Rat Tale

RDP Tuesday: ODOR

Working in a Mall really did stink.


One summer

I took a vacation from work

and when I got back my work area smelled like death.


For real, it smelled like death because something had died.

” Something ”  turned out to be a huge  decomposing rat.


My Co-Workers were so  SURPRISED when I opened the door which is normally NEVER closed and the smell of decay raced out.

“That rat must have just died!” they said in surprise.

The rat, I said was not fresh, it probably died shortly after I went on vacation.

Oh, they said. Well. There is some Lysol under the bathroom sink in the Book Store Manager’s Office ( which is where I worked at the time ).

I should feel free grab that and use it- you know in MY work area which is separate from THEIR work area where if something say like a rat dies they don’t have to pick it up.

We all worked for the same company but that was putting to fine a point on things.

“Thanks I said, I think I’ll grab that giant can of air freshener and  spray YOUR area first to get rid of the over powering smell of bullshit.”

You wouldn’t think words can actually stink, but they really can.

Don’t they?



Diverse Creative Projects at Bancroft

Anita Marie Moscoso and Heather Blakey, each of whom have established themselves at Bancroft Manor, have been working collaboratively and spending some time Dansing with the Macabre. If you visit the site you will find that it is full of interesting stimuli and has lots of prompts that folk can work on in their journals

The World of Georgina McClure

We have wandered roads together
played and learned and found each other
hand in hand the journey winds
through the back roads of memory
through the pathways of new learning
up the stairs where magic beckons
into caverns dark
and to the morning.
Waking we have joined the circle
glowing dawn forever holds us.
Fran Sbrocchi

Anita Marie Moscoso and Heather Blakey, each of whom have established themselves at Bancroft Manor, have been working collaboratively and spending some time Dansing with the Macabre. If you visit the site you will find that it is full of interesting stimuli and has lots of prompts that folk can work on in their journals.

When she is not off ‘Dansing with the Macabre’ or running a creative Lived Life Narrative course in Castlemaine, Heather Blakey is working in her apartment at the Manor, wandering down memory lane, remembering the times she travelled…

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On The Clock


On a silver tray to my right

lined up neatly




a trocar

a scalpel and eye caps

In the closet, next to my locker hangs

  a freshly pressed suit


a brand new dress with shoes to match.

I am ready to work



or maybe




I’ll Be Home Late Tonight

I have learned over the last few days, that when I get a text from the Sounder that says, ” Medical Emergency ” it probably means someone was on the tracks and got hit by a train.

That’s what happened on Wednesday.

I was on my way home when someone sitting across from me said he just got a text from his friend that was riding on the train ahead of us and his friend had texted  that the train they were on hit someone.

Almost right after that we pulled into our first stop and then  we got word about the fatality and that we were looking at a two hour wait minimum.

Considering I was going to get to go home and my family wasn’t going to have to claim me at the morgue, I decided that I may as well not stress, stay with the train instead if racing for a bus or calling for an Uber  and that I would eventually get to where I needed to be.

Once we got going, we eventually got to the place on the tracks where the accident happened.

There were law enforcement cars, there was a Medical Examiner’s truck and then I saw a gurney. I was surprised that it was there, considering.

Our train was moving slowly   as we moved through the intersection, I looked out my window and I saw a leg, a little further down I saw part of a torso and then I saw the people who have to take care of situations like this one kneeling in a circle and working.

And that’s when some jackass who rides the train shouted out ‘ Oh my GOD.”

But she wasn’t crying out in horror, she sounded like she was at the movies or at a concert- she sounded  thrilled.

I write about death, I have worked in a Funeral Home, I have been there when my loved ones have passed away and I explore and study death and it’s influence in art and music an literature.

But here is the thing- when I am in the presence of Death I show it respect.

I respect the deceased, I respect the process, I respect the impact death has on what it touches.

I think that the passengers on my train, for the most part respected that- Not everyone looked and some people made it a point to NOT look.

