The Wrong Side of a Love Poem

***Disclaimer: If you know me please do not call or email me about this; it is not a cry for help, it’s cathartic. If you are mildly sad of depressed please do not read this. Come back next week for a cute, witty post. Or read a past post.

One of my favorite authors recently had a blog post about how at this time last year she was so in love and what a difference a year makes. That struck a chord with me because of something my father said to me on New Year’s Day about never thinking that I’d be ringing in 2013 without my mom. Well, I have been listening to Melanie Fiona’s “Wrong Side of a Love Song” on repeat all week. But not because of romantic heartbreak; eerily the words work for any type of emotional upheaval. In my case, it’s the perfect song to serve as a balm for missing my mom. Especially these lines:

I’ll be thinking ‘bout you
Got me dreaming ‘bout you
Every single day and night

And I don’t want to be without you
‘Cause I can hardly breathe without you
This is what it feels to be the one
Who is standing here left behind
How did I become the wrong side of a love song?

I am about to do something that I never do. I am giving you a piece that I know is incomplete. It’s nowhere near finished but all of the emotion led to the creation of the following poem

Now I lay me down to sleep
Still crying tears ‘cause the hurt’s so deep
In theory it’s nice
Having people handing out advice
Just can’t get caught up in what they say
What do they know anyway?
This ain’t nothing that time or faith can heal
How can you keep living with heartache that’s so real?

I know those memories are forever
Reminders that she’ll leave me never
But when I need to see her smile
Or just talk to her for a while
There’s no comfort in that
Cause there’s simply no bringing her back

Returning to An Unfinished Story

One of my writer’s resolutions this year is to finish this romantic suspense story that I started in 2001. I’ve worked on it sporadically since then making minor changes and occasionally adding new dialogue or a new piece here or there. Although it was the second story that I started it has been a bit neglected. It was going to be my thesis project but there was another story that I had to tell so here it sits on paper, in my sent email, in a folder, and on a few USB drives. This year it will be finished; I am committed to seeing it thru even while I work to pursue another degree and while helping others with their writing.

The story is about a female FBI agent who is forced to face her past when her former flame ends up in the middle of a FBI investigation. Along with her past relationship and what the failure of that relationship cost her; she is also forced to deal with an overeager boss. I am sharing an excerpt from the second chapter but please keep in mind that it’s very rough as I haven’t worked on the story in almost two years.
As always, thanks for reading!

Chapter 2: From Bad to Murder

The phone was blasting its shrill ring into my left ear when I emerged from the cocoon of my cranberry comforter. It must have rung at least one hundred times to awaken me from the deep slumber of early morning. As I reached for the receiver I noted the time, the bright red numbers of my clock displayed. It was 5:58 a.m.
Somebody better be dead.

“Robinson,” I mumbled into the mouthpiece.

“We’ve got a hot one. Get dressed and meet me at 248 South Broad,” my partner’s raspy voice replied obviously happy at finally reaching me.

“Dutch, come on. I’ve only been asleep for four hours. Can’t someone else can handle this,” I said around a yawn. This was my first night sleeping in my bed in three weeks. I’d just finished a report on the capture of a serial rapist that had eluded the bureau for two years. You’d think that entitled me to eight hours of uninterrupted sleep.
“No way, this one has your name written all over it. Trust me when I say that this will be worth getting out of bed for,” he responded. I could hear his smile through the phone.

I guess there would be no more sleep for me tonight.

“I’m getting up. Make sure forensics beats me there. And this better be good,” I growled then leaned over and hung up the phone. I fell back into the pillow face first. Then I got up and headed to the bathroom to brush my teeth, take a quick shower, and get dressed. As I threw my hair into a ponytail, I reminded myself that I’d always wanted to be a FBI agent and this is what I signed up for. It’s my job to go out in the middle of the night to profile and catch killers. I walked downstairs, into the living room to look for my bag and my glasses. Once I found them I picked up a coat and walked out the door.

Luckily I had been too tired to park in the garage when I got home earlier this morning so my baby was sitting right in the driveway. As I walked towards my dove gray Durango what was a fine drizzle turned a little heavier as some sort of proof that God thinks that I’m an idiot for going through this. Only an idiot would be up headed toward an unknown murder scene at 6:30 in the morning I thought while waiting for the SUV to warm up. Surely whatever Dutch has discovered on Broad this early could not be that great, even though he sounded as if he found Jimmy Hoffa. I slowed as I eased onto the Expressway heading into Center City Philadelphia.

I flipped my badge out to show the officer at the door of the office building that was located at 1248 South Broad St. “Agent Robinson, they’re on the third floor,” he informed me as he opened the door for me. I was walking through the lobby towards the elevator when my cell phone rang. It was Dutch, again.

“What?” I asked irritably, wondering why the hell Dutch would be calling me when he knows that it takes at least twenty minutes for me to get here. This must be one hell of a case.

“Where the hell are you? There are people here waiting for you,” he responded.

“On the way up. I’ll be there in a second,” I said. The elevator doors opened onto the third floor directly into another lobby, which looked like hell. There was broken glass everywhere and it appeared that someone had trashed the receptionist desk.

