This is a work in progress. It is not done yet...
Now the next letter or document jumps to the past to the very beginning. At this point the writer is called Martin O’Neill. Martin currently has no wife, life, family, or money in this letter. I can now say that this is actually the only thing I could get from Mr. O’Neill since this was a very stressful time for him. Mind you this is going to be a long entry, but I made sure it is at least divided into two entries…I call this chapter…
Dreams from the Past
Thursday, October 17th, 1985
My name is Martin O’Neill. Given at this time I am a twenty year old man who has been wandering the streets of states in search of food, shelter, and many things to be needed. Of course at some point of time I had a home in Albuquerque, New Mexico, but I had taken that for granted by leaving my mom and two siblings; Susan and Peter with them. I guess that’s the price I have to pay for being so ungrateful.
Now I walk in complete solitude as I gather my pride and dignity each and everyday to survive. In the beginning my mother and father had met in Scotland. In that time period some important war had broken out and my parents were forced to move to America on accounts of not wanting to die; and decided to live in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Within that time my father joined the army while my mother had already given birth to my brother (Peter) and my older sister (Susan) had then given birth to me. At almost an instant my mother received a letter stating that my father died in battle when I was at least five years old.
Thirteen years later; after living with my brother, sister, and mother; I decided to move out on my own without saying a word. Being as it was this broke my mother’s heart so much that she refused to contact me when I told her where I was. Now I have arrived in Topeka, Kansas in hopes that I may gain what ever dignity I have left and start a new life.
With that in mind I decided that since I’m new to this city I must rest a while in front of Mr. Kyle’s Candy Shop and dream of the future…
Friday, October 18th, 1985
This morning I was woken up to find some crazy old Chinese man hovering over me with a broomstick poking at me. Apparently he didn’t speak much English, because his sentences were choppy and unorganized; but I understood him. At first he told me to shoo away and “I scare customers”, but then he decided for me to follow him up to his living quarters and fixed me a bowl of chicken soup.
After the man looked over my dirt invested brown hair and rigid face he calmly said and I quote, “If you need place to stay, you work for me. Okay?” I quickly nodded as I gulped down the soup like a hungry beast. I was then told to slow down and “Rewax.” Apparently the man had never been starving before. Also I forgot to mention that the man’s name was Mr. Kyle. Daniel Kyle in fact. How on earth a Chinese man like himself, who spoke very little English, acquired an American name is beyond me. If any of you folks have seen cartoon drawing of men with squinted eyes with aged faces and partially bald hair who wore nothing but Chinese style clothes then that’s Mr. Kyle. He was a kind hearted Chinese man who couldn’t make up his mind for lots of things.
Take for instance that he wanted to restock the candy, then he automatically decided to bring up supplies for me use so that I can keep watch of the store. I will never get him and I never will. Something tells me he will live for a long time and still confuse people like me.
As of this point Mr. Kyle has only one family member (his daughter Rebecca) Mr. Kyle’s wife passed away “long time ago”
He was left with his daughter to raise by himself. Rebecca or Becca had a particular Asian rather than Chinese look to her face and an American style to her clothes and attitude. Apparently Mr. Kyle seemed to have spoiled her daughter rotten.
The first time she saw me, she ran up to her father and asked, “Is he for me?” At that point of time Mr. Kyle finally figured out what he had created and brushed her aside like a child. Given at the time she was only eighteen years old. She was actually an adult with a child’s mind. I don’t pay attention to her much. She is always trying to get me to buy her things. She’ll walk up to me and say certain things like, “Hey I saw this cute purse at the store today… and sigh.” As if by cue I’m supposed to say, “What are we waiting for? Let’s go get it for you.” Anyways I have to go Mr. Kyle wants to talk to me about something.
Friday, January 10th, 1986
Sorry it took me this long to write in my journal. Becca stole my journal and tried to black mail me with it saying that if I didn’t do what she said she would read the contents to her father. I said no in response, so she decided to hide my journal, and about three months later she confronted her father about what I had said in my journal and she asked if she was spoiled, he said yes.
