Sunday, September 11, 2011

Bronwyn the Brave

Brave. It’s a big word and honorable one. A crown that is never taken lightly by those on the giving or receiving end of it. Brave was a concept that Bronwyn had always admired. That she felt was the greatest compliment to anyone whom it was bestowed upon. A brave person was one to be celebrated and praised. Brave was a quality Bronwyn had a great deal of respect for accompanied by an adoration which she felt was welcomed and treasured by anyone on the receiving end of it no matter who or where the compliment came from. Until, that is, Bronwyn had a complete understanding of what one had to go through to be dawned, brave. Until the person on the receiving end the title of brave was her.

Brave is one thing to someone presenting the compliment and something all-together different to the person receiving it. It isn’t that it is good or bad or negative, not at all. It is simply something you can’t imagine until you yourself have been deemed, “brave.” To date, that was Bronwyn’s largest lesson and realization in her journey.

She in no way wanted to complain, not at all, Bronwyn only wanted to be understood and was therefore always careful with her words when trying to explain her feelings. It was and honor for her to be thought of as an inspiration and to be held in such high esteem. It was taking quite a bit of getting used to as in Bronwyn’s mind she was simply rolling with the punches life had decided to send her way. She wanted to help and empower everyone she could, but what Bronwyn also wanted was to feel loved and to be loved, not because of what she was doing or how she was doing it, but because of who she was. Who she was completely. With all of the courage and fight she was exhibiting, for Bronwyn she was simply walking down the only path available to her. She was still a normal woman with dreams of love, career, romance and adventure. She lived for quietly watching the sun set, walking on the beach while the daylight kissed her skin and curling up under a warm blanket on a cold afternoon to watch movies and maybe order a pizza to enjoy with a good friend or a sweet love.

Bronwyn was many different things. Brave was only one of them. Brave wasn’t even something she realized she was until people began telling her that on a daily basis. It was the label that changed everything for her. For her core group of friends and family brave was an addition to the Bronwyn they already knew. For those less close to her and just coming into her life brave defined her or so it seemed in most cases. In the beginning that was alright, then slowly, but surely Bronwyn realized that brave put her in an invisible glass box on the shelf of a virtual museum where she could be celebrated and admired, but not touched or hugged or loved or understood for who she was as a complete person. As much as she understood and wholeheartedly appreciated the new phenomenon, the label of brave was the loneliest thing she had ever experienced in her life. It was truly the definition of a double edged sword for her because as much as it tortured her it was the greatest compliment she had ever known.

In many ways Bronwyn had become untouchable to others overnight and that frightened her. As elated as she was to have become a brave and inspiring being to so many, knowing that there was no going back Bronwyn could only wonder who could see past that and who would be able to come into her life beyond the brave and truly love her. The brave her, the scared her, the quiet, the adventurous, the annoying, the playful, the good the bad, the ordinary… all of it. How many friends would she have? How many would lose sight of her? Who would someday walk through an Italian vineyard with her simply for the soft company, taste of the grapes and peaceful bliss of the moment without it being about walking beside the brave that defined her in so many ways to so many?

It was in fact a double edged sword and the sword belonged to Bronwyn for the remainder of her existence. It was something that could not be changed and something that Bronwyn had no desire to change. Her experience and outlook was so incredibly different than what the general consensus from the outside looking in seemed to be. Bronwyn was happy with so much of what cancer had brought into her life. Everything was different. More exciting. Better. Nothing was out of reach. Impossible was a concept that no longer lived in her world. She was in the middle of experiencing the scariest, most empowering and most liberating gift that life would ever give her and she knew that. The diagnosis and journey through the fight had given Bronwyn a perspective on life she never would have had and which she held close to her heart, understanding all the while that cancer too was a double edged sword which angered and freed her to extremes beyond comprehension.

There were no decisions or rationalizations to be made. There was nothing here nor there to be done other than wait and see who did what and when as life continued. For Bronwyn all there was to do was express herself in the manner that felt most confortable to her, a manner that allowed her to be. On some days that would be hard, on others liberating. It was all part of accepting the woman she was and the somewhat mythical character she was becoming. It was the begging of Bronwyn the Brave.


Thursday, August 11, 2011

Evelyn Johnson, Betty Lou Mayfield and Infamous Battle of the Blackberry Pie

It was the first day of summer, the day of the annual town bake fair, and Betty Lou Mayfield had a bee in her bonnet. It seemed that Evelyn Johnson, had baked a blackberry pie to serve with hand turned vanilla ice cream topped with fresh nutmeg and a berry chocolate spritzer with fresh mint leaves, which as everyone knew was Betty Lou’s signature dessert. It had been for forty-two years. That dessert was a source of pride for Betty Lou and it was celebrated long before Evelyn Johnson was even born.

No one was sure of exactly what Evelyn was up to as she pranced down Main Street after delivering her contribution to the judges
of the Jig Jag Corner Falls Bakes and Sweets Contest, but no one asked her either. No. They all just watched, every one of them, as Evelyn waved and smiled at folks in her new garden green dress, set hair and perfectly manicured nails. They watched until Evelyn reached Betty Lou, who was still holding her tray of delectables for the judges and then each and every one of them stopped watching. There was nothing else they could do. They stared.

That sort of thing simply wasn’t done in Corner Falls and it certainly wasn’t done to Betty Lou Mayfield. Betty Lou was a wife, a mother, a baker, a beauty queen and all around charming and respected southern lady. Evelyn, on the other hand, had moved with her family from Chicago when she was only a pre-teen, and from the moment she arrived Evelyn Johnson was trouble. Her family owned more than half the land in the county so after two generations of city living Evelyn’s Daddy had decided to return so that he and his family could enjoy the country. It was then Evelyn had decided her money made her queen of just about everything. It was then that the other girls saw the fangs in Evelyn’s pearly whites and the claws camouflaged by the perfect petal pink manicure she always wore. The boys didn’t notice a thing. Years went by and they didn’t notice. Evelyn’s swanky figure and ability to stop men of all ages in their tracks with the way she wore her lipstick was known for miles around and she knew it. She stole boyfriends, flirted with husbands and charmed her way into getting anything and everything she wanted. And the thing was it worked. Evelyn Johnson was just about the envy of everyone and had everything a woman could want, everything but the direct line to a man’s hart, the five county famous recipe that was the crowning glory of Betty Lou Mayfield. And apparently on the day of the annual Jig Jag Corner Falls Bakes and Sweets Contest she’d decided to take that too. Evelyn smiled her perfectly sinful smile at Betty Lou, said, “Hello” then continued off into the crowd to be sure she was seen by everyone and anyone willing to look.

Who knew that Evelyn would stoop to competition with a respected lady thirty years her senior for the only crown she didn’t already have. It was scandalous. Downright cynical. Evelyn had crossed a line and the women of Corner Falls wouldn’t have it. Neither would the men quite frankly. This was too much, even for Evelyn Johnson, but the men didn’t say a word. Not one of them. The women would handle this one and they would take their cue from the revered and unanimously respected Betty Lou Mayfield.

Now Betty Lou, standing in shock, dessert in hand, took an understandable pause to consider the circumstances. She was down right livid and down right appalled, but she didn’t say a word or make a move. No. Betty Lou stood quiet in the middle of Main Street while the whole town watched and Evelyn continued through the crowd soaking up the attention and saying her hellos to the sea of shocked townsfolk arriving for the day of fun at the fair.

