My book ‘The Wolf In Me’ came out two years ago this week, and I am still so proud of it and myself for writing it – because it was the first long form of fiction that I got published. Before ‘The Wolf In Me’, I had written hundreds and hundreds of poems and many short-stories – which ‘The Wolf In Me’ was supposed to be; however, when I was writing it, I just kept writing and writing and writing… because the story of Olivia Hunter and the Wolf compelled me to do so – to keep writing until I reached the end of this first chapter of her story. And who knows, there could be a second or a third chapter? We shall see! But, for now, ‘The Wolf In Me’ to me is a story of one woman/one werewolf’s journey and their struggle to survive through all the extraordinary, inexplicable, and supernatural entanglements that are thrown at them, not to mention the daily struggles of real life: losing your identity, finding an identity, bereavement, losing control, finding the strength within to carry on. ‘The Wolf In Me’ is the story of a woman who won’t give up no matter what, and it is a story that is close to my heart. Occasionally-dark, but full of strength and heart – that is how I would describe this first story of Olivia Hunter, which you can buy from Amazon today for the bargain price of $2.77 for the paperback and $1.25 for the Kindle version! Follow this link to get yourself a copy of ‘The Wolf In Me’ from Amazon.com! Enjoy! And say hello to Olivia for me when you meet her! 😊
Some people think
that ghosts are all in the mind…
some people think
that we see what we want to see…
some people think
that the stories of hauntings
are more often than not
just a bunch of lies…
some people are just unable
to entertain the possibility
of somebody continuing to live
though they may not technically be “alive”…
ghosts, spirits, people remain on Earth
and they talk to us all every day –
but sometimes not in ways
that are easy to believe.
When a human spirit leaves its corporeal life
and is set free of its physical body,
a natural change and transition occurs…
when a human heart stops beating,
another source of spirit grows stronger
and we are given a choice:
to follow our instincts
and to journey to a place
beyond human understanding and comprehension,
or stay on Earth and be shown,
and get to interact with,
the living of humanity
within an existence of limitless-time.
Everybody has a reason to be who and what they are –
some people when they die become songs,
and some people when they die becomes stars;
some people’s spirit live on
within the pages of a book
long after their audible-voice can no longer be heard,
forever inhabiting a story’s every letter of every word;
every form of life, when it fully becomes its own spirit,
lives on – and the more that we explore other planets
in the galaxy I am sure that we will encounter
alien ghosts, also –
and I personally would not be surprised
if one day someone from Earth
finds themselves haunted by the figure
of a dead Martian while living
upon the surface of Mars.
Everybody has a story that they are at the centre of…
some peoples’ stories do not end
when their physical body gives-out…
everybody had a moment during their life,
and after death, when they have to shake-off
who they used to be and become someone else completely new –
the draw of an enticing bright light
is hard not to race towards like a moth…
some peoples’ idea of life after death
to some might be thought of as “heaven”,
and to others that same idea
might be their exact version of “hell”…
life when you are alive is different
to the life that awaits us all
on the other side of the threshold of our twilight
that we have to cross when our time
as a living and breathing human comes to an end…
it is said that when we die
we write the most beautiful poetry…
it is important to say goodbye
to loved-ones and friends…
every person, every-thing lives on…
everybody and everything changes –
but nothing ever truly ends,
and when each of us pass on
our story changes also,
from one like that of a caterpillar
to one like that of a butterfly –
and that is the essence of a ghost’s story.
I’m sitting here in my kitchen,
at the kitchen table,
with The Beatles’ “Revolver”
playing on my record-player
and a Smith&Wesson
lying next to my still cold bottle of beer…
the house is quiet…
I am sitting almost in complete darkness,
but for the light of the fluorescent-light above my head…
I am thinking about my life –
what happened to screw-up my world so bad…
I am planning by the end of the night
to end it all – and by that I mean
I plan to be dead…
I just can’t take the pain of the heart-break any longer –
I don’t have any-more fight left in me…
this isn’t the first night that I have sat like this
in the dark with a gun in front of me,
but tonight I know is the night
when the stetson of death
that I have been trying on now for a while just feels right.
