Wounded Bird

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They are majestic, a wounded bird.
Flapping wildly to get away from prying eyes.
Scared and impassioned, to live, to be free.
Softly crying, maybe screaming but we can’t see.
Fighting for that next step without damage, just get to that tree.
Please God, get me to the tree said the wounded bird.
Pieces fall and feathers fly, each one lost forever.
The little bird searches for peace, waiting for calm just trying to be clever.
Oh sweet bird you can strive you can feel better, you can’t give up now, not ever.
Please God get me to the tree…let me be free.  
– Heather  Lombardo

Marvel and their “Average Joe”

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I saw a tweet and I read the thread, it was accompanied by a link about a Native American superhero, Red Wolf, that Marvel is showcasing. The editor of the new series stating that he would be more of an “Average Joe” which, what that implies is still confusing. They will also be diversifying the rest of their superheroes, Captain America will be black and Thor will grow tits.

Let’s start with, I am a huge comic book fan. Marvel, DC of course being my favorites, yet even the gritty basement comics grab my attention. Men and women saving lives and the super villains always getting in the way of progress…love it all. I guess suspending the disbelief that someone can be bit by a radioactive spider and start climbing walls is easier to understand than how Marvel thinks that giving Thor boobs is diversifying the series.

I am a writer. Marvel has staffs of people like myself that get paid to think of ideas…Hey yo think of new characters. Stop recycling. You have a slew of women characters that are amazing that don’t get their own real credit. Wonder Woman has been around since the forties and she is just getting her own movie in 2017 ( I know the TV show, but just chill). Starfire is the most amazing alien in my opinion, much more innocent and kind than that other alien we hear so much about (Superman) and she really only gets credit for following around Robin and having his baby. Which lets face it, is the best thing about Dick.

I digress, I could talk about the sexism, racism, classism and all the isms of the comic book world. There are plenty of independent publishers out there making incredible stories…I want to focus on the oddness of why Marvel one of the biggest comic book generators can’t just create new characters? Is it money? Marketing dollars shouldn’t be an issue. Is it just an easy way out? That is my concern. Red Wolf will be stripped of his tribal identity, he will be essentially an action star now. The ability to communicate with wolves might be squished as well, so they can create an “Average Joe”. Red Wolf is a member of the Squamish nation, which is so brilliant yet too politically incorrect to use? That is the only reason I read that they will keep him away from stating a tribe.  So that is where you draw your line…I guess.

Trying to create a cool diverse Native American superhero is GREAT, although you did that. Forge is spectacular, he’s an inventor, having the ability to create anything.  What a great role model, even working with Tony Stark’s team. You also have Mirage/ Dani/ Psyche who does it all, she is a cross over X-Men, S.h.i.e.l.d Agent even Hellions. Warpath is big time even being featured in an X-Men movie.

Point is, we can create new more modern characters. You don’t have to reuse, let Red Wolf stay in his alternate universe. Don’t put boobs on Thor, get Starfire involved, why make Captain America Black when you have the Falcon, just have to globalize them. Grant it, I know the diversification changes have been made. I just think speaking with prominent members of varies groups would bring lasting support to the characters. Who knows maybe they did and this is what the end result was. It just doesn’t seem that way.

Here is the article on mashable I saw that started my internal conversation. http://mashable.com/2015/09/08/marvel-comics-red-wolf-native-american-superhero/

I developed two male superheroes one is Native American and one is African American. I’m a white woman, it can be done Marvel. Imagination and the ability to think about how other humans live, let me do it. Like that one guy said “YOU HAVE THE POWER” oh wait, that was Mattel. How about advice from an elder….

“With great power comes great responsibility”

 

 

 

 

Memories of Malcolm X

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My daughter was given the task to pick a historical figure and give a presentation. We are discussing who she would like to be and she asked me if I had done this project. I thought back and I remember I had . I choose Malcom X.

