A Poem – It’s Not Nothing

I’m upstairs. Writing. Drinking beer.
Outside the leaves are turning over,
I read we may see a storm tonight.
I hope we do.

You’re downstairs. With our son.
I can say now that I know it’s not nothing.
I’d like for my college English teacher to read that line.
I wouldn’t care for his opinion now, just as I didn’t then.

But! If you want to talk about my fifth grade teacher,
now that was a teacher and a great man.
When answering him you better reply correctly. Exacting.
Or, the eyebrow up, head down and the pointing of the finger
toward the hallway.

Anyway, I know now it isn’t nothing.
I wasn’t sure I’d ever know about it because I didn’t
understand if it truly was. Or, if it was another collected
thought process to hitch and wind all persons into the smallest of places.

When you come home, I watch him run to you. I am not a soft man. I feel soft when I see this. I release myself from anything but watching him and you. His little feet running,
arms swinging, with a toy shaking violently. I say, ‘Mamma’s home.’
The door doesn’t need to make a sound, he’s off to greet you.

I guess I can remember when I coached baseball for my brother. I guess I can admit to myself that these things took place, the things being feelings, took place and helped me to step closer to my understanding of this.

The wind is picking up outside. I don’t think it’ll storm. I hope it does. This beer is good and I’ll need another soon.

when i was young
things weren’t
i left that word alone

and all the world left me alone
when i needed it the most
and the trees can push back
against the wind

and a boy can hope

My beer is gone. It’s time I go downstairs and see why I’m fighting tears.
It is true. It isn’t nothing.

-M. Taggart
copyright 2017

A Raw, Heartfelt Short Story

From time to time I’ll mention a short story I wrote for my cousin, Adam. He was in a tough situation and the only item left for me to give was to write. And I did. I wrote from the heart. He read the story and loved it.

An excerpt, Chapter 1

His heart pounded in his chest and his ears rang. He was in hell. He was sure of it. This moment; with this feeling of sickness, and pure hatred for what he felt, was hell. Welcome to hell.

No vomit came from his stomach. No vomit came from his throat and no vomit came from his mouth. His mid-section wretched up and down looking like an October cat in a filthy dance. Up and down his body rose and nothing came out. Yet he smelled his own vomit lingering all about him. Again, he rose up, and again he produced nothing. Beads of sweat were on his forehead and it wasn’t long before they fell onto the surface of the tub. He lurched heavily downward with a massive cough and something came up. Something vile and red landed onto the tub’s floor. Black. He saw nothing but black as he slowly faded and fainted again.

-Below are links to the amazon and Barnes&Noble website pages where you can download the short story.  There’s a dog, mud, a river, and graphic situations such as the above excerpt.

Thanks for visiting. I invite you to read the reviews.  Cheers.

http://www.amazon.com/Dont-Be-Sally-Based-Events-ebook/dp/B00DYAJ2ZW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1433349895&sr=8-1&keywords=don%27t+be+a+sally

Barnes&Noble link-

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dont-be-a-sally-matthew-taggart/1116001656?ean=9781483503097

A Pub Walk – New England Pubs

I enjoy pubs. I enjoy reading. I combined them and learned I am addicted to reading while at pubs. Listening to the drone of public speak, mixed with arguments or laughter, I’ve found a gem of solitude and happiness. I have even met great friends.

In New England we have a number of hidden pubs. When asked how to get to one of these gems, some might answer, ‘You can’t get there from here.’

First, The Book Mill. Seated on the bank of a river in Montague, MA. Before this converted mill housed a pub (The Lady Killigrew Cafe), my brother and I would walk this river and watch our father fish for trout. Get there early and grab a seat overlooking the river. Outside seating overlooking moving water stirs imagination. Go here. They have good beer and oddly enough good rice. There’s even a bookstore next door.

