Books & Music A book Im writing


Handbags and Horses
Jul 4, 2009
In the saddle.
Here are a cutout of a book I am working on on and off... Would LOVE LOVE LOVE any input you might have. Thank you sincerely to anyone why actually reads it :smile:

It is a sad fact of life that the older we get, the more the state of loneliness possess our lives. Our family and friends die away, children and grandchildren no longer find time to visit and the days slowly become more and more quiet and each minute seems to last an hour.

This was the case for Margaret Downey. Once upon a time she was referred to as a social butterfly, turning down invitations to dinner parties and tea parties almost every day. Now, at seventy-seven years of age Margaret Downey was alone. Every day she got dressed at 6 am, she carefully chose her dress and jewelry, and in the firm belief that someone would come to take tea with her she set the table with her best china and waited for her guests.
As Margaret Downey sat in her chair, by her perfectly set table in her parlor, stirring her tea for exactly 3 minutes to make time pass; Daniel Thomas tied his shoes and put the leash on his dog to go for his daily walk like he did every day, summer like winter and crossed his porch onto the grass. His dog, Bear walked close to his right leg, like always. Together they walked the same path as they did every day, taking them exactly three hours on the dot. Not because it was a particularly long walk, but because Daniel was old and he walked slowly. He crossed the path that surrounded his garden, and continued into the forest as he did every day. “Who needs company other than you, Bear?” he grunted, and in a way, he meant it.
In many ways, Daniel had been blessed in his life; He had nieces and nephews, all visiting him on the rare occasion when they had the chance, though not often; it still let him know that they cared for him. He had a home that he was fond of; a little house with a garden around, he was still as strong as one can expect from a man of seventy-eight. He had great memories of thousands of days lived, but most importantly: He had as a young man given his heart completely, and he was given the heart of another in return.
Margaret finished her cup of tea, and walked slowly down the path into the garden. The leaves on the threes had turned yellow little by little each day for weeks now, and Margaret wondered to herself if her noticing these small changes in her garden each day was a blessing, or merely a sign that she was allowing the last precious days of her life go to waste.

Daniel had finished his walk, now sitting down in his worn-down chair by the fire and stroking Bear’s head. The soft coat between the dog’s ears had become coarser with years passed and grey hairs had slowly but surely taken over the solid black spot that covered the entire front-part of the dog’s body.
Bear had been a present given to Daniel by his nephew Robert almost twelve years ago. Bear was a puppy, and Robert felt his uncle was too lonely for his own good. Daniel had been less than thrilled at having this small, clumsy thing around his feet, leaving puddles on the floor and chewing on the furniture and he remembered being rather hard on Bear back then. But slowly he began to care for the thing. He knew it first one night when Bear had gotten out after dark and seemed lost. Daniel had searched for hours upon end in the forest, calling Bear’s name and eventually the puppy had emerged from the dark, utterly filthy and overjoyed to see Daniel. He told Bear off, wrapped him in a towel and brought him home. But after that night he always remembered how empty the house had been without Bear, and at least to himself he admitted his affection for the dog.
Daniel knew in his heart that Bear’s days would soon be over. He used to be off leash, chasing far ahead of Daniel on their walks, running across the path again and again until Daniel would laugh and say Bear’s walk had been a hundred times as long as his own. Now he would walk at Daniels heal or behind him. Occasionally stopping to rest; sometimes even sitting down and panting heavily. Perhaps a set of legs only have a certain number of strides in them Bear, and you’ve used yours up. The thought made him disrupted, and for a moment he wondered what he would do without Bear, he could no longer stand the idea at being alone. The thought of a new dog had crossed his mind, but there was something in Bear that could not be replaced. Perhaps the strong determination to have Daniel as his master even against Daniel’s own will. Two stubborn souls meant for each other.
Daniel was expecting guests later that afternoon and so he let Bear rest his old legs by the fire while he prepared some coffee and laid out some biscuits on a platter. He was all but done when Robert arrived. Robert was 32, and Daniel’s younger brother’s son. He had always been fond of his uncle, despite Daniel’s less than pleasurable demeanor and visited as often as he could. His father was a lawyer and worked a great deal so when Robert was little Daniel had acted as a substitute father-figure, teaching him how to chop wood, shoot rifles and gut fish. To most people Daniels brother would appear the more successful of the two, he was a lawyer and Daniel was sometimes a fisherman, sometimes a logger and sometimes nothing at all. But to Robert he had been the ultimate role model. Daniel had relished the time when Robert was a boy. He would follow him everywhere trying to do everything Daniel did. This must be what it’s like to have a son, He had thought on more than one occasion, but even though the thought was pleasant, and he loved Robert as a son it was also saddening because he knew that he wasn’t his son and that he would probably never have one.
Robert had promised to bring his daughter with him to visit Daniel. Her name was Iris and she was one of the few things in this world that brought more than a glimmer of a smile to Daniel’s face. She was three, and watching her explore the wonders of the world for the first time made Daniel see it through her eyes and marvel at small things such as butterflies and flowers and Bear’s great, big teeth.
But Iris was not with him.
“Anna refused to let me take her, uncle.” Robert said. “I told her you were expecting to see her, but she insisted that Saturday was her day and she couldn’t be persuaded. This divorce will be the end of me. How am I supposed to see my only child once a week and every other weekend? She is doing this to punish me.”
“Do you deserve it, you think?” Daniel muttered, while pouring milk into his cup.
“No… I know she’s mad about my affair, but honestly. Iris is mine too! I’m hoping Anna will cool off in time and see that what she’s doing is not in proportion to my crimes.”
Daniel nodded. “Let us hope so. That child needs her father to be around. A girl’s father is her anchor… until she marries that is, if her husband is the sort that is to be relied upon.” He said the last part with a smirk on his face, letting Robert know he was teasing. He wouldn’t have done so if he had known it would prompt Robert’s next question.