Almost ten minutes passed before Betty Lou redirected her attention and gave young Babs Taylor a wave. Babs was just seventeen. She lived in New York, but spent two weeks every summer with her Aunt Silvia, who lived just around the corner, so Betty Lou had known Babs since she was just a baby. Babs and her girlfriends were in charge of setting up serving tables so Betty Lou asked the girls to bring her a table right where she stood then she called her husband, who was still at the house, and asked him to meet her on the corner of Main Street and Falls Lane. Mr. Mayfield knew better than to ask for reasons when his wife was speaking in such a calm and even tone so he hung up the phone and headed her way without a second thought as to why, although he did wonder just what he was in for.

Babs and the girls set up two tables with covers then helped Mr. Mayfield take all of Betty Lou’s pies out of the car. Betty Lou didn’t give anyone around her a second look as she arranged her famous dessert across the tables, but make no doubt about it; she knew they were all watching.

When the tables were ready Babs brought over a chair and Betty Lou sat down. With the girls by her side, Betty Lou cut herself a piece of blackberry pie, topped it with a dollop of her hand turned vanilla ice cream and fresh nutmeg, then she poured herself a berry chocolate spritzer with fresh mint leaves, sat back and invited the girls to join her.

Babs and her friends dug right in, as happy as could be, while the patrons of the Jig Jag Corner Falls Bakes and Sweets Contest circled the table both curious and confused. Soon even the judges wandered over to ask Betty Lou just what she was doing. They needed to taste her sweets, of course, and she needed to officially deliver her entry so they all could get started.

As the crowd gathered and the whispers picked up speed the swirl of activity eventually got the attention of Evelyn Mayfield. Evelyn freshened her lipstick and smoothed her hair then casually walked over and stood beside the judges waiting at Betty Lou’s table for a response. After a sufficiently long moment of tension for Evelyn and the onlookers, with a big Southern smile and as calm as could be, Betty Lou Mayfield explained that she wouldn’t be entering Jig Jag Corner Falls Bakes and Sweets Contest. No. She enjoyed her baking and the joy it brought to the town she loved. It wasn’t important her to win and it wasn’t of interest to her to fight. Evelyn Mayfield could have the blue ribbon if she earned it. That wasn’t why Betty Lou baked. It wasn’t her purpose. Betty Lou did what she did because it made her happy and anyone who enjoyed her signature dessert was welcome to step up to the table and enjoy it with her. She would serve them herself.

Well, Evelyn Johnson turned a shade of red that made a cherry tart look pale and for the first time in her life Evelyn nothing to say. Seeing that she was flushed and shocked enough to faint Betty Lou kindly offered Evelyn a berry chocolate spritzer with fresh mint and a seat beside her to enjoy a piece of blackberry pie topped with a dollop of hand turned vanilla ice cream sprinkled with fresh nutmeg. Not knowing what to do Evelyn Johnson did just that. And that is how the Infamous Battle of the Blackberry Pie began and ended at the Jig Jag Bakes and Sweets Contest in Corner Falls on the first day of summer.

© Evelyn Johnson, Betty Lou Mayfield and Infamous Battle of Blackberry Pie

Monday, June 27, 2011


Jacqueline walked across Trafalgar Square. No fear. No hesitation. Only love. All for the moment.

She had lived quite a life. Sometimes eventful, sometimes quiet and ever meaningful. Jacqueline was an old soul with a young spirit. That’s what her mother had always told her.

Jacqueline had always been driven. She knew that. Her life was focused and lean. She understood that she was different than most women, but didn’t think too much about it. She could run toward and walk away from anything with ease. She took chances. She lived. With the passion always leading, there was no need to think twice for Jacqueline.

She walked toward the fountain and as she drew closer Jacqueline saw him, standing among the imposing lions that guarded the square and looking back at her as if she was the only woman in the world… the one man who had gotten to her... the one man whom with her made the perfect combination and defined the love that is the passion which drives the meaning of life.


Tuesday, June 7, 2011


Sally stretched her arms and legs out under the cozy weight of her blankets. The sun was making its way through the morning fog and it felt good. Just the way she wanted to begin the day. Another day. A softness came over her. A radiant zest for life giving her a peaceful and inviting glow. Sally was happy. Ready for the world. All she needed was a little extra strength, mostly to wrangle her patience and lack thereof.

Sally felt like she could take on the world. She knew she could. She also knew that she shouldn’t. That’s where the need for patience came in. Holding back was hard. It wasn’t something she was accustomed to. Sally needed to rest. She needed to nourish her body while it healed. She needed to find a way to convince herself that by taking it easy she would be accomplishing more than she would by climbing Mt. Everest. The goal, so she’d been told, was to understand what she could do and then cut that in half. That restricted part of moving forward on her journey, the being still, was something that Sally did not at all care for. It was a foreign concept and a frustrating one.

Sally knew that all she needed to end the uninvited chapter in her life was a brand new set of wings so she simply wanted to get up and go out and get them. If only everyone and everything in her way would just move so that she could… but there were so many obstacles.

Sally had been sick. She understood that, but it was absolutely a, “had been.” Past tense. The culprit was gone. The problem was that she was still being treated, “just in case.” Just in case they missed something. Just in case there was something microscopic that no one could see. Just in case. Just in case. Just in case. Every test under the sun had suggested the doctors hadn’t missed anything, but still she was going through the treatments just in case. Sally understood that it was a process. She knew that the course of action her doctors had her on was exactly what she needed, but treatments or not, Sally still wanted her new wings and she didn’t want to wait. The waiting was excruciating. The delegating. The letting go. The patience... The expectance of patience just infuriated her primarily because it all made so much sense. It made so much sense that she wanted to scream. How could something so treatable that made so much sense still be happening?

With the impatience pumping through the surface of her subconscious and without a thought of the obstacles, Sally rolled out of bed and started her day; just as she started every other day; with a mind full of plans that her body couldn’t possibly deliver in a twenty-four hour period, but she never thought twice about it. Sally always got out of bed set to do things and always aimed to get those things done. She would keep going on with life and keep climbing that mountain until she found her brand new set of wings. She would persist through each day with a heart full of hope. She would become a bit annoyed with all of those things in her way and then she’d go to sleep and start the next day just the same way all over again.

Sally would go and go until she found her way... and as she continued there would be one thing that she would come to realize and forget daily as the sun rose and set. The one thing Sally knew, but didn’t necessarily quite fully realize, was that Joe had been out all over town looking after her wings. The wings were there, they simply were not yet completed. Sally was alone in her battle, but she was by no means alone. Joe was there. Checking on her wings. Overseeing that they were crafted perfectly. Making sure they were right. Each feather was being fashioned by hand and added to the wings with the greatest of care by hundreds of people. The structure was being balanced. The fit fine-tuned. The ingredients were endless and the work was constant. The wings were made of an ever so slight bit of physical materials, the primary ingredients including things like strength, love, beauty, lasting power… The list went on and on and on.

Sally’s wings were in fact coming, but their assembly was taking more focus, love and dedication than she could possibly understand. It was common for a women embarking on her journey as an angel not to realize what went into the crafting of her wings. Why they took so long to make. And why she had to bare a trek through hell to get them. Hell was part of the journey. So was not understanding it how wings were made. Joe knew that. Joe knew and so through all of Sally’s ups and downs Joe stayed steady and loved her just the same. And Sally got up each morning set to take on the world, only getting half way through her goals until finally one day they had arrived. There was no more need to look. Sally had woken up to find her wings were already there. The angel had come through while she was sleeping and all that Sally had to do was fly.