Mr. Kyle then took my journal from her and put it on my bed saying to her that if she ever touched my belongings and did anything like that again… well _________________. You fill what ever you think should go in there, but please be reasonable.
Anyways, the man reason I wanted for you to hear is that I finally found a girlfriend. Her name is Martha Anderson. Apparently she told me that her family lives in a shack just near the edge of the city. I told her I didn’t mind, but she insisted that she come on dates at my place. I found that particularly strange due to the fact that I told her that at some point I had no home.
During that time she would laugh and call me a tease; what ever that meant. She doesn’t talk about her life at home. I told her that I understood and that I had my fair share of troubles with family. With that she just give me a huge smile from her perfect white teeth and glaze at me with her bright green eyes and say, “Oh I love you my Martie.” I would then reply, “Who’s the luckiest man alive?” She would reply me.
Truth is told I was the luckiest man alive. I was dating a young woman who could’ve been mistaken for an angel. Her long red wavy hair glistened in the sun as her eyes always seemed to sparkle in the sunlight. Her fair complexion and thin body made all the rest of the women jealous. I also admire her style of old fashioned hippie clothes which consisted of tie dye t- shirts and jeans.
I on the other hand had grown from a thin brown haired man with very little money to a man with clean pressed strait brown hair, brown eyes with a bulkish build. My style included of mainly jeans and white t-shirts since I had very little to wear. Since living with Mr. Kyle; life was wonderful, and I wouldn’t give it up for the world.
There were moments where I doubted why I even existed until I went to church and found the Lord our God. At that moment I decided to pledge my live to Martha. In other words; I’m actually saving money to buy her a ring and gather the guts to pop the question… Hint…Hinty… Hint…. Hint… Hint. I have to go.
Wednesday, February 12, 1986
Sorry for not writing for so long. This one is on me. It appears that I actually got the courage to ask Martha and I received the ring. She went completely ballistic. First she went to her house and dragged me with her to tell her parents. Apparently she wasn’t accurate about her being poor, but I didn’t care. Her parents were on the other hand seemed more shocked than excited about our news; since they never met or even heard of me.
Martha’s parents owned an old plantation that went on for at least several miles in diameter. What really shocked me was the fact that Martha’s father came at me with a shotgun when he first saw me. The man was either crazy or from an old part of the century. Either way I still didn’t care. Martha seemed to disregard the gun her father had in his and threw her arms around his rigid neck, and said, “Daddy I want you to meet Martin. Martin O’Neill. He’s the man I told you about. He wants to marry me.” Her dad seemed shocked as ever and looked me over with a glance a nodded his head with a grunt. Martha’s father told her to go tell her mother while he was walking towards my way with a grim look on his face. Right as he got to my face he breathed his whiskey breath into my face and retorted as his daughter was out of sight, “Son, you look like a well bred man, but I assure you if my daughter ever comes to me saying you did anything to her. Well… you figure out the rest.”
With that I walked into the house just in time to hear a loud scream and a thud. Apparently Martha’s mom had fainted. Martha’s father then grinned at me and said with a cheesy voice, “Welcome to the family son.” Sorry I have to go. I just wanted to share the news. Apparently I’m getting married in two days.
Yes we had the rehearsal and apparently everything was bought for by Martha’s parents as custom for the bride’s parents to buy everything. Boy I sure hope things go to according to plan. Mr. Kyle was overjoyed when he heard the news, but seriously I have to go. Candy stores don’t watch themselves you know.
The next entry I have is from Martha Anderson/O’Neill herself. Apparently Martin told her that she could write in the journal since that they were to be sharing everything now they were married. However Martha also added several pages of her own to this journal. This entry is during the time where both lovers had both started their relationship to the point of living together in their house that Martha’s father had bought for them as a wedding gift…
Tuesday, November 12th, 1985 9:45 A.M.
