After four years at the two room/one room school in Bridgeport, that school was also closed so for eighth grade, I went to a 'normal' or more typical school. In Clarkdale, Arizona, it was still not a really big school. There were three schools in town. The grammar school where my brother Charlie began first grade that same year served grades K-3, I believe. They had a kind of middle school which encompassed grades 4-6 and the seventh and eighth grades were in with the high school which was where I found myself that fall.
Talk about culture shock! I went from a one-teacher school of about thirty pupils in eight grades to a program where we rotated from classroom to classroom with different teachers for each subject, just as the high school did. There were only eight girls in my class and almost twice as many boys but that did not make me an instant queen of the campus! I missed the country and community atmosphere and my old crush, Marvin. However by the time I moved on to my freshman year at the same school, I had adjusted fairly well. By then my admittedly fickle fancy had found a couple of new boys to be interested in. Again, as I look back, I have to laugh but as is often the case with puppy love, it seemed very serious and intense at the time. Both boys were a bit on the outside of the "in crowd" or popular groups, just as I was, not athletes or BMOCs at all..
They suffered some bullying at times, mostly verbal, over which I was very quick to jump to their defense. However, that was often thankless too. I mean it was probably a bit demeaning to a young man to have a girl leap to berate his tormentors! Live and learn. I never did have good sense when it came to what I perceived as injustice and wrong. Although I was normally very timid, I could jump up and let someone have it with both barrels when I felt the urge in defense of someone wronged or a collective wrong. I can recall people looking at me with shock and surprise when I would do that. Whoa, is that mousy little Gaye/ Maggie/
Margaret (I was known at various times by all those names) shooting off hard words like blasts of gunfire? No profanity at that time but plenty of blistering phrases!
Anyway here from my old yearbook are my two heroes and special friends from that time. I guess I did not pick them for their handsome faces or athletic or other prowess. Mostly they were nice though and just people I felt sympathy for, a bit of common ground and a connection with. I suppose one could have worse reasons for a crush or puppy love! Both moved on out of my life by the next year but that's the way of such things.
By the next year, the high schools of Cottonwood and Clarkdale were merged to form Mingus High School. And my original hero Marvin was back in my world, now a senior and about 6'2" with a bit of the ornery and swaggering rebel about him. His father was gone and he basically went his own way. We never got together but not due to my lack of wishing! All of this was duly recorded in verse and in my diary, the poems the first of what eventually became Walking Down My Shadows although I did not know it at that time. And the would-be writer of romance added more fodder to the memories and learning process.
Welcome to my World
Welcome to the domain different--to paraphrase from New Mexico's capital city of Santa Fe which bills itself "The City Different." Perhaps this space is not completely unique but my world shapes what I write as well as many other facets of my life. The four Ds figure prominently but there are many other things as well. Here you will learn what makes me tick, what thrills and inspires me, experiences that impact my life and many other antidotes, vignettes and journal notes that set the paradigm for Dierdre O'Dare and her alter ego Gwynn Morgan and the fiction and poetry they write. I sell nothing here--just share with friends and others who may wander in. There will be pictures, poems, observations, rants on occasion and sometimes even jokes. Welcome to our world!