Saturday, February 14, 2015

Emil #4. Moonshine.........................by Diane Ogden


Emil:  #4  Moonshine

(Sometimes I hear from the Spirit or Spirits beyond.  This special man named Emil came to me at 4:30 a.m. a few nights ago.  He told me this story among others.  His name is Emil and I am sharing what he told me)
 

I’d like to tell you a story about something quite awful that happened to me back in 1936. Maybe I am sharing this with you because it is unfinished business in my heart.  Maybe it is affecting my transition into this new world.  I am also saying there are many earthly doings of mine that could affect where I might go into this vast Universe, when the time comes for me to move past this, what seems to be a holding area.  I have already passed but it looks from here like there is more passing coming.   I can see various openings with light coming through.  Sort of like I am in a large round ball and wherever I look I see these windows of light.  Some of the lights are brighter than others.  I hope I don’t have to choose on my own,  Miss Julie.  That would make me feel a bit uneasy and I haven’t felt uneasy at all since my passing.   Pondering my hereafter life isn’t going to get me anywhere so I will continue the Story of Shame I started to tell you about.  I know Tillie forgave me. 

I was renting an old farm at the edge of the Arboretum in Madison.  One barn, one old beat up house,  an outhouse a good hundred feet from the main house down a hill and near a RR track.  Darn little outhouse shook like the dickens if a train came passing by and you were inside it.   There were writings on those walls from fifty years’ time.  Some of the writing was clean, some not so clean. Never had no toilet tissues, just an old Sears catalog and some corn cobs.   My barn was just big enough for the draft horses along with some hay and oats, few cats and the Bowman milk cows.  We got the house to live in free ‘cause I milked the cows for the big Bowman Dairy Company.  Ma, “Tillie” would separate the milk from the cream on the porch where she kept the Separator.  That was also a loaner from the Bowman’s.  Tillie also made butter.   The cream and butter was part of the package that went back to the Bowman’s. We got to keep whatever we could eat.  We had chickens and ducks that provided food also.   And a lot of berries from the woods Ma and the kids would sell at the market on the Square along with her other garden vegetables.

One day some fancy city fellows came by for a visit.  They came right out into the barn to talk with me like they owned the place.  I was always a quiet man Julianna…..  I mostly listened like you do.   I wasn’t a very ambitious man either.  So when  them men offered me a lot of money to be able to use the property for their boys to run a Moonshine operation, and for me to keep what was going on very quiet, I agreed.  The men would come and go through part of the Bowman property and I were to ignore it, and so I did.   I told Tillie and the only boy left at home the cars and trucks belonged to the Bowman people who were building back in the woods .  Told them we was asked to refrain from going to their working site.  I was hiding a very illegal Moonshine operation in 1936. And for the first time in my life I had a pocket full of money I didn’t have to work for.  Not only did I not share it with my hard working wife, but I spent the lot of it on myself and a new used wagon.  

And then a day came when a caravan of a different sort of cars came raisin’ dust up the long drive to the property.  The Fed’s.  There were at least five cars, ten to fifteen federal agents dressed in suits and ties, guns drawn.  I was arrested no questions asked.   Tillie was a hollerin’ at them men like a crazy person.  I was feared she would get taken in too and I wondered why she hadn’t been.   Good thing cause the boy was there watchin’ it all.   He wasn’t but six years.  

I tried tellin’ the fed’s it wasn’t my still.  I told ‘em the truth but they wanted a conviction.  I was their easy road to a probable raise.   I lost my job, lost the farm, and spent six months in Leavenworth Prison, Kansas.   Tillie and the boy had to move alone in the dead of the winter.   She had heated bricks and stacked them in the open wagon under tarps for the boy who was  so cold he would run next to the wagon to keep warm after the bricks lost their short warming season.   That boy was also feeling totally responsible for his ma.  The conditions I allowed them to live in were shameful. 

Ma drove the team and wagon from the Arboretum to Token Creek where they had a place to live until I got out of Prison.   They darn near froze to death Julianna.  I am not sure I cared like I should have back then.   But it came fresh back to my mind lying in that nursin’ home before I passed away to where I am now.  

I should tell you Ma took all her cookie jar money and bought the boy a new set of clothes to come meet me at the train from Leavenworth.    One of the older boys gave them a ride to the train station downtown Madison.  

I never appreciated Tillie like I shoulda Miss Julie.  I was a selfish man.  I turned from that nice kid that worked for her folks when we was in our teens to a man who just didn’t seem to be able to support his family very well or at all sometimes.  

I needed to get this off my mind but somehow I suspect it will remain there and follow me.   It always has.   You know the boy was awful embarrassed of his old man.   Tillie told me.  I am sure I have been forgiven, but the hurt remains somewhere in my space.  
Post a Comment