What a day. Today I think I had the most exciting day ever. Well first let me tell you who I am. I mean this is like the first document I have ever written of my life, so I might as well tell you everything; right. Anyways. My name is Martha Lillian Anderson. I live with my parents and my older brother Luke.
We all live together on a fifty acre plantation that my grand father Antonio Povov had bought once he had struck oil after the Great War. During that time frame and still; my family is considered the richest family in the state of Kansas. I don’t like to brag about it like my brother does; which is why I usually tell my boyfriends that my family is poor.
My family itself is basically from the poor parts of Germany and Russia. This means our standards that we’re old fashioned roots. Huh! Yeah right. My folks maybe old fashioned, but I prefer to look forward. Just not too much; I mean the days in this time seem more hazardous than when I was born. I guess that’s why I always where tie died t-shirts and head bands with jeans; while other people just wear ordinary flannel shirts with ties and slacks. I hate those people. I’m sure those people that try to look their best hate me as well. I’m not denying the fact that I don’t see many girls my age giving me dirty looks.
Pa told me that their just jealous because I’m just too good for them to be around. I say that’s not true. I mean if you saw me; you’d be jealous too. I have my mom’s long red wavy hair and my grandpa’s green eyes; but, I have my dad’s personality and my own frail but young body. Today ma sent me to get some candy for my younger brother Luke.
Right now Luke is suffering from lung cancer. God only knows how he received this ailment, but I don’t try to question the lord and help the best way that I can. The only problem is that even Luke looks a lot like our dad; he has the direct personality of our grandfather (The Stubborn Ass Kind). So the only way for him to get his meds down his throat is by either bribing him with candy or making him listen to pa sing; believe me pa stinks at singing.
Now with pa’s old fashioned ways he has the tendency to drink. He got the idea when he came to America. He either moved with his parents or he moved with ma; he wouldn’t tell. Anyways; the first time he saw a picture show was at a drive thru movie. Apparently a western was playing and he was memorized by the ruggedness of the west and how they acted. Long story short pa made it a life time goal to become the rugged out doors men of the west (Mission Accomplished).
Now he drinks whiskey, wears overalls with a tattered hat and prefers to carry a gun that seems to scare off any visitor that walks within distance of our house. The worst part is he recently started chewing tobacco. It wasn’t enough that he keeps on trying to play a broken down, two stringed guitar and sing old western songs, but really; the chew. I don’t know how ma takes it from him. She must be super human or something. I don’t know.
My mother herself is a down to earth house wife that prefers the old ways in which she grew up. You know? The wearing of cheesy uncomfortable clothing that makes your body itches when you put in on. How ever she told me that she had to get used to the feeling once growing up, and eventually she grew to like it. Even her lectures seem like she comes from a different time. I mean she may be in her 40’s, and she may have the sensitivity of a cat in water when it comes to sudden things small things as to mice up to important news…
Believe me when she gets madder than hell on Earth; you kind of think that our family has the devil incarnate for a mother. You know what I mean? She would say things like, “Warsh your hands before you eat. Clean your plate. There are children in places where I grew up that could eat that last lima bean; and they will love it. Sit up straight. Wait for pa to say grace. Warsh your body. Don’t sass me; or you’ll be sorry. Did you do your homework? How about your chores? Did you do them thoroughly?” That sort of thing. Apparently in mom’s case before she moved to Kansas, she had a glimpse to the Bronx in New York. Unfortunately she loved it so much that she took the accent with her and combined it with her foreign behavior, and that’s why she is so jumpy when it comes to a lot of things. Darn sewer rats in New York. Ma never had a chance to regroup herself…
Anyways I have to go give Luke his freaking candy, before he throws a fit. I will be sure to write my next entry when I can tonight. There is much to talk about. Kiss. Kiss. --Martha L. Anderson
Tuesday, November 12th, 1985 7:13 P.M.
