Tag Archives: Author: Monica Brinkman

Speaking My Mind by Monica Brinkman

a

There comes a time in one’s life when they no longer can hold their tongue. It could be as a youth, discovering the workings of the world or a wife who no longer allows the beatings and tongue lashings from her once adoring husband. Be forewarned, for it shall happen and you will have the choice to quiver in fear or take a stand and speak up.

Today is my day, my time, my moment and I siege the opportunity with passion and vigor and purpose. Hate me? Fine. Detest my words? Good. Object to my opinion? Okay. For I do not worry about what you think of me, nor if you condone my actions, nor will you when the moment appears in your life.

What propels me with such passion? It is Fear! I am weary of living within its grasp. I am tired of it hovering over my head, my every thought, my every choice, my every opinion for lest I annoy, anger or upset another.

Cities, states, countries and the world’s inhabitants live in such deep alarm of what could happen to them if they let their true thoughts out. What would their ministers, their rabbis, their neighbors, their supervisors, their friends, and family think of them, or even worse, do to them should they allow truth to leak out? Oh, for horror above horror, they would certainly be struck down by lightening or silenced for life; their tongue torn from their mouths. Or certainly shunned by the town and cast out as an evil demon into the darkness of the night.

All dramatizations aside, in the real world, their voice would be heard. Perhaps a few would pass judgment, some would agree, but most would merely listen and go on with their lives. The seas would not part nor the earth, underfoot, give way. You see, no matter what you might like or think, the entire world does not revolve around you as an individual. You are simply not that important to others no matter how much you may wish to be so.

What is important is that each one of us can voice our opinions, speak our mind without living in fear of consequence. After all, when one speaks it is how they are feeling at that exact moment in time. They may or may not feel the same way in the next minute, hour, day or year. For we evolve, we learn and we change per our experiences in life. And it is grand and it is good and it is how it should be. Yet so many continue to hide their thoughts and shut out communication. I ask you, who do this, to toss away the fear, for that fear lives within your own mind.

In the end, we can only be the person we have become, the thoughts we have embraced and the actions that we choose. Me? I’d have it no other way. I invite all of you to toss that fear aside and allow all to experience the real person behind the façade; the truth of essence and the force of your personality. Please, be yourself; let others in and you will find great joy as the fear, once so vivid, ebbs into a faint memory. You might even find others adore the real you.

Bio: Monica M Brinkman believes in ‘giving it forward’; reflected by her writing and radio show. A firm believer open communication is the most powerful tool to make positive change in the world; she expresses this in her books, The Turn of the Karmic Wheel, The Wheels Final Turn and in her weekly broadcast of It Matters Radio.

An avid writer, named a true storyteller, she has been published in several anthologies and wrote a weekly column for over two years at Authorsinfo. Her works can be found at various sites throughout the internet. Visit her blog @ http://itmattersradio.wix.com/on-the-brink

Monica resides in the Midwest with her husband, two dogs and five cats.

The Gathering by Monica Brinkman

veranda-1634865_640

The night was approaching and with it growing excitement for what was to come. Maurice had heard about the gatherings which took place on this very special day. His dream was to one day be part of the exclusive group. They only selected the most perfect to partake in the festivities, and here he found himself, amid the flawless beauty of the others.

He knew Sheila would be picked, with her round curves and broad smile. She was second to be chosen. He could see why with a face that lit up the night with its brightness and warm glow. He’d secretly had a crush on her, yet would never let on, for she had her heart set on Louis.

Suppose if you were to measure excellence in form and face, Louis would win by a landslide. Somehow the crooked leering grin and arched eyes drew the crowd. He’d come in first place with the judges who selected those who would be part of the celebration. Maurice was tiring of the relentless reminder of superiority Louis exuded. Still, it was worth putting up with his boastful nature to be within this exclusive assembly.

Darkness now engulfed the night, which only accentuated the glow emitted from the windows behind them. So proud were they, for they had been carefully chosen from hundreds, maybe even thousands to bring in the season. And now they sat on the porch, he on the bannister, Sheila on the stool and Louis on the front step.

Though he realized he did not have the firm, broad form of Louis, or the curvy elegance of Sheila, he had something special indeed. He was the tallest and leanest of them all and he wore a devilish grin, accented by the wink of an eye. It somehow captured the heart of the people, and he was delighted!

So, they did what only the winners of the gathering were meant to do. They shined their beauty upon the world, and people stopped and looked and laughed and smiled. It felt so good to bring such joy to others, especially the children, who delighted in their excellence.

The night grew longer and soon the people were far and few and a chill set in, forming ice spots on his lids and mouth. He noticed Louis and Sheila were experiencing the same discomfort. Wasn’t it time to go inside the house and warm their cold at the fire? Why wasn’t anyone coming for them?

The light from the windows disappeared and they were in total darkness, apart from the glow of the candles, which were melting at rapid speed. He could feel the flicks of melted soy against his skin. Now it was becoming unbearable. Icy cold around his form and extreme heat within his body. He heard Sheila gasp and Louis groan.

What was such glory, had now turned into the worst nightmare. Where were the judges? Why had they abandoned them? Winners should be protected.

Wait. He heard footsteps and the sound of rustling leaves. They had not forgotten them. Maurice sighed with relief, his spirit perked. Two young boys approached, one tiptoed onto the porch and seized Sheila, tossing her hat to the floor, while the other raised Louis off the step and lifted him high into the air, and, no, Maurice could not believe his eyes, the young man threw Louis to the ground with such force it broke his body into pieces. The once magnificent Louis lay crumbled and dying.