The bureau’s coroner appeared from down the hallway and headed over to me.

“I’m happy you decided to join us Robinson, we’ve got an interesting scene back here. We’ve preserved it for you. There’s not much of a body, but there’s a lot of blood. I’m afraid there might not be much of anything for you to work with. Jones is in there taking pictures. ” He said with a grimace, he’s been looking out for me since my first summer interning with the bureau my junior year of undergrad.

He led me down the hallway as he updated me on the preliminary findings at the scene. Still I was totally unprepared for what I saw when I stepped through the doorway. The walls were covered in blood; the remains of the victim were in a chair in front of the bay window. The room was crowded with members of the forensics team, the coroner, and what appeared to be a couple police detectives. Also in the room was the reason I was here, my partner Roman “Dutch” Evans who rushed up to me and started updating me on the particulars of the case and why we were involved.

“The deceased is one David Dixon, thirty-five years old, African- American, licensed psychologist, turned up missing three days ago from his Mount Holly, New Jersey residence, found at this location at 5:00 a.m. by secretary Janice Bryant who came in early for a conference the office had set up for 7:30 a.m. We were called in because Dixon disappeared from his New Jersey home on the fourth, and magically reappeared here dead. The locals called us when Bryant called in the body.”

“So who told you he was dead when he turned up here?” I asked while pulling on latex gloves. I headed further into the crime scene, pointing to a spot I wanted a picture of “Cause I know that you didn’t figure it out yourself,” I said while kneeling over the body. “Jones, did you get a shot of this?” I asked as I pointed to the slices on the torso of David Dixon. She nodded, as she continued to take pictures of the blood- splattered walls.

Dutch chuckled as he informed me that the coroner told him that Dixon had been killed somewhere else and put here, he also told me that the surveillance tapes were being checked for clues as to who dumped the body.

“Did someone notify the family yet?” I asked while checking the desktop for information, finding nothing I began removing the gloves and informing the coroner that I was finished for now.

Apparently that was the question of the morning because Dutch’s round face burst into a grin and he said, “I thought you’d never ask. He’s the reason you’re here. David Dixon’s brother is Tyrell Dixon so of course he was notified immediately and once he was, he demanded that you be called in.”

“What?” I practically shouted drawing stares from everyone in the room. Dutch handed me the photo from the desk showing Tyrell and David Dixon in front of their family’s house in central New Jersey.

I ordered two sets of pictures of the scene to be on my desk by 11:00 a.m., informed forensics that I needed a preliminary report by lunch, and asked Clint, the coroner, when he could schedule the autopsy. He said for me early afternoon. He told me he’d give me a call when he was ready to start. I thanked him, grabbed my coat and started for the elevator.

Tyrell Dixon and I had been classmates at The Day School in Lawrenceville, NJ. He was my guide on my first visit the semester before eighth grade and we remained tight throughout graduation, even during undergrad while he attended Columbia and I was at Princeton. I had met his brother maybe seven times during our friendship and when I heard the name it never occurred to me to connect the two.

Tyrell is the commissioner of the city’s minority advocacy committee; he is also a minority liaison to the governor of Pennsylvania. And he could have us put on a case with just a phone call. Now I knew why I’d been yanked out of bed; Ty had used his pull to have us called in on his brother’s case.

Creating a New Character

roll top desk

I am in love! Wait, let me start over. As part of my goal to create more fiction this year I have started work on a new story which initially started as a short piece. It’s an idea that I had last year but never got to really work on. To me an important part of creating a tale is character development. I use between 3-4 different character worksheets to try to get a feel for my characters because I want to feel as if I really know them.

The characters from the piece I’m currently working on are all pretty fun and my heroine is such a wonderfully unique woman. Okay, her name is unique. As a Writer’s Digest devotee, I try to pay attention to the naming of my characters and I think that I’ve struck gold with all of my characters in this tale. Although I did initially name my male character Lion, which was going to be short for Lionel, don’t judge me. I was all set with that name until the list came out the other week announcing that Lion was voted as the worst boy name. Apparently Hawaii Five O‘s Alex O’Loughlin named his son Lion and it didn’t go over so well. So back to the drawing board I go to change that character’s name.

However, I definitely wanted to name my female character something literary and inspired without resorting to stealing onomatopoeia (an inside joke). I will be revealing her name soon but I am super busy trying to balance the coursework for my new class and my expanding writing time. I hope to have new fiction for you soon including my beloved new character.

Metamorphosis

You wreak havoc
on all of my senses.
I cannot get past
the past
and the taste
of wasted time
on my tongue.
It’s similar to
the bitterness
of burned garlic
and I often wonder
if I’ll ever get
over it.

Your absence makes me question
what I want to do,
who I want to be,
and wonder why I’m wasting
my time by not working
toward my goals.
I want to sweep all
of my sorrows
and regrets into
the corner and cover
them with my doubts.
But most days
I lack the
courage to take
such a bold step.

You make me want to
eat all of my fears.
To simply swallow them whole
without a sip of libation.
Maybe then I could
Summon the nerve to
gather a strong gale beneath
My wings, disregard my trepidation,
and take
that leap.
In the hopes that
I’ll be able to
Fly.