It’s me again. Well duh; who’d you expect it to be? Boy am I stupid. I mean… Sorry got carried away. Anyways; I had to go get some candy for my spoiled brother Luke. Pa calls him a gifted angel. (Meaning he’s an angel with lots of problems) Ma calls him “the short end of her stick, because he is only person that can drive her to her wits end within one split second. Anyways… Once again I arrived in town due to the fact that pa had given me a ride in town since he was out of chewing tobacco; he had to go get some more.
Now before I tell you about what I did. Let me tell you about the town. (City) Sure Topeka is the biggest cities in Kansas, but in a way it still resembles a small town to the naked eye. Everything… Well almost everything is still within its original form when it was built back in the 1800’s. Sure the stores have modernized to help the general public, but the feeling about the place still feels the same as always; warm and cozy.
My favorite store is Mr. Kyle’s Candy Shop. Now truth be told that Mr. Kyle himself first started out as a toymaker and he would sell hand made toys in his shop. When he became older and well at least learned the tricks of the American trade he turned his shop around as a candy shop. Of course with the help of my grandfather’s expenses; only was he able to rebuild his finances from under the ground and into the air.
From what I gather Mr. Kyle is an old Chinese man that was taken under my grandfather’s wing when Mr. Kyle had lost his wife and son during the Great War that he fought. During that time my grandfather pulled a few strings to get Mr. Kyle imported and a green card along with his new born daughter (Spoiled Beckie) to the promised land of milk and honey. (Or my version is; The Land of Greed and Money) Since than Mr. Kyle was given a chance to create his life again since acclaimed by my father that Mr. Kyle saved my grandpa’s life numerous times.
Now I go to the store when I can to get the latest treat that I haven’t had and to drool over the others that I already had; but this time was different. As usual every time I walk past the windows to the door of the shop I hear many snickers of teenagers, and whispers towards my direction. Of course I ignore them, but it does sting a little to be mocked at. Today that all seemed to wash away as when I walked into the door of the shop to see what I truly believe to be my next boyfriend and possibly my husband. He looked so handsome. Even though he looked like he hadn’t eaten in years, and he had better days when it came to washing clothes; it was his eyes that I fell in love with and just the way he smiled when he greeted me as I walked in the door.
Sure he may have looked like he was building up a sweat, but the scents of many different candies seemed to soften the room even more. Even the fact that spoiled rotten Becca Kyle was there eyeing me with her evil eyes didn’t change how I felt at that time. The man’s existence seemed like she wasn’t even there. That is of course until Becca practically yelled at me, “Can I help you?” Now it wasn’t the fact that she spoke to me that upset the mood, but it was the way she said it as she sneered to a point as if to say that I had no chance with the man, and that he was all hers, but I knew that wasn’t so.
I knew that because the fact that I saw the man completely ignore her gesture as he was trying to work. You know? The come over here I want to show you something or tell you something in private gesture. He completely blew her off. By the time I got the candy; I also received his name, phone number, birthday, and favorite food all in three questions. What’s your name? Where are you from? And Will I see you again?
He basically told me that his name was Martin O’Neill. He came from Albuquerque, New Mexico and he was born exactly a month before me. (Hint: He likes Spicy Food)(Double Hint: My birthday is on May 6th, 1965. He knows this because I told him to get his) and he told me that if I wanted to hang out or do something that I should give him a call. More or less we actually both swapped phone numbers and then I left feeling content.
I can still picture him now. Brown wavy thin hair that droops over his pale skinny face that had gorgeous brown eyes. Then his smooth skinned face nestled on a frail but sturdy tall body that had a white t-shirt that covered the torso and a pair of blue overalls that covered the t-shirt and his legs to reveal that he was wearing sandals on his feet. For every time he spoke his eyes would seem to twinkle in the light.