Maurice heard the thud and saw his once lovely Sheila split in two.

The last thing Maurice heard was the taller boy state, “What a mess this will be for old man Phillips when he wakes up tomorrow.”

As Maurice lay broken on the porch, his insides leaking out onto the tattered floorboards, he realized this was not a great reward to be chosen as the best of pumpkins. In fact, it was the ultimate punishment.

***

Monica M Brinkman believes in ‘giving it forward’; reflected by her writing and radio show. A firm believer open communication is the most powerful tool to make positive change in the world; she expresses this in her books, The Turn of the Karmic Wheel, The Wheels Final Turn and in her weekly broadcast of It Matters Radio.

An avid writer, who has been proclaimed a true storyteller, she has been published in several anthologies and wrote a weekly column for over two years at Authorsinfo. Her works can be found at various sites throughout the internet. Visit her blog @ http://itmattersradio.wix.com/on-the-brink

Monica resides in the Midwest with her husband, two dogs and five cats.

Upon Waking by Monica Brinkman

child-1235104_640

The first thing I recall was the sensation of floating, my body so light it seemed nonexistent. I took a large breath, held it for a few seconds and exhaled, noticing the coolness against my parted lips. My eyes fluttered from the glare of light and I peered between thin slits to take in my surroundings. Tears streamed from each corner as my baby blues grew accustomed to the brightness. I instinctively brushed the moisture away, squirmed in place, stretched my arms out and relaxed against the pillow of softness. So peaceful a morning, I sighed with contentment and wished I could hold this moment, this second, this instance for eternity. I glowed with the joy of being alive.

A voice interrupted my meditation, followed by a deep baritone chuckle. Memories of yesterday filled my brain. It was one of those rare occurrences when you recognized a smell, a thought or in this case, a voice and it flooded your entire soul with remembrance. You could taste it, feel it, relive each sensation until its brief appointment left you melancholy, wanting more.

“Michelle”. Wait, there it was again, calling my name, the voice drawing nearer. Why did it sound so familiar? “Michelle” rang out once more.  So identifiable was the utterance, yet I could not match a character to the tone.  I rose from my waist and scanned the perimeter. Wait. There in the distance was a movement. Though blurred I could see it progress, coming closer, calling out my name, “Michelle.  It echoed through the air and brought me tranquility of which I’ve never known.  My body automatically fell back into a prone position and I stretched each limb, curled each toe. This was magnificence beyond belief and I adored the feeling. I did not wish it to cease and sobbed with happiness.

The sensation of a firm grip upon my shoulders startled me, yet I was not afraid. I turned to one side and fingertips played a sweet song of endearment on my arm and brushed the hair from my face. I snuggled,

spooning against maleness without hesitation; it felt so perfect, so right. This was utter bliss as I’d never experienced and I was lost in pleasure.

Strong arms held me tight. “Michelle, I’ve waited for you”.

Pain, fear, horror rushed into my mind and body. I trembled against his grasp. No, make it go away, please, no, not this, not me. The visions came as flashbacks, one after the other, each more horrifying, all so terrifying.  I cried out from the memory, still fresh in my mind. There lay my body on the cold pavement, once gray, now full of crimson blood.

I shuddered in his arms, tears flowing swiftly down my face, hitting his hands.  Where am I?

He pulled me to face him. We kissed as we had done so many years ago, before the head-on collision. I held him tight and knew that my first love, Chet, was now my eternity.

 

Monica M Brinkman believes in ‘giving it forward’; reflected by her writing and radio show. A firm believer open communication is the most powerful tool to make positive change in the world; she expresses this in her books, The Turn of the Karmic Wheel, The Wheels Final Turn and in her weekly broadcast of It Matters Radio.

An avid writer, named a true storyteller, she has been published in several anthologies and wrote a weekly column for over two years at Authorsinfo. Her works can be found at various sites throughout the internet. Visit her blog @ http://itmattersradio.wix.com/on-the-brink

Monica resides in the Midwest with her husband, two dogs and five cats.

Fragments of Dimension by Monica Brinkman

 

hand-984170_640

 “Frankie! Come here boy.” Jennifer inhaled three whistles before continuing. “It’s me sweetie. It’s mama.”

The short-haired Fox Terrier’s ears perked, nose pointed forward sniffing for familiar scents. Finding none, he cocked his head, circled the corner and lay down, now content on licking the dust from his paw.

If only I’d been more careful, thought Jennifer. She recalled the first time it had happened. She was sitting on the sofa watching the dust twirl, dance and sparkle within the beam of sunlight pouring through the open window. It occurred to her that the sparkles weren’t actually dust particles at all but tiny dots of glimmering rays, each separated by a minuscule space of darkness. When she looked deep into the empty spaces, she found herself drawing closer to the light.  Yet her body was motionless and seated on the sofa, content on staring into the rays, not moving a muscle.  The emptiness drew her further and further into its space. The nearer she came, the wider the darkness opened as it pushed the shimmer and glittering particles of sunshine to the side. She felt the darkness widen taking over the entire area of the sunbeam and in an instance, the empty space sucked her into another dimension.  She soared above the sofa at will and as soon as she had felt fear, bam, she was back in her living room on the sofa.