“Why is it that you never married, uncle” He said.
“Women!” Daniel answered bitterly, “They only make your life harder. You ought to know that, being divorced yourself.”
“Separated, Uncle. I guess Anna and I just weren’t right for each other,” he replied, “we wanted different things out of life. And then I met Melissa, and before I knew it…” He paused. “Dad told me, a long time ago, that you were engaged at one point. Who was she?”
“Maggie-Rose” His had not heard her name spoken aloud for so long that the sound of it made his heart jump.
“What happened?” Robert had wanted to ask his uncle that question for a long time, the thought of this grumpy old man as young and in love was almost impossible to imagine, and feeling the answer within his grasp he was almost scared to breathe, thinking it’d make Daniel change his mind in telling him.
Daniel scratched Bears head, trying to decide if he should tell Daniel about Maggie-Rose or not. He finally sat up, fixed his eyes on Robert’s like he always did when he was about to say something of great importance; and started telling him, for the first time, about Maggie-Rose.
“She was never supposed to be my wife, Daniel. She was a snobbish, brattish little thing, always complaining when we took walks about how her feet got wet and that she was too cold, too hot, too tired… couldn’t cook to save her life. But she had this laugh, you know? She could whine and argue all she wanted, and I’d still walk through fire for that laugh.” He smiled.


“When I was 18 I worked at my parent’s bakery every summer, making deliveries to the homes near the shop. It was a hot morning, and I had just dropped off stacks of pastry for a garden party when I spotted her behind the house. She was lying in the hammock, in a night-dress with a sash thrown across her body, sucking the life out of a cigarette while reading something I later discovered was Shakespeare.”
Daniel stopped scratching Bear for a minute, and closed his eyes, as if to relive that moment in the garden, and Robert suspected he had done so a hundred-thousand times before.
“She tilted her body, and the sash slid off her, and she lied like that in the ni


Handbags and Horses
Jul 4, 2009
In the saddle.
ght-dress for… it must have been half a minute and I almost felt like a criminal for spying on her. All the sudden she flipped her head around and looked straight at me, laughing like it was the funniest joke. She was so unashamed and aware of me that I didn’t know what to do but to jump in the car and leave.” Daniel laughed to himself at the memory.
“When did you see her again?” Robert asked.
“Well, I was thinking about her, you see and was hoping for another chance to deliver pastries to the nearby area, but it never came. So I went myself one day. I brought a fishing-rod so that I had an excuse to walk by her house and stopped at the fence to look for her. The garden was a great one and the house too, and I couldn’t see her. I stood there looking longer than I should have because suddenly I became aware of a person in the window. It was her, and she was looking back at me. I became so embarrassed I left immediately, but on my way back from the pond, there she was in the garden again. She walked up to the fence and when I walked by she talked to me.
“No fisherman’s luck then?” She said.
And I said no. “What’s your name?” She said, and I told her and she told me hers. She was beautiful. Not very tall, and a little too slender but she had big, blue eyes and blonde hair down to her waist. She wrinkled her nose when she laughed and she laughed all the time at all sorts of silly things.
She said that the next time I went fishing she would like to come, and before I left she smiled and said “It is much better that way, you don’t have to hover around looking for me all the time if we are friends.” I felt flushed, but she said it in a teasing way, you know?”
Robert smiled. “Well uncle; what more can a man want but a woman that is both funny and beautiful?”
“She was a fantasy, Robert. Not wife material. We men often let the fantasy go, and settle for wife-material. We do it because we fear that the fantasy might turn out to be just human. It’s almost better to settle than to lose the one fantasy that will keep our heart racing for the rest of our lives. I might be alone every day, but in a way, I’ll always have that moment with Maggie-Rose in the garden”
“I hope that’s truly how you feel, uncle. If not, It’s never too late to contact her you know.” And with that, Robert left, depriving Daniel the pleasure of telling him what a stupid notion that was.
“That will do no good, Bear. She’s married or dead or…” He sighed.”Some things are better left in the past” The dog looked at him for a moment, than turned his head from Daniel as if disapproving.

