A short novel…

the wooden eagle

GUN 2013

a secret-agent adventure

(concerned with common-sense gun law)




(Copyright Clyde Collins 2013)



free read


Introductions begin here:


The fiction narrative begins here:


Soon enough to be a website with some concluding arguments

Then maybe an e-book


Are you coming up or going down?




The Ladder of Saint Augustine


H. W. Longfellow


Saint Augustine! well hast thou said

That of our vices we can frame

A ladder, if we will but tread

Beneath our feet each deed of shame.


All common things, each day’s events,

That with the hour begin and end,

Our pleasures and our discontents,

Are rounds by which we may ascend.


The low desire, the base design,

That makes another’s virtues less;

The revel of the ruddy wine,

And all occasions of excess;


The longing for ignoble things;

The strife for triumph more than truth;

The hardening of the heart, that brings

Irreverence for the dreams of youth;


All thoughts of ill; all evil deeds,

That have their root in thoughts of ill;

Whatever hinders or impedes

The action of the nobler will ~


All these must first be trampled down

Beneath our feet, if we would gain

In the bright fields of fair renown

The right of eminent domain.


We have not wings, we cannot soar;

But we have feet to scale and climb

By slow degrees, by more and more,

The cloudy summits of our time.


The mighty pyramids of stone

That wedge-like cleave the desert airs,

When nearer seen, and better known,

Are but gigantic flights of stairs.


The distant mountains, that uprear

Their solid bastions to the skies,

Are crossed by pathways, that appear

As we to higher levels rise.


The heights by great men reached and kept

Were not attained by sudden flight,

But they, while their companions slept,

Were toiling upward in the night.


Standing on what too long we bore

With shoulders bent and downcast eyes,

We may discern ~ unseen before ~

A path to higher destinies.


Nor deem the irrevocable Past

As wholly wasted, wholly vain,

If, rising on its wrecks, at last

To something nobler we attain.





Pretty Little Liars

St. Augustine


Mission accomplished…



GUN 2013

Chapter 23


I am sitting at Submissivania’s knee.  Her fiery hair is a flow all over my dreams & her firm smooth shoulders.  I am not real sure how this happened.  I am a fortunate old feller.  Hallelujah.

This evening when I returned from the Prescott Public Library to my neat little room at the inn, I found her in a miniskirt, knees up, sitting in my chair.  She had glass in hand, shoes kicked off, her wiggling toes in command.  This is the first time she’s been in here, her room being across the hall, in which I’ve never been.  But other men have been there, I know for sure.  Midnight dalliances over there do not go undetected by this here secret agent, yours truly.

So she was sitting in my chair.  But now I’m in the chair & she’s sitting on the table next to it ~ her toes in my lap.  We’ve just finished watching Peeintheair & the paltry news on TV.  My secret-agent partner points one of her domineering digits at it.  So I click the idiot box off.

“We got our orders last week,” says Submissivania, sipping her wine.

“Nice of you to let me know,” says I, chagrined.  “What are they?”

Her feet tap a titillating fandango for an instant or two.  It’s a lap dance.  She’s killing me.  She’s really killing me.  She even bumps me in the cheek with her knee.  “O wants us to locate & destroy an NRA ammo-dump hidden somewhere in Prescott.”

“Didn’t we do that two months ago?”

“Quite accidentally.  With some help from our friends.  Yes, Raw.”

I’m so distracted by Submissivania’s legs that I kiss her knee.  I can’t help it.  It’s only natural.  It’s so nearby.  This is the most intimate we’ve ever been.  And I am getting a bit delirious.  She even knocks off my new hat.  Then she starts messing around with one of my earlobes ~ pulls it around ’til, like she’s Cleopatra, she gots me kissing her other knee too.

“Mission accomplished,” I sigh.

“I guess,” says Submissivania.  “The NRA has secret ammo-dumps all over the nation, Rawclyde!  The NRA leaders blame the federal government for hoarding bullets when it’s the NRA who is doing the hoarding ~ thus causing a nationwide shortage.  White House secret agents are blowing up NRA ammo-dumps all over the country now.”

“Sounds like insurrection, Submissivania.”  My lips move to the side of her knee, which tilts a little bit.

Pillars loom high, supporting the roof of the temple.  Heaven’s gate is revealed.  There is no veil!

“And there’s no new assignment?” asks I.

“None for now.”

“So you’re going back home?  To LA?”

“Yes.  And you’re coming with me.  I’m moving out of my parent’s house.  You’re going to be my butler.”


Pillars move.  The subterranean tongue slithers forth.  The stairwell of love quakes.

“Yes, Rawclyde!  Yes!  Yes!  Yes!!!”

Wish Bone

(the end)


H R Giger artwork:



Two months later…



GUN 2013

Chapter 22


At the end of the event, I know what I saw & what I didn’t see inside the burning saloon.  A large wooden eagle & Wayne Peeintheair were in there.  Then they weren’t.  And that’s all I saw.  The rest is smoke & flames.