I was a white 8 year old girl dressed as a middle aged black man. I felt very connected to him, not that our lives are interconnected. I will NEVER understand what he went through, it was his power, his speech that connected me to him. I didn’t think it was abnormal that I choose him, although I grew up in a very colorless suburb my parents encouraged me. I memorized parts of his last speech at Barnard College (which I am sad to say I don’t remember). I must have spoke the words “It is incorrect to classify the revolt of the Negro as simply a racial conflict of black against white, or as a purely American problem. Rather, we are today seeing a global rebellion of the oppressed against the oppressor, the exploited against the exploiter.”

I remember I stood on a chair to do this (I have always been very dramatic). I wore a skinny black tie and my dad’s old glasses. At the end of what I can only assume was a thrilling presentation I brought to school a fake gun and had a classmate “assassinate” me as I walked. I fell down and everything making sure to stand up and explain the action that occurred in detail and why it happened. This was in 1987- 88

I was not taught to be racist and honestly if my teacher was to tell my classmates parents about my presentation, it might have been a real problem. I was raised to look up to people that want to make the world a better place. I don’t even think my parents made any reference to a person’s skin color just are they good or bad. Even making it clear that good people do bad things at times to survive. Thanks Mom and Dad, my dad is so progressive, yet catholic and for most of his life a Republican, figure that out😉

I can’t even imagine my teacher’s thoughts, so sad I can’t remember the grade. This was such a crazy revelation for me considering the state of our country at the moment. I am proud of my 8 year old self, whether I knew it was going to be a big deal and decided it matter more that I speak about this civil rights warrior or that I had no clue it would be an issue.

I’ll leave you with this… “I believe in human beings, and that all human beings should be respected as such, regardless of their color.” – Malcolm X 

 

 

 

 

My Drug

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I’m addicted.
I need the rush.
The blurred flush.
Stars in my eyes…breathless.
Call me Walter, I’ll do what it takes, cook the right mix.
On my knees, begging for my fix.
Swallowing methadone when all I wanted was my beautifully pure heroin.
Surging through my veins, calming the thoughts, silencing the beast.
My eyes gaping with new light.
Searching for the needle, my China white.
“We tripped on the urge to feel alive and now I’m struggling to survive.”
Clawing at the mediocre, get another.
The color was fading, the beast was growing.
Going days in grays.
No, it won’t do, it didn’t work.
I needed you.
Not need you, want you.
Want is desired, need is required.
Chasing my dragon.
Dealer please may I have another?
Shoot, gush, exhale…inspired. – HLombardo

Instagram Inspired Poem

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Baby boy
I can have anyone you see
That’s not a problem for me
What I want is you
Maybe not you, maybe the essence of you Baby boy you don’t understand what I can do Who I can be
I put on my heels, my pencil skirt that top that just goes a little below where it should be
I can have Heads of State, NBA in their prime, actors, even those religious cats that scream
Smooth like silk is what they call me
A nice smile and a wink, is what it takes
It’s so easy you see
Don’t for moment think you have it on me
I wash away the hurt and I store away the memory
I wish you well baby boy trying to forget about me
“Ooh child things are gonna get easier.”

Basketball Shorts

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I love everything about basketball. The game, the action, the athletics, the players. So I decided I would mix two things that excite me the most…Basketball and romance in a timed exercise, I only have 10 min start to finish. Here is my first:

He focused on the game, shoot arounds, three pointers and plays. He was idolized, he felt the expection like bullets. He knew he was going to see her tonight and that calmed him.

She was wrapped in excitement, a different view he never had. Six hours, that was it, six hours.

She got off the bus, a new city to see him. The last meeting was innocent sweet banter, but this time she had his attention if only for the night. The plan was to meet at the restaurant at 7 for dinner. After that it was whatever, no expectations at least that’s what he said.

He took a shower, rubbed his knee. Not built like he used to be. He was ready to relax, he looked at her picture she sent him, smiled a little. He was ready to start his night. He went down to the hotel restaurant “Foder for two?” “Yes sir, your table is ready.” He sits and orders a titos and soda.

