“All evil seems to arise from the desire to dominate others. Most men in our society are taught from a very early age to try to dominate. It isn’t something that they think about consciously. It operates at a subconscious level. They are taught by the adults around them and their peers. Someone dominates them and they in turn try to dominate others. They do it without even realizing it and they do it without even thinking about why. It is without question. In their conscious awareness they may aspire to grandiose ideals but their actions speak for what really motivates them from a subconscious level.” ― Mark Alberto Yoder Nunez, The Spider Lady and Other Short Stories and Poetry
Most sold book January 2020 #78 Meistbestellte Bücher im Januar 2020 #78 The Spider Lady and Other Short Stories and Poetryhttps://diebuchsuche.at/mb.php
Most found books in December 2019
Meistgefundene Bücher im Dezember 2019 #14Mark Alberto Yoder Nunez: The Spider Lady and Other Short Storiesand Poetry, EAN bzw. ISBN: 9781543957082, 3120 mal gefunden, 4 mal bestellt, neu um € 7,97 … 30,10, gebraucht um € 11,58 … 86,75 https://diebuchsuche.de/mg.php
Not long after becoming acquainted with Jimmy’s family John’s family next door to them moved away. The house was vacant for a time. One day Jimmy asked me to come along with him, his mother and younger brothers to visit with John. Apparently John’s family had bought a brand new house. Our neighborhood was that of very simple tract homes that appeared to have been built in the early fifties. John’s new home was sixties style, fancier and brand new. The tract of homes was even built on a hill and not on flat land. He lived at the end of a curving cul-de-sac. The home was so new that the land around it was dirt. There was no landscaping yet. We were taken on a tour of the new, fancy house.
This was only the second time in my life I ever saw the younger John. I remembered how cruelly Jimmy had treated him at the last meeting. Much to my surprise Jimmy now treated John with the utmost respect and friendliness. Something had suddenly changed. He seemed to treat me with disdain as if since we had been seeing each other regularly the familiarity had turned to disrespect and contempt. Very quickly he and John disappeared around a corner leaving me alone, alone outside a brand new house that seemed barren with no landscaping. All I could do was wait patiently until Jimmy’s family decided to leave. I wasn’t in a good humor on the drive back. I was quiet. I couldn’t wait until we arrived so I could walk back home.
Our yard was not perfect. It wasn’t like the Miller’s who were a retired couple across the street whose lawn was perfectly green and always cut and trimmed perfectly with its perfect flower beds. It was weedless all the time. Our lawn was not dry but was never completely green. There were always some weeds that needed to be pulled. At some point my father taught all of his three sons to care for the yard but left it up to us to do so. There was no pressure. I think I took up most of the responsibility myself but try as I might I could never make the yard look perfect. I watered in the evening, pulled weeds, mowed and edged the lawn and swept the walks. My father collected a lot of nice rocks and cemented them at intervals on top of the low wall that bordered our yard. Ours was a corner house and even though the corner of our front yard was rounded and not a sharp corner the neighborhood boys would cut across our yard for a shortcut. Sometimes some of them would push and pull on the rocks until they pulled them out. They seemed to want to do these things as a sign of disrespect and rebellion against authority. I had no idea why. I finally had to confront some of these boys and tell them they couldn’t do that. They would want to argue and say, “Why not?” but I got them to stop. I even got them to stop taking short cuts across our yard.
Try as I might our yard was never perfect. However we had a very tall mulberry tree in our front yard that gave an abundance of fruit every summer. Lots of neighborhood kids would be in our yard uninvited picking fruit including children we didn’t even know. Eventually there was even a grown Mexican woman who we didn’t know picking fruit with the children. My mother who was raised on a farm in Ohio knew how to bake pies from scratch and she would bake us delicious mulberry pies every summer. There was always a smaller, immature mulberry tree on the other side of the front driveway that as yet did not bear fruit. It was not planted by design but it looked very beautiful and perfect where it was at. It was obviously a child of the mother tree. Between the front sidewalk and the curb grew a Palo Verde tree. This type of tree was native to the Arizona-Sonora desert. It had a slender trunk and limbs with smooth, green bark. The branches hung down with leaves that were thin strands with tiny green, pointed ovals along each strand. This gave the leaves a feathery look. At times the tree, also, had tiny, yellow flowers. People who were driving by would stop their cars in front and tell me that the tree was beautiful. Another of these trees had begun to grow several feet away.