If the colorfully painted sculpture of the Bald Eagle, 8 to 10-feet tall, transformationed some how into a live entity via a mysterious divine magic ~ if this holy bird picked up Peeintheair in her mighty talons & escaped out the partially burned-away dome in the ceiling of the flaming Bird Cage Saloon ~ if this actually occurred ~ it buffaloes me as much as it buffaloes anybody else.

You, kind & gentle reader, can believe it or not.  It doesn’t matter.  But I know what I saw.  And I know what I believe.

“The son-of-a-gun got carried away by that fricking bird!” bursts forth I to Submissivania while viewing the bellicose NRA spokesman on television a couple months later.  And, alas, I’m wearing my new hat, breaking it in, so to speak.

On the evening news, there’s Wayne Peeintheair saying, “There is nothing President Obama will not do to destroy the 2nd Amendment…”

The gall!  After all we went through Peeintheair is still leading folks astray so that his gun-manufacturing cronies can get filthier & filthier rich.  He’s probably still handing out loaded derringers to unsuspecting children too .  “Well, this isn’t over ~ not by a long shot!” bluster I.

“I like the plastic ear on the side of his head,” calmly comments Submissivania.  “That’s really cute.”

She smiles broadly…


by Rawclyde!

Escape from The Birdcage Saloon

After The Fire Prescott AZ

Photo by Les Stukenberg, The Daily Courier, Prescott AZ, 5/10/2012


GUN 2013

Chapter 21


What stops

a bad man with a gun


Look in the mirror

bury that pistol

my son


What stops

a bad man with a gun


Here come the


run, man, run


What stops

a bad man with a gun


Stick out your foot

he’ll fall on his face

like anyone


His voice ~ it blows like a hurricane as he sings an epiphanic song.  It vibrates the  chandeliers more so than the spatterings of powder & shot from below.

The birdcage doors, I swear, rattle!  Yet they are only paint on the dome interior.  And the perch that supports the wooden eagle ~ sways amidst the clatter & smoke in the artist’s conception of the bird cathedral, aye, above our lonely heads.

Ca ca ca cahhhhhhh!

The catatonic bodyguards bump & nudge each other back to life, then haul-ass, but one.  This remaining one cajoles Wayne Peeintheair to flee the sputtering flames, but the over-the-edge NRA leader will have none of it ~ pushes his last loyal minion away.

“Save your own bacon.  Don’t worry about mine.  I want to sizzle!” guffaws Peeintheair.  And he continues to two-step around & around in a circle & chortle!

In the blink of a Whiptail Lizard’s eye & the shudder of a Bald Eagle’s wing, the one-eared antihero of American gun-freedom is left all alone in a saloon doomed to collapse any minute ~ alone alone alone but for the White House’s two favorite secret agents, Submissivania Whapp, and yours truly, Rawclyde!

Ain’t we lucky.  We’re still here too.

Submissivania is loaded down with her armaments like a peach tree ripe with summer fruit.  She’s standing behind her cascading wheel-barrow, ready to go.

I make gesture at the back door.  She allows me to grab the wheel-barrow.  We head out.

What are we supposed to do about the abandoned gone-loco NRA leader?  Are we supposed to save him some how?  In reply to these thoughts, the animated ammo below whittles at the floor in a sudden accelerated magnitude.  Peeintheair’s song is drowned out by fierce ammo soprano.  And a whiskey bottle explodes.  It’s a miracle none of us has been hit by a stray bullet.  They’re everywhere!

Clouds of smoke obstruct our view of the whirling nut-cake man as we find an obscure trail and, sweating profusely, push forward ~ zig-zagging around the flames.  Planks are a-crumbling.  Sparks fly!

Under the bullet-shattered exit sign above the rear corridor, I come to a halt.  At the end of the short passageway Submissivania pushes open the backdoor.  She is a sparkling silouette in sunlight.  But I want to take one last look at the blooming inferno behind us.  I’m actually worried about Peeintheair ~ as if he has any chance to survive whatsoever.  I hear no song except that of crackling bullets and flame.  I turn around & peer into the smoke where he is sure to be dancing all by himself in the burning Birdcage Saloon.

The smoke clears for a long enough moment for me to see thru stinging eyes that Peeintheair is not there.  I also see in the dome above, which is partially burned away, that the eagle too is gone.  Did the big bird, once wood, now astral, snatch up Peeintheair and escape through the ruptured dome?  I wipe sweat out of my burning eyes, peer thru the smoke and peer again.  I see flames licking at a pair of empty clodhopper clown shoes.

Another chunk of barroom floor collapses...

chirp chirp

Gun Law

how 'bout a ride


“Well Regulated”


I would like to argue in favor of potentially deadly firearms being treated on the same par as potentially dangerous privately-owned motor vehicles.  In other words, I am for federally-dictated state-run licensing, registration, and insurance requirements for gun ownership and utilization.  Of course, nobody who owns a firearm wants to do this.  I remember years ago I didn’t want to be forced to buy insurance for my car.  But when it became