Often, she had focused on the empty space, the darkness between the light. She recalled that in school they had taught her nothing is solid; there is always space between the molecules holding items or she supposed, even people, together. Somehow, she had mastered the ability to enter into the between and experience a dimension where the body was lighter than air and could float across space and time. So addictive a game it was and such fun that all fear of the unknown ceased and the incidents became more a habit than an exception.

Now she had gone and done it.

Jennifer pressed her Miren shaped nose against the hard surface of the window-like substance. She had not yet decided what it most resembled. The color was not as clear as glass for it portrayed a pearl-like radiance that changed color according to the angle one peered, altering from a soft glaze of white to an intense shade of gray.  Little flecks of light burst from its interior, rather as those of fireworks, but much tinier in circumference.  Somehow, none of these oddities interfered with the clarity of vision. She could make out every single object or being through this odd looking glass.

The surface began to roll and ripple. Jennifer stepped back.  She watched with curiosity and alarm, as the ripple grew large, towered over her head and scooped her up. It formed a large bubble that encased her body. She cried out in terror. Her wails turned into cascading foam and fell liquidating under her feet.

The bubble lifted Jennifer into the air and through a tunnel of blackness.

Frankie jumped on the king sized bed and licked tears from Earl Hanson’s face. Animals have that innate ability to sense an owner’s despair. Earl knew it was foolish to think his daughter would appear after all, nine months had passed. He might be losing his mind, but at dusk, just when the final light of day shined through the windows, picking up bits of dust, which swirled through the air, he could swear he heard Jennifer’s voice crying out “Help me. Father help me.”

 

OF TRAINS AND FIREWORKS by Monica Brinkman

PastedGraphic-1

Mason clutched mother’s hand, his steps quickened to keep up. There were so many people. The young boy felt fear mix with the excitement of a new adventure.

Firecracker pops filled the air. He heard cries of surprise and yelps of alarm. Mason loved fireworks but could not see over the heads of the people as mother pulled him up the hard steel stairs and into the trains’ interior.

“Mommy, stop. I want to go see the fireworks.”

“Shush Mason. Not now.”

Tears filled his eyes. How could she be so mean? He heard more pops and cracks and pouted in defiance of her words. The fireworks were still going on and he wanted to see them. He yanked from her hands’ grasp and turned to exit the train. So many people. They roughly jammed into his small body. Mason pressed against his mother’s wool coat. A raven-haired girl fell at his feet. The crowd stepped upon her tiny arms, torso and face until she was no longer visible.

Mason looked up at his mother, “Mommy, they’re hurting her.”

“That is not your concern, Mason.” She pulled her son close. “You stay near me or you’ll be next.”

It was getting warm; he wanted to take off the heavy coat and hat. It was futile even to attempt to raise his arm or move his hand more than a couple inches from his body. The pressure of the other people’s bodies hurt. Each second brought them closer, squeezing and squishing his small frame.

“It’s hard to breathe, Mommy.” Tears ran down his cheeks. The excitement of a train ride replaced by pain and grief.

The shrill scraping of the trains‘ steel doors as they closed caused his ears to pound and his head to throb. This wasn’t fun anymore. Mason wanted to go home. He embraced mother‘s leg. His sobs grew louder. Mother raised his head, fingers under his chin, and wiped the tears from his face.

“Don’t fear, Mason, We are going for a visit to a camp in the Ukraine. There will be yummy food and a nice place to live. Won’t it be fun spending each day with Mommy?”

Mason’s face brightened at the thought of food and of spending days with his mother. He just knew this would be the most exciting adventure of his life. He smiled in anticipation;  his eyes twinkled with delight.

He was fast asleep when the train pulled into Auschwitz-Birkenau.

 

Author and radio show personality Monica Brinkman mixes suspense, horror, and spirituality in her writing which can be found at Amazon. You can get to know her more personally on It Matters Radio, the Internet based program that she hosts.

Into the Woods by Monica Brinkman

 

stream-690325_1280 mAY 20

“Wait for me Sissy”!

Sissy Jones looked back to see her little brother stumbling through the tall rock laden grass. She ceased her walk and hollered back, “Hurry up Timothy or we’ll miss finding them.” The young boy smiled and huffed his way to his sister.

The sight of his blonde locks, now wet from the humid heat of the summer softened her reserve. “It’s okay Timmy, you catch your breath. We still have time. Here drink this.”

Without hesitation Timmy gulped down the entire contents of the thermos and wiped the cool water from his mouth with his right hand. “Thanks Sissy, I sure needed that.”

“I guess you did cause now we don’t have any water left for later. I don’t want to hear any complaining about how hot and thirsty you are. Geez. You didn’t have to hog it all.”

Sissy felt bad as soon as the words left her mouth. She kept forgetting how young Timmy was and that he hadn’t learned yet to think about the next person in line. She patted him on the head. “Come on, we better get going if we want to find any arrow heads.”

She took Timmy’s hand and led him into the woods, noticing the temperature dropped considerably from the shade of the multitude of trees surrounding them. It was a natural gift from nature; one she appreciated on such hot humid days. Soon, the sound of water traveling over rock covered ground could be heard; she knew they were near and her excitement rose.

“We’re almost there.”

Hearing his sisters’ words, Timmy let go of her hand and raced ahead to the river’s bed. He waited, knowing better than to enter the water until Sissy joined him. It only took a moment and there she was, at his side.