She walks into the restaurant and sees him sitting, she glides over to the table.

He sees his pretty girl dressed in a black dress with thigh high boots.

She sees her gentle giant looking at her with anticipation. He is so beautiful.

She sits across from him. “Hi”

“How was your bus?” He askes.

“Fine, long, but worth it” she replies with a wink.

They ate swiftly, both wanting the meal to end. The conversation was light and jovial. They ended sharing a chocolate mousse.

“Do you want to come up to my room?” He asked.

“I would love to.” She answered.

He pressed 12 and they went up. Both stood as far apart as possible.

He opened the door and led her in. Clothes everywhere, food and nikes strewn about.

“I’m glad you cleaned up for me” she smiled.

“Yeah, well it was a long day.” He chuckled.

He looked at her and closed the door. “Get undressed.” He demanded.

“Oh wow, that was quick.” She answered while pulling off her dress.

“I have wanted you for months, I needed to see you.” He replied pulling her close to him.

They kissed, he dominanted her, he picked her up easily being a foot taller. He looked up at her when he kissed her inner thighs. She moaned his name and slide her fingers through his hair. She climaxed yelling his name. She wanted to make sure he was pleasured so she got on her knees, begging to put him in her mouth.

She sucked out his soul and jumped on top, for the next round. They melted into each other and came. Falling asleep right after. They woke up the next morning across the bed. He pulled her close to him and they snuggled. She took the time to bank this…she knew it was the last time.

Gas Station Pizza

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Eating gas station pizza remembering the night.

She touches her lips, swollen and ruby red.

Mouth to mouth, breathless babe.

Passionate kisses souls connect.

Will you remember her, babe?

“He’s so tall and handsome as hell, is so bad, but he does it so well.”

Tight pants and comfortable dreams.

You will do anything for her, babe.

Working on her best Jackie impression being a Marilyn all her life.

Even if she never sees you again even if this was their only chance thank you, babe.

The Nightwing to her Starfire.

Don’t worry most of you won’t get that he said.

You say they have nothing on her, all the princesses can’t beat the queen.

Wildest Dreams, remember that, babe.

Pot to Pieces

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Oh my what happened.. can you clarify?

Is the love for a moment cancelled?

Oh my, me…I should have trusted me

Should have asked more questions
Or no questions asked

I thought I understood, silly me

Thought there was a connection a suggestion.

No me, no you, no we

Fine, we’re good we’re great, I thought I understood.

The moment passed

Laugh, smile good, crase

As the day lasts, the figure fades

Look at the sky, wonder why

That’s cool, no matter, no care

I thought I understood, just hurt too good

-Heather Lombardo

Learn from my Stupidity and take Uber or Lyft or call your Mama!

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Scared Straight Essay – from a 34 year old woman

Driving home from a Cavs game in a bitterly cold Cleveland at 1:30am. That is how this all started, my one encounter with the law.

Many of us make a choice and no matter what WE make the choice to get behind a wheel after a beer or two. Sometimes it is many more, for this story it was just a couple.  I am a slight woman, 5’3 about 125 give or take a few and I don’t drink often either, well not anymore. Watching basketball is extremely gratifying for me, because unlike baseball…I get it. Lebron James throwing the chalk, Kyrie with the 3 pointers and well everything about Love and Thompson. It was my first game of the season, great seats and better company. Two beers down and the game was over, we beat Michael Jordan’s team. Hollering in the streets ensued, taunting Hornet’s fans, because that is what we do in Cleveland. Going to a bar for one more wet of the whistle, sit to talk shop and being the wingman for a few friends. I sat gulping water for the next few hours contemplating if I should use my free Uber ride. Finally, feeling like the hassle of coming back downtown and not sure if the spot I parked at was illegal or not made up my mind. I got in the car and started driving home.