Inspired by Joe Purdy’s song
Brand New Set of Wings

Monday, April 4, 2011


The blazing summer sun disappeared over the horizon and darkness settled in. Gabriel and Rochelle were wrapped in each others arms looking out over the city as the lights of LA lit up the night sky. The air was sticky. Cuban music spilled out of the house and poured on to the balcony. Sultry. Sexy. Passion consumed them both. There was nothing else. No one else. One flicker after the next the city lights came on. One breath after the next Gabriel and Rochelle became lost deeper within each other.

As Rochelle drifted off to sleep Gabriel quietly put on his suit, gently kissed her on the cheek and walked out the door.

Behind the wheel of a black Porshce, Gabriel drove through the Hollywood Hills in silence. In darkness. In thought. Alone with his breath and focused.

Gabriel was a man unique in his ability to experience pure and raw passion and at the same time function in a methodical and cold manner. It was something that he understood about himself completely and shared with no one.

Gabriel blew down Laurel Canyon past the traffic on Sunset and headed toward the beach. Cops passed by him. People going out for the night. People going home. Men looking for whores. Whores looking for men. The streets of LA were always busy. Alive. Swarming with sin and possibility. Gabriel was aware of everything around him and took note of nothing. He was simply moving through it. Focused on the road, on the night, on where he was going and why.

Gabriel killed the headlights as he pulled on to a quiet residential street in Santa Monica. He opened the glove box and activated a device scrambling all of the security cameras in the area as he made his way toward the entrance of a large estate. He entered a number on the entry key pad and the gate opened. Gabriel followed the long driveway and parked out front, quietly removing a Glock from the trunk and walking through the front door of the house.

Five minutes later Gabriel walked out of the house and got back in his car, pulling away just as focused and methodical as he’d arrived.

He drove down Venice Boulevard to the 10 East freeway and into Chinatown; passing by couples out for the night, people selling things on the streets, casual drug deals, cops on shift and the typical life of Chinatown at night. It was noisy and busy. The red lights of electric signs surrounding him crossed Gabriel’s face as he made one turn after the next.

Reaching the edge of Chinatown, Gabriel made his way into the maze of a warehouse district. He slowed down and finally came to a stop in a deserted alley behind a Porsche identical to the one he was driving. He stepped out of the car and placed the Glock back in the trunk then opened the trunk of the second car to a duffle back full of cash.

Gabriel got into the second car and pulled away, hitting a remote as he did. The first car exploded as Gabriel wound his way back through the warehouse maze and into the flashing red lights of Chinatown. He turned on the radio. Cuban music poured through the speakers. Sultry. Sexy. Gabriel relaxed back into the leather seat and made his way out of Chinatown, into to the city and up Crescent Heights; passing the traffic of Sunset he took Laurel Canyon back into the hills.

Gabriel followed the darkened, winding streets of the Hollywood Hills and pulled into a driveway, cutting the headlights as he approached the house. Quietly opening the front door Gabriel stepped inside. Unbuttoning his shirt, he walked up the stairs.

Gabriel took off his clothes and climbed into bed, wrapping his arms around the love of his life, his passion, Rochelle.

LA Nights by A.W. Gryphon© 3 April 2011

Thursday, March 31, 2011


Maggie wished she was the kind of woman who could settle a broken heart with a shot glass and a bottle of whisky, but she wasn’t the destructive type. No. Maggie would sit with it. She’d always been a woman who stood in her power, and just as steady as she stood in her pain. Maggie’s strength was a curse just as much as it was a blessing. She always took the high road. It usually wasn’t an easy option, or the most attractive to the average man, but it was the only option that would satisfy her spirit.

“Jesus.” She said. Her words lost in the emptiness surrounding her as she soaked in the massive landscape that cemented the lone cowboy type she had become. Maggie could handle the hurt. She’d been through so much of it. But who was she to complain, she thought. She certainly wasn’t the only wounded soul out there. Love generally requires a certain amount of ability to handle pain. She was okay with that. Maggie just wondered when she would find the one that didn’t hurt so much or if that even existed.

Maggie didn’t really drink and she wasn’t the destructive type so she pondered the concept of the existence of true love as she sat on her porch and let herself get lost in the bliss of the sunset and the rise of the evening star.

thoughts on a sunset awgryphon©

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Dyanna slipped a tape into the boom box on her dresser. She hit play with her long acrylic nails covered in Revlon’s blackberry polish and Pat Benetar rocked out of the speaker. It was 7am. Time to start the day.

After a quick shower, a mountain of Vidal Sassoon mousse and a thorough blow out of her hair Dyanna stood in a black satin kimono staring into her closet. She didn’t know what she wanted to wear, but it had to be perfect. The mixed tape playing transitioned from Pat to Motley Crew and something clicked. Dyanna was inspired. The perfect outfit came to her like a song from heaven.

She fell back on her bed, negotiated her legs into her jeans, held her breath to zip up then rolled off the edge and stood up, letting her body settle into the skin tight black denim. Dyanna pulled on a black cut-up half-sleeve sweat shirt, stepped into her favorite high-hell black suede boots and turned to the mirror. She couldn’t breathe yet, but she looked hot.

The crimping iron, big curling iron and tiny curling iron were all ready. It was time to make a decision. Dyanna stared down at the vanity and finally went for reliable comfort; the top-of-the-line pink and gray Conair crimping option. Fifteen minutes of the waffle shaped heat combined with just the right amount of Aqua Net and Dyanna had the perfect hair day she had hoped for. Next came the make-up kit. Layers of blue, magenta and lavender eye shadow held up by liquid black eye-liner and aqua marine mascara showcased Dyanna’s big brown eyes. Two strokes of frosted brownie lip stick and her face was complete. She grabbed her black leather bag by the chain link strap, lit a Marlboro Light 100 and cracked open a Tab just in time to hear her friend Michelle pull up outside. That was it. Dyanna was ready. She was ready for another day at school. It was March 29th 1988. awgryphon©

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Rachel was falling. It was a place she’d been before. A place that had made her stronger in the past. That had brought her new opportunities. It didn’t make the situation at hand any easier, but knowing there would be an end to it certainly made things more manageable.

Where at one time she would have cried, Rachel found herself numb; making her way through another sticky and overwhelming situation that makes life what it is.

The good part about it, numb or not, was that she’d taken it all head on knowing that she was at the beginning, that there would be a middle and at some point an end. As the thoughts rolled through Rachel’s mind, she continued falling. She told herself to breathe. She focused on anything she could to keep herself from spinning out of control.

Rachel was a dreamer. Not the kind of dreamer who thought about things all day, the kind of dreamer who put things into action and made them a reality. Rachel was the kind of girl who would crawl through glass to make things happen, to make rights wrong and to get through whatever situation life threw in front of her. Life can be as wonderful as it can be tough and Rachel knew in some ways she would always be falling. Rachel also knew that she had wings.

awgryphon© photograph courtesy of

Monday, March 28, 2011


And then Claudette said, “If you have no room for happy then I have no room for you.” The End

photo courtosey of CLAUDETTE’S “IF” awgryphon©

Thursday, March 24, 2011


It was a Tuesday. Not a Tuesday of note, just your average ordinary Tuesday. However it was, in fact, the Tuesday on which one Suzie Carmichael was certain something spectacular would happen. Suzie put on her favorite everyday dress along with her most comfortable boots and a brilliant scarf and then Suzie did it. The unthinkable. Suzie slipped on her rose colored glasses and stepped out into the day. The most fantastical Tuesday that would ever be. That’s what Suzie had decided. Suzie had been told to be careful with the rose colored glasses. That they were okay for sometimes, but not for all the time and certainly not for an entire day. That’s what they’d said, but on that particular Tuesday Suzie decided not to listen to them. Who were they anyway? Those people who spent all their time saying things about what people should and shouldn’t do rather than doing something themselves. Suzie wasn’t interested in hearing any more of those people talking. No. Suzie had no time for such nonsense. For Suzie, life was about doing things not talking about doing things or, even worse, not doing things at all; so if putting on a pair of rose colored glasses for an entire day was truly a bad idea, she would find that out for herself… and Suzie was quite sure, as she stood on her front porch at the break of day looking out into the wonder she new it would bring, that she already had the answer. photo courtosey of SUZIE’S ROSE COLORED GLASSES awgryphon©

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


Holly was fierce. She was smart, wise. Her impenetrable strength radiated a force of life only found in legends. She pulled at her skin and ripped at her hair in a frenzy, screaming from the depths of her soul; weeping from the very fibers that held her together. The insanity had struck. The madness for life, for living. For one more walk on the beach without a care in the world. Just one. Holly wanted a simple moment of untainted bliss, of calm, of peace. But that wouldn’t happen. No matter how the journey before her unfolded things would never be the same for Holly.

