter, it's always the dieter's fault and not the fault of a flawed-ass program designed to keep you paying into a flawed and fucked system forever while you remain filled with self-loathing for your entire miserable life.

But my misanthropic self digresses.

You can't "cure" mental illness any more than you can cure type 2 diabetes with whatever brand of snake oil or mantras or "defining yourself" or whatever the fuck bullshit they're spouting. Type 2 diabetes occasionally goes into remission. Occasionally. It can never be cured. Myself, I ain't going to bank on it going into remission because that's highly unlikely. I'm going to go with Reality Bites on this one, use my insulin, and other than that, try not to obsess about the fact that this fucking disease makes me multiple times more vulnerable than your average 54-year-old for strokes and kidney failure. It wouldn't do me one damn bit of good to obsess about that shit, so I'm not going to. Not the same thing as being in denial, I'm fully aware that I have diabetes. But it's not going to cure me to think about it all day long or to try to pray it away or wave magic wands at it or eat only bran and some sort of overpriced oil for the rest of my life. 

With mental illness, you don't cure it, you learn techniques to cope with your fucked and broken brain. Nobody has ever "cured" mental illness. They have taught people to deal with shit. That's all. If you're lucky, you find a sympathetic shrink who will help you learn some coping skills and hopefully teach you how to get along with yourself rather than just teaching you to be an obedient little cog in the machine. If you're not lucky, well, welcome to the club. I've never resonated with mental health professionals. I always feel like they're not listening to what I'm really saying. Some of them are sort of pleasant to shoot the shit with, the rest just piss me off. Most of them have nothing to offer me. So, I'll make do with what I can do. It's cheaper, both in terms of money and time lost.

Because I have rapid-cycling type 2 bipolar disorder, I've had people imply that it's no big deal when I go down the hole, because I'll cycle back up again within a week to ten days. This is true to a degree, although circumstances do impact mood and feeling ignored and ostracized can keep me down for longer. On the other hand, sometimes I just need to be left the fuck alone for a while. An adorable little bundle of contradictions, me.

I read that statistically, people with type 2 bipolar disorder are more likely to commit suicide than people with bipolar 1 or schizophrenia. On the surface, this doesn't make sense. Since bipolar 2 presents with hypomania rather than full mania and people with bipolar 2 don't experience psychosis, wouldn't this mean that they are more capable of reasoning things out?

What it means is that people with bipolar 2 do not experience altered states and therefore tend not to experience the euphoria which sometimes (by no means always) accompanies a full mania. I've only experienced full mania when taking SSRIs and I don't know how anyone handles that state. I was tremendously agitated and nothing made any damn sense at all. I did not experience euphoria. It was like my entire body was electrified and I just wanted to turn it the fuck off, but I couldn't. Bipolar 2 does not come with full mania, although when untreated, I did at times experience giddiness surrounding a given situation. When I realized that I was mistaking giddiness for happiness and that I have only experienced actual happiness a handful of times in my life, that right there kind of made me want to off myself. It was really discouraging.

Similarly, people with bipolar 2 do not experience hallucinations or delusions (except when taking narcotics, at least in my case). The metaphysical part of my belief system thinks that it's possible that for people with schizophrenia, the barrier between worlds is not closed and they see creatures such as elementals and spirits all the time. Whatever the case, for people with Bipolar 2, we are aware of the world as it is. This means we are more likely to aware that reality, in fact, does fucking suck, and sometimes we are not able to Stop That Stinkin' Thinkin'. The more we look at our crap-ass, hopeless situation, the more hopeless we feel. There is no magic fairy dust. There is no Happy Ever After. There is only more of the same fucking shit to look forward to because even if we pull ourselves out of this round of fuckery, we're just back on the same roller coaster. As Sylvia Plath (who had bipolar disorder) said:

"To the person in the bell jar, blank and stopped as a dead baby, the world itself is the bad dream.

How did I know that someday—at college, in Europe, somewhere, anywhere—the bell jar, with its stifling distortions, wouldn’t descend again?"

--Sylvia Plath (27 October 1932 - 11 February 1963)

As I have learned, it does descend, again and again and again.