“Look at the little frogs. Aren’t they cute? Sissy squealed and circled the water with her fingertips, watching as the frogs swam for perceived safety.

Sissy adored frogs and was delighted to see the tadpoles swishing their tiny forms and swimming among the small frogs. Surely many would not make it, but there would be enough to keep the species populated. She noticed Timmy was bent over the edge scooping up mud and grassy soil, seeking those arrowheads and artifacts from the Neshaminy Indians who had lived in this woods for decades before them.

The woods was always magical. Silent yet boasting the rustle of birds, reptiles and insects for those who hesitate long enough to listen. Ah, it was the time of her life and Sissy revealed in it, taking in the richness of life, the simplicity of moment, never anticipating what would come next; experiencing what was happening now.

 

***

His white lab coat rustled as he approached the silver-haired woman and spoke to his assistant. “You know, Fleckner, it never ceases to amaze me how peaceful and happy she appears. Don’t know that I’ve seen her without a smile on that wrinkled face. Whatever could it be that holds her in such a state?”

Adam Fleckner nodded. “Alzheimer’s is sadly still quite a mystery to us. I suppose it is merely her reflexes and nothing more. Sissy cannot speak or hear us, or if she can do so, she surely has not given us a sign. It is sad, this disease.”

The two doctors walked pass Sissy Jones who continued to laugh, smile and find joy as she experienced the past, or perhaps to her, it was the present.

 

Monica Brinkman writes stories of life, the paranormal, horror and suspense. Visit her web-site @ http://itmattersradio.wix.com/on-the-brink

And radio web-site:  www.itmattersradio.com

Such A Loving Pair by Monica Brinkman

 

 girl-157533 (1) (1)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The couple sat at the kitchen table. The red and white checkered curtains flailed away from the window, orchestrated by the cool breeze of the night.

He touched the small boned knuckles of her tiny hand, turned it over, drew the open palm to his face and brushed his lips against each smooth fingertip. It was still a thrill of pleasure after all these years, and his heart quickened as he felt the surge of love fill his body.

Annabelle coyly cast her eyes downward, a demure smile upon her face. Then she looked up into Gerard’s’ face. Their eyes locked as they experienced a moment of intense emotion, so much more than mere love, nothing less than consummate completion.

“You look ravishing tonight my darling.”

Her cheeks pinked with the blush of a much younger woman. “Thank you, and if not too bold of me, I say that you my husband appear quite striking yourself.”

Gerard’s’ face opened to a large grin. “Why woman, I would accept nothing less than the truth, be it bold or not.”

He noticed her eyebrow arch and a frown take over the smile.

“What is it Annabelle? Have I offended you in some way?”

She sighed softly, rose from her seat and walked to the window and pushed the curtain to one side, holding it against the wall.  “It is exceptionally beautiful, this night. The moon so near, brilliantly white and clear. I feel if I reached out my hand I could almost touch it. Silly of me acting so childishly.”

Annabelle turned toward Gerard. He knew that look upon her face, the sadness, the despair, the hopelessness. How he wished he could alter her situation and knew, no matter how much she sought escape, there would be none. Not from the house, not this night.

He walked to her side, took her hand in his and pulled her away from the window and the nights’ hypnotic trance. It drove him mad to see her in such pain, yet he knew he must do what was best for her well-being, her sanity.

“Shall we go to the terrace? You said the moon is very beautiful and the night air should be refreshing.”

Her eyes glowed with anticipation, excitement and joy. “Oh yes my dear husband, may we?”

Her steps quickened to a fast trot as they passed through the living room and approached the sliding door within the entertainment room. The bright blue walls displeased her, how garish and bold. She would have preferred a more subtle off-white or beige design yet realized her opinion on this matter was meaningless. As Gerard slowly slid open the door, taking precaution to remain as silent as possible, she cast one look backward at the despicable decor, now eager to feel the coolness of the night upon her body.

After exiting the room, with circumspection, he slid the door back into place, leaving a tiny gap between the lock and latch, assuring re-entrance would be safe and silent. Lord knows he did not need the others discovering their presence. He never knew how Annabelle would react to their interference. Though timid by nature, when confronted, she could become quite a handful and create havoc within the home. Gerard preferred to treat any intrusion into their life with understanding. After all, this was not their house; he and Annabelle were only residents.

“Look Darling.” Annabelle pointed to the nearby lake. The water bristled with activity from the wind’s caress. She held back a giggle as she watched the moonlight reveal a raft of ducks paddling toward land. The hen proudly led the ducklings who followed in quacking chorus.

He loved the delight upon Annabelle’s face. He wished he could actually lead her to the waters edge and together toss bits of oats or vegetables their way. Again, he realized the futility in this line of thought. Better to enjoy what was granted than to daydream on what would never be.

God, he loved this woman with his entire being. Their partnership was eternal, filled with adoration and youthful passion. He could not foresee a future without his beloved. Her welfare meant everything to him. He was her protector, her security.

Gerard neared her, bowed and extended his hand. Annabelle laughed softly, took his hand and they embraced in a dance, careful to be on tiptoe and not arouse discovery. Each glide across the terrace brought them freedom of space, the moonlight glistened upon the two silver clips which held her auburn tresses in place. All that mattered was the now, the moment, the experience. They danced and pranced. Time ceased to exist, each cast in the magical spell of love. Husband and wife. Partner and mate. Protector and protectee.