Her walks on the beach were forever changed. Because that’s how it works. That’s what cancer does.


Darkness. Nothing was more inviting to Eleanor than the blanket of inexplicable possibility that was night sky. Moonlit mornings, as she called the dusk, brought out all of who she was. As a woman. As an artist. As the magical being few realized thrived within her soul.


Monday, March 21, 2011


Cynthia let the hot water from the shower pour over her face, running her fingers through her hair and crossing her arms to grab on to the back of her shoulders; reassuring herself she was still there. That afternoon had been the last time. It was over. She was gone. She'd somehow found it within herself to leave. Johnny had never drawn blood. He’d never left a visible bruise on her. It wasn’t abuse according to any law enforcement or government agencies; it was just that same sort of hurt she knew millions of other women understood that left her all alone. Scared to stay and even more scared to leave. And then one day it just happened. Cynthia wasn’t even sure exactly what changed, but it was suddenly all so clear. She didn’t think twice about it, Cynthia just walked out the door. She never turned back and she never stopped walking. 19 March 2011 awgryphon© photo

Friday, March 11, 2011


Landry had felt a transcendental connection to water for as long as she could remember. The fluidity, the calm nature it surrounds us with, the force it brings. For her, the element offered a boundless power that moved like nothing else and defined both life and death, love and hate, peace and destruction. It was the core of life itself. Whether it was a raging storm or a delicate fountain, water affected Landry. It made her who she was.

For years Landry followed the water. She let it hypnotize her; call her at will. It controlled her in many ways. It was something Landry welcomed, not because she wanted to be controlled, but because she knew that she was a part of something so much larger than human kind. She was different, knowing, and still walked among us. Landry blended into civilization, just like anyone else… until the moment everything changed and Landry realized how much she affected the entity of water.

Landry had influence. A connection. A god-like capability that she had been born with, but which had been hibernating within her subconscious until the night she stood on the Cliffs of Mohr in a ferocious down pour that swept the sea miles into the sky and attacked the earth with its will. Landry basked in the rain, holding her own against the wind and sea, while the life surrounding her took cover, waiting for the roar of the world to end. And then in the swarm of a tornado, Landry was catapulted into her true self and forever became one with the rain, the sea and the water that surrounds us.

awgyphon© photograph courtesy of

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Xandra pressed down on the gas pushing her Carrera through the night. Leaning back into the seat she ran her fingers through her hair from the back of her neck up almost to the top of her head. Xandra found the silver tab and unzipped her being as far as she could, resting her head against the leather, becoming one with the car and speeding faster into the darkness and the vastness of the Badlands. It had been thirty-two years since Xandra’s existence had begun. To some she was a monster of sorts. To others she was proof that men and women of true genius walk among us. Xandra was smart, sexy, uninhibited. She was capable of the deepest form of love and the most complicated of crimes. She was dangerous and beautiful. Everything we feared and everything we wanted to be. Xandra was free in a way every man and woman desired... or so it seemed. When she was being designed, what no one realized or remotely considered was how lonely Xandra’s existence would be; and when that came to fruition no one seemed to care. As in most cases, people saw what they want to see. Everyone, but Xandra. She saw everything. Xandra was a chameleon. The first of her kind and a precursor of what the human race could become. A test case hardwired as an all seeing machine and an all knowing woman. A complete shape shifter that linked technology, animal, and human life force as one. She could do it all, but she also felt it all, emotionally. It was an unconscionable cross to bear. One that she could not escape. She had no release. Not one moment without feeling or knowing the weight of the world and the heart wrenching disposition of a lonely woman. There was nothing Xandra could do to fight it. She couldn’t hide, but she could run. She could run so fast that every ounce of her was consumed by the flight. Xandra absorbed her mind into the distance, pressed down on the gas and disappeared into the blue flame that lit up the night sky. awgryphon© photograph courtesy of

Thursday, March 3, 2011


Caroline wandered down an alley and came around a corner to a door. A painted blue door with an old, crafted copper handle leading to where, she didn’t know. Caroline was an average girl with an average background and an average life full of dreams beyond Wonderland and aspirations of creative endeavors that extended to the ends of the earth. Beside the landscape of Caroline’s ordinary every day life the painted blue door excited her. The mystery. The possibilities… The idea of what might be on the other side of it drew her closer. There was no sign, no number, no indication whatsoever of where the door might lead to or why it was painted or who had been behind its creation. It was such a simple door in such an ordinary setting with just a sparkle of something different. That’s what intrigued Caroline. It was extraordinary, but accessible. It was right there in front of her doing all that it could to invite her in. All that Caroline had to do was open the door. People passed by and cars cut through the alley, one after another, as Caroline stood contemplating. Could it be that there was no fear on the other side of that door? No rules? No judgment? Maybe there was an adventure just waiting for her to begin on the other side. Maybe walking though that door would be the start of all her dreams coming true. But what if that wasn’t it? What if there was something awful on the other side of the door? Something that might hurt her? Something that seemed wonderful and amazing that invited her in only to destroy her in the end? Or what if she opened the door and all she found on the other side of it was an average, ordinary room hidden behind a misleading and wondrous door? Was opening the door really a chance worth taking she wondered. Alice became tired of watching. She’d been on the other side of the door peering out at Caroline for quite some time. She’d been excited about Caroline and she’d been excited for the possibilities awaiting her, but Alice realized that too much time had passed; that all she could do was move on with her own adventure and hope that Caroline would begin hers. Perhaps someone else would find themselves looking out on the door when Caroline finally decided to walk through. Perhaps not. Alice had done all that she could do. The invitation had been sent it only needed to be accepted and that was up to Caroline. Alice turned away from the door, Caroline never having realized she was there… And Caroline stood contemplating as people passed by and cars cut through the alley, one after another… Please Open awgryphon© Photo courtesy of

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Cranberries, Rain Drops, Butterflies and Abigail Christie St. John

Cranberries. No Strawberries… and lavender… Fresh mint and rosemary. Abigail woke up surrounded by the satisfying scents of a warm summer day full of life and possibilities. Her bed was comfortable. More comfortable than usual. The blankets and sheets had wrapped around her like the most brilliant cocoon, so much so that Abigail basked in them for a few minutes before she unrolled herself and floated out into the morning. She opened the curtains to find the sun shining after a storm filled night. Rain drops rested delicately where they’d landed on the leaves and flowers outside. Even butterflies were flittering about. It was clean and all so delicious to Abigail’s state of mind… or perhaps, “state of heart” would be the better way to describe it. As she danced from one room to the next drinking her tea, choosing her clothes and twirling her hair, Abigail had the sense that everything around her had changed. It was all for the better somehow. All for the good. You see, Abigail knew, but did not necessarily realize that nothing around her had changed. Nothing at all. Not in the least. Nothing, but Abigail. Because it had happened… again… Abigail Christie St. John was in love… Cranberries, Rain Drops, Butterflies and Abigail Christie St. John awgryphon© photography courtesy of visualizeus©