~Cie~

OctPoWriMo 2019: Day 28: Broken Pieces


I'm afraid I've got some bad news for you, Sunshine
You see, I'm feeling discouraged today
You see, my obsessive-compulsive, bipolar, attention-deficient brain
Is not complying with this idea of acceptance
You see, my quivering fuckery of a personality is feeling anything but precious
Some days she can fool herself that she's healing
That she's regaining her strength
Today is not that day
And tomorrow isn't looking so hot either
Do not come 
To my run-down, battered, dilapidated, war-torn house in the bad part of town
Looking for a bright beacon of light
Or some fucking Hallmark Channel story about the horrible old hag
Who was cured of her mental illness
And suddenly became young and pretty
You will not find her here
On the wrong side of the Cosmos
Swilling her bitter bitches brew
Wondering if today is the day when she walks off down the road
Into the cold
And lets nature take its course
Like it should have long ago
I have some bad news for you, Sunshine
Today is not that day
And tomorrow is not looking so hot either
All bad things must come to an end
But today is not that day
Maybe tomorrow
Who the hell knows?
In the meantime, I sip my bitches brew
And try to kill off the remaining feelings
Wherever they may hide
Deep inside
The toxic moonlight bipolar negative blacklight supernova
That lies at the very heart of me

~Cie~




Carpe Diem #1770: Tomtit


gold and black jewel
sitting with ruby berries
voice like a gold bell

~Cie~


Notes:
Imma admit that I have no idea what a tomtit sounds like. A blue tit sounds like this.

OctPoWriMo 2019: Day 27: How Did I Get Here?

What I Didn't Know
Photoshop manipulation by The Real Cie

Was it fate for you to be erased?
Was it your destiny to remember nothing of your life?
Was it a fault in your chromosomes?
Was it a choice you made before birth?
You were a shining singularity
You were a rebel who rose up from nothing
But nobody here gets out alive
And nobody wins against 
A process which literally
Destroys the brain
Fuck dementia
I say it again
Because I'm powerless to do anything else

~Cie~



Notes:
I just wasn't feeling that otto-whatsit suggested form. So, have some pissed-off free verse. It's what I do best.

Carpe Diem Weekend Meditation #108 + OctPoWriMo 2019: Day 26: What Is Unspoken (Choka)


what is unspoken
in the silence of autumn
is what I'm feeling
"speak your truth," the leaves whisper
but what can I say?
I'm biting my tongue
because what I want to say
is I still love you
wish you hadn't gone away
please come back to me
walk alongside me again
the crunching of leaves
sweeter walking together

For Team Netherworld's sadly ignored WIP, Fetch
From Pepper to Gerry



Rainbow Snippets 26 October 2019


The Rainbow Snippets group on Facebook provides authors with an opportunity to share a six-sentence snippet of their own LGBT fiction, or to share an LGBT book rec from their blog or website.

The following snippet is from Naughty Netherworld Press' forthcoming release, Castle Necros, which is the sixteenth installment in the Carnal Invasion series. It is due for release on Halloween 2019.

We find Marquis Ciaran Kabral, lord of Castle Necros, talking to the demon Lucifer, who was inadvertently summoned by Lleu Redgrave, a startlingly naive Irish vampire.

Marquis Kabral gripped Lucifer’s shoulder.

“Lucifer, old man, I relent,” he said. “There is great kindness in you despite your fearsome reputation. I will join you for this dreadful wedding of two tremendously odious souls. I will drink their wormwood wine and perhaps manage to slip in a few carefully worded barbs for a few deserving sorts. Now, why don’t the lot of you follow me into the main palace where we can refresh ourselves and discuss the particulars of your presence here and what I can do for you.”

~Cie for Naughty Netherworld Press~

Carpe Diem Solo No Renga + Haiku My Heart + OctPoWriMo 2019: Day 25: White

Image by David Mark from Pixabay

Note:
This is a poem about my dislike of the fur industry and disdain for those who wear fur as a fashion accessory. It is not pretty, so you may not care to read it.

why do some wish to
stain the white snow red with blood
to steal the white fur?


why do some wish to
stain the white snow red with blood
to steal the white fur?
profit their motivation
their souls are dead within them

why do some wish to
subject the innocent to 
their cold-hearted whims?
the cries of the dying fall
on deaf ears and decayed hearts

stain the white snow red
to line their pockets with gold
all for fashion's sake
fur lovely on the living
becomes ugly with carnage

to steal the white fur
go with clubs and guns and traps
animals in cages
not out of necessity
strictly a status symbol

strictly for profit
from the wealthy and heartless
wear their victim's pain
the beautiful fur adorns
the carcass now lies bloody

souls are dead within
the heartless social climbers
who wear their victims
as adornments draped over
their unfeeling carcasses

~Sly~

image copyright juliahenze @123rf.com
Cie's activist alter-ego Sly Fawkes has been on a tear the past couple of days.





