If I Only Had A Brain…Or Two

Clone Wars
If you could clone yourself, how would you split up your responsibilities?


 Writing is about the only thing I can make myself do.

I can do it on my bad days, my good days even on days when I don’t have anything to say.

So if I could clone myself what crud jobs would I give my secondary me?

I’d have that ‘me’ do all my caretaking stuff- the day to day grind- the housework, the cooking- almost everything except for my day job and taking care of my cats and dog.

But the reality is, I hate that stuff myself and when I slack off I don’t feel bad about it.

So how would I get my clone to do it?

I couldn’t, I wouldn’t, me and my clone would agree to blow it off.

I know myself, if I don’t want to give I don’t.

However, I’ll bet if my clone and I put our heads together we could find someone else to do the work for the BOTH of us.

And The Truth Shall Send You Straight To The Principal’s Office

Truth or Dare
Is it possible to be too honest, or is honesty always the best policy?


Of course honesty is the best policy.

Honesty earns you trust and respect.

On the other hand, we’ve seen honesty used as a blunt instrument in many a murder of the heart and mind haven’t we?

So, that led me to wonder, are you being honest when you take the truth, twist it around someone’s neck until they turn blue and their tongue pops out of their mouth and they are for sure dead?

I don’t think so, I think at that point you used honesty for your own personal gain that makes it a lie.


When I was a kid one of my classmates referred to me as ‘ the black cat sitting on a Cadillac’. It was a TV jingle at the time. But before you knew it I was being called a Black Cat by everyone…she would not stop. So one day I hauled off and punched her in the eye and ended up in the Principal’s office with my Teacher- who was very fond of grabbing me by hair on the top or back of my head and shaking it  from side to side to get my attention.

In fact, that’s how she got me to the office that day. Dragging me down past my classmates, other teachers and a janitor by the hair on the back of my head.

Nobody looked surprised.

So, we get into the office and the Principal and Teacher tell me, in all honesty ( they said )  that it wasn’t my classmate’s FAULT that I was different. I was told -almost kindly- by our Principal that I looked different and what I NEEDED to do was develop a sense of humor about BEING DIFFERENT from everyone else.

And then they brought my classmate in – with her Mother who they called right away ( my Mom got a note two days later) and told me I needed to apologize.

I looked into those self righteous  faces, and into my classmate’s smirking expectant one- and from the bottom of my racing little heart-  in all honesty-  and on the verge of tears said with amazement

” That shiner is a beaut, isn’t it?”




Just a thought:

Sometimes when I mention I used to work in a Funeral Home some people  will say that they always wanted to do that work because

” They feel comfortable in a funeral home” , that they think death is “beautiful”, and dead bodies don’t ‘bother’ them.

For the most part I listen politely.

But this is how I really feel:

The living VISIT funeral homes, even the people who work there. It’s not your home, it’s a weigh station for the dead.

Show some respect for that. It’s not a club house.

Death is NOT beautiful.

It’s brutal.

It takes babies and children, old people, good people, bad people, beloved pets .It takes you when you’re happy, vulnerable, when you’re sad and depressed and lonely,  when you’re driving your car or just living your life and minding your own business.

How messed up is that?

Like Lister said in Red Dwarf, ” If Death comes near me, I’ll rip it’s nipples off “

For the most part that’s how I feel about death.


And FYI dead bodies SHOULD bother you.

They should make you think, feel, react, run, vomit SOMETHING.

Once there was all the hope in the world for that dead person and now it’s gone.

No more chances, no more reset, you get put into the ground or and urn and that’s all she wrote folks.

So please, if you want to work in a Funeral Home remember you are in service to the living and your job is to care for their loved one who has passed.

You’re not ‘of the night’.

You’re of the living and if you forget that you’re not going to be of much help to anyone.

Help Wanted



Teacher’s Pet
Tell us about a teacher who had a real impact on your life, either for the better or the worse. How is your life different today because of him or her?


When I was in school they asked us what we wanted to be when we grew up.

At the time I was about 10 and that person was not a young woman to be trifled with.

I knew I was SUPPOSED to say a Teacher or a Secretary or a Mom- none of which appealed to me because I knew a lot of women who did that work and they weren’t exactly happy when they left for work in the mornings. It seemed like a grim existence.

I knew better then to say what popped into my head, but I did it anyway.

So I told my teacher I wanted to be a Hang Man.

I was great at  knots I said plus, I’d seen it done a million times on TV so I was pretty sure I was ready to enter the work  field of my choice.


She told me I was being silly.

That wasn’t a real job, besides women didn’t do that kind of work she said firmly.

The trouble was, I believed her.

Years and years later I was reading a book about death and one of the chapters dealt with executions and in particular there was a part about Ted Bundy.

One of the witnesses who could only see the eyes of the executioner ( Bundy was electrocuted if memory serves ) remarked that the Executioner had long thick eyelashes- they kind a woman would have.

Now this is noteworthy on two points- getting sent to  Hell by a woman after what Bundy did  is just to delicious for words.

I must say, if those words were a cupcake it would be topped with three inches of thick delicious frosting with a deep rich velvet cake buried in there somewhere.

Second point, I read that line a few times, let the book fall on my face in despair ( I was reading in bed, because nothing says fun, fun, fun like reading about death before your eyes shut and you’re plunged into darkness) I thought to myself:

Son of a bitch, I missed my true calling.

Because someone else answered the phone before me.





Tree Shadow, © Copyright 2009 Jade Leone Blackwater 

In the woods of old poetry
I find lost moments of clarity,
fragments of unabashed emotion.

New lightfall on the thicket
obscures the darkness of self-destruction;
mitigates what only I remember.

Clean verse and clean hands:
meticulously sculpted stories
contain the broken nut of my shell.

Bristlecone-memory is a curse
and a companion.  Its branches
scrape the shadows without compassion.

With compass and cutlass
I inch through the forest:
leaves whisper ugliness and truth in one breath.

Now I gust past rage to finger twigs of wit,
lilt through old poems like prayer:
barely spoken, barely there.

Prostrate in duff, I crack apart the pages,
cast each to the fire as a voice to the wind —
watch the flames finally have their way.

© 2009 Jade Leone Blackwater

Fire Snake, © Copyright 2009 Jade Leone Blackwater

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Thanks to Anita Marie Moscoso for once again generously sharing her audience here at Anita’s Owl Creek Bridge.  I always welcome constructive feedback on my writing.  To learn more about my work, or to contact me via email, please visit me at Brainripples.

Waking Up the Dead Girls

Dead girls don’t have wishes.
They don’t dream like other girls.

They sit at home, and watch the news;
they talk with speechless familiars.

Watch as the jaded line up for coffee
each morning, eyes downcast

searching the dusky corners for
direction;  finding no one.

Didn’t you wish you could
be dead like them?  Slender and

translucent, unsmiling,
unbending to the music:

curled in shadows like spiders,
and weeping for every woe in the world.

Watch as the fading-fast tuck strength away
in silver knots, droplet by droplet,

their prayers lost as spoken:
cast down unknown wells.

Didn’t you ever wander to the bluffs
to look out on the ocean with new eyes?  To

drown indifference with ineffable moonlight,
and draw night into your lungs with a long, low stream…

Dead girls don’t swim either.
They float on hot air and sweat clouds.

Watch as the awkward learn to walk
around broken; to stand split apart in the sun.

© 2008 Jade Leone Blackwater

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Thanks to Anita Marie Moscoso for generously inviting (and encouraging) me to share at Anita’s Owl Creek Bridge.  I welcome constructive feedback on my writing any time.  To learn more about my work, or to contact me via email, please visit me at Brainripples.