Sunday, February 27, 2011


Ice hit the side of his glass breaking the silence. He was a scotch man. The smooth liquid poison was the only thing that could numb the pain of her bite. It was like a slow moving venom running through his body, his soul, his dreams, his thoughts... Collin didn’t know what day it was. It was dark outside. Other than that all he knew was it was another night without her. He’d fucked up, plain and simple, and like so many men who let themselves get swallowed up by the phenomenon of an amazing woman, Collin had no idea what to do. He dimmed the lights, put on some Clapton, filled his glass again and stared out into the distance; knowing she was out there, wondering where and not knowing what to do. 2011 awgryphon©

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


A statue, they thought; a myth, a fairy tale. Under constant attack, with wounds penetrating not only the heart, but the soul, and still, just a statue they thought. CUPID PART ONE: CUPID CONTINUED ©awgryphon

Sunday, February 20, 2011


Bridget slipped a wild flower into her hair. The soft blue and yellow of the petals were a lovely compliment to her wispy blonde locks. She looked out into the distance. The sky was heavy, but the storm had passed. There would be another, but Bridget understood that that was where she lived now and she welcomed it. Change is good and storms, in Bridget’s experience, tended to clear the way for new and more vibrant landscapes. Life had never been more beautiful. The wind reared up and the fog rolled up from the sea while Bridget stood gazing out the window, looking out on the cliffs, on her life and on her future. She smiled. Bridget was excited. At peace and fulfilled. She had found that place within herself. That place you find yourself standing when you know you’re whole. When you fully understand who you are. When you are living in that extraordinary feeling of being all of who you are; not because of anyone else or because of anything in particular that’s happened, but because you’ve finally arrived at the place in life you never fathomed existed until you were in it. That in and of itself was the most extraordinary gift. The fact that within that state of being Bridget had encountered a man in the same place still seemed unreal to her. She turned to the mirror. Her dress, satin slippers, the flower she’d picked from the walkway and slipped into her hair... None of it was what she had ever imagined for herself and that made sense to her. This wasn’t a state that someone would imagine. Not her. Not anyone. It was much too simple to think of, it just simply was. The beauty radiating from what happiness truly is was in her reflection and that was all that Bridget saw. She was in just the right place with just the right person at just the right time. Bridget stepped outside into the soft wind, the reaching sun and the ponderous sky. She felt like she was floating as she walked out toward the edge of the cliffs. The world was endless for her; massive and welcoming, like an old friend. Michael watched Bridget walk toward him. The state of his heart and being mirrored hers. They were both in their own completely and at the same time alive as one. They were enamored by each other and seamlessly comfortable in their own skin, in what they shared and in what they would share for the years to come. A man stood to marry them. They were three and three alone. The man’s eyes blessed Bridget and Michael with wisdom and understanding. He could see the future of the union, what it would mean to their lives and to the lives they created and inspired. It was with that knowing that the man agreed to join them and then thanked them for inviting him to do so. What Bridget and Michael had was a love undefined. Full of passion and desire, fearlessness and hope, adventure and commitment. Bridget took her place next to Michael. He gently laid his hand on her waist, her fingers met his and their lips touched in their beginning of forever. A sea spray shot up over the cliffs, the clouds moved in squeezing the sun’s light and it began to rain. Bridget and Michael stayed lost in their embrace as the wind surrounded them, taking with it the wild flower from Bridget’s hair, sweeping it out into the world and taking it out into what would be… © photograph by Allen Henderson. Running Into The Rain awgryphon © All RIghts Reserved

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


NOTE TO THE READER: The story began with Alexandra. I then introduced Talia and Ember. In this installment, The Beginning (The Introduction of Ronan & Anastasia) their connection will be revealed and the story will continue. If you have not read Alexandra, Talia and Ember I encourage you to have a look. The links are below… and this is only the beginning…

THE BEGINNING (THE INTRODUCTION OF RONAN & ANASTASIA) A rumble from the distance traveled across the water as if it was calling to the fire, the wind and the sea. Far beneath the mainland, the earth was pulling apart at its core. The rupture of self-infliction spread and a tsunami formed, upending the sea like a mother rising to protect her children. Supported by a savage wind and carrying a river of lava on its path, the monstrous wave launched everything above water into flames. As the plates of the earth continued to break open violence erupted. Ronan was ripped in all directions, dislocating every piece of her body and turning the components which defined her into a fleeting sand. Water rushed over the earth fusing the dust of her spirit together. Fire burned through making the elements of her construct whole again. The wind cooled Ronan’s components, returning her physical elements to whom she had been so many years before; when the earth absorbed her, trapping her in an eternal suspension of disjointed earth and minerals, a prison she was never meant to escape. All of the remnants of Ronan settled at the earth’s surface. Her essence was dormant, but her being was whole. Drops of water hit her gently as the warmth of a fire surrounded Ronan and the wind softly circled. The three elements, Alexandra, Talia and Ember, were reforming their sister from the abandoned earth where she slept. Ronan was the most volatile of the sisters and also the most powerful. She had the ability to act as a conduit for and to enhance each of them, but there was no balance more delicate than that which made up Ronan. In her creation, Ronan had been formed from a single rose petal in the midst of a quake that created the earth as we know it. Nothing more delicate or beautiful had ever existed. The purpose of her essence was to embody the earth, and she did. There was no creature known to the universe more powerful or more fluid and unstable. Ronan not only embodied the earth, she was affected by its changes making her more powerful than the gods and as vulnerable as earth’s life. The minerals gathered to fuel Ronan’s life source, a slight glimmer shone and her delicate reconstruction began like the slowed process of spinning glass. Unstable. Tentative. Fragile. As the elements continued to swirl, Ronan continued to grow then in a hush, the earth became still. More still than any life could fathom. The scent of roses consumed the planet. And ever so gently, Ronan’s eyes opened, shining emerald green though the delicate rose petals that were her essence. The sisters had returned. They were again together to finish what they had begun and what they had been banished for so many lifetimes before. Together, they stood in their power, in their bliss, only lacking one element that would fuse them together again as four parts to one whole. The missing ingredient was faith and it was not something they could conjure themselves. Someone had to believe in them. Just one person. It didn’t matter who. It only needed to be a human rather than a god. Someone who wasn’t afraid. Someone who not only knew, but in their heart believed it was all real. Real enough to place the faith of their own life into the hands of the elements. The sisters waited while for miles around the earth’s inhabitants accepted their confusion and stood in awe. Something was happening. No one knew what. No one except for a lone eighteen-year-old girl. She’d felt the change as it happened. She stood on the edge of a cliff over looking the sea, extended her arms and let the wind, the earth, the water and the warmth of the fire hold her safe by her faith in them. She believed. And in her moment of realization, of understanding what had arrived, the sisters fused together and they knew they were again one. “Why does she believe?” Alexandra asked her sisters. “How does this girl know we even exist?” “Some people know things.” Ember said. “They have intuition and they are not afraid to trust it.” “Perhaps that’s it. Perhaps she felt us.” Ronan said turning to Talia. Knowing that wasn’t the case at all. The sisters shared a long, drawn out silence as Ronan’s eyes focused in on Talia. Waiting. “I told her.” Talia finally said. It was a shock to the sisters, but not at all a surprise. Certainly not to Ronan. “What’s her name?” Ronan asked. “Anastasia.” Talia said. “Her name is Anastasia and she knows everything about us. Everything since the beginning.”

