Three O'clock In The Morning...
Author: Shiloh


Three o'clock in the morning is a hell of a time to waken with a sinus headache; head pounding beneath the eyebrows, face feeling like the cheekbones are pushing through, sort of tender right in front of the ears... yeah,- you've been there, you know how it feels. Almost feels as if I should have been drinking.

So I sit here at the keyboard, waiting for the sinus medicine to kick in, and I turn down the intensity of the monitor so it doesn't hurt my eyes so much, and I push on the keys without really thinking about what is being typed.

Back in the sixties and seventies they called it "auto-writing," where you sat there with a pen and just wrote down whatever came into your mind, and then you read it later - you weren't supposed to read it as you wrote, or else that would influence whatever was being put down.

Shrinks were good at telling you to auto-write; it was supposed to help you relax, help you feel better, help you find out what was bothering you. So, forty years later, I still do it, but now I do it with a keyboard, which is a lot easier. But with the monitor right here in front of me, I can't help but read it as I write. But that doesn't matter - I leave it as it falls.

Three o'clock in the morning, and all sorts of things are going around in my mind. It's like a little tiny whirlwind vacuum cleaner, and I can see all these thoughts and images as they whirl around... silly picture, really. No room inside the cranium for such as that, but that's the way I visualize it.

Lady next door is trying to sleep without thinking; her husband is in the hospital, and coming home in a couple days, to wait for death; they can't do anything to help him, and euthanasia is illegal, sadly. I bet he would opt for that. They give him a few weeks at the outside, and he's aware of everything - must be driving him nuts. They went to Rochester, and then to Boston, looking for help. Found out there was no help. The Big C sucks.

Been living next door to this guy and his wife nearly 30 years, and I don't really know them at all. He was always an ugly sort of person, nasty mean, the kind of guy Archie Bunker was, only multiplied about a hundred times. He didn't like kids, didn't like people who were different than he was - he planted two rows of fir trees because he thought Jews were moving next door to him fifty years ago. He trimmed a thorn tree in his back yard and put the thorns between the fir trees on the property line, because my kids would go after their basketball when it went between the trees. These thorns were four inches long! We had a good talk about that crap.

One day when my buddy and his wife were over for a barbeque, and he was out in his yard staring hard at us, he turned blue when I told him I was thinking of selling to my buddy who was black, and his white wife. He got upset and stormed back into his house. My buddy and his wife and I had a good laugh about that. Later my neighbor across the street told me that he called and said that the neighborhood was going to hell and that I was the driver. I took it as a compliment.

He didn't like folks parking in front of his house, even though it is a public street. He'd park one of his cars at either end of his property line to keep my family from putting a car on the street next to our driveway. We live on a curve, so we can't legally park on the street in front of our property. When he was out in his yard, if he found a stone or a branch thrown down by the wind, it would end up over in my yard. I'd pick them up and put them in my trash can.

He didn't like Vietnam Vets, either. I was a baby killer and a drug-crazed baby raper and worse - he knew - he'd seen the movies. And when I moved here that's what he told the neighbors.

So this guy, who's been a pain in the ass at least thirty years that I personally know of, is going to kick off. And I suppose that I really should be forgiving, and feel a bit sorry for him, and for his wife, who is his Minnie-Me - shares his attitudes like a clone. She's gonna give up the house and move to another state and live with her daughter, as she has Parkinson's. They both must be going through a lot emotionally, and mentally it must be one hell of a ride, but I figure they bought the ticket, they got to sit there.

Nah - I don't figure I will feel sorry for him or her, and I'm not gonna be forgiving about all the crap he's dished out the last thirty years. For the most part I've kept quiet, stayed on my side of the fir trees, and let them be damn fools.

I guess it's just a TS situation. My, my,-- what goes around, comes around.

Ahh... it's four o'clock in the morning, and the headache's letting up, so I can go back to sleep.

Wonder what the new neighbors will be like? Maybe a Vietnam Vet will buy the place.


Comments on this poem/writing:

Marilyn ( -- Wednesday, September 19 2007, 01:36 am

Get Well

Your writing was a nice break from a lot of stuff I have been reviewing. Hope u r feeling better. I was up with my daughter at the same time with the same thing. The old barometer is crashing in on everyone!
Hopefully your neighbor asks the savior, Who wore a crown of those thorns in his back yard, for salvation before it's too late. Good luck poet friend
oldman ( -- Wednesday, September 19 2007, 04:31 am

Ha,ha good write!

Your neighbor sounds a little like me. I planted a bunch of sharp thorn holly bushes, to keep the kids next door from playing in my yard because their mom didn't want her yard messed up. So they had to play in everyone else's yard. Put up a big fence all around and planted all kinds of things to block the view of my neibor's out and all the prying eyes. The kids got big, now parking their cars in front of my house. So I planted big bushes. Their balls ended up in my back yard, so I got a big dog. Ha,ha, so I guess I'm a little bit like your neighbor, but not as bad. Just like my privacy.
shiloh ( -- Wednesday, September 19 2007, 04:41 pm

no, not bad at all

all you were doing, oldman, was defending your privacy - he was being dangerously mean - those thorns were laid between the trees in such a way that the kids would step on them, driving them into their feet, or, if they fell there, they could have had one driven into their face, neck, or eye. bushes like you planted are one thing - home-made punji traps aimed at children are a whole other world. I didn't do what i wanted to do with some of those thorns, but it took a lot of effort not to.
shiloh ( -- Thursday, October 11 2007, 03:54 pm

the guy next door...

...died on the 28th of Sept. I've been working around whether or not to include that here, but since it is a part, the final part, of the story, I finally decided to add it as a comment. To his memory, I say: "Somnus puteus, fossor."
shiloh ( -- Monday, May 26 2008, 05:39 am

I've been asked...

A few have asked me what the above phrase, "Somnus puteus, fossor" means. It is Latin, and it is appropriate, I feel, for the person I intended it for - it means, "Sleep well, fool."
shiloh ( -- Thursday, August 12 2010, 12:32 am

and the final chapter endes

don's wife (whateverthehell her name is/was) died today. so much for all of their combined being "oh so much better" than everyone else... what did it get them? and just how angry can i remain? quite a bit, i guess...
Name:                                           Remember Me

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