Barbara blaring and singing at the top of my lungs is tradition while driving home, so when in the middle of “When eyes meet eyes” my stomach growls to the point that it drowns me out I take notice. I am almost home and for what reason I still can’t explain I decided that I will turn around in someone’s driveway for a taco bell run, because man…a crunch wrap supreme is just so glorious. Next thing I know since I live in an amazing city that turns into a strange Alaskan tundra at times, I was stuck in a snowdrift from hell.

A few expletives later and I am outside the car looking at my tires pinned in the rock hard snow. Never will I know how to get this out drunk or sober. When I see a car pull up and it is one of my cities friendly police officers I was relieved, but wait…I smell, I always do. I have this weird thing that happens when I even have a sip of an alcoholic beverage, the smell permeates out of my pores or something. The officer asked me what was going on and from a distance away it seemed like he was just going to push me out, but then he came closer. He asked me how much I had to drink that night…I told him and he started with the tests

Can you count backwards from 53 to 18? Done

Can you follow my pen? Done

Can you walk a straight line backwards and forwards? Done

I felt like I passed, but he said Ma’am you smell of alcohol, so I am taking you into custody for suspicion of driving under the influence.

Holy Shit…I hadn’t worn handcuffs officially before, just for play and I like them, but in this scenario not so much.

He snapped them so tight and the cold steel combined with the frigid temperature had me shaking or was that my nerves?

I knew enough just to keep my mouth shut, but this guy was just badgering me. The officer was grabbing my arm extremely firm and was really impatient. He sat me down at the tiny office that was attached to the drunk tank that I stared at with distain. The CO in the “jail” was very nice and tried to make it easier for me, seeing that I was scared. My arresting officer on the other had was making fun of me and the other gentlemen in the room. My jail friend had the most beautiful tattoos and just moved here from Washington State. He was clearly high and we spoke about trails to hike and he reminisced about the beauty of his birth state. Jeff was there because of a chick who ended up dumping him the night before. Women are such bitches sometimes.

Anyway, I was still handcuffed because my arresting officer wanted to teach me a lesson and wouldn’t even let me put on my coat in negative weather while in the “jail”. The CO was so nice…I think he didn’t want to fuel the fire by disagreeing. Jeff was done with his breathalyzer and was arrested after hitting a .0087 the legal limit here is .008 the CO said he could recommend that they let poor Jeff go, but nope mucho man said he was going in (his words, BTW) complete with a smile. Bye, bye Jeff

I was next, I blew on that thing like my life depended on it, but guess what! If you are having a panic attack and getting yelled at by a douche bag saying things like “What if your kids were in the car?” I needed to stop and say back “why in the world would my kids be in the car at 1:30am?” “I drive a blue minivan and the last time I got a ticket was 10 years ago, chill out” mind you I was saying this in a polite manner. Good lord, these little towns must not see too much action. I was so upset, after 17 tries I was told I refused and would get 1 yr. of license suspension.

They let me call a few people…My brother was too drunk to come get me, my bestie didn’t answer, and I called my mommy “Mommy, I need you to bail me out…” “What? Are you serious? I’m coming right now”

They took my phone and shoes gave me a blanket and put me in a room decorated nicely with steel and a toilet.

I waited there…one by one other girls joined me, 5 in total. We all had different stories, but at that moment we were criminals. Some girls were crying others were pissed and screaming at the door. I stayed quiet, thinking about how great of a show it would be to have a camera in here with all of us, because it was nuts and we were all good looking chicks…next reality show Hollywood!!!

So my mommy came and saved me.

I took the next steps, got a lawyer and he was great.

Fast forward, I was told by my wonderful lawyer that I SHOULD go to “the weekend” aka hotel hell. He highly recommended it…ok, ok I get it.

I packed, crying the whole time, kissed my babies and left my warm home.

Walking in I was told to sit in a room with what it seemed like 100 people, they were going to be my forced friends for the weekend. One was shaking, a couple where drunk and I can’t even place what was going on with a few.