Outside Brew

bookmill1

 

Next up- The BridgeSide Grill, Sunderland, MA. Ah, Yes! I cannot write this without mentioning some good friends. I would embarrassingly stay at this cozy family friendly hide-away until closing time. At times I would help them vacuum. These were my bachelor days and the owner and staff were incredibly kind to me. They never kicked me out while I read and drank their beer and held up a seat for hours. In fact, I miss doing that to them. I lived close by. I walked there. And I would walk home. The BridgeSide Grille has a nook style bar and outside patio. I once was able to talk the owner’s son into selling a piece of art work he’d created. His painting was once hung on the wall of the bar. I really should give that back. When visiting BridgeSide be sure to also drive to the top of Mount Sugarloaf. BridgeSide Grille is located just on the over side of the bridge.

B Side Bridge

 

And moving on- Rhode Island has many pubs. One of which is The Twisted Vine in Westerly, RI.. Along with a great name, Pat and her employees were amazing to Megan during her pregnancy. The Twisted Vine has a NYC feel with the comfort of New England. Exposed Brick, properly lighted, with wood floors and a fire place- you cannot go wrong enjoying a drink here. Especially in the winter. Seat yourself in one of the high back leather chairs near the fireplace and enjoy a cocktail named after a famous author, such as my favorite, Ernest Hemingway. Just before Christmas I once walked into The Twisted Vine to find a Christmas party ongoing. It was packed. There wasn’t one seat left at the bar. Everyone was dressed very well. I was wearing a hoodie, blue jeans, and boots. I was even wearing my beat up Boston Red Sox hat. In my right hand was a book. I turned to leave. While walking toward the door, someone grabbed my elbow and said, ‘Where do you think you’re going?’ Pat, the owner, had observed me leaving. She wasn’t about to let me feel out of place. And it worked. She placed my butt in a seat and told me to enjoy and read. And I did.

I took the picture of The Twisted Vine’s floor just after Pat had them sanded and urethaned. Pat had seen me walking down the street and waved me in to have a look.

photo (58)

porter

And instead of my sub par photography I’ll post a picture that shows how gorgeous The Twisted Vine is.

Vine.JPG

Vine O

 

And lastly, simply because I’m running out of time to write, The Haversham. Also in Westerly, RI. Within The Haversham you’ll find a large sports pub. You literally can’t get there from one side of the road. You must first fight the Rhode Island road system before being able to enjoy one of the best sports pubs in the area. And when you do, ask for Shane. That man you will not forget. He may, or may not, be slightly crazy. Which I consider to be a word of wisdom and I’m flattered when I’m given the compliment.

It’s simple- if you want to watch a Patriots game and shout at the top of your lungs while drinking beer, this is where you need to be. You will have a rowdy good time. I’ve taken too many pictures of myself cheersing a new friend while at the Haversham. I’ve read numerous books and talked at length about authors, town happenings, and even politics and religion.

H Q

And slightly crazy Shane. The beach is just down the road.

Crazy S

I use the term ‘Pub’ loosely in this article. Each establishment I’ve written about has it’s own brand. I call them ‘Pubs’ because I hold that word close to my heart. To me, it’s an expression. A compliment. When I ask a friend if they’d like to go to a Pub it is because I would like to create a memory over a pint. I would like to charge forward and dive into a conversation that might never be forgotten. I want to cheers to them and to the moment and take a long pull just as Hemingway may have done.  And remember- Don’t ask permission to live your life. Live and be well doing it.

Thanks for reading. If interested in reading more you’ll find information on my self published short story via the link below.

https://mtaggartwriter.wordpress.com/my-book/

Cheers.

 

An Uneven Unity – A Short Story

An Uneven Unity: Fiction

Written by -M. Taggart copyright 2016

 

‘Hun, why are you stomping?’

‘I’m not stomping. I’m trying to put things away.’ She said with a tone.

His wife generally stomped when she was busy. She also seemed upset and almost angry. Her eyes were tense and she gave one word answers. A few minutes earlier he had heard her car door close. He was excited she was home. He’d put his boots on and opened the door. She had an arm load of groceries. He smiled wide and asked how her day was. She pushed through the door and passed him. ‘Good.’ She had rushed into the kitchen and put the bags on the counter and immediately went into the bathroom. He thought about asking her if she was alright through the door, but knew it wouldn’t go well. Instead, he brought in the rest of the groceries.