As of course it varies on who he talking to. I mean he could be listening and talking very little to Becky and his eyes all of a sudden become dull and tired looking, but if he’s talking to anyone else he seems to have this glow within his eyes. I love him…
While on the way home I told my dad about Martin; in which my dad replied, “Just make sure he’s not one of dem stubborn, pricks dat get all wild up on you.” I quickly replied with shock as we got home. “Daddy, just be sure not to bring out your shotgun when you meet him. Okay?”
The reason I have to remind him of such things; is because sometimes he gets so lost with his memory that he can’t even remember to tie his own shoes. It’s a wonder that pa actually remembers how to drive safely….
Got To Go Now… May The LORD Bless you. Kiss. Kiss
--Martha L. Anderson –
The next entry is still by Martha, but the date itself is considered after the couples wedding and honeymoon. All though Martin insisted that he write the entry about the relationship. Martha some how managed to do the impossible by persuading him so that she could write it in realistic formality. I applaud her high spirited nature. Here is what she wrote on behalf of both individuals.
Saturday February, 15th, 1986
What a journey! I do apologize for my tardiness due to my current relationship with my now wedded husband Mr. Martin O’Neill. Before I tell you the details on how we are currently living together; I have to tell you what happened during our short dating lives to our marriage. Martin can tell you about the details of the wedding in his own way later on after I’ve finished with this.
After Martin and I had been calling each other practically every night to a point where pa had to literally disconnect the phone and have ma give me a lecture on how, “she paid for the bills and it’s not nice to keep bugging a boy every second of the day.” So my ma suggested that we date since we have been talking on the phone for over a month. Pa on the other hand seemed always confused when ever he heard Martin’s name come up in a conversation. He would say thing such as, “Young lady. If I knew better; I’d say you got in contact with your great cousin Martin. Much to your liking, but he’s already dead missy, so; put that out of your head. You can’t date the dead.” With that the conversation ended.
Of course it was always just Ma, Pa, and I at the dinner table. Luke specially had his meals brought to his bed on a tray. My parents never really understood the true definition of milking pain. The sad thing was that Luke enjoyed this attention. I just hated it when Luke would give me his cheesy grin as he would narrow his baby blue eyes to a point where I knew his entire white skinny face was mocking me. Come on the boy’s at least thirteen years old and he still acts like he’s five.
He hardly brushes his short blond hair. Never eats or does anything with the rest of the family. Is as stubborn as the donkey’s ass when it comes to anything he has to do. The only thing he actually does himself is take a shower, brush his teeth and use the toilet. Sorry I got a little carried away there. My frustration level has been a little worse with him since he hasn’t gotten any better.
I told ma and pa that he should see a real doctor, but ma told just replied, “Dawling there’s nothing a doctor can’t heal that a mother can do better.” With that I leave it. Besides the important thing to talk about is my relationship with Martin. Luke is important; he’s just not the center of the universe…Sorry; Back to the story.
Our first date merely consisted of the simplest things. We took a walk around the city’s park and ate hot dogs while we talked and walked. We learned a lot from each other. I being secretive about my family and where I came from wasn’t exactly easy; but he understood, so I just asked questions about him; and he just asked questions about my hobbies, likes and dislikes.
The one thing I found amazing was his expression towards the nature around him. It was almost poetic. “Surely the grass has not grown, and the snow is still shown; but the world is still beautiful as you. The trees may not bear fruit, and the flowers may not also bloom; but give in time. That beautiful swan egg will surely hatch to grow up to be what it’s supposed to be. The wind may blow, and the cold shall chill my bones; but it shall never touch my heart that holds the key to the love I have for my beautiful grown swan. So wait my beautiful love. Wait for the Earth to turn so that the blossoms of the flowers may bloom; so that the snow will give the grass its room and if you wait long enough… When you finally hatch out of your shell…I will still be waiting for you.” Of course he was saying this he was merely observing the swan eggs in a nest, and the flowers around them that seemed to be covered in snow.