I am a washed-cowboy…
I am a man planning to ride off
into the sunset and never come back…
I have seen sights and I have been through a lot
since I was a boy –
living without a daddy since I was five,
dropping our of school, making a living
doing what other people wanted me to do,
drinking myself under more tables than I can remember
in bars in each-and-every-one of the fifty states,
surviving a heart-attack…
loving, hurting, pretty-much earning a living
doing things that even I can’t find the words
capable of describing what has slowly but surely
earned me a one-way ticket to hell…
if my life has been a dream this entire time
it has been a nightmare from beginning to end…
my fate was already signed, sealed,
and delivered a long time ago –
there was never any question of how,
just the ultimate question of when?
I always loved The Beatles,
and I have done since I saw them
on Ed Sullivan in ’65 –
I used to wake up every morning for a year
with the words to “Good Day Sunshine”
echoing in my ears…
any-time that I was feeling low,
I would recite the lyrics to “Eleanor Rigby” in my head
and instantly I would smile and feel more alive…
I haven’t listened to a vinyl-copy
of a Beatles record since 1985 –
but over the years I have heard and listened
to The Beatles’ music wherever,
and in whichever town I came to rest,
and every time I did I would throwback
a glass of J.D. and relive the brief happy times
that I remember from my life.
Death is like the Taxman
that you spend your entire life
trying to hide and run from;
I have been seeing the signs leading me
to where I now sit all my life –
Here, There, and Everywhere –
and when the moment of me sitting here
with my Pa’s Revolver that he left for me,
and The Beatles album that I remember the most of all
playing and it’s songs echoing all around me,
now feels like the moment when I am
going to do no more For No One else but me –
and I Want To Tell You that at this moment
I know that nothing and no one
this time is going to stop me.
And then, I wake up…
And as I lift up my head,
and as I open my eyes again,
I look out my window and I see the sun rise…
and I feel a hand upon my shoulder,
and I hear a voice telling me that
Tomorrow Never Knows who any of us will be,
but God did not ever do anything for no reason
and that if I just hold on a little longer
I would one day be saved and find true peace.
I had always been a believer –
I even remember sitting across a table
and sharing a beer with the Devil-himself
in Vegas in September of 2001…
I have seen and I have heard people pray for their lives –
but God never once spoke to me directly:
but maybe he is now?
I have spent my entire life
running the roads and seeing every wonder
of color to be found in the United States of America –
but it wasn’t until the moment when I was woken up
and saved by the light that greeted me this morning,
after the life that I had been living ended,
and I decided to take my life into my own hands
and walk away from all that I had ever known –
leaving behind what I knew
had been holding me back like an anchor:
my old house, my record-player, my life,
and my daddy’s fully-loaded
50 year-old revolver.
Waking up even before the sun has risen,
getting up and putting on his jeans and his boots,
the Gunslinger always goes to the open window
and stares at the horizon…
watching the sky start to slowly
look like the burning ember
of a timeless celestial fire,
the Gunslinger’s heart overflows
with an intense desire –
because he knows that he is getting ever-closer
to the centre of the universe
that lies where The Dark Tower of reality
stands and casts a shadow in his direction
for the Gunslinger to follow.
The Gunslinger carries many scars…
the Gunslinger has had more than one tussles
in more than one towns and bars…
the Gunslinger does what he does
because he is being guided by
the hands of fate upon his shoulders…
the Gunslinger knew, even as a child,
that he was meant to do something
and that belief and that feeling
grew steadily stronger
the more the years flew by
and the Gunslinger got older.
He was a keen student of the past…
he was a man who had learned the hard way
that if you want to survive
what life sometimes throws at you
you have got to think, learn, and act fast…
he was someone who had been taught
that respect was one of the greatest virtues
that anyone could remember and put into practice…
he was already some-what of a legend in his own right,
and he was almost as elusive
as that of the sunken island that was Atlantis.
The Gunslinger drunk life as if it were whiskey…
the Gunslinger embraced change
as if he were holding the body of a woman…
the Gunslinger was a poet
but he never in his life
wrote a single word of poetry…
the Gunslinger had been waking up
for as long as he could remember
knowing that he had a destiny to fulfill
that he could not yet fully-understand.
