Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Flying Cats part 1

     So the cat attached to my right arm is making that low pitched guttural sound again and I know that it cant be a good thing. It  digs in as it continues to climb my limb like its pursuing prey on a  human tree . My focus though is on the cat I cant see and just as my "Spidey Senses" are going off in my head it pounces with a yowling hiss that turns my blood to ice and my legs to jelly and just when it can't get any worse, I catch a glimpse of the nurses looking through the glass, crying in heaving fits of laughter.
      Let me back up a little.........  I was a Pre-Vet major at the University Of West Florida in the late 80's, hoping to go to the University of Florida for vet school. My grades were good,  I had a 3.85 GPA and I did well on the MCATS.  I was a regular volunteer at the Pensacola Zoo, but being an older (28 years) out of state student I was always looking for something to give me an edge over other students. My lab partner in physics mentioned to me that a country vet in his area was always looking for help and he said he would put in a word and get me an interview. All was right with the world.
        The Docs practice was about 2 miles out in the middle of farm country. A small hospital with a surgery, kennels, and a livestock barn all filled to the brim with every creature that you had ever seen on Animal Planet. In addition to the office work a great deal of the practice required house calls for larger animals. After an hour of interviews I was welcomed aboard and told to report Saturday morning for my first assignment, he said he was out of the office on house calls all day but his 2 interns would show me the ropes.   Something in me told me to RUN,,,,,note to self,,listen to that little voice.
      Saturday I show up in jeans and a button down shirt with the sleeves rolled up, I thought I was ready....I met the two young ladies who were interning with the Doc and after a few minutes of small talk I asked.What do you need me to do first? I wasn't surprised at the answer. Clean the cages Cats first then the Dogs, I wondered why Cats first, little did I know I was being set up. But soon I had little time to think as I worked my way through the kennel
      After a morning of cages and poop I had lunch with the girls where they told me they needed my help with a client who was coming by that afternoon with several dogs and cats from his farm. Happy to get out of poo detail I gladly volunteered. My job to give all the animals a flea and tick dip before kenneling them to await the Doc. . Seems that this farmer would bring his 6 dogs and 11 cats in twice a year to be dipped and seen by the vet. The dogs were beagles that the farmer used to hunt. They were happy, friendly and well,,,,, beagles. The cats were a whole different animal,,,BIG pun intended. Brought to the farm as mousers, The only human contact that they ever had was when they were fixed and their twice a year appointment with the flea that meant me.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Ghost of Winter

In the howl of a winter storm he could still hear her voice as it mixed with the cold icy rain,
Her ghost was by his side again, whispering truths made real by February's watery ways,

She spoke to him softly, again, through the night , the storm, the doubt , his pain.
He pushed her memory away as the rain came down,and wished for summers warm rays.

He thought of times when his sky didn't pour, a time before her specter found his vein.
Still the rain fell on his window and his night would not relent as she surrounded him in grays.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Embrace Your Inner Redneck

We have all come so far from our child hood, but as we get older we all one day surcome to the epiphany that ,the farther we go down lifes road the closer it brings us back to our own back door,,,,,,,translation?
Sometimes you just have to embrace your inner redneck...

1. Eat Vienna sausage out of a can with a pocket knife.
2. Ride in a vehicle with no top and no seat belts, much less airbags.
3. Walk in the bar of 4 star restaurant in blue jeans and your favorite rebel t-shirt and drink cheap beer, till they make you leave.
4. Take your dog fishing.
5. Listen to Lynard Skynard Platinum and Gold Album, end to end loudly.
6. Take a bunch of Yankees in suits to your favorite BBQ joint, and fill them up on mustard sauce, hash & rice and of course sweet tea.
7. Teach your son how to hustle a game of pool.
8. Build a potato gun out of pvc and treat your neighbors to a night of fun.
9. Watch 14 hours of "Cops", just to see how many people you recognize.