Annabelle halted her step, cocked her head, the frown returned to her face. In the silence of the early morning she thought she heard footsteps. Were they coming? The others? It wasn’t fair this life forced upon her. She wanted to scream, lash out and confront the vile family who had taken over her home. They now made the rules, they now called the shots, they now controlled her surroundings. How dare they?

He could see the anger and hatred rising within his dearest wife. Yes, they were prisoners, doomed to exist within the confinement of the home, the rules set by the others, never able to leave its door, to venture outside. They were forced to live in harmony beside the others and were regulated by the restraints of the residence.

They watched through the large pane of glass, knowing their presence would not be detected. They were safe, if silent.

The male child appeared and wiped his sleepy eyes before padding to the contraption the others called a TV. Gerard detested the noise it projected yet pondered how remarkable an object to have the ability to see a variety of people and hear their voices. It did seem rather cold and offensive for surely anyone would prefer the company of friends rather than watching them remotely.

The next other to enter was a blonde-haired young girl. She chatted with the male child and settled down beside him on the burnt-umber carpeted floor. Gerard glanced at Annabelle and saw the rage growing within her. He had to stop her before she allowed her rage to cause distress.

It was too late, she had slid the door open and entered the room. Annabelle walked behind the seated children and flicked their hair. She had to stifle a giggle when they reached up to shoo away the presence of her touch. Gerard looked on in disappointment. It was all a game to Annabelle. A game he wanted no part of, a game his beautiful wife embraced.

She became bolder and pushed the male child into the lap of the young girl.

Oh how she delighted when she heard, “Stop it stupid. Yuck. Get off of me.”

The male child seemed baffled and responded,  “Somebody pushed me, I didn’t do it on purpose.”

“Not that again Bobby. Nobody pushed you. Mom and Dad said it was just our imagination, remember?”

“Magination doesn’t push you Sabrina. I don’t care what they say. I was pushed.”

The young girl shook her head and went back to watching the TV program.

Gerard entered the room and arms crossed, stood next to Annabelle. “Okay, that’s enough. You’ve had your jollies for the day. Let’s go to our room.”

Annabelle turned to him, a broad smile on her face. He knew that mischievous smile well. Her eyes took on the glow of madness. She drew every ounce of energy from within the room into her body and walked silently to stand in front of the others. Her form appeared gradually, from a small orb to a bit of mist to a solid mass. Annabelle extended her hand and in a loud roaring voice said, “Hello children.”

It was hilarious. These others shrieked and screamed, simultaneously jumping to their feet and scurrying out of the room at lightening speed. Let them explain that to their parents.

Gerard shook his head in disapproval. Yet he couldn’t help but smile a bit when Annabelle brushed her hands against each other and shook her finger.

“How dare anyone take over my house, my home. Well there’s plenty more where that came from.”

The loving couple who’d existed since 1892 within the walls of the house they’d built, clasped hands and walked toward the attic door. Just another day within eternity.

 

Monica M Brinkman believes in ‘giving it forward.’ This is reflected by her writing and radio show. A firm believer that open communication is the most powerful tool to make positive change in the world; she expresses this in her book, The Turn of the Karmic Wheel and It Matters Radio.  Look for her book, The Wheel’s Final Turn, to be release in 2015.

Monica resides in the Midwest with her husband, two dogs and five cats.

Visit her web sites:

www.itmattersradio.com

http://theturnofthekarmicwheel.blogspot.com/

Within the Walls by Monica Brinkman

girl under the covers with a flashlight

Those who know me, realize I speak with honesty and integrity. For so many years, I hid a truth…a truth of paranormal activity within the walls of my childhood home. Today I will share with you a true story of one such paranormal occurrence.  In doing this, I hope to reach others who have been fearful of speaking out about their own experiences. It is time we cease labeling those who express familiarity with psychic incidents as lunatics, crazies, and mentally unbalanced.  I ask that you open your mind to possibility and open your heart to understanding. Thank you.

The home in which I resided from the young age of six months was built in the early to mid 1800’s. It was nothing fancy, basement, first floor and partially unfinished second floor with a small back porch entering into a mudroom and larger front porch, complete with rocking chair and heavy wood railing enclosures.  The home set back from the main road known as the Old Lincoln Highway. Unbeknownst to me, at the age of eight years old, was the fact yet another portion of the home was built underneath the basement. It was a secret kept by the locals, never spoken of but understood as part of the town’s history.

You historians may already have correctly guessed what lay beneath the home’s structure. If you are thinking Abraham Lincoln, the Emancipation Proclamation, then you are on the right track. The Underground Railroad, for those of you who may be unfamiliar, was a network of secret routes and safe houses used by 19th-century black slaves in the United States to escape to free states with the aid of abolitionists and those sympathetic to their cause.

So what does this have to do with the Paranormal? It has everything to do with my personal experience, for deep underneath the ground of my residence lay tunnels connecting neighborhood homes, used a hundred years prior to hide and assist former slaves to find protected, secure and safe sanctuaries and keep them out of harm’s way. During their journey to seek freedom, many would perish. From my own experience, they spoke to me from the other side, from deep within the murky tunnels of their final resting place.

Today, I will share a frightening psychic experience that baffles me to this day. In no way am I stating the entity was a former slave; only that the portal to the other side lay in those dark tunnels.

