Some Women Fall in Love With Criminals, by Marjorie Maddox

      “Some Women Fall in Love With Criminals”

        Williamsport Sun Gazette headline, August 12, 2005

Jilting her husband, the prison psychologist fell in love with an inmate. “You would, too,” she explained later, “if you took the time to study his eyes.” In them was the trust of his victims.

If you analyze the iris, some spiritualists contend, you’ll find flecks of joy and sorrow. Watch where the light goes, how quickly or slowly the pupil dissolves. Have you gone into your lover’s brain. What did you find there?

After Ted Bundy’s conviction, a flood of women flocked to the courtroom, continued their loyal love letters. During his second trial, Carole Ann said, “I do.”

The lifeline on a person’s palm, once stained with blood, is hard to clean. However, in such circumstances, persistence works well. How long is your attention span?

Jennifer, a former nurse, ambushed two prison guards as they led her husband, a convicted robber, from his Kentucky hearing. While driving them 185 miles to an Ohio Amway convention, their cab driver heard what they didn’t say. “Amway people are all about Amway, and when they didn’t try any conversation further about it, that’s when I pretty much thought, ‘Well, they’re not with Amway; they’re doing something else.” He also noted that they didn’t tip well.

To get help editing your best-selling novel on bank robbers, first marry a Canadian poet. Next, obtain parole. Third, have two children. Fourth, wait a dozen years. Fifth, and this is important, don’t bungle your next burglary.

While holding a gun, check to make sure you have all your fingers and that your wedding band fits correctly. This is also a good time to examine your fingernails and the health of your cuticles. A trip to the drugstore may be necessary and should be accomplished within forty-eight hours.

Three weeks before her twenty-fourth wedding anniversary, the female prison guard got a tattoo that matched her lover’s, then helped him escape. “The attempted murder conviction,” Vicki explained later, “was simply a misunderstanding.”

“The brain can trick itself into believing what the eyes see.” Now attach the appropriate cliché about love and blindness.

“Rona Fields, a Washington D.C. psychologist who has worked with prison inmates and staff, said interpersonal relationships in a prison setting can evolve in ways that might seem strange in the outside world.” Northeastern University criminologist James Allan Fox, agrees, “’In some cases, it’s a question of adding spice to life.’”

According to K Arvidson of Friberg University, “The number of basic taste qualities registered by single human fungiform papillae is correlated with the number of taste buds borne on the papillae. Multiple sensitivity was demonstrated both in single fungiform papillae and in single taste buds, with response to all four of the basic taste qualities occurring in a single bud.”

When cooking, don’t be afraid to experiment with unusual spices. The culinary arts are, indeed, an art, and creativity is a necessary ingredient. Read the recipe, but don’t be bound by it. Always, always, season to taste.


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Anniversary poems, by Marjorie Maddox

      Looking for a Ten-Year Anniversary Card

      Again, the Wal-marts and K-marts fail me;
      their rows of Hallmarks stiff and silly,
      swirling with clichéd roses,
      finger-printed by the mass of malogens you scorn.
      No bother. I’ll sing a song of Bloomsburg
      for you, my sexy soul-mate, a decade of days
      replayed in this short stanza,
      a celebration of the every-moment,
      with you my miracle life-changer.

      Bloomsburg: Ten-Year Anniversary

      This time, I am in love with our aging,
      with the angles of our bones against each other,
      the unspoken understanding of skin
      that comes with love’s wise practice,
      the surprise of old kisses renewed.
      You are my young groom
      and lover of long days,
      dashing in your naked devotion,
      my friend of flesh and face,
      which I hold now, dear,
      in love, in gratitude
      for this ever-new decade.


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It is your leaving that I love & First Snow, two poems by Marjorie Maddox

      It is your leaving that I love

      Naked in the naked way day wakes
      to morning, stretched up, muscling
      from heel to head-shine the backs of everything:
      hand grasp of calves and balls and rear;
      flesh loose, tight, turning
      not into face or front never!
      but toward the backdrop of your back,
      those hallway lights highlighting each exit
      as "now," "before," or "will be"
      without worry or forethought.
      (We leave to separate, separate to return). Oh
      the beauty of a back moving
      away, the predictable
      rhythm of limbs that leave
      to come again.

      First Snow

      So provisional, it almost doesn’t
      count—uncouragous, afraid
      of everything concrete, the frozen closes in
      on asphalt, then vanishes
      into nostalgia.

      In the streetlight, the sky is all dust,
      pale and full of flutter;
      on the ground, damp pockets of no longer.

      Tentative as first snow reluctant to land,
      we move again toward the other,
      remember the chill,
      the pleasure of complete cover.


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Faith, Sex, and Apple Picking, poem by Marjorie Maddox

      I.
      His old adage: "A cat through the branches
      will do it. That's when they're pruned."
      He says it serious, head tilted, so I'm
      there, stretched between limbs,
      the county firemen
      whining their trucks toward the fields,
      pretending to save.

      II.
      At six, I bite my Delicious
      and listen.
      His thumb rubs the skin,
      punctures the soft spots till they froth.
      I do not look long.

      III.
      Crabapples in my cheeks
      without swallowing;
      the way a seed irritates the tongue;
      the number of Jonathans
      you can juggle with one hand;
      an orchard divided by moon and man
      again: twice the length of waiting.

      IV.
      The ones you'd keep
      (stuffed in a pocket,
      slid across a sleeve,
      set just-so on a bedside table)
      good for boasting and bribes are, at harvest,
      ounce for ounce the same (less always being more)
      as those thrown away:
      inedible, small and hard.

      V.
      "Abide," he winks,
      "in me and I in thee."


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