Posted on 4 Comments

Remembering 9/11- Remembering Jimmy Cherry

This is a memorial post dedicated to the late Jimmy Cherry who my family lost on 9/11/04. A different tragedy, for a different reason. I published this in 2009 in the first years of Oddball Magazine. Thank You for allowing me the space to remember Jim while we also remember everyone who was lost on 9/11/01.

Jason

Ed.

We Miss You Jimmy 

September 11, 2001, our nation suffered as a country, we suffered as people. We watched powerless as the buildings fell, and soon we were at war.

The next year on 9/11, I was in Salem Hospital. Soon I had the strongest manic episode I ever had and walked thirty six miles. I wrote a book about it.

I remember that day in Salem Hospital. Hearing the lists of people being remembered depressed me. I was angry at our president. I was paranoid. I thought something was going to happen again. I spent most of the time that day away from the television in my cage. Outside at Salem Hospital, in the psyche unit, there is a place, a cage like place to smoke cigarettes. While I was smoking, I could hear in the air, the sounds of jet planes. I knew they were fighter jets, surveying the land. It was really cloudy that day and cold. There was a beautiful girl there with me, we smoked cigarettes and began a conversation. She was manic, she was my manic girlfriend, while I was there.

September 11, 2003, I don’t remember. September 11th of the next year, I will never forget. That was the day my brother in law Jimmy died. He died of cancer. My sister has never been the same since he died. With my family being so distant, we all came together through Jimmy. I can never forget that day.

What happened the day Jimmy died, was called a living wake. I was there when he died. I watched my nephew then 15, holding his father’s hand, while my sister stroked the hair on Jimmy’s head, as we watched Jimmy die. I had never seen someone die before. My family has never been the same since. Yet, every september 11th, my family gets together, or if we can’t… we call one another, and remember.

Today is September 11th, 2009. It’s raining today. It always seems to rain on September 11th. On 9/11/01, it rained sulfur and burning ash from 84 floors up. Smoke and fire, as two towers crashed to the ground. On September 11th, 2004 when Jimmy died, it didn’t rain. But for my sister, I think it has never stopped raining.

God Bless All those who were lost on September 11th, all those who lost on September 11th, and all those still lost because of September 11th

Love you Andrea.

Advertisements
Posted on Leave a comment

Jagged Thoughts #103: Voices

 

Live every day like it is your last. Don’t regret anything.

(I am so sorry)

What goes up must come down
I must learn to calm down
Let things go
Like people
Places and memories
Of those places and people
Artifacts of theirs
Try and remember the good times
And friendships that you have
They bind us to a greater understanding
That we travel alone
Accompanied by our own theme music
Too bad I force people to listen to mine.

This is the sounds in my head
Already half dead
I write instead
Because I break bread with my enemies
And all of them know me

And it’s all gravity not withstanding
I wasn’t in Gods plan
But here I am planted
Swing for the fences
Forever slanted wishing
I could speak to you
Without overdosing or avalanching

The voices

 

Jason Wright is the founder and Editor of Oddball Magazine. His column appears weekly.

 

Posted on 2 Comments

Jagged Thought #97: Effie, Me and Everyone Else

 

When depression hits
It hits.
It takes your breath away
Like a punch in the gut
It stares you in the face
And says
“You are nothing.
You’ve done nothing, and you don’t matter…to anyone.”
It makes you think about
All those bouts, those knockouts
And each star
That you see as you are flailing your enemy
They remind me “You had everything. You had hope. You believed. You loved.”
And each song on the radio
Confirms your hopes
Or lessens your dreams
And they make you sing
Only to silence your sadness
Or they make you angry
About everything.
Or they drive you to that part in the song
When the strings crescendo
Sounding like a wave ebbing back
And the cello reminds you of that bright beautiful girl
Who would play her strings
And she would share her mind
And she was brilliant
And then dead.
And you ask Effie “why?”
Why the sting of the strings on your fingertips
Could turn to the bluest cold needle prick?”
I guess I think that’s what depression is
It’s the bluest cold.
It’s the thousands of pages
Of forgotten scientists.
it’s the sting of a TKO
Smelling salts
Boos and hisses
A walk to the locker room
And the tape
And bruises hands.
And the urge to show them
That you have designed your life
Around these beatings.
and that you will always be in
That ring
Dancing through the
Depression.

 

Jason Wright is the founder and Editor of Oddball Magazine. His column appears weekly.

 

Posted on Leave a comment

Jagged Thoughts #39: Poem for the Paralyzed

 

 

When the world seems too far away.
And you can’t touch the sides of the street
When the blades of grass you feel could cut you
And sorrow sits with you and begs to be bitten.
You are free,
through the written page.
You are free.
Even if you are without speech
and can only scream
an empty scream
And
even if you dream in emptiness
if only to fill the time.
You are free
Through the written page
You are free.
You are free to sway your arms
You are free to dangle your feet on the poet’s beach
You are free to discover the darkness
You are free to turn on the light inside
You are free to paint over them
or let them in.
It is your choice to
Build or
to Destroy.