This evening was no different than most. I was about eight years old and after watching the Ed Sullivan Show with my parents and brothers, I climbed up the narrow, winding stairway to my bedroom, which set at the top of the stairs. It was the larger of the two bedrooms, given to me due to the fact I was a growing young woman and my parents felt it time I no longer shared a bedroom with my brother Mickey.

I was ecstatic knowing I had the biggest and best room, often gloating over the fact, being sure to rub it into the faces of my two brothers who had to share their room with each other.

The truth was, this room never felt quite right. It scared the wits out of me for it was always freezing and I had the sense I was never alone. On top of this, it wasn’t a welcoming aura but rather a cynical, foreboding, evil presence, which encompassed the space.

But what could I do after making such a big deal about having this room as my own? And how would I be able to explain my reasoning of wanting another room to my parents? I’d already learned years ago to keep my mouth shut about anything to do with ghosts or entities. So, I’d get undressed as quickly as possible, into my pajamas and run as fast as I could to the sanctity of my bed, pulling the covers up and closing my eyes tightly.

man behind glass

This particular night, I was snuggled in the warmth of the thick down cover, fast asleep. I awoke, eyes wide open, to feel myself being strangled, pressure so hard around my throat that I could barely catch a breathe. Fuzzy, yet not fully alert, I instinctively placed my hands to my throat to pull off whatever was stopping my breathing. Now wide-awake, I pulled at invisible fingers as they tightened their grip, struggling to pull each digit, one by one, from around my neck. Inside I was praying to God to please help me, to get whoever was trying to kill me off my body. I knew it was someone’s hands suffocating the life out of me, but whose? Why would someone want me dead?

I’ll never know how but I was finally able to pull each finger from its tight clutch, free now to take in a huge gasp of air, exhilarated I could once again openly take in air. My lungs welcomed the ability to fill with oxygen. I was alive!

You try to reason and use logic and I had done so, running to my brothers’ room next door, certain one of them had been merely playing a practical joke on their younger sister. My eyes doubled in size as I viewed the figures of my brothers, fast asleep. I cried silently so fearful to return to my bed. Was there someone in my room? What if they were still there? My body trembled as I cried openly.

A voice telepathically stated it was okay now. It was safe to return to the room; the presence was gone. Peace and tranquility replaced the terror. My soul felt protected and I knew no further harm would come to me this night.

Funny how the mind works; you don’t want to accept the facts, the reality of such an occurrence. You don’t want to be different. I knew it wasn’t a nightmare. I was wide-awake, eyes open and alert. Hadn’t I dashed from my bed and gone to my brother’s room? Didn’t I cry, tears streaming down my face?

I took one last attempt to place logic and sense into the episode and told my brother I knew he had tried to strangle me. I asked him why he would do such a thing. He shook his head, laughed at me, calling me crazy. He threatened to tell my parents but I knew he wouldn’t, that he’d keep my secret. For underneath it all, no matter how much of a looney-tune he thought his sister, he would love and protect me.

Wish I could say it was easier being in that room. It wasn’t. That is yet another story to tell.

 

Monica M Brinkman believes in ‘giving it forward;’ reflected by her writing and radio show. A firm believer open communication is the most powerful tool to make positive change in the world; she expresses this in her book, The Turn of the Karmic Wheel and It Matters Radio. Monica resides in the Midwest with her husband, two dogs and five cats.

Visit her web sites:

www.itmattersradio.com

http://theturnofthekarmicwheel.blogspot.com/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

May Day Serenade

May Day 1

Sally Morrison shifted her weight to the right, steadied her hand upon the cumbersome wooden cane and warily lifted her frail body from the over-stuffed beige recliner, letting out an unconscious mandatory groan of willfulness. Once upright, her hand fleeted to wipe a stray, graying strand of hair from her left eye as she proceeded, systematically, toward the entranceway door. Careful to keep her balance, she turned the door handle to the right and exited onto the front porch.

The smell of freshly dewed grass, fragrant hollyhocks and daffodils filled her senses while the ever-chirping bluebirds brought melody to the morning’s silence. She hesitated before venturing to the white wicker love seat, to take in the glory of the moment.  She knew a person could not recapture the initial experience of seconds in time when you had to let it all in and later reflect upon the pleasant memory.

Sally managed to plop herself into the confines of the damp, yellow-flowered seat cushions without teetering and falling. This in itself was a mastered maneuver. With the beauty of the dawn, came the realization she was lonely, in fact downright sorrowful for the lack of any human interaction or companionship. She hadn’t given much thought to growing older; always-believed Arnie would be at her side, holding her hand, tending to her when the body gave way to the ailments of age. Too soon he fell victim to cardiac failure.

Oh how she envied those grandmas who doted over their grandchildren, telling stories of the deep bond and love they had developed. Childless, she had no such tales to relate, nor any deep friendships to carry her forward to another day. Sally wondered what purpose she held now. What difference would it make if she disappeared from the face of the earth? After all, who would miss her or even care that some old woman was gone.

Tears welled from her eyes. Stupid, stupid, stupid, she thought, me crying and feeling sorry for myself when for so long I have been the strong one. She hated what she had become. Once a lovely, charitable, compassionate and active woman, it had all come down to this facade of life. Sally closed her eyes, lost in the memories of yesterday, a time when she touched peoples’ lives and they touched hers.