10. Start a campaign to bring back the mullet,Buisness in the front, party in the back.
                                                      11. Boiled Peanuts,,,,,,,enough said

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Hell In An Ice Cube

      It was the cold wet wind that welcomed him on that first day of winter. He turned his head aside, tilting it quickly away and in doing so he let the frigid fingers of the December breeze caress his cheek with an icy touch born of a once jaded and almost forgotten lover. On his wind burned neck and face she had left her mark, a crimson reminder of winters frozen embrace.
God he hated winter,,,,,

      In the background droned the local AM radio weatherman. A modern day version of the saints of yore, he had heard in this most desperate prayer, the deep, hushed, lilting tones of a southern accent and through his boom box confessional granted this plea for warmth and relayed it on to the powers on high. The prayer once answered returned to this mortal plain by way of the small transistor radio that he had carried since he was a kid.
                                                          Warmer days to come,,,,,,,,

     Hell has always been depicted in books as a place where fire and brimstone would burn for all eternity. Hot,searing,steaming caves, filled with white hot flame and burning embers and while that might well be true, to most southerners' way of thinking that's only a hot tub and a full body massage away from a week at a Sandals Resort. Everyone has heard the quote," Revenge is a dish best served cold" well to my mind, Hell would be better served and far more well,,,, hellish if Ice,sleet,snow and sub zero temperatures replaced Dantes classic vision of our collective afterlife nightmare. This was no place for a Southern boy he thought.
                                                           Winter was surely Hell on Earth,,,,,,,
      What kept him going when the "hawk" came out of the north was the that tiny little island that he kept wrapped away in the safest corner of his mind. He pulled the blanket away at times like this and let just a little Carolina sunshine warm his soul. Soon he would head south again and he would leave this waking nightmare behind, but for now all he could do is think of summer, and beaches and warm evening breezes. Slowly a faint smile creased his tired wind burned face and he pushed back  all other thoughts as he worked, fought and lived only in future time now. For a day when the time, temperature and Latitude  would all come to mean the same thing.


Wednesday, February 20, 2013


Pluff Mud up to your knees as your cast net fans out across a small tidal creek.
People who still look you in the eyes as they say good morning, yes m'am, or thank you with a smile.
Sound of voices joined song from the countless small churches in the early cool of a Sunday morning.
Cobble stones & Fire ants, here by accident from the bellies of ships, they remind us to watch our step.
Smell of Magnolia,Gardenia, and Sea Salt mixed with over 300 years of history.
Sand on your skin after a day at the beach, it follows you home, a reminder of the day, like a warm memory.
Oyster roast with friends under a the stars only 100 yards from where they were growing just an hour ago.
Clemson-Carolina with 80,000 plus of our best friends and neighbors on a perfect Saturday in November.
Watching your kids orange cork bob on familiar water of lake Marion as the sun slides from the sky.
Being a local at a downtown restaurant and feeling sad for everyone who cant just walk home.
Sitting at a draw bridge with the windows down and watching sailboats head north or south with the season.
Referencing time and measuring our lives in respect to Hurricanes,,,ie. before Hugo, after Floyd.
Endless days when you've lost your shoes, left your watch and walk around smiling and you don't even know why.
Family, Friends,Future,Food,Fun,,,,,we are  Fortunate.

R. Sweat

Friday, February 8, 2013

Prelude to a Kiss

Poetry/Prelude to a Kiss

His hands ran down to the small of her back, it was his favorite spot on her body and she could feel his fingers move slowly as he traced the length of her spine before firmly grasping her small waist in his strong hands. He knew her well and she began to shiver despite the summer heat that covered her body in small beads of dewy sweat. 

She pushed his arms above his head, her hands ran from his shoulders up his muscular arms. She held tight onto his tattooed forearms as she leaned over him, so that her long soft hair ensconced them in their own private world. She moved her lips so close to his that he could feel their heat long before they ever touched. Her breath left her in waves and as she exhaled he took her sweet moist breath as his own and they shared life as if they were one.

Then she kissed him, not for the first time, but with a practiced hunger that only came from years of shared desire. Her hands ran through his hair and pulled his head toward her own, her lips slowly worked their way to his ear, her voice now came raspy and ragged as she spoke, and in the late night she gave into him and finally whispered the word that kept him alive,,,,,Yes

R. Sweat