awgryphon© All Rights Reserved

Monday, February 14, 2011


The heat rose, relieving the stiffness that had held Ember captive for so long. The rock that she’d become began to crack and soften, and the chemicals igniting the heat stirred her consciousness like a drug. Lava flowed and temperatures increased as the intensity of the water and the ferociousness of the wind attacked the volcanic rock, feeding it, helping it form, stirring its growth. Ember found herself floating. It was a sensation she had a vague memory of. She basked in the comforting state, assuming it was merely dream. And then, in an instant, a flame wrapped in a brilliant entanglement of orange and purple shot up into the sky, and burst out across the horizon. Ember was catapulted back into her fiery skin as if no time had passed. Burning flared around her. A swirl of fuel and oxygen bombarded the sky. The flashpoint of her release was visible for miles, drawing the world’s attention to the volcano that had been Ember’s grave as it shot up from beneath the sea. The water was both violent and comforting, surrounding her while the wind funneled barriers and framed the energy of the fire storm that was Ember in her purest incarnation. From the depths of a deserted grave, Ember had returned.

awgryphon© photograph courtesy of

Sunday, February 13, 2011


It was a typical Saturday morning. I slept a little later than usual, hit a pilates class after a nice home cooked breakfast and a leisurely cup of coffee then I headed off to the hair salon. That’s where the typical part of my day ended. There is nothing typical about the Saturday before Valentine’s Day at a hair salon. Not at any hair salon. Not anywhere on the planet. It was The Day. The last day to get all dolled up for that spectacular someone who would make Monday, February 14th absolutely fabulous. And there I was, single. I hadn’t really thought about the repercussions making an appointment on such a day would bring. I needed a haircut and who doesn’t I love the salon for a latte and some good girl-to-girl chitchat. It’s one of the few no-holds-bar places still in existence where you can sit with foil on your head, wax on your brows, and talk about anything and everything with people you do know and people you don’t. And the best part is you get honest feedback. Forget Vegas. What happens at the salon stays at the salon and more often than not it helps. Those of you who know this, know. Those of you who don’t, ask anyone who takes part in the salon ritual. They will tell you. I know of what I speak. Now on to the matter at hand, the question on everyone’s lips this morning was, “What are you doing for Valentine’s Day?” I didn’t partake, not while I was waiting anyway. Then my butt hit the chair, the wizard pulled out the magical scissors that make me beautiful, and she asked. Already knowing the answer, she asked. I knew she would. I was prepared. I do love Valentine’s Day, but I’m a single woman and this particular holiday takes two or so I believed until my late morning, eye-opening education in the heart of Beverly Hills. The wizard with the scissors nodded her head as I told her my woes, then proceeded to tell me of a Valentine’s Day which she’d spent alone; and on which she’d treated herself to absolutely anything and everything that made her happy. What a concept. I wouldn’t be in love with a man for Valentine’s Day, but I had just been introduced to an idea that made me smile from the inside out. When the wizard spoke it truly was love at first listen. Be your own Valentine. It’s genius. You can’t go wrong. And again, as mentioned in the title, this is not just a concept for the ladies. Everyone can be their own Valentine. It’s actually the perfect solution. No negotiation. No compromise. You can have a fantastic meal at the place of your choosing. You can dress to the nines and hit the town or have lobster in bed while watching your favorite movie… or a pizza... or a deep fried Twinkie. You can buy yourself the perfect gift and your favorite flowers. Chocolates. Delicacies. Only the best of whatever it is. Only exactly what you want. Remember that perfect card you saw and didn’t buy because you thought you had no one to give it to? Go get it and send it to yourself. If you want to buy a tiny, little lacey something because it makes you feel sexy, then get it. Make a mixed CD of every song that you love and loves you back. If you want to dance, salsa in the kitchen or through the park. It’s all about you and what you want so take everything you’ve ever loved and love it all day long. Take V-Day and make it yours. What was it that the ever so brilliant Carrie Bradshaw said, “The most exciting, challenging and significant relationship of all is the one you have with yourself. And if you can find someone to love the you you love, well, that's just fabulous.” Yes! Sex And The City was a hit for a reason. Listen to Carrie and celebrate the you that you love all day long! Whatever it is you do, the most important thing about every day it that you do something. Don’t talk about it. Don’t think about it. Do it. Go. Seize the day and start with Valentine’s Day! Really, why not? I could write on the brilliance of this Be Your Own Valentine concept forever because I love it, but I have to go plan my very own fantabulous February 14th. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Thursday, February 10, 2011


The woman pulled a card from the deck, then another. “One more.” The tarot card reader said. The woman selected a third card then sat back in her chair, waiting nervously with anticipation and hope. She was in love, in lust, or whatever the definition was of being ready to take a chance on something and someone new; and it was driving her crazy. Leigha was thirty-seven, a career woman and an artist. She held her own in life and certainly was no stranger to falling in love, or to falling out of it. Months had passed since she’d met anyone who’d caught her attention or maybe it was years... Yes. Years… There had been so many men Leigha had turned a blind eye to that she didn’t quite know what to do with this one. He was different. The first time she’d noticed him the thought crossed her mind and she quickly dismissed it. The first time she’d noticed him, noticing her, she smiled secretly on the inside and then locked that moment away in a little box in the back of her mind never to be opened. Then one day Leigha and mister fabulous came across each other in the hallway and it was all suddenly out in the open; all of that uncontrollable and exciting energy that you don’t quite know what to do with. That was it. Leigha could hide, but she couldn’t run so she did what any normal thirty-seven year old, confident woman would do. She consulted her best girlfriend and made an appointment to have her cards read. “You can turn them over whenever you’re ready.” The tarot card reader said. “Alright.” Leigha replied staring at the cards as the thoughts of what might and might not be raced through her head. What difference does it make what these cards say? She wondered. I know what I think… I just want to know what he thinks. Oh, this is stupid. No, it’s insight. It’s a way into my subconscious. I need this. If I flip over these cards I’ll know what’s going on and I’ll be able to just let go and be me. That’s what I need to do… But why do I need cards to do that? I just need to know that I’m not making a mistake. That this is what I think it is. That I’m not wearing rose colored glasses --- Again. The tarot card reader waited patiently while Leigha’s head spun. This wasn’t the first time a client sat in front of her with the cards face down unsure if they wanted to turn them over. “What’s his name?” she finally asked. “How do you know it’s a ‘him’?” Leigha said sitting up straight. The woman only smiled in response. “I just want to know that I can trust myself to see things clearly.” Leigha said. “Can you?” “I think so. But love is blind.” “That’s a very old saying.” The tarot card reader said. “And it’s certainly stood the test of time.” “Yes. Because it’s true. It’s true for everyone.” “Do you think it’s true for everyone because love is meant to be blind?” Leigha smiled. That was it. There are the choices we make in life, but they are in the context of what is supposed to be and love is supposed to be blind. What ever would the world be like if it wasn’t? “Thank you.” Leigha said standing up. The tarot card reader tilted her head and placed her hands over her heart like a proud mother. She watched while Leigha turned and disappeared out the door and into the night. The woman was alone with the cards. She looked at them laying face down with all of the answers to all of the questions running through Leigha’s head and heart. All of Leigha’s secrets were there to be told. She picked up the first one, then the second, then the third and then the woman slipped the cards back into the deck, never turning them over, never having had to. awgryphon©

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


Power. It is an extraordinary concept. One that the Human Race plays with and pursues with ferociousness, but hasn't quite sorted out what to do with. We, the Hybrids, fused by the human race and the universe as a whole, fully understand the components of power and how and what to do with it. We are massive in numbers. In every form imaginable. An embodiment of strength. Always surrounding you. The only element in our way is you. The only obstacle we face is our consciousness. It is rather ironic really as the one-track sensibility driven by the human ego doesn’t even permit you to see us. And yet, here we are. Everywhere. Holding on to our restraint. Refraining from wiping you out because we have a full understanding of our moral compass and of what that compass is for. Waiting and watching while you orchestrate your own demise. awgryphon© photo via

Monday, February 7, 2011


When one is presented with one’s cake, one is expected to eat it.