The Gunslinger was real,
and yet the stuff of dreams;
the Gunslinger loved a good meal,
but he hungered more to see
something of the world
but which felt not-of-his-world
that he had imagined
but had not yet seen;
the Gunslinger knew that where he was
was but a way-station to where he was going;
the Gunslinger was inspiring others,
and he was being followed wherever he went
without his knowing.
He had always thought of his weapon
as but an extension of his own arm…
he had always considered his lightning-fast draw
as his greatest gift…
he had always used his finely-honed instincts
to keep himself and those he loved
from coming to harm…
finding the one place in the entire world
where he could take off his hat
and unbuckle his gun-holster
and lay-down his revolver
is what he had always wished.
And as the rose before him,
and as the dawn-chorus called to him,
and as his trigger-finger started to quiver,
and as the heat began to darken his skin,
he knew that he was reason
for all things and for everything…
and without even blinking an eye
he smiled and then prepared to head-out,
saddle-up, and race towards
that which would give him
the reason he was seeking
why for his entire life
he had always been “The Gunslinger”.
Inspired by ‘The Dark Tower – The Gunslinger’ by Stephen King
George was brave…
George was strong…
George was a knight
who was always looking
for someone to save…
George was the one
everybody called out to for help,
and he could do no wrong.
“Scales” was your common mountain dragon,
living in his cavernous cave
underneath the Earth –
when one day, after returning from a bit of fun
that involved flying, fire-breathing,
and accidentally scaring half-to-death
the local town-folk that lived nearby,
Scales was payed a visit by a “knight”
who called himself “George” –
who had the smallest of swords
that Scales had ever seen –
and who was as full of heart
as he was overflowing with words.
It was not any every occurrence
for Scales to be visited by anyone –
not even an another dragon;
it was rare that a human
voluntarily came looking for Scales –
however, even from his first glance
at the young warrior-wannabee,
Scales could tell that George
was not just anyone.
“I am George – knight of the night,
defender of the weak,
the hero of the people of Mountain Shadow –
and I, dragon, am here to slay you!”
Said George while holding his sword
out in front of him
as he walked into Scales’ cave
and came face to face with the dragon.
To which, Scales laughed uncontrollably
and even exhaled a few flames of fire
he was so amused by what he had just heard.
Scales, however, was impressed by George’s
pronunciation and his ability to speak
“dragonese” – a gift that he did not know
that any human could utter,
well no human before George
that he had ever encountered.
“Well, George, hero of Mountain Shadow,
I am Scales – nice to meet you!”
Scales replied with a smile
as he looked into George’s eyes
and hoped to put a smile
on George’s glum-looking face;
however, George looked angry
to Scales for some reason,
and he did not appear to be
taking a breath –
which was probably why his face
looked like it was changing colour
and why he was shaking so intensely.
“Did you not hear me, dragon?
I am here to slay you!”
Shouted George as he could feel
his helmet begin to slip
even further down his face.
“I heard you just fine, George!
Would you care to take off you helmet
and your armour, maybe?
You have come a long way from your town –
you must be tired?” Scales replied –
fearing that George might soon faint.
“I cannot do that! I must slay you
so that you may stop terrorizing my people!
Every time we see you in the sky above
our children scream, our women cry,
and our men drink themselves into a stupor.
And I have been sent here to face you
and to slay you, because among our people
there is no one braver than I!”
Said George as he shook from helmet to his boots.
“Really, dear George?
I mean George, defender of the weak?
I am truly sorry to hear that!
I did not mean to cause so much panic!
Please forgive me?”
Said Scales with a genuine expression of regret –
to Scales he was only just having a bit of fun,
and he honestly did not mean to cause such upset.
“Forgive you? You are asking for my forgiveness?
Do you not want to roar? Or breath flames, maybe?
Also, can you tell me how it is possible
that a dragon such as you are
can speak, and speak the most perfect of English?”
“It is not I who is speaking English, dear George –
you are speaking dragonese!
I had no idea anyone or anything could speak
in the dragon-tongue –
however, I am both surprised and pleased!”
“I am? Since when?
I had no idea there was such a language?”
Said George with a look of astonishment.
“And I had no idea that humans had such
a big heart for such a small body?
Today is truly a day for human-dragon
“You are not a monster at all, are you?