We had some bushes along the front wall of the house that had small, dark green, waxy leaves. They grew up to the roof of the house and had a low arch between them. We called them bird berry bushes because they grew berries that looked exactly like tiny apples that the birds loved to eat. They were bright red on the outside, white inside and had tiny black seeds just like tiny apples. We ate them ourselves sometimes. Sometimes we’d watch the birds go crazy eating them. My father later told me that the bird berries made the birds drunk. That’s why they loved them so much.
We, also, had two plum trees on the other side of the yard past the car port. They grew right up next to the backyard fence. These small, dark, purple and green trees gave fruit every summer. In the same area was a small palm tree that was only a few feet high and the pond, a small concrete pond that my father had made. It was bordered by large rocks that were good for sitting on. The pond was only filled when one of my brothers or I filled it with a garden hose. After the two rainy seasons in Tucson we would bring tadpoles from the desert in jars to put tadpoles in the pond. The cats would come and lick some of them up from the pond to eat them. We watched the ones that were left grow hind legs and front legs. Then they would lose their tails. Eventually they became little frogs hopping around the pond until they got bigger and hopped away.
And these were the treasures of the front yard! In back there was a patio where on summer days we would eat breakfast outdoors since it was already seventy degrees even early in the morning. We would eat cereal and cantaloupe. There was another fruitless mulberry tree that was a good climbing tree. Here is where we built a tree house in it of scrap wood. The mulberry tree, instead of growing fruit, grew yellow flowers. My mother just called it a fruitless tree. Later in life when I thought back on this it became obvious to me it was the male tree that pollinated the fruit bearing mulberry tree in the front yard. There was a lawn there and next to the redwood slat, back yard fence was the clothes line where my mother hung clothes to dry and sometimes lots of diapers. I often helped my mother with the laundry. We had an old fashioned, washing machine in the back yard with a wringer to wring the excess water out of the clothes. I loved to run through the lines of cotton diapers on the clothes lines when they got dry because of the fresh smell.
Next to the wall of the house in the flower beds was a peach tree. The mother of this peach tree was in a small patch of dry lawn on the other side of the patio. Every summer the peach trees were heavily laden with fruit. The younger peach tree was once so heavily laden with fruit that one of its branches broke from the weight. My mother would make us peach pie, peach cobbler and peaches with whipped cream for dessert. She made the whipped cream from scratch. We often had peach slices with our cereal in the morning.
Then there was the weeping willow tree on the other side of the back yard driveway. The entrance to the driveway had tall, wooden gates that my father built into the redwood slat fence that encircled the back yard. The tree grew from a square made of low, red brick walls. Its gnarled roots filled the earth inside the brick enclosure. Its long, thin branches hung down low over the roots with its long, green leaves. In the spring it was not good to be under the tree’s branches because the caterpillars would be spitting out green junk that would fall on us. Later came the beautiful butterflies as they emerged from the cocoons that the caterpillars had retreated to after having their fill of eating weeping willow leaves. For a short time butterflies covered the hanging branches before flying away. Then there was the summer when the tree would achieve its full, lush greenery and glory. It was nice and cool in the shade behind the green curtains of the weeping willow tree branches. I felt a sense of peace hiding in there on hot summer days.
In the back yard behind the weeping willow tree was a fallow area of dirt. At times we grew watermelon there, potatoes and carrots. My mother gave me packages of seeds and my father taught me how to grow things. We were able to grow some corn but the stocks of corn did not get really high like on my grandfather’s farm in Ohio. We tried to grow sunflowers and were successful but the birds ate all the sunflower seeds. The birds went crazy eating the seeds from the big, yellow flowers. At times it was hard for us to even get close to the plants because of the crazed birds.
We had a kid goat for awhile as a pet and then a desert tortoise. My sisters were afraid of the goat so my father sold it back to the feed store he had bought it from. The tortoise kept digging under the fence to escape out to the desert. He finally got too much of a head start on us so we couldn’t find him. Then we got a little dog and this patch of dirt became his potty area.
The weeping willow tree was not a great tree for climbing. It was not like the huge mulberry tree in the front yard. The mulberry tree had thick branches that separated at a low level on the trunk. It was easy to climb and there was a place high above from which I could look down on the world below. I could even look down on the roof of the house. It was a natural place where branches cradled me. I could recline there. It was a place I would go to when the noise of my brothers and sisters became too much for me. When I got upset I would climb up to my high spot in the tree to think and have peace of mind. It was a place where my imagination was set free from the troubles of life.
A few months went by and I didn’t hear anything concerning the spider lady. A little after five in the afternoon one day I got a call at a doctor’s office. I had never been there before. I was impressed when I read on the sign that was next to the door of the office that it was a woman doctor who was a naturopathic doctor.