If you were going to be a part of that moment, if you wanted to witness what death did on the tracks that day- then don’t act like that person lived and then died to give you a cheap thrill.

If there is  on thing I’ve learned about Death over the years, I’ve learned it has a way of catching those little moments where people did not respect the process  and it stores them away for the future.

For. Your. Future.


Later Days

Imagination Prompt Generator: Do you believe in an afterlife?

Photo A.M. Moscoso

After you have lived, you end up in a cemetery or in a basement or in a car at the bottom  of a river. Some people end up baked into pies or stews.

Some people end up in medical displays, or in museums where thousands of people visit  them and learn their names and hear their stories.

Photo A.M. Moscoso

Do I believe in an Afterlife?

I most certainly do.


A Little Lesson In Life


Sometimes we plan our trips and vacations and our moves from one home to another- and sometimes they are planned and executed by someone else for us- or more specifically  to us.

Sometimes we have to take a little time out to reflect on our lives and what it all meant and sometimes other people do it for us:

Photo A.M. Moscoso

But when it comes right down to it, Life is Cruel and so is Death and life is funny and dramatic and so is Death- in my opinion though Death seems to enjoy it’s job so much more.

I wonder why that it so.

The Invitation

At The Crossroads

From Danse Macabre :   Standing on a Literary Legend’s ShouldersThe Red Death Project-

Photo A.M. Moscoso

The Masque has been hanging in my attic all of my life- it was there when my Parents owned my house and it was there when my Great Grandparents had the house built in 1901.

Nobody knows where it came from or who hung it or why nobody ever took it down.

It seemed better, wiser, to just leave it alone to the darkness and the dust – because sometimes it sounded like someone was up there with it and during those times we made sure the attic door was locked.

“There’s nothing up there,” we would say as we turned the skeleton key and backed slowly away from that door and hurried down the hall to the safety of the well lit living room.

There is nothing in that huge dark room…

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are a puzzle.

Fragments of colors and shapes

a jumble of letters, numbers and pictures in countless albums  fading with age and lack of care.


are a puzzle

 words hitched to other words


in stream of nonsense that will go  nowhere.


are puzzle

sitting in a box

on a shelf

in a room

nobody uses


The Abdominal Doctor and His Melting Face

RDP Friday: MELT

I begged, I pleaded, I swore to be the best 7 year old kid to have ever existed  if my Dad would just please, please, please take me to see ” The Abdominable Doctor Phibes. ”

My Dad would tell you I wasn’t the sharpest tool in the shed so he made me repeat the title a few times.

” What is it about?”

I had heard about Dr Phibes on the playground and I struggled to put together the pieces, those magical pieces of a story together.  ” It’s about a guy whose face melts and his wife is dead but I think she isn’t because she is still pretty and he sneaks into someone’s house and  makes grasshoppers eat a lady’s face and the Police try to catch him but they can’t because he’s a Doctor and he’s smart. Also he can’t drive but someone else drives him around so he always gets away, oh yeah, I think he’s dead but not like his wife. He looks dead. So I’m sure he is dead and his wife is not”

” You’re making this up.”

” No. It’s real. Please take me. Please, please, please! I won’t ask you to take me  anywhere again!”

As a rule, my Dad never took me to the movies or anywhere else where he didn’t have another adult to stick me with and if we did go anywhere together  it was to McDonalds or KMart and the deal was- I kept my mouth shut. So I figure he’d jump at the chance to ditch me once and for all and take me to the theatre where I could see Doctor Phibes and eat popcorn.

In the end despite my great description of the movie, complete with me acting parts out  I did NOT get to see Doctor Phibes.

My Dad took my younger brother who was traumatized by the movie and had nightmares ( Lucky dog, I remember thinking- I LOVED having nightmares) and my Dad went on to see all the Phibes movies.

I never got over that and I never understood it either.

So today I am posting this clip movie because it’s Friday- and Friday’s were made to watch spooky movies and I’m posting it because I want to make sure that nobody else is denied the chance to see one of the best horror movies EVER.