You are not what our children dream of
in their nightmares!
I thought that slaying you would be
the crowning achievement of my life –
but now, I realize that
though we may look different from one-another
there are things that both humans and dragons
have in common and share.”
“Perhaps you could return to your town
and say that you did in fact slay me?
And in return, I promise to never shadow
the town of Mountain Shadow,
nor shake fear into the hearts of its people,
ever again!” Said Scales as he thought out-loud.
“And you would just let me turn around and leave?
You wouldn’t just come up behind me and eat me
so fast that I wouldn’t even hear a sound?’
“George, I promise! Believe me, I had no idea
that I was perceived as such a demon of skies
by your people! I may be a dragon…
I may breath fire from time to time,
but I do not tell lies.
In fact, I have been thinking about
turning vegetarian? Sheep and cows
do not taste that great,
and humans do not do any favours
to my already sensitive-stomach
and my problematic digestion!”
Said Scales with a wry toothy-smile
after he licked his lips jokingly.
“But what if someone from town find out?
If my people ever found out that I lied
they might banish me?’ Said George worriedly.
“No one will find out. Your secret is safe with me.
You go home and receive a heroes-welcome for slaying me.
I will even give you an old tooth of mine as proof!”
“You would do that for me?”
Said George with a lump in his throat
and a tear in his eye.
“Of course I would, George!
That is what friends are for!
And if you ever need my help in any way
then do not hesitate to return her in the future.”
Said Scales with a smile,
before yawning and stretching out his wings.
“Thank you! “Scales” is it? Thank you
for your kindness and your generous offer –
I will not forget!”
“Now head home, young knight –
and tell your fellow towns-folk
how you slayed me easily
and then took a tooth from my mouth
as a souvenir. And, as I said,
if you ever need me I will be right here.”
And so, George turned around with a grin
and left Scales’ cave holding an old tooth of his
that must have been the size of his hand –
leaving Scales to rest in comfort and in silence again,
and thinking about his new-found human friend.
George returned home to his town more of a hero
than he was before he had left –
and telling anybody who might want to listen
how he slayed the dragon of the mountain
(but who to George was secretly his new best-friend).
Both George and Scales knew that their meeting
was just the beginning of a long friendship
that would be a staple of their shared future –
and both Scales and George knew
that it would not be long
before they saw one-another again
and they shared a brand new adventure.
Where we have been
and where we are going
are tied together
by the threads of our lives;
while we are enjoying a good story
we never want it to come to an end;
darkness and light ties night to day
and day to night;
sometimes when we know
we are approaching the end of a great book
we will put it down and bookmark our place
so that we can pick up one day where we left off;
however, just as every writer
must finish writing their story,
every reader must follow a tale
to its conclusion,
and when they reach the last word of the last page
promise to return to the same story again and again –
the same, but different –
like periodically catching up with an old friend.
We all sometimes look at our own reflection
and do not immediately like the face that we see –
though someone else may look at the same face
and see the face of unparalleled infinite beauty;
we all should remember that a mirror
can only show us a distorted image of how we appear,
and the only true way of knowing
who the world sees when they look at us
is to go to the one person who knows us best
to describe us and tell us who they see
and what about us they most revere.
We all have reasons for what we do;
certain things and special people
have an indefinable gravity about them;
we all love people in our lives
in ways that we show every day,
but we sometimes feel a need to prove;
we all leave many clues;
I, myself, could never deny
an unbreakable connection –
once made, never severed –
because, just like the bound pages in a book,
bound people are linked forever
because that is what was always meant to happen.
Some people rise and fall by the resonance of a voice;
some hearts beat in perfect-time with other hearts,
and even when they are far-apart from one-another
they constantly sing “see you soon”;
falling in love is uncontrollable
and it is a fundamental instinct without choice;
all stories have chapters and twists,
beginnings and endings,
and some have a pace and a depth to them
that is as vast as space;
and though its true meaning and message
may not be as blatant as a telephone ringing,
the best thing about any story
under any cover is one that you can hold,
walk with, and even tie to something,
and is that which you should never let go of –
because once a story rises too high out of reach
it will become someone else’s,
and slowly drift away like the wind
carrying away a balloon of your own making.