The Hoarder

The winds  howled. The doors creaked. Unwanted guests arrived quick; trying to find refuge. Candles danced shadows upon the walls creating scary faces that blinked eyes at you.

It was an eerie night in the house on the hill. It rested back a long, curvy lane, made of stone and gravel. Ruts formed from pouring rains, making it almost impossible for automobiles to make their way to the front door.

Naked trees with long arms, scratched their nails against each other as if fighting for their rights to stand tall and strong. Branches which couldn’t hold their own, fell hard to the ground; crumbling and breaking into many pieces.

Souls who once rested in peace in the cemetery next door, now could be seen by the most naked of eyes. White wisps of matter floated through the air as each spirit fought for a new resting ground.

Inside the house, dressed in a dingy, white, floor-length sleeping gown, a man sat at the table. A small table which held one lit candle, a dead rose in a dirty vase, a pad and a feathered pen rested on the worn tablecloth.

He picked up the pen and stuck the tip on his tongue as if pulling ideas stirring in his brain may come out into the open. He wrinkled his brow and scratched at his chin. “Come on, damn you, come out. I know you are in there.”

In his day, he had written many a word and placed the sheets in order and had created several books. No one knew that he was famous in his own right. A magician of thought, a monkey made to come to life by tugging at the strings, now sat lifeless, waiting for the brain to kick into gear.

He had sat there for hours, for days, trying to think of the first word he wanted to write down. He was about to give up and decided instead a change of pace may stir life back into him.

He slipped on his grayed slippers. He placed his over-sized, black trench coat on. Reaching for his umbrella, he opened the big, black knob and went out into the night. He walked slowly down the gravel and stood looking towards the cemetery as if pleading for someone’s help.

He shivered and pulled his coat closer to him and walked towards the spiked fence. The iron was holding back the once lived, keeping them in place until a bigger soul came to take them home.

He gazed over the tombstones looking for answers.  He suddenly became cold. He could feel ice seeping into his nostrils, following the path into the lung cavities. His body became stiff and he knew someone or something had entered his body.

He fell to the ground, grabbing at his throat, squeezing as if trying to stop what ever was invading him. He became lifeless and fell to the ground. Each thought he had ever created took over and consumed him, choking him to death.

Whispers heard, words not understood became louder and louder as his own body was eaten alive from hoarding  His mind  shut down,  his brain swelled, and he died right there amongst the thousands of thoughts and words that he had never once shared with another human being.

Painting done by,

Terry Shepherd







This darn thing of getting older is really starting to get to me. I usually have no issue with remembering anything from long ago, but this short-term memory, lack of, is bothering me big time.

Why am I telling you all this? Because, I need help, so I am coming to you. Sounds so silly since I have written and  published two books, but the problem is I can’t remember how to save what I wrote in Open Office to a folder on my desktop.

I can save it, the page, but when I open the file, and click on the title, it shows my work, but it shows it in its entity. I don’t want any part of Open Office showing, only the text part. What in the world am I doing wrong? Please talk to me, if you can help me. Other wise, I am only writing for myself.






The bells rang twice, letting Jules know time was almost up. She had gotten up late and was running behind schedule. She taught classes at the local college. She had been employed there for five years and had never received a warning for anything.

Last night was different though. Her father had been admitted to a nursing home in the next town over. Jules had spent too long of time there. It ripped her heart apart seeing him laying in that bed.

Nurses and aides came and went, checking on his vitals and making sure he was going to be comfortable for the night. This was his first night. Jules wasn’t sure if he knew where he was.

He had Dementia and sometimes seemed to float in and out of reality. As she stood there watching the movement in the room, she couldn’t help but wonder what mom would be saying about all this.

Mom had been her best friend, but cancer took her away last year and dad’s  slow moving dementia sped up. He missed his wife of over 50 years and didn’t want to live much anymore. Jules and her siblings decided that dad would get better care if he was moved into a facility with 24 hour care.

She stayed as long as she could afford and kissed her dad on the cheek telling him she would return soon. His eyes told her that he recognized her, but he didn’t understand why he was laying in this strange bed.

When Jules laid down for the night, her mind wouldn’t stay off her dad. This in turn made her sleep in late and as she entered her classroom door, the final buzzer sounded. She took a deep breath, and placed a big smile on her face as she said good morning to her students.

The class she taught was art. She hadn’t done too much on preparing for today’s lesson, so she did an impromptu. She asked the students to think of a time in their lives when a change that wasn’t wanted had happened. She asked them to draw out their feelings on their paper and hand them in to her when finished. If they finished early, they could go ahead and leave early.

She half-expected the students to hurry through in order to leave, but most of them stayed around three-fourths of the class. As she looked out over faces, she could tell some were serious about what they were drawing. One by one, they each turned their project in and as the room became quiet, she looked through them. One stood out to her, and she wondered if this student had somehow read her mind.

There was a separate piece of paper attached to her drawing. She explained how her favorite person in the whole wide world had been sick. She wrote about visiting her grandma and how grandma didn’t know who she was anymore.

Jules looked at the drawing and her heart sped up a little and a tear was shed, as she connected to the art work.