 

Jason Wright is the founder and Editor of Oddball Magazine. His column appears weekly.

 

Posted on Leave a comment

We are the Gas. You are the Match by Jason Wright

See this is a scene

“The Blue Sphere” Shahnawaz Achhiwala © 2010

Where dreams take shape

Shift like riots on tv

Where the walrus speaks

And says.

“We are nothing but arms and legs

We are nothing but spikes and pegs”

Drugs and dreads

“We are nothing but what we say we said

And what we did.”

“We are nothing but a gang of green

We are nothing but imbetween”

A flashing icon on a computer screen

We are everything , but the battery”

We are empty, but the weather man

Says Tuesday will shine

suntans and mammograms

a cancer in the stand

A cancer in the stand

A wave of water

With leftover fathers

And microwave mothers

“We are the imbetween

Of a street sign that lights

Neon. And a black and white

Codachrome”

That speaks clingon

Wears nylon

And grows everlong

through a towering massive building

we are nothing and everything.

we are the kings and queens of this fair city

we are the gas and you are the match.

“The Blue Sphere” Shahnawaz Achhiwala © 2010

Posted on 1 Comment

The lonely boy on christmas

Follow the Star
Image by Q, A, O, P, Space via Flickr

There once was a town it seemed that was always cold. Even when it was warm it still was always cold.

The people were mean. The people weren’t green. The people weren’t clean. They all forgot their dreams and no one could sleep.

Not even sheep, could make them dream. They all had forgot there meaning, and what it meant to be free.

They lived their lives as shadows. they lived in poor man castles, some were drunk and staggered, and some were slaves in shackles.

They all had forgotten, what once was their motto,— to live in darkness, you could never cast a shadow, and in the darkness, shadows never follow

and when the light shines from the sun in the seasons, whether frost bitten hands, or those wearing mittens, the sun always shined on the ones who asked for wisdom

and one did….the lonely boy on christmas.

and this lonely boy just wanted one thing for christmas, a dog or a kitten, wrapped up with a ribbon, a bright blue ribbon. If he had a dog… he could pet him with his mittens and watch him chase pigeons, and play fetch with the children.

But it never happened, no gifts were given to him on this christmas.

or any christmas.

there he sat in the town of castles and shadows, where the cold seemed to sting, everyone and everything.

and he began to reminisce of his families last christmas, the last time he was given a kiss on his head, and that warm feeling he had, and the last words ever said by his dad.

“you must live by yourself we can no longer take care of you”

and he said to them “I’m just a boy…what do you expect me to do?”

but his father and mother, they didn’t love one another, and they didn’t really mean to say what they said, so one day they both got into their cars and left.

But before they left they both kissed him both on the cheek, and said

“I’m sorry son, that we have to leave. Here are the keys this is your very own castle. And never leave, always stay in the shadows. We will always be with you, but we must leave and we hope for your forgiveness

and then they had left the lonely boy on Christmas.

PART 2

At the same time there was a young widow, who always sat by the window, with a sad glow, waiting for her husband to come home.

He and her, also lived in this world.

The world that was mentioned in part one, a world of no fun, where noone could smile in fear of being stung. because the cold was too cold, and some were too poor to buy coats, and besides,

the castles were hidden by shadows, and moats protected by ghosts, but still there was hope that her love would come home. and every day she wrote from a journal

that was given to her, from her husband who had disappeared, in the cold of the winter, and made her from married and happy, to a way too young widower.

Her name was Rosaline, and she was only eighteen when she found the man of her dreams. But one day he left to go to the store, and was never seen anymore, and

people had said that he had gone missing, in a cold storm, on a frosty Thanksgiving, and they stopped searching after a few weeks, cause noone could survive out in the

cold on those peaks. But Rosaline, never stopped looking out that window, till one day it started to snow. and then it suddenly stopped. And out from they sky an angel just dropped.

PART 3

Before I tell you how the angel dropped, and why the snow stopped, we must go back to the spot where the boy sat patiently, waiting for the day, when his family

would come back, and how all he wanted was that dog for christmas, a little dog wrapped up with a bright blue ribbon, but really

gifts were not on his wish list, just a little slice of happiness, outside of all that darkness

That day the boy decided to leave, he said to himself, I’m going to get a tree, so he left his castle and stepped out of the shadows, and headed to the forest outside of

the meadow, and began a long walk out of the darkness and into an even darker forest. He could have went left, and went towards the shore, he decided to go

north, and ventured forth towards, the forest and the trees, and the bright north star. He knew little of where he was, but it was better then where he would be, and

besides it was christmas he wanted a tree.