37 that was my group 37 souls who made a mistake or in some cases several. We will always be united, together we stand. Really, we just watched each other cry. All weekend in one form or another we cried for 72 hours. Now let me remind you that I had a totality of 3 alcoholic beverages. Some of these poor people walked into this withdrawing from alcohol, heroin, and prescription pills. The weekend was geared toward the people with real problems, addictions that took their life away, they hit rock bottom and I had to stand up and lessen their fight telling my story of woe about my trip to taco bell gone wrong? I am not even sure I have actually seen cocaine…one time at a party there was a stack of white powder on a table, but let’s get real it was most likely powdered sugar from the cookie party they had the night before…because that is how I lived! I went to goddamn cookie parties…not saying I didn’t have a somewhat fucked up existence, but really I wasn’t into drugs. Pot made me hungry and tired, which I am already hungry and tired, so amplifying that didn’t really make sense.

Getting back, I won’t go into detail about the weekend, but it did show me that I am lucky to have the support I do. A lot of my new weekend friends were very young and their parents were unstable, addicts themselves or totally non-existent. I also learned so much about what having an addiction to a substance can mean, they spoke about waking the monster inside and that that monster was always waiting for its host to mess up, feel depressed, be alone. Really sad and a true illness that most just see as pathetic.

I left the weekend with a puffy face and a renewed sense of self. Then I had to wait for my final court appearance. Shit I had to go in front of a judge, they had to evaluate me as a person. Have I been good enough that they will be lenient? I didn’t sleep the night before, I got up and put on my suit that has done wonders for my sales recently. I waited outside hearing my lawyer plead my case. Shit they called my name, my heart was beating so loud I synchronized my steps to drown it out.

Judge: Heather Lombardo, it is upon serious examination that you did try use the breathalyzer, yet it just was not effective. You have an outstanding personal record and your counselor feels strongly that you will never do anything like this again. Plus your lawyer has assured me that you completed the weekend about driving safety and you learned many valuable lessons, he also mentioned you have two children that you would never want to leave again. Do you have anything to add?

Oh my God I think I stopped breathing completely while he was talking.

Heather: (Huge breath in) Yes, your honor. I will always have a safe and reliable form of transportation if I ever decide I will drink again. Which, I feel won’t be anytime soon.

Judge: Well, your stars aligned and you are very lucky with what you received, you should thank your lawyer. Stay away from those snow drifts. Next!

I walked out, I looked at my amazing lawyer and hugged him so tight I think I hurt him. Man, I love lawyers. I don’t want to go into details of charges, because my case was very weird and there were A LOT of ifs. Let’s just say I can still get into Canada, no problem.

Statistically, over half of the people I suffered through hotel hell with will be arrested again for similar charges, because the odds are against them. I know eventually I will have a couple great drinking nights, because I am not an alcoholic or addicted to drugs and I have no reservations saying that. I don’t need them to have a good time, wake up or go to sleep.

The big revelation from this experience was the treatment I received from the police. Being a good citizen, I was treated in a very demeaning manner for zero purpose. The arresting officer just wanted me to feel below him and for what? I had the extremely nice side of the baton, but there are so many stories about the unnecessary police brutality that ends in violence. We need to end the police mentality that they can do no wrong. I am not saying all police are that way. I believe that out of 100, 2-5 have this elite perception of themselves and that is poison.

Sincerely,

Not Proud, but Wiser

HURT

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Exhausting power of a person’s mind without a thought

The tempestuous words without being spoke

Short trust, short fuse, singled out

Love is bountiful, always present, always there

Dealing with loss that you never knew was gone, never knew was wrong

Whispering secrets, all parties are not invited

You must bring your invitation, the king’s wax seal.

Is it you, is it me, is it we? Thoughts of she

Shhhh, take my dirt, I am hurt

Never mind the silly, just wounded

It is good though, it is fine

Don’t breathe beneath me

                            -Heather Lombardo