Another Excerpt from That Christmas Morning Feeling by Marie Cartier

MarieCartierforKCETa-thumb-300x448-72405Author’s Note:  This post continues to serialize excerpts from my novel, That Christmas Morning Feeling. Please see last month’s post for the initial entry.


Book Number Seventeen

Look, I’m not the one. I don’t have an investment here. This is not about me. But, I think that when you think you can actually do some good in the world you should do it. I mean what if you have this whole body of knowledge. And you say nothing. Is that morally acceptable? I think not. I’m sure everyone has thought it. You are going along in your life, and you stop suddenly. The color of the trees, sparkle on the water, but maybe not so wow world, you are cool stuff. Maybe just the mundane world, maybe even the curve of the paint on the wall, even paint drying as the saying goes, could be enough to catch you up and you realize – life. Life’s here. Right now. And it needs me. Do I love it, or do I not? And if you do, if you love, love it – just life. Then you have to do something about it, to make it better. Like if it was your kid, you couldn’t just sit by – right? Well, you could. People do, God knows.

Or he doesn’t. You’d think he would do something, or she. Guess it doesn’t work that way. Maybe it’s true what they said in the church last Sunday. I’ve been thinking about it… even though I was only half listening. Personally I usually hate being there, big waste of time. But it is a waste of time, and in some ways that’s a good thing…just a predictable waste of time, nothing dramatic happening –that’s a new way to look at Church. I guess. Have to remember that.

Maybe God is in “the least of us.” That would be me. And it is up to us to decide what God does, how God acts, or rather to act like God. Then we can get God to change things. Otherwise God is just an idea…without a body. Not much you can do on planet Earth in that state. We have to figure out we are not really in Oz, like Dorothy, no mystical wizard to help us…just some fabulous dream shoes and a great idea about home, and no place like it, whatever she’s rattling at the end… and then going there to do something about it. She can’t do it from Oz. Too bad, but true. She has to wake up there in the middle of the black and white world and get out of bed, presumably without the fabulous shoes. So she just has to get out of bed and get on with it. At least I hope she gets out of bed; we never really saw that part.

We are really here, so we can do something about the here and now.

So no one is talking Incest. No one I personally know of course, since I talk it. That is not because Incest is not happening as an event. It’s just not a newsworthy concept, really. Because it isn’t a concept is it…? It’s an event, as in, “This happened to me.” But it is not a language that is spoken on planet Earth. No language here, except Incest, could transform that event that happens into a concept that’s newsworthy… not that I know of. And no one is taking language labs in Incest. So no one can write about it in the newspapers, etc., etc. It’s obviously a vicious cycle.

“Whatever you do to the least of me, you do unto me,” the Gospel according to Matthew, Verse 25. I remember all of this from Sunday. Wow. I need to pay attention in there more often. So, I’m God. There are a lot of logical problems with this of course. Like no women priests and I suppose I’m a woman, but is that really God speaking? Where did God say no women priests? He didn’t. Or she. No one said God was a man. Just Jesus. God, by all rights, and science, should be Mary. As if. But, it doesn’t matter. I’ve got bigger fish to fry, someone else can tackle that.

I think Matthew was on to something though. He wrote, because I just looked it up, “God Said,” I guess I could go through the whole damn book and see if there is anything that contradicts this or strengthens my point, but I don’t really have time for that. I mean I’m trying to save my Life here. And if you are thrown a Life jacket you shouldn’t worry about whether or not it’s going to fit… if you and Life are already drowning, you should just grab the damn thing, strap it on –Life, and start swimming.

I’m God.

If there ever was a phrase that could save a drowning man, I’m sure that this is it. And for a drowning woman? Well…what about…something I heard on “Gidget” actually, sure…what about… “Let’s get wet?” Could mean a lot of things, but also swimming to shore.


 The journals could smell their Reader. They could feel him in the attic. He was smoking, like she smoked. The journals knew, like all inanimate objects knew, that they would lose their life force after he read them- their charge would be released. Like the novel that waits with the marker in the middle– it’s alive, patient and not patient.

I think this thing and I get you to see what I see through the magic of writing, wrote Stephen King and he of all people would know that objects can come to life.


Chris was sitting on top of the floorboards, underneath which were the journals, in their boxes. They reached out to him through the layers the girl has placed between them and her Intended Reader. And they started to beat. He tapped his foot against the floorboards and leaned back his head and started to cry.

“What the fuck is wrong with me?” they heard him say…although he didn’t say it out loud. And then “Fuck, I’m menopausal! Like Mallory.”


Marie Cartier is a teacher, poet, writer, healer, artist, and scholar. She holds a BA in Communications from the University of New Hampshire; an MA in English/Poetry from Colorado State University; an MFA in Theatre Arts (Playwriting) from UCLA; an MFA in Film and TV (Screenwriting) from UCLA; an MFA in Visual Art (Painting/Sculpture) from Claremont Graduate University; and a Ph.D. in Religion with an emphasis on Women and Religion from Claremont Graduate University.

Categories: abuse, Fiction

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