It was just a little school. Like a lot of places there in the Sonoran desert, it was a one-story building from the 50’s, built of cinder block, with a flat roof, all of it painted a remarkably less-than-festive flat white. During the three years Whistler had lived in the vicinity of the school (calling the dwellings scattered over nearly ten miles of sand, scrub, saguaro cactus and every variety of pointy, pokey plant life known to man a “neighborhood” seemed impossibly optimistic to him), he’d observed the little kids outside every spring painting murals on the longest wall, which faced the playground.
     The bright, simplistic, and anatomically incorrect figures standing awkwardly on the big cement canvas were usually good for a chuckle as he drove by, unless the sun was jabbing those knitting needles of light in his sleep-deprived eyes. On those mornings, nothing made him happy except the thought of fleeing the unrelenting glare of the desert daylight and retreating to the stuffy dark cocoon of the couch at the back of the trailer.
     Still, even on his worst day, Whistler wouldn’t have wanted to see the little school burn, nor could he have imagined such a small structure would burn for so long.

Addie, there are things I’ve done, terrible things, that I don’t want to tell you now. 


They’ll have to wait until you’re older, and then maybe you can look past the “terrible” to the “why.” 



I hope that when you think of me, you’ll be able to smile.  Once in a while.

your loving Dad


Find me on SAMZINET if you know the name of the guy who was translating for the Caliban at the last Purification. 


He was an American…working for the ‘ban as they killed Americans. 


I got something for his traitorous ass.

your girl on Samzinet, Betsy R.


people are scared in the small towns.

The closer we got to big cities, the more casualties we saw.

 The dead piled in parking lots and on the side of the road — they were pitiful.

The survivors were horrible.

I’m a survivor now.  That makes me horrible, too.


When the Twin Towers fell, these black-clad crones danced in the streets of whatever shithole country they lived in. 



Now those same death-loving crows are dancing in the streets of my country whenever Americans die. 


What the hell happened?



Betsy R. on Samzinet