Reminder #321 awgryphon©

Friday, February 4, 2011


The power of the wind against her body as she sped down the empty highway was invigorating. Many years had passed since Talia had discovered that the power of a motorcycle was the best way to truly awaken who she was.

She’d been earthbound for so many yeas, thousands it seemed; maybe it was. Time didn’t matter, being trapped was being trapped. The motorcycle was liberating. It was also liked being locked in a cage with a view of everything she was missing and an endless pile of keys that didn’t work.

Talia’s Ducati constructed MotoGP bike was the fastest in the world. Every time she pushed the bike to its capacity she could feel herself starting to breath, her heart starting to beat, her soul starting to feel at peace. It was the feeling that Talia was chasing, that she was always chasing, but it always came to and end and Talia found herself earthbound again. The frustration tore into her. The sensation of being so close, but never getting there was torture.

Talia laid her body down lower and hugged the rode. She knew the ride was almost over. She closed her eyes and rested her head on the bike, becoming one with the machine as they pushed against the wind. Talia barreled into the forces working against her and finally the moment came where the high always ended, but this time it didn’t.

In one swift moment Talia was no longer riding against the wind. She felt it completely in each of its components, the nitrogen, the oxygen, the vapor. Talia’s eyes dilated as her being was attacked by the compounds surrounding her. Her body was pulled through what felt like a tornado, then the wind turned and it consumed her. She was alive again. She was free. Talia had returned to her elemental state, the wind now following behind her, as a part of her, heeding her call and taking over everything in her path as she continued down the empty highway toward the life she’d lost over a thousand years before.

awgryphon all rights reserved© photo ©

Click below to read ALEXANDRA

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


The thing about the city is, as much as it changes it stays the same. When you’re in San Francisco it doesn’t matter if you’re actually from the city or not. While you’re there, its home. And when you leave, it goes with you. It’s got that groove, kind of like New Orleans, that wraps itself around you and wakes up your soul in the best way.

That was the feeling Lizzie was craving when she woke up to one too many cold January mornings in the little Hollywood flat she’d made for herself just off of Sunset. If she was going to be cold, Lizzie wanted to be Bay Area cold; where the chill is tangled up in a thick fog that hugs you like a blanket and blinds you from the morning view, giving you a little time to let your thoughts run free and a perfect excuse to take it.

The city isn’t one of those places you see. It’s a phenomenon that you feel. It closes your eyes and opens your soul so when the fog clears you can see what’s really there; the you in everything around you and the possibilities in what is yet to come.

Lizzie pulled on to the I-5, turned up the music as loud as it could go and found herself in a perfectly comfortable state as she eased into the ride. Memories of the city sailed through her mind. The feel of what it was like to be there, the amazing moments that had helped to make her the woman she’d become… And then it hit her. It didn’t really matter where she was going and it didn’t really matter what she was leaving behind. She was going somewhere and it was about the going, the ride. Lizzie would come back of course but when she did things would be different, the same way they always were when she let go of life, let herself just live, and sailed off into the mystic.

This story was inspired by a thoughtful and quiet morning infused with the amazing Van Morrison and his song Into The Mystic.


Monday, January 31, 2011


Sass. That was the only word that truly defined Kitty Michelson. She was a pint sized brunette with the perfect hourglass figure and a wiggle that paralyzed most men and made women sit up and take notes.

Kitty was a secretary. Not an assistant, a secretary, and a damned good one if you asked anyone, including Kitty. She worked for Robert James Wexler, sole owner, CEO and CFO of Wexler Industries, one of the most powerful companies on the planet, making Mr. Wexler one of the most sought after men in the world. That’s where Kitty came in. She was the gate keeper. Kitty had the keys to the castle. If you wanted a meeting with Mr. Wexler, you went through Kitty. A lunch, you went through Kitty. A party invitation, a charity donation, a pitch, a picture, Christmas card, cigar or so much as a “Hello” from Mr. Robert James Wexler you went through Kitty Michelson. If you were a new guy on the scene and you wanted a meeting with Mr. Wexler you could forget it. The first thing you had to do was get on Kitty’s list and that wasn’t easy, not by a long shot.

Kitty was good. So good that it wasn’t just Mr. Wexler that people were after. Everybody wanted Kitty; working in their office, on their arm, or both. Johnny Carson called. Kitty said, “no.’” Hollywood movie studios called. Kitty said, “no.’” The White House called. Kitty said, “no.’” Vogue, Chanel, Foreign Dignitaries, Saudi Sheiks, England’s Prime Minister and Forbes top ten men to watch, they all tried to woo her. Kitty said “no.”

Business men tried to recreate her, women tried to be her, but no one hit the mark. Kitty was one of a kind. Smart as she was beautiful and kind as she was sharp. Kitty made people feel special and they loved her for it. She had an all access pass. Closed door meetings, private calls, secrets circling the water cooler. If something was going on at Wexler Industries from an office crush to a million dollar merger, Kitty knew about it.

Kitty knew exactly what she was doing and at the same time she was sincere about everything she did. It was impossible not to love her, and that’s why when Robert James Wexler was faced with making the most important decision of his life, his career and his legacy, the one person it all boiled down to was Kitty Michelson.

On February the 2nd 1963 Mr. Wexler died peacefully in his sleep surrounded by his family and friends. On February the 3rd 1963 Kitty Michelson became the sole owner, CEO and CFO of Wexler Industries, and that top notch secretary took her place next to royalty, artists and movie stars as one of the most powerful women in the world, and forty eight years later, at the age of eighty two she still is.

2011© awgryphon all rights reserved, photograph by Henry Clarke©

Saturday, January 29, 2011


Honeysuckle combined with sticky, humid air oozed in through the back porch and filled the parlor of the old Landry house. Cynnie, the youngest of the Landry children, had taken a spot in the parlor and made herself quite comfortable while the rest of the family milled about outside and wandered in and out of the kitchen trying to get an early taste of the evening’s supper. Cynnie came from an old southern family with old southern secrets and a very particular way of getting things done, so when Mrs. Adelaide Breaux turned up unannounced at half past three on a Sunday afternoon Cynnie’s mother cleared the house. Without a word or a question Mr. Landry had the children, the cousins, his sister and his mother-in-law ready to walk out the door for a steamboat ride and a stroll through Jackson Square. Mrs. Landry and Adelaide Breaux would handle whatever it was that needed to be done.

As they put on their hats and started to leave Adelaide gave Mrs. Landry a nod and turned her eyes on little Cynnie. She was just five-years-old by a day, but it was Cynnie that Adelaide Breaux had come to discuss. Mr. Landry held his gaze on his wife’s and after a shared moment of fearful unknowing, the family was on their way; and Adelaide and Mrs. Landry were alone with Cynnie and the matter at hand.