Haiku My Heart + OctPoWriMo 2019: Day 25: White: A Senryu

Image by David Mark from Pixabay

why do some wish to
stain the white snow red with blood
to steal the white fur?

~Sly~

image copyright juliahenze @123rf.com
Cie's activist alter-ego Sly Fawkes has been on a tear the past couple of days.



Friday Flashback Repost: A Love Letter to E.A.




NOTE AND DISCLOSURE:
This was originally posted at Aunt Cie's Attic (formerly Deliver Me) on October 25, 2018.
I have since become too disabled to work outside the home. I currently work entirely from home blogging and freelancing. My primary source of income comes from book reviews.

The majority of my book review income is from paid work via professional review sites such as Online Book Club. A small portion comes from commissions made via Amazon affiliate links to books I have reviewed. I do not and will never charge a fee to an independent author for a review. The only payment I ask from an independent author is a link back to my review if they like it, and permission for me to provide an affiliate link to their book on Amazon if it is available on Amazon.

If you are interested in having me review your book or provide beta reader or proofreading/editing services, click here. Payment for my beta reader services is a link on your site or in a post to my services page if you think I've done a good job and permission for me to provide an affiliate link to your book on Amazon if it is made available via Amazon.

And now, on with the REpost!

This comment that I left on the Sims Freeplay Facebook page is "under review." I am sure it will never see the light of day there, but that doesn't mean I won't publish it elsewhere.

Not allowing players to finish collecting the items they were crafting when a quest ends is a serious dick move. Surely it isn't a cash grab at all to instead offer the chance to pay ludicrous amounts of money to complete the project without even allowing players to finish collecting the items they were crafting at the end.

This sort of thing is predatory at best. I guarantee that there are not a ton of millionaires playing games like this. A lot of faithful players are disabled and don't have money to spare.

For my own part, I have been sick with a severe respiratory infection this past week. I finally fell asleep at dawn after being up all night coughing. I left my Sims working on one last set of crafts.

When I woke up and sat there coughing up yellow crap for about 10 minutes, I then injected my insulin and went to collect the final items. Lo and behold, I was not allowed to do that. But there was this very generous and not at all predatory offer to finish the quest for the low price of $70.

I don't have $70 just lying about, and neither do many of your faithful players.

I am not so disabled that I can't work at all, but have severe enough health problems that I can only work part time and am on Medicaid.

I am probably stupid for continuing to play this game, but I love the characters and the interaction with them helps distract me from my deteriorating health.

Shame on EA for their predatory practices.

~Cie~

Carpe Diem #1768: Crow: A Senryu


old black crow and me
we have a lot in common
both misunderstood

~Cie~


Grams Ramblings: Day 24 - Breathing

Grams Ramblings: Day 24 - Breathing: 24th Oct 2019 Day 24 - OctPoWriMo  2019 Breathing Crowds- Breath mist into icy air Scurry along ...



Yes!
Until I moved out to a very rural area just about six weeks ago, I lived in the suburbs and worked in the city as a courier. I drove past the homeless shelter multiple times during my shift. I would see elderly people outside the shelter, handicapped people in wheelchairs huddled together for warmth, people sleeping on grates. 
There really is no excuse for this, but the fault does not lie with those who are homeless. It lies with a twisted Draconian system that adheres to a belief in social Darwinism. 
If it weren't for my son allowing me to live with him, I would be one of those people, and well I know it. I can't work a normal job at this point. My mental health has always been fragile, but during the past few years, my physical health has drastically declined. Many homeless people live with severe mental illness.
All right, hopping off the soapbox now.
I greatly appreciate this poem.

~Cie~

OctPoWriMo 2019: Day 24: Breathe the Poison

Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay

Surrender to the charismatic
Greedy, self-serving lies
Of those who would empower
Themselves by climbing upon
The backs of the downtrodden
Who will work for nothing for the rest of their lives

Let yourselves be hypnotized
By the siren song of a life glamorized
By the throbbing club music of the pied piper
Who tells you all you have to do is trust in him
You will wonder what you ever did without him
He is not a self-serving psychopath at all

He is soma for the masses of disenfranchised
Overworked and unappreciated
Ripe for his lies
You too can have fame and glory
If you just breathe deeply of the toxins released
By the Cult of Personality

~Sly~


Image copyright juliahenze @123rf.com
Another one from the persistently nasty mind of Sly Fawkes, professional dissenter

Did I already share this song?
Cool. 
Here it is again.


Closing Comments on This Blog

At this point, this blog is only a place for sharing links, and the only comments I've been getting are comments like the following fro...