Before he left, he dressed in his warmest clothes, hat and coat, and scarf to protect his nose, and the only possession he had with him, was a backpack of provisions,

and a compass, and a map. And off he went, and took his first step out of the darkness, while in that same town a widower wept.

Part 4

Oh Where did he go, got lost in the snow? She sang to herself, while she sat by the window. Oh where did he go? And when will he return, to give me his love, I so desperately yearn”

She repeated these lines, like she was hypnotized, the saddest moment in a beautiful life. She was only 23 when he said good-bye and went out into that cold november winter, and was never seen alive, but keep faith good reader, a good love never dies.

“Oh where did he go? When will he return? why did you leave me, it wasnt your turn.” She sang this song in morning, she sang it still mourning, and that was when she realized, that her eyes were not blind, and in her heart she believed he was alive.

At the same time she sang by her window in that empty house, the compass was pointing telling the boy to go south.

But the map said that the meadow, was the way to go, but his heart told him to follow the star, and into the dark, he ventured in, to the deep forest, where

the trees lied there in.

PART 5

Well dear reader, you must be weary of me, so let me tell you how the boy found his tree.

And also a brand new family.

It starts where we left, with the boy’s lonely trek, and ends, well were not quite there yet. So the boy began his climb into that deep forest, while the angels sang to him,

this simple chorus. Follow the star son, follow the star, follow the star son, follow the star. Yes, the boy was lonely and scared, for sure, but in his head and heart he

was strong and secure. People would leave him, for that he was sure, but never his family, that scar was the worst, and his head began to hurt. But before the tears

started to fall, he took a step and all of a sudden he was not by himself, and while he was down and thinking about life, he somehow had wandered onto the thinnest of

ice.

PART 6

Oh reader, Oh me oh my, What did this boy do on that thinnest of ice. He walked oh so carefully, and he could hear the ice creak, and then there was the crack in the

ice he could see. He thought to himself, dang if I wasn’t thinking about all my problems, I might have seen this coming, and i could have done something, instead

of being stuck where I am, and then something happened.

The ice cracked, and splintered

and cracked, and splintered and cracked,

and the ice fell underneath his feet, and the boy was suddenly over his head, and while under the coldest degrees, he began to see,

Christmas wasn’t about getting presents or trees, it was about being happy. He was under the water gasping for air, trying desperately to be freed from a horrible death indeed ,

then at this moment

a hand reached out to him. And now enters the man, Jim, the widowers husband.

PART 7

Hey Kid!! Hey Kid!! Can you hear me? Grab my hand! Hey Kid!! Hey Kid!! Can you hear me, grab my arm, I’ll pull you in. That was the voice of the widowers husband.

All the boy could hear was a muffled sound, but saw the arm, and tried desperately to get out. He grabbed the strange hand that had come from above, and Jim pulled

him out with the strongest of tugs. Jim pulled the boy off of the ice, and made sure that he was alright. Can you hear me kid?! Can you hear me?!

But the boy was barely breathing, cold and shivering. What could be done to save the lonely boy on Christmas?

Jim started a fire with some sticks around him, and hoped and prayed that something could heal him. But as the fire grew stronger, soon the boy breathed in, and looked into the eyes of the man that saved him.

And at this very moment, the widower was sleeping, and dreaming what seemed to be the same thing. It was about a boy who fell on a dark night of the thinnest of ice,

and her husband was surely alive, and saved this boy’s life.

PART 8

The widower hadn’t left her house since her husband had disappeared, but she had to leave, her heart was telling her so, that she had to go, out of the darkness and

back into that snow. And as she left, she took a deep breath, and that was when she realized for the first time her self, that the darkness she lived in, this town, of castles

and shadows, there were more places to see, like the place in her dream. She visioned a stream, lit up by a bright star, and there she ventured out into the dark.

And there she sang.. My heart tells me to follow my dreams, and I will sing this song until he hears me. So she began singing. My heart tells me to follow my dreams,

andI will sing till my angel hears me. And just like that, the star lit up the whole place,

and though they were far apart, she could see his face. By the place in her dream, right by the stream, where she would find her Jim, and where she found…..me.

Part 8

Yes I was the lonely boy on Christmas, but now that I have grown, I am no longer alone. My family, Rosaline and my father Jim, we live outside of the darkness, where the shadows live. And though you must find your own way, and sometimes follow that dream, to get the biggest tree, or play station three, all you really want is a good family, and maybe a dog. Like the dog that I have. But really in the end a mom and a dad, and people that love you. And believing that the right star will shine above you.

So there you have it.

Merry Christmas to all of you, and all of yours.May love and light unlock all your doors.

Merry Christmas

from Jason

editor