Archive for Sometimes it just hurts

When We Were Boys

When we were little boys , my cousin Eddy Madden and I would imitate our TV heroes. Sadly, my fellow hero passed away five years ago after a long battle with cancer. Ed loved God, his country and his friends, but most of all he loved his family. This country is now missing another hero and this old gunslinger misses him dearly. I republish the following in his honor, because I know he felt the same.

We Used to Have Heroes  

We used to have heroes; they rode horses, wore white hats, fought for what they believed was right, looked out for their neighbors, and ran the bad guys out of town. I wanted to be like them.

a-lone-rangerWhen I was six, I was the Lone Ranger, and at the same time Superman; ever ready to stand against anyone or anything that dared to come against truth, justice, and the American way. When I was eight, I was Paladin–Have Gun Will Travel; a black hat this time, and more rugged, but a hero still, who righted wrongs and would go anywhere to correct injustice and defend the defenseless. When I was ten, I was John Wayne. I learned to walk like him, tried to make my voice deep like his, and hoped I’d grow to be tall, broad shouldered and brave like “The Duke”. But mostly, I wanted to be a good man, a superb man, a combination of all of those heroes who cared little for themselves, but lived for what they could do for others.

 Yes, it was just television and all our heroes were make-believe, but they made us believe and they taught us about right and wrong, and so many other things. But… where have all the heroes gone? Who do we turn to now?  What is truth, or justice? And, what is the American way?  Our heroes stood proud and tall, hands on their hips, ready to fight for a way of life and a country they loved, even though that country was flawed, even then, in so many ways. 

I love my country. But it is a love like one has for a dying loved one, and I watch her now, slumbering in drugged apathy, immorality, indecency, and corruption. I hear the blustering of our confused and corrupted government, the noises they make sounding much like the death rattle of cancer-ridden lungs, and my heart aches, as I realize even should she survive, a mere shadowy skeleton of what she once was is all that will remain.  

And so, I think back on those days of yesteryear–days when this country stood strong and proud–and watch as she slowly succumbs to darkness with no heroes to ride to her rescue, and I silently weep.

Copyright © 2012 C. Mashburn

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Beautiful Exiles

beautiful exiles

Beautiful Exiles

I’m currently reading Meg Waite Clayton’s, Beautiful Exiles, a novel about Ernest Hemingway and his third wife, Martha Gellhorn. Gellhorn, also an American novelist, travel writer, and journalist is considered one of the great war correspondents of the 20th century. She reported on virtually every major world conflict that took place during her 60-year career.

I’m paraphrasing the following from a passage in the book, simply because it rings so true to me. Especially regarding my autobiography, Just A Boy: When a writer, more so if he’s an amateur like me, lets go of a book, he does so, knowing all the wrong in it will forever be wrong. And even the bits—and it truly seems it’s only bits—that are good and right leave your soul ripped out of your chest and placed on the page to be examined by anyone who cares to read them.

This—to me anyway—rings even more true today than it did in the days of Hemingway and Gellhorn. Thanks mostly to the Internet, which has given license to “perform” to anyone—me included—who dares take their shot at writing, singing, comedy, art, et al. It’s a good thing but also a very bad thing. Good, in the sense we can take our shot, but bad in the sense that so can millions of others, and the odds of being “shot down” are high.

I’m not complaining, or excusing my lack of success, I’m merely trying to convey how this feels—this writing thing. I’ve often said that to write, one must be either very intelligent or somewhat insane. I’ve decided I’m just smart enough… to be fool enough… to write.

Here’s a list of links to my published works:

Just A Boy

Just A Man

Be Still

Juli

Shelter

The Devil’s Dust

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I Can’t Stop the Bleeding

At that moment I was twelve going on twenty. I’d jumped so far forward in life my head was spinning but, in a strange way, it was all starting to make sense. But it was making sense in a way that made no sense at all. As I looked across the table at my mom, her tears dripping onto the Formica-topped kitchen table, I wondered about love, I wondered about God, I wondered what life was all about. And as all these things raced around in my mind, they began to form the new me—the soon-to-be-a-man me. I suddenly realized, and I admit a tinge of fear accompanied the thought, that I had to—somehow—protect my mom, my brothers, and my sister. From my dad.

~~~~~

The above is an excerpt from a book I began writing last November. I abruptly stopped writing the book, due to a very unexpected circumstance. Most of you are aware of what happened but if not, you can read my post, The World Stopped Turning, for the details. But there’s more to it than that. I simply didn’t, and still don’t, know if I can write the rest of this story.

But, a few days ago, I began reading a book, not by but about, Ernest Hemingway. As I read it, I was inspired, not by his talent, or his person, but by his pain. He was a tormented man, and he was not afraid to display his frailty to the world. He said this about writing:clouds and mountains HemingwayI’m certainly no Hemingway, but I bleed, and I cannot stop the bleeding. I’ll let you know when the book is finished.

Just A Boy

 

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Heartaches and Such

 

feel real good (3)When I was a boy, and I’d get hurt, my dad would sometimes grin and tell me, “Son, that’s gonna feel real good when it quits hurtin’.” At the time, I thought he was making light of my pain, but looking back I wonder if there wasn’t a bit of wisdom hidden in those words.

We all suffer pain, whether it be physical or emotional, and I know for certain, it will one day quit hurtin’. Because… if the pain isn’t gone by the time we leave this world, it will vanish in an instant when we rest in the loving arms of our Lord. He says it is so.

 

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. Revelation 21:4

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Sometimes We Cry

This morning, I came across this poem I wrote several years ago, and I couldn’t decide if I should re-post it. I wrote it on a day I was feeling like I wasn’t worthy of God’s love, much less anyone else’s. We all have those days, and sometimes they come down on us hard. I truly wish we could’ve known then what we know now, but… we don’t get a do-over. We do, however, get a start-over.

The reason I hesitate to post things like this, is because I want to encourage others—I feel it’s my job now—and, on the surface this doesn’t seem encouraging. But on the other hand, it is, because it encourages me—and you, I hope—to forgive ourselves our mistakes and misdeeds. God does.

I Cried a Lot Today

Read the rest of this entry »

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Best Dog Ever!

She was just a mutt, but smart as a whip, and a person couldn’t ask for more loyalty and love than she gave us.

If the Clock is Ticking

The old dog makes pitiful soundsdog-office-0031

Sleeping there by my desk

Sometimes she sounds almost human

Whining as she sneaks toward the end

There’s a ringing in my ears

Not loud, but steady

Not that it bothers me

I just notice it at times like these

Times when the house is silent

And I’m alone with my thoughts

And the ringing

And the old dog

The ceiling fan moves the air

Ever so slightly… soundlessly

If the clock is ticking…

I can’t hear it

Copyright © 2012 C. Mashburn

 

 

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White Noise

scenery 14 quoteI’ve noticed when it comes to politics there are basically two types of people; those who get involved and try to encourage others to get involved, and those who are being encouraged to get involved and want nothing to do with politics. Both groups will occasionally drift toward the other group, and some from each group will jump from one to the other, then, return to their former group. Me, I’ve been the virtual ping pong ball, frequently going from one side of the proverbial table to the other and, to be honest with you, I’m physically, mentally, and spiritually exhausted. Read the rest of this entry »

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