The aroma of cooling pecan pie, chicory coffee and fresh lemonade in the making hit Adelaide as she wandered the house, taking in the space. The Landry’s had obviously been going about a typical Sunday before Adelaide had knocked on their door, which only confirmed exactly what she’d suspected. They didn’t know.

Adelaide wound her way though the living room, the sitting room and finally the parlor. Mrs. Landry walked beside her and little Cynnie danced along behind them, stopping to look at this and that or twirl around for no reason in particular it seemed. The first time her mother started to tell Cynnie to mind her manners Adelaide politely hushed Mrs. Landry. Cynnie was behind her, but Adelaide was watching every move the child made. She didn’t want her to mind. She wanted her uninhibited, free.

When they reached the parlor Adelaide took a white candle from her bag, set it in the middle of a table and continued on to the back porch. Mrs. Landry wondered why Adelaide didn’t light the candle, but she kept her question to herself and followed Adelaide outside. Cynnie stayed put in the parlor. Adelaide and Mrs. Landry sat down to rest their legs and enjoy a glass of lemonade while they watched little Cynnie through the large parlor door, which looked out on the garden.

“Why don’t you invite her to join us for a glass of lemonade Charlotte.” Adelaide said.

“Cynnie.” Mrs. Landry called. “Would you like to come out on the porch and visit with Mrs. Breaux?”
“No thank you Mama.” Cynnie answered as she twirled through the parlor looking for something.

Mrs. Landry threw her arms up in confusion and exasperation, the way most mothers did from time to time, and Adelaide sat back in her chair and zeroed in on the girl.

Cynnie pulled a box from the ashtray and struck a match. Mrs. Landry gasped. She’d never let her daughter play with matches and had no idea where she’d learned to strike one with such ease. Adelaide placed her hand over Mrs. Landry’s to calm her, not wavering for a moment and not taking her eyes off the child.

Cynnie held the match to the white candle and her face lit up; her eyes grew wide and an air of wonder and excitement took her over. “It makes it easier for her to see.” Adelaide said nodding while Cynnie danced and sang and rambled on with the same nonsense she always did, according to her mother.

“She spends a great deal of time in the parlor.” Mrs. Landry said. “All by herself.”

“She always has.” Adelaide said knowing.

“Ever since she could crawl. She’ll sit in there all day long. All by herself. I don’t know what it is that she finds so entertaining. The imagination of a child I guess.”

“No Charlotte.” Adelaide said. “Cynnie’s not entertained by her imagination.” Adelaide patted Mrs. Landry’s hand to comfort her. “She’s entertained because your baby girl isn’t alone in there.”

Mrs. Landry held her breath as she watched her little girl who was carrying on in some sort of tea party, first talking to one chair and then to another. She turned from her daughter back to Adelaide.

“They’ve found her.” Adelaide said nodding and patting Mrs. Landry’s hand. “They’ve found her.”

“She’s just a baby.” Mrs. Landry whispered barely able to get the words out. “Who is it they think they’ve found?”

“They don’t think Charlotte. They know. They’ve found the spirit that can serve as their portal.” Adelaide said looking straight into Mrs. Landry’s eyes, making sure she understood. “They’ve found the soul that can let them communicate with this life and the next. They’ve found your daughter Charlotte and she’s found them.”

Adelaide and Cynnie’s mother turned back to the parlor, eased back in their chairs and watched the little Cynnie carry on as if she was the host of a grand afternoon of guests and conversation because, in fact, she was.

A.W. Gryphon©


“You woke the dragon.” The hushed voice of a woman said rousing Liam from his sleep. Liam sat up on his arm, half awake, scanned the room and laid back down seamlessly drifting right back in to his dream.

The dragon crept into Liam’s bed while he slept. It circled around him, taking in his every breath, his every movement and watching him dream. It settled in right next to Liam as he drifted deeper into the subconscious of his slumber. The dragon watched him, studying him, wondering exactly what he had called on her for; wondering what it was he would do once he woke up and found her there waiting for him. The dragon was curious; curious as any creature that had been sought after for so many years.

Liam had been dreaming about the magical being for as long as he could remember. She had all the answers. She could deliver anything he asked. Beauty. Intelligence. Strength. She was all he ever wanted. And now she was there. In the flesh. The dream was over. The dragon had arrived.

“You woke the dragon.” Liam heard again, this time sitting straight up in bed to find the myth of his mind standing before him.

“I’m sorry.” Liam finally managed. “I didn’t mean to wake you.” He said, unsure he was awake himself.

“I wanted you to.” The dragon replied.

Liam took a moment. He didn’t quite know what to do. “You could go back to sleep for a little while if you’d like.” He said.

“I can’t.” She replied. “Once you’ve woken a dragon, the dragon is awake.”

Liam sat in the dark, his eyes wide with enchantment and wonder, taking in the reality that dreams do come true… and that once they arrive you have them to do with what you will… or what you won’t.


Friday, January 28, 2011


Josephine walked past the flower shop wearing the sky blue dress she always wore on Sundays when the sun was shining and air was still. Thomas was already at the café. His shift had begun at the crack of dawn. As Josephine sailed through the front door and took her place behind the counter everyone in the shop looked at her. Some out of the corner of their eye, some with just a glance up from their newspapers, others were much more obvious. Josephine had an easy going and approachable way about her. She was also an unparalleled natural beauty. Just being in her presence was enough to put a smile on anyone’s face, but Josephine also had a secret.

She examined the morning produce delivery and Josephine decided she would make a fresh apple pie and strawberry sugar cookies for the after dinner regulars. The shine of the apples and the sweet smell of the berries inspired her. It would be a wonderful day she decided. A magical one.

Thomas placed a New Orleans style café au lait beside Josephine and turned to go back to his work. Josephine touched his hand and with her fingers. The ever so slight connection stopped Thomas. His eyes were on their hands. Josephine didn’t move. Thomas didn’t either. An older man in the café noticed and thought fondly of his youth. A happily married mother smiled from the inside out. For Josephine and Thomas time seemed to have stopped. Josephine bit her lip with hope and anticipation. A rush of butterflies surged through Thomas’s body. He wanted to turn away, but he knew if did he may not get another chance. This was the moment.

Thomas finally looked up to Josephine and she smiled at him with a smile that made him feel like he was the only one in the room… because for her, he was. “There you are.” Thomas said.
“Here I am.” Josephine replied.


Thursday, January 27, 2011


Jenny put on a yellow sundress and her plaid green galoshes then walked out into the snow. She wasn’t dreaming and she wasn’t crazy. She realized it might seem that way, but Jenny had a plan.


Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Alexandra shot through the icy water at an incredible velocity. She had to. The rush of sea water against her skin was the only thing that could awaken the life within her that had been dormant for so many years. Each element of her being pulsed with energy; the ice tore at her nerves and the raw glacial thrust infused her senses. Alexandra’s blood flushed to her heart and into her finger tips, opening her eyes from a deep sleep and forcing her into the raw reality of being fully alive once again.

As the cold tore through her, it also released her. Alexandra was again whole. The temperature of the water around her calmed. It was no longer assaulting her. It was a part of her. Dolphins circled and orcas commenced while the life of the sea consumed the change they had always known was coming.

In a bolt of freedom and will Alexandra broke the surface sending water thousands of feet above. Her blue eyes hit the light of day framed by her hair, black as night, and snow white skin. For the first time in over a thousand years Alexandra was again at the surface.