Robert was plotting as me made his way through the grass to his car. Maggie-Rose. That can’t be her real name. I’m thinking that first name is Margaret, that second one could in fact be Rose, perhaps Rosamond? He smiled to himself as he started the car, excited about his new undertaking; to find the girl from the garden and reunite her with his uncle. Who knows, he thought, she might be as bewitching as ever in her old age. Let’s just hope that old grump can find some charm to keep her around for more than half-a-minute.
When he arrived home he first hung the drawing that Iris had given him when he went by the house to prompt Anna to let her come to Daniel’s house on the refrigerator, than called his father, Daniels brother Ed to ask what he knew about Maggie-Rose.
“Not a great deal, Rob.” She lived in a great, white house where the supermarket is now. She had no siblings. I think she was about a year younger than Daniel so I suppose she must have been born in 1934. But you have to remember I was only eight when Daniel met Margaret.”


Handbags and Horses
Jul 4, 2009
In the saddle.
“Margaret, so that was her name? “ Robert was eagerly taking notes.
“Yes, Margaret. Daniel called her Maggie-Rose for some reason I don’t know. Why do you ask?”
“A romantic notion.” Robert replied, and his father laughed.
When they hung up the phone, Robert decided to go to the library on the next day to look for Margaret’s family name. He could’ve asked Daniel of course, but he was certain that Daniel would be less than helpful. He would much rather provide Daniel with all the information he needed to contact Maggie-Rose so that he might do what he liked with it. As stubborn as Daniel was he’d always been a man of action and strong resolve and he was certain that Daniel would pursue meeting her if given the chance. I have her first name, and I’m sure a grand house like they described is in some way noted in the library along with the family who lived there. This should be quite easy, Robert thought and picked up his phone again to call Iris before dinner. Anna picked up the phone and barked “Yes, Robert?”.
Robert swallowed the resentment he felt for Anna for keeping him from his child, and calmly said “Hello Anna, I just wanted to talk to Iris to ask how her day has been.” “It’s been fine. Bye Robert.”
“Please…” He hated begging Anna for anything at all, but he needed to hear Iris’s voice. He couldn’t bear the thought of missing out on anything that happened to her and she forgot so quickly. He wanted to be a part of it all. “Fine.” He heard Anna calling Iris’s name and a few seconds later he heard her voice on the phone “Daddy, I was so worried!” Robert smiled, Iris was always picking up words and phrases everywhere and she felt so grown up when she found use for them. “Really? Why were you so worried?” Because Iris hadn’t really been worried, she just wanted to use the word, she had no reply for that and went on to telling him about how she’s gotten mud on her new, pink shoes and how it made her very worried. She’d made another drawing today that was for him, and she’d picked flowers for him too, but she left them at the playground which was very worrying too.
“You have had so many worries today Iris.” Some of the things he said to her he only said because he knew her reply would be funny. “Getting my nerves” Iris said, “on your last nerve, you mean?” “yes”.
The conversation ended with Anna taking the phone from Iris and telling Robert it was time for her nap. Robert felt cross at her for doing it. Iris didn’t seem cranky at all and there was no reason to be so stern about her nap-time. After all he had the right to talk to her, and she had the right to talk to him. He looked up at her artwork on the refrigerator and hoped she would remember to bring him the drawing she made today. She forgot things so very quickly, and sometimes he worried that if Anna kept him from Iris often enough she would forget him too.

Margaret Downey had married at a young age, to a suitable man who was good-looking and very foolish. He had an overwhelming fascination with stamps and after a year had gone by they had no more to talk about. But he was good to her, she knew he loved her from the presents he brought her all the time. It was his way of telling her; He had the money but not the words. She had preferred it that way; it was easier to say thank-you for the gift than to reply with lies to heartfelt words of love. He did one time attempt to write her a poem, because he knew how she liked them. But it wasn’t very good. When he did she had thought of a young man she used to run off with to swim in the lakes and kiss in cars. “Some men write about love, and some men make love and I’d rather be that second type any day of the week.” She had used to feel bad about thinking of Daniel while Irving read his poetry to her, but she found it couldn’t be helped so she indulged.
Robert didn’t have to look very hard to find out that Maggie-Rose’s real name was Margaret Rosamond Lane. The house she had grown up in had been lost in a fire when she was nineteen. A fire that had brought down the house, the garden surrounding and two houses next door to it, this due to a strong wind from that night. The police had suspected arson. Robert was shocked to find that among the suspects Daniel Thomas was mentioned. The news article stated that Mr. Daniel Thomas of 20 years of age was suspected of arson due to an ended engagement to Mr. and Mrs. Lane’s daughter. He couldn’t find any leads as to why the engagement ended, and decided to try to pry this information from his uncle. Daniel had been removed from the list of arson-suspects due to lack of evidence and the case was never solved. The Lane’s has moved and the remains of the house was demolished and the property sold. Robert ended the day’s research to pick up Iris from daycare early. One of the perks of being a freelancer was doing just that. Anna disapproved of him doing that, but Robert would dare her disapproval for the extra time with his daughter. After all his relationship with Anna couldn’t get much worse than it already was.

Margaret Downey was taking tea in her parlor that day, there was a brisk chill in the air and though she would much rather sit outside in the sun it quickly drove her back inside. As she was stirring her tea, glancing at the big clock on the wall there was a sudden knock on the door. A hesitant knock she thought. She put down her teacup and owslowly made her way to the hallway, briefly stopping at the great mirror by the door giving her another moment to hope it wasn’t just a mailman or a child asking to retrieve a stray ball from the backyard.
Daniel knocked the door again, what is taking her so long? He thought to himself, half expecting her to run as swiftly to the door as she used to, remembering suddenly that she would be an old woman now. As she opened the door he quickly, from old habit removed his hat.
“Yes? May I help you?” Margaret asked. I do hope he doesn’t want to come in, She thought. His shoes are dirty and that dog can’t have been bathed in years.
“Are you Miss Margaret Lane?” The man asked.
“Yes, as was it is Mrs. Downey now. Again, may I help you, sir?”Margaret began to feel unsettled by this stranger at her door. He looked about as cultivated as a stray dog. Not anyone she had ever associated herself with.
“Oh, Well… Mrs. Downey. You may not remember me. I’m Daniel, Daniel Thomas. We were friends I suppose at one time, and well… I wanted to see how you were doing.”
“Daniel?” Margaret opened the door wider and laughed, forgetting her previous thoughts on how Daniel would’ve perceived her as an old lady. “Do come in Daniel. Would you have some tea?”
He accepted and walked straight into the parlor, leaving spots of mud on her parquet floors. The dog followed and curled up on the carpet by the fire.
“On, Should’ve taken these off huh?” Daniel said shamefully, removing his muddy boots.
“Oh no, its quite all right” Margaret assured him.
They took their tea together in silence, but it was pleasant. At one point Margaret caught herself wondering if his skin still smelled like fresh cut grass and smoke but the thought made her blush and she pushed it away.
She hasn’t changed much, Daniel thought. Now, she’s older but who isn’t. She’s still the same girl.
When they finished their tea, Daniel thanked her and put his boots back on. As he was leaving he said “I hope to see you soon again, Miss Margaret. Perhaps tomorrow if you’re not too busy?”
“I would like that Daniel.”
As he left Margaret wondered if she should clean the carpet that the dog whose name she had learned was Bear had rested on during their little visit, but she changed her mind. That can be Bear’s carpet from now on, to use when he is here. The thought made her smile and she went into the kitchen to make some hazelnut pastries that she remembered Daniel had been fond of in the past.


Jovi Junkie
Apr 20, 2007
Bon Jovi Blvd.
I think it is admirable that you are working on a book; I don't think I have nearly the imagination required to do so. I hope you truly are open to feedback...

I only read the beginning and the end and skimmed through the middle but it doesn't make sense to me that after all those years they would just sit in silence and then he would get up and leave, saying he hopes to see her again. It strikes me as a very odd reunion. Her reaction when she opened the door and realized who he was struck me as odd as well.

Of course any book would have an editor, but I did note a number of grammatical errors that would need correcting.


Feb 17, 2013
:yahoo: Very happy to read about such a nice plot-designed story, I love the reunion, well in fact I prefer to stories with happy ending, but it seems that an end with some suspense can bring the story more surprise, sincerely expecting to read more about your stories!!