Prologue: Caged

(February 19, 1969)


I was caged.

Then, I was driven.

Driven to Cherokee.

A hazy memory of riding caged in the back of a police car.

Two shadows in the front seat, the county sheriff and a female escort.

Patsy Cline’s “Crazy” buzzing from a tinny transistor radio.

Outside, the Iowa landscape bleak:

Cloudy and cold, condensation and frost riming the windows, piles of dirty snow dotting the countryside.

I, cargo.

Destination: Cherokee’s other place, the outline on the hill.

Shifting, crossing my legs…

Please, can we stop?

Hot and steamy inside.

Shivering, my teeth rattling.

Please…I have to go!

Hear something, George?

Naw, nothin’ important.


Cargo has no voice.

Madness has no voice.

Listen, crazy girl…

Two voices: We have come to take you away, ha, ha…

“I’m crazy, crazy…”

Fragments, crazy-quilt impressions, acid flashbacks…

I, crazy?

* * * * *

From I, Driven: a memoir of involuntary commitment ("Prologue")

© 2008-2010, by Jennifer Semple Siegel

Excerpt may not be used or copied without author’s permission.


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Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Excerpt (Chapter 1): Blue Moons


From Apollo 8: December 24, 1968
Photo courtesy of NASA (Blue tint added by webmaster)


A Scene from Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, "The Trip"


Christmas Eve, 1968
(2001 Ivar Street, Hollywood, California)

Blue Moons.

Black dots from the linoleum rise up and float, planets bursting into blue, red, yellow, green, purple, orange.

Birthing galaxies...

Does God feel the same awe?

A blazing light: I am the creator of these galaxies, responsible for billions–

My fault should they go bad...My fault.

Oh-my-god. I am God.

I must destroy life, before it spreads viruses.

A butterfly net appears. My mission: capture these galaxies, trap them in a cosmic jar, smother them before they destroy their Creator.

They will destroy, just as we have our God.

Is God dead?

Define "dead."

Is God Death itself?

To believe is to die.

Is Death God?

Why not?

Who is God?


When is God?


Does He possess a butterfly net?

Kaleidoscope light???

What color is God?

The essence of light.

What is essence?

The color of God.

What is God?

Why night?

Black, slick water, first smell, like old rubber boots, first smell, primal scent, tangy licorice love drizzling my body.

Luscious rum balls.

Velvet sugar, past boil, butter lust, savored again and again and again.

Is God dead?

To believe is to die.

Is God Death itself?


Is Death God?

The color of God.

Who is God?

Why not night?

When is God?

If not now, never.

Does He need a butterfly net?

The color of essence.

What color is God?


What is essence?

Kaleidoscope sky???

What is God?

The Man.

The Man.

The Man.

What is that?

A siren.


The room wavers–nothing has substance.

How can nothing have substance? Can something have nothing? What is nothing, anyway? If it has a name, then it has to be something; nothing would not have a name, if it were truly nothing. Are there empty spaces in something, nothing places to hide? My head spins–a million nothing places, black licorice dots swirling around and around.

Two sirens.

Stoney? Stoney? Oh, Stoney...

No one exists but me.

I know that now.

I am truly alone.

All you people are clowns, and clowns are not real; therefore, you were not, are not, and never will be.


Why are you smiling?

Yellow haze flows when you whisper, Winesap apples when you sing "White Rabbit," orange flames when you shout.

"Fuck you!" Orange and blue flames blast from your lips, tickling my thighs.

Blink. Blue butterflies flutter from your eyes, flicker, land on my triangle–pure geometry.

Yes, fuck me.

You ram a needle into your pulse–amber liquid whooshes through arteries to your heart to veins, from heart, back through your circulatory system, every branch, down to the smallest capillary, racing through your body, up stream to your brain, down river to your fingertips, flowing down to your toes, looping around and around...

You light up, a star burst covering the sky with flashes: red, gold, white, green, purple, blue, silver...then fading, whirling diamond chips, crackling and descending, descending, descending, disappearing behind ocean waves.

Your eyes, paisley.

Your heart, a rainbow.

Your body: granite, a quake.

An Odyssey.

You come. A single red rose blooms.

I catch petals as they drop, wine red and smooth, cold as polished stone.


Oh, Stoney.

Warm as barberry oil.

Your solidity: a trick…

You cannot be.

Three sirens. The police!

No, just me in you.


Stoney fizzles, soft as a mother’s breast.


The room zigzags, we congealing to the floor.

I move, even as my legs melt into the dead dots.

The room has turned to sea.

I have grown gills.

I am back in a mother’s womb, only she is not the mother I knew–this Mother is all wise–

Blue Moon Mother.

Blue Moon hurtles me through the galaxy...

We zip through one million galaxies, head filling with sights, sounds, aromas, music, tastes, textures known only to a God.

She is the galaxy.

She is my God–

I am Her Daughter.

I am the Child of God.

* * * * *

© 2008, by Jennifer Semple Siegel

Excerpt may not be used or copied without author’s permission.

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