A very pretty, young, brunette woman who was close to my own age at the reception desk smiled. She seemed especially friendly and cheerful. She said she would go get the person who called for the taxi. She returned and smiling she said, “She’ll be just a minute.” There were women and children in the waiting room. Then I saw her in the semi-darkness of the room approaching me. It was the spider lady. She was wearing a long, dark print dress.
I went to open the back door of the taxi
for her and she said she wanted to sit in the front so I opened the front
passenger door for her. As we were
riding along I thought how strange that we were riding in a car together with
daylight all around on a warm, sunny afternoon with a touch of coolness in the
air. She seemed calm, patient, relaxed
and humble. She was gazing off into
space. She sat in her long, dark print
dress with her arms resting on her lap.
Her wrists and hands were placed just above her knees, her palms
up. Her fingers were delicately curved
as if she was posing in a peaceful, serene and beautiful position.
Then I saw it! On both of her wrists were plastic, stick-on
bandages. I kept looking in disbelief
while she remained calm and serene. She
was gazing into the distance ahead with slightly lowered eyelids as if in a
surreal state of melancholy and peacefulness.
I looked again at the bandages in exactly the places on someone’s wrists
where a person would slash with a razor blade to commit suicide.
I looked at her face so calm, serene and transcendent. Except for glints of light that reflected from her eyes as we drove along she seemed motionless and in a state of relaxation. It seemed as if she had wanted me to see her bandages. She wanted me to know.
When we were on her street and getting
close to her house she asked me to stop a few houses away from hers. She said she wanted to walk the rest of the
way. I offered to get out and open the
door for her but she insisted on letting herself out. She reached for the door handle. She seemed listless as if drugged. I patiently pointed to help her find the door
The afternoon just before sunset was in a
golden glow as I watched her walking ahead of me with the skirts of her dark,
elegant dress swaying while she walked past the yellow and green lawns of the
neighborhood towards her own home. She
walked with sadness and serenity as if introspective. I never heard anything of the spider lady
I remembered I had told the cab drivers and dispatcher that no such spider that is completely black with a smooth, hard skin of that size exists in this area that I’ve ever heard of. It was larger than tarantulas which I have seen in Arizona and tarantulas are furry and brown. Was it just a spider? Where did those webs come from on the porch that I had just walked through? What was that smell of death? Did she practice evil magic and lure men to their death, murdering them in the belief that she could gain power from death like a female spider that seduces males to have sex with her and then devours them?
When I read in a magazine about how a man turned in Jeffrey Dauhmer, the serial killer, to the police because of smelling an unusual smell that made him think of death and then he looked into Jeffrey Dauhmer’s bedroom to see bed sheets covered with caked, dried blood it reminded me of the smell in the spider lady’s house.
Did I break her magic spell by writing a verse of poetry? Did she use poetry for evil, magic purposes to cast her spells and did I defeat her unwittingly because of being a poet myself? Was her seduction spell over me that important to her that when I used her own medium to break her spell she attempted suicide? Or is the writing and publishing of this story the final breaking of a spell that may have gone beyond the grave? At this point I know there are people who practice magic, both good and bad.
Spindeldamen handlar om en ung taxichaufför som möter en mycket konstig äldre kvinna. Det är en mörk memoar. McArthur Street berör en pojke som växte upp i Tucson på sextiotalet och hans kämpar med gott och ont.
Thank you to all the websites that have referred to my blog with links!
I hope people will be entertained with my writing! I like to have fun with literary clichés. I have made literary references that seem to turn in on themselves about literature and writing itself. My goal is to inspire imaginations! If I have succeeded in that then it is an accomplishment. The Dream, The Spider Lady, McArthur Street, Catholic School Stories and Liquor Store Stories are works of creative non-fiction. If you are wondering how The Dream could be non-fiction it is because it is straight reportage of an actual dream I had. All the events in my non-fiction stories are true to the best of my memory. The creativity is in how I tell the story. The Talisman is a psychological fantasy and The Ghost Ship is just a great, ghost story!
The Spider Lady is concerning a young, taxi driver who meets a very
strange, older woman. It is a dark memoir. McArthur Street concerns a
boy growing up in Tucson in the sixties and his struggles with good and
evil. It is, also, a memoir. Lots of non-fiction and fictional stories.
And lots of poetry. Good inspiration for those who love reading and
aspire to write. Good for young adults and adults. Original proverbs and
humor. These writings are over the course of years and have developed
interactively with people as Mark has recited his poetry and even his
fictional stories in progress; consequently his listeners have
influenced the outcome of his writings in his first book.