Michael stood at his window, peering across the street at the figure who sat on a settee upon her porch. It had become his routine to check in on Sally Morrison, though he never ventured for a visit nor let on that he viewed her activities. He felt as if he were a Peeping Tom, at times yet could not cease his curiosity.

Today was May Day that brought with it a mood of renewal and bright beginnings. Yet he wondered how bright Sally’s life was after the passing of her husband Arnie some four months ago. What the hell could he do, after all, they were not friends or even formal acquaintances for that matter. With one last look across the street, he backed away allowing the curtain to swing into its intended placement behind the window.

May day 2

Sally hated the evenings the worse. The dusk would be setting in soon, replaced by darkness, blackness that brought the full reality of her existence. She heard a doorbell ring, once, twice then a third time. It certainly sounded like her bell, but who in the world would be calling on her? Though a bit apprehensive, she slowly rose to her feet, walked to the entrance, pulled the door slightly ajar and peered outside. She glanced left to right, saw no one and then noticed at the foot of the door lay a small gold and crimson box with a small envelope attached.  With much effort and pain, she crouched down and picked it up, closed the door and hurried as fast as her body would allow to the kitchen. Placing it on the table, she set herself down into the accompanying chair, stared at this small token, mystified and delighted, yet a bit hesitant to reveal the contents. “You old fool”, she thought to herself. “What could it hurt to open it, hell, worse that could happen is it would explode and then you’d have no worries.” Sally carefully pulled the ribbon and removed the golden and crimson wrapping to reveal a black embossed box. She opened it and gasped. It was stunning; a white and gold-ridged rose pin with a glistening pearl embedded in its center with the most delicate, two-toned light and dark green leaf protruding from the left side.

May day 3

Sally pondered, who in God’s name would have sent this to her. But wait; there was that small envelope. She had forgotten, for with age comes loss of memory. It took a moment to open the envelope; the fingers just didn’t work as well anymore. She read the words and when finished, she wept tears of joy and delight.

Seventy-two words would change her life…

This small gift cannot express our gratitude. Helen and I shall never forget your unselfish acts of kindness, love and care. You gave my little Gretchen such comfort as she battled brain cancer. It’s been fifteen years since her passing. So deep in remorse, we never took the time to thank you. Please come over for dinner tomorrow. Time all of us began to celebrate life. All our love, Michael & Helen Lawrence

 

Monica M Brinkman believes in ‘giving it forward’; reflected by her writing and radio show. A firm believer open communication is the most powerful tool to make positive change in the world; she expresses this in her book, The Turn of the Karmic Wheel and It Matters Radio. Monica resides in the Midwest with her husband, two dogs and five cats.

Visit her web sites:

www.itmattersradio.com

http://theturnofthekarmicwheel.blogspot.com/

Monica Brinkman and Fran Lewis on Radio Shows

cartoon2

So You Think You Want to Be An Internet Radio Show Host

by Monica Brinkman

Many people have shown interest in creating their own radio show. Nothing wrong there—Internet radio is an excellent source of communication and entertainment.  In fact, we the hosts of It Matters radio entered into the business with a purpose—to provide exposure for the many talented musicians, writers and artists and to offer open communication on meaningful topics. Great idea, right?
 
So, you sit there fantasizing of the fame, the glory, the thrill and the excitement of it all: Your name spread across the internet, thousands flocking to be a guest on your show, even more thousands listening.  What a lark; what joy, what fun. After all, how difficult could it be?
 
Let me put it this way; to be successful as a radio host you need a spark of masochism, nerves of steel, and a very broad sense of humor. If you are the type who gets their feathers easily ruffled, if you cannot handle stress or change, let alone lack of a decent night’s sleep…do not…I repeat…do not even consider this venture. 
 
You will spend hours seeking show guests, researching topics, reading books and articles, listening to music, visiting web-sites, creating show pages and communicating with guests, fans and supporters. Then you have the inevitable marketing of the show itself. Remember, there are thousands of broadcasts; so if you do nothing to promote your show, no one will attend and you’ll be talking to dead air.  It is up to you to spread the word, to believe in the quality of your broadcast and to happily share the information with others.
 
Sound like a full time job to you? That may be because it is.  One more thing, you had better have a bit of personality and have it come through in your voice. No one wants to listen to someone drone on and on in a monotone voice. You are bringing entertainment to the audience; no matter what topic you discuss, it is entertainment and it is up to you to make darn sure it is worth a listen.
 
Believe me, it is not something everyone is able to pull off and on a continual basis. You must love what you are doing; have a purpose or it will show in your broadcasts. I do not say this to dissuade anyone from taking on this venture, but to let you know that along with the joy and fun it takes true dedication and the willingness to put your own needs aside. So, if you love people and can put your ego away, you might have what it takes to host an Internet radio broadcast.
 
Okay, a little about It Matters, Live talk Radio at Its Best. Our number one rule: Our show is about our guests, not us. We believe if you are having a guest on the show, you show disrespect if you won’t take the time to listen to their music, read their book, learn about their product, service, or investigate and learn of their topic of conversation. If you don’t value your guests’ work, don’t insult them by having them on the show; and don’t insult your audience by sharing something you hold in such little esteem. You will not find our hosts asking you to buy their product or service, even though we consist of three authors and a well-known name in the entertainment industry.  Of course we offer advice, support and occasionally another host may offer a tidbit about a host’s article or new book release—not to sell ourselves, but as a gesture of friendship.
 