Martin seems like a calm and collective man to be around. Even as we dated he showed not much particularly interest in revealing his emotions like I do. Of course when I’m an emotion I tend to show it immediately. There we were dating on consistent basis. I thought that it would never last; until Martin wanted to take me to a party.
At first I was hesitant, but he reassured me that it was not only safe but fun as well. I never thought I had the most fun in my life. There were only six of us. Of course none of knew who each other was except Martin Mr. Kyle, Becky, and I. Somehow Mr. Kyle was hosting a small party for his daughter. Of course since no one really liked her that much and only came for the free food, and or only came because they did it for Mr. Kyle. It all seemed pretty boring because that Mr. Kyle made the birthday seem like Becky was five not nineteen.
At a sudden moment Martin disappeared into his room and came back with a huge grin on his face. He then walked up to me, whispered in my ear, “I know how to liven things up a bit.” With that note he picked up a party horn that you use for New Years Parties and blew it to get everyone’s short period time attention and said, “I have a very important announcement to make to a very special girl,” In that notion Becky could be seen in the middle of the room jumping for joy as he continued to speak saying as he quickly jumped down, went past Becky to where I was sitting, knelt down and asked, “Martha Lillian Anderson. Will you do me the honor of becoming my wife?” At that point of time everyone froze as I quickly retorted that it was going to fast and changed my mind once he pulled out a ring.
The entire party at that point seemed overjoyed with enthusiasm and strangely enough had forgotten all about Becky’s party and her birthday. Even her own father had forgotten about her and had rushed to our side saying, “I am so happy for you two. May the blessings of my family shower upon you both.”
The look on Becky’s face was priceless. At that point of time she could utter a word. This seemed like the greatest moment of my life. At a quick retort I gasped and quickly put on the ring with sudden delight and said, “Oh my goodness. It's beautiful” Of course given on how rich I was; if he actually gave me a ring pop I still would have thought it was beautiful. I guess the main reason why I was so happy was because that Becky was unhappy.
Anyways that's my diary entry. At least for now that is. I will type later... See ya...
May The LORD Bless you. Kiss. Kiss
--Martha L. Anderson – A.K.A. Martha L. O'Neill--
Sunday February, 16th, 1986
I know it’s only been one day since I wrote you but I can’t help it sometimes. Oh My God! I for got to tell you about the details about the wedding. So there we were as a family. My side of the family on one side of the church, and on the other side was just Mr. Kyle. Becca decided that she was going to miss it. Oh well. I walked with my dad who insisted on wearing overalls and a t- shirt. He figured if he could dress like that while going to ordinary church; why not at my wedding.
At the end of the walkway I could see Martin in a scruffy looking suit that looked too big on him. Although brown was a good color for him… Anyways everything was going smoothly as planned until my young brother started to snore. Apparently he wasn’t looking forward to getting married. I was about to kill him, but I had to be nice. After I am getting married; so I might as well enjoy myself.
Oh! Before I say anything let me tell you how the wedding plans and actual wedding got started… After Martin proposed to me in front of God and everybody on the exact date as Becca’s birthday party; well the entire party looked like they were showered down and had drunk a pot of coffee each. Martin and I were getting married, and that seemed like the most important thing that was happening that day. Everyone seemed to forget Becca all together. Even her own father disregarded her. In the end I kind of felt sorry for her. After we had some cake and talked a bit Martin and I walked home… or at least he walked me home. It seemed really romantic. The clouds were scattered throughout the sky. The breeze was as gentle as a feather floating across your cheek, and the sounds of crickets surrounded the night air.
Life was great. The next day I told my ma and pa about me getting married. Pa just grimaced like he usually does and just stared at Martin until I got Pa’s attention. Ma was really embarrassing me. She was the one that got all emotional. Luke heard about it over dinner. Of course Martin stayed for dinner. Yay family meal!