Now, as he read at the table, he watched her stomp. ‘How was your day Hun?’

‘I told you. Good.’ And again she rushed passed him stomping as she went.

He felt the familiar twinge of disappointment spreading. ‘Well, did anything exciting happen?”

‘No. It was work. And why do you always start a conversation with me by saying something like I’m stomping. That puts me in a bad mood. You know it does. You’re like the men I work with. I’m sorry to tell you, but not all women walk lightly. That’s sexist. I walk how I walk and it’s not stomping. I’m busy and getting things done so I can relax like you.’

‘It wasn’t sexist. Calm down. From my point of view, it was a fact. You seem to be stomping. And you seem unhappy. I want you not to be unhappy and I want to help, but I don’t know how.’ Now his body was fully and completely disappointed. He’d gone too far and now it was his fault. He could have let her finish with her mood on her own, but instead he needled because he was not a sexist and he felt he needed to defend himself. But, to what end, he thought.

‘Don’t tell me to calm down!’ She snapped. ‘Now I am unhappy and it’s because of you.’ Her eyes were full of anger. She seemed to look at him as though she didn’t enjoy him and wished he were gone.

He tried to find his piece within his book. He knew to not reply. To leave her alone. He’d apologize later.

‘You know what?’ she said, ‘It would be nice if you’d have a conversation with me instead of reading all the time. I get home and your face is stuck in a book. You don’t talk to me. It’s as if you don’t even know me.’

The light was fading, the day was nearing to an end. Soon it would be dusk and then dark. Eventually he would walk upstairs to their bedroom. His wife would already be asleep. He’d slide his jeans off as quietly as he could and slowly get into bed. He’d think about putting his arm over his wife and pulling her close and whispering he loved her and kissing the back of her head. He wouldn’t do this for fear of waking her and becoming angry with him.

 

A Powerful Short Story

Recently we moved north.  Changing states isn’t something that slows my family down, but it does interfere with being connected. Which was a nice reprieve.

While I haven’t time to write a meaningful post I do want to again provide the link to my short story. It’s raw, powerful, real and an adult read.

Below is a link to the story. Cheers.

 

 

In The Grip – Anxiety

I wrote this for something but that something didn’t matter. A Poem.

In The Grip – Anxiety

There – in the corner-
Our Life Died-
With four walls watching-

Unable to breathe-
Breathing too quick-
We cannot stand-
Or find safe ground

We were sure-
We’d certainly be gone-

Only- our four walls-
With their cracks and stains-
Wouldn’t let us go

Coupled with deathly thoughts-
We lie in our waste-
Abandoned by comfort-

Alone is measured
In our minds-

There – A crack-
Within one of the four walls-
We’ll climb in and pray
And finally feel nothing

-M. Taggart copyright 2016

Bar Room – Flash Fiction

The bar was full with people easing themselves into their next moment. He sat in the seat nearest the wall and felt comfort knowing the wall supported him. He rubbed his forehead with the palm of his hand. His fingers flared out slightly while he did this. He felt shame. His father would often rub his forehead the same way, telling the world how irritated he was. He closed his hand into a fist and set it on the bar. The rumbling of the men and women drinking and talking, seemingly without care, eased him. Looking at his closed fist he counted the scars on his knuckles. Remembering clearly where each came from. His beer was empty but he wouldn’t ask. He would sit and wait until the bartender asked if he’d like another. It was always this way. The rumbling went on and the wall wouldn’t leave him.

 

Thank you for reading and Cheers!

I invite you to learn about my self published book.

https://mtaggartwriter.wordpress.com/my-book/

Or, read the reviews via the amazon link below.

https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Be-Sally-Based-Events-ebook/dp/B00DYAJ2ZW?ie=UTF8&keywords=don%27t%20be%20a%20sally&qid=1433349895&ref_=sr_1_1&sr=8-1