It Matters believes in embracing humanity through music, the arts and open communication. We put our personal beliefs aside and offer a variety of topics to our listeners. You’ll find music a part of every show along with special guests–be they actors, comedians, artists, non-profit organizations, authors or well-known celebrities. No matter who is a guest on a broadcast, every one of them is afforded equal respect and becomes part of our It Matters family for the evening.
 
We love to have fun. We adore laughter and we believe it good for the soul to chuckle at oneself every now and again. Some topics will be dead serious such as Child Abuse, Animal Cruelty, and Bullying while others will tug at your heart or just make you feel fantastic. You’ll meet country bumpkin Ola Mae, the Sexy Single Sadie, Psychic Madame Alana Obynskea and many other colorful characters who seem to call in at the most inappropriate moments. 
 
It Matters also feels our listeners are very important and we honestly love and adore them. To show our appreciation, It Matters holds many contests and give-a-ways and invites everyone who wishes to receive our weekly newsletter penned by Kenneth Weene. We never take our fans, listeners and supporters for granted. We want to know what they are doing, what they like, and what matters to them.
 
In the end, it is worth every single bit of labor, time, and effort to be able to work with Co-hosts Kenneth Weene, Brenda Brown of Brenda Brown Entertainment, and Ms. Kerry Hall. It is a delight to speak with such diverse and informed guests. Each show teaches us something new and opens our eyes to other possibilities.
 
We invite you to be part of our It Matters family, Thursday evenings 9PM ET @ http://www.blogtalkradio.com/itmatters or call in @ 213-769-0952
 
In ending, I applaud the hosts of all Internet radio shows and appreciate the variety of content they bring us.  Perhaps you will become a part of this wonderful entertaining outlet. Just be prepared to work.
 
 

cartoon

Radio: Who Me? by Fran Lewis

Imagine the first time you are on the air and have to interview an author. Even though no one can see your face or you does not mean that your heart is not beating fast, your pressure is rising and you pray that everything goes as planned. When April Robbins suggested that I host a radio show on Blog Talk Radio I accepted the challenge after reading one of my Bertha stories live on her show. Never ever thinking that this quite, shy and reserved girl from the Bronx would ever be a radio talk show host no less star, not only surprised my mother at the time but before she passed away my sister too.

I think the hardest part was deciding whom to interview, what type of show I wanted, and how to relate to an audience that I couldn’t see. The first season of Book Discussion with Fran Lewis, started on March 16th 2010. The format was quite different from what it is now. I had several authors that read the book of the author I was interviewing. I created questions that I wanted to ask and interspersed them with the questions of five other authors, who had agreed to be on my discussion panel for the show. Each panelist asked the featured author three questions. This worked well for the first few shows until one or two of the panelists wanted to ask more questions. Not wanting to insult anyone, I asked my assistant to call time after the third question was asked. After the next few shows, I realized that I would have to take the reins and tighten the format—to have better control of the show in order to highlight the work of my featured guest authors.

I changed formats. Rather than having a panel I invited one guest author to ask some questions of the featured author after I had asked my own questions. This worked well for a while. My assistant at the time was an avid reader, and after all of the questions were asked and answered. we had a great discussion among the four of us for the remainder of the two hours.

 However, things change and assistants do, too. I was lucky to get Bethany Cross as my new assistant and we developed our own show and created a rhythm that until this day is unbeatable. The authors whom I am honored to feature and interview receive the questions way in advance in order to know what is going to be asked. I never blindside anyone. Since many of the authors are NY Times Bestselling authors and will not always answer plot questions that are too detailed, this makes it easier for me to revise the questions and create new ones if the author requests.

The shows vary, my sense of humor does shine through, I love when the conversation gets stimulating and the authors enjoy being on the show. Many who are apprehensive at first warm up after a few minutes and you never know what anyone is going to say so you have to be ready for the unexpected. For example: the day I was doing Mystery Thursday and someone was playing classical music in the background. We never found out who it was or where it came from so I just made a joke and said it was my piano teacher reminding me to practice my scales and my sonatas before my next lesson. Doing life shows is full of little challenges. There are even times you get knocked off and have to call back.

The greatest compliment I have received from some of the authors is asking to book another show and interview while on the air. Many have been return guests, and they are also now among my personal friends.

 Doing this show has really made a positive impact on my life and I hope a positive one on the authors too. I have had the honor of having Kenneth Weene as part of many of my shows, Peggy Greene, and of course my very first author that agreed to let me interview her, Dellani Oakes. Marsha Cook has encouraged me to continue on the World of Ink and we have fun and laugh doing shows together.

Book Discussion is strictly about the work of the guest authors. I read, evaluate and really try to develop questions that highlight the theme, message and thoughts being conveyed by the author. If we laugh, smile and have fun: that is a real plus. I prefer having no call ins because I want to focus on the author and prefer asking the questions myself unless I invite a surprise guest or an author is in the chat room and asks to call in.  Radio is fun, challenging and every show is different. I truly hope that I can do this for many more years and spotlight the work of so many talented authors. 


Book Discussion is just one show that I am doing. Starting September 18th I will begin Chat Time with Fran on Red River Writer’s Network. That first show Jon Land will chat with me about his latest release, “Strong Rain Falling”, his career, and give authors some valuable writing tips that he shared with readers in my new magazine M.J. Magazine. So, please listen. Join in the chat room, in the discussion and be part of the fun.