Author’s note: This, to me, is a special song, one that I am about to actively pitch (opening a whole new area of rejection). It emerged simply from the idea or thought of breakups — so common — yet with no one in particular in mind. We just see way too much of it, and always wish, hope, and pray for people to find the love and happiness we share. Thanks for reading, oh, and the photo gallery is added and will grow as I go back and scan from pre-digital, A.S.           

GONE, in a hopeless sea of pain, looking for some kind of comfort, that will make her whole again.

Her man, he was blinded by a touch, he was blinded by a feeling, he was blinded by new eyes.


So she reached for the bottle. And she reached for the Bible.

But she lives, somewhere in between, her sins and her Savior.

2nd Verse:

Days, well they slowly ticked away, there were some that were so wrenching, she couldn’t brush the tears away.

And the nights, she just lay there in the dark, wondering what she did to cause this, wondering how to make it right.


So she reached for the bottle. And she reached for the Bible.

But she lives somewhere in between, her sins and her Savior.


She is thinking now he was bound to break her heart, so she gave up on the life that they led.

Yes the Lord gave her strength to move on, and the drink gave her courage to try again…


Repeat Chorus:

So she reached for the bottle. And she reached for the Bible.

But she lives somewhere in between, her sins and her Savior.

Yes she walks each day somewhere in between, her sins and her Savior.

Completed 12/20/10

© 2010 Andrew Spradling

The Wrong Side For Sunset… But I’ll Take It

Author’s note: Downloading some photos today, dreaming of summer, so I thought I’d slap one up (with more to come). I’m going to start a gallery of photos, because I can’t figure out how to add to my “Observations.” Which was my intent when I did it. Any ideas? Thanks, A.S.

late evening

Hilton Head Island, summer 2014

A Simile Like A Smile

Author’s note: Warm weather on a Saturday in mid-January made everyone a little crazy, and the lake brought new meaning to losing your ball or having it just out of reach. Click on the picture to see the full scope. A.S.

2015-01-17 Frozen Lie

THE month was as warm as April,

The mood was as light as air.

The men were as giddy as school kids,

For a coat was not seen anywhere.


The start was slow as molasses

The starter was stern as a whip.

The sting would be like a spanking,

if a mulligan he would let slip.


The friendships were old as the pine trees,

Familiar as well-worn gloves.

The tees would snap like twigs,

Cause the ground was ice with a rug.


The greens were as hard as cart paths,

The grass was as brown as the mud,

My game was like a beginner’s,

But the warmth of the sun made it fun.


© 2014

Write On

LINES on a map,

Turns in the river,

Twists on a page,

Staying north makes me quiver.


The highs of the city,

the lows of the floodplain.

The bill in the mailbox,

absurd is the thinking.


Fixation it limits,

till the project’s complete.

I dare not slow down,

My brain’s dead on its feet.


But I stop to consider,

the freedoms in danger.

That truth and its telling,

Brings death from a stranger.


If you circle the wagons,

Or put down the pen,

If the inkwell goes dry,

The bastards will win.

© 2014

“Floridays” and a Festive Flock of Old Friends

Author’s Note: This picture made its way to me through email, the Simmons Family, formerly of Monterey Drive: Mother Doris, son Max, and daughter MaryLu…. their exodus from SAHS was in the early 70s. Their father, Paul, passed away many years ago. We had a special connection as I grew up, and he is the subject of the below poem, “Heroes.” Around ’82, my graduation date, he wanted to see Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson in concert. He respected and was a fan of their song writing talent, but was no longer comfortable making the drive. I nervously took on the task. Because of my inexperience he had to climb more stairs than necessary, and had to rest before we made it to our seats. That hurt me. But we ultimately had a wonderful time and the memory, like so many others, is cherished. Peace, A.S  

2014-12-25 Simmons crew

Josh (Maggie’s husband) and little Max, Maggie, Max.
Second row–Jan with Madeline, Doris, MaryLu and Alex Kinlaw and Rob (Maggie and Rob are Max and Jan’s children).
This will be the first opening day you’ve missed since 1911.
You with your infinite wisdom – me just a boy who thought Mays was the one and only.
But you had seen them all – Ruth, DiMaggio, Mantle…
I had seen the Reds once and could remember Rose # 14 through heavy binoculars, and it stuck with me… like a dream that wouldn’t die.
I remember walking down our street when I was young, fireflies glowing, crickets chirping, and there you would be, always, listening to your little transistor – to the game – smoking cigarettes, maybe having a beer.
We’d talk pennant race, those dreadful Dodgers, or basketball – West was always the greatest.
I acted like I knew everything – so you gave me a Guinness Book of World Records and Sports Almanac 1974  to get my facts straight. This just fueled my fire.
Your son was my idol too, he played hoops like a lion, fearless yet graceful – I hoped I would rate.
Ultimately though, it was your daughter’s music that we both gravitated to… as I grew up and you grew old.
You wrote songs though the music was in your head, poems sometimes as long as Kubla Khan, and stories that would make Twain smile like a river pirate in a stolen boat.
Though you eventually quit, cigarettes haunted you till you were like a skeleton fighting the wind. Seeing you gasp for oxygen hurt, and I became aware that death hid like Satan himself in the burning white sticks you always held.
I’ve been to many parks and stadiums now: Kansas City, San Diego, Denver, St. Louis, Cleveland, Detroit, Charlotte, New Orleans…
But I’ll never enjoy a ballgame more than I did listening to the Big Red Machine: Bench, Perez, Morgan, Concepcion, Foster, Griffey, Geronimo…
Swatting mosquitos, sitting on the porch with an RC, laughing under a summer moon, with you, Simmons.
By Andrew Spradling
First printed, The Kanawha Review 1991
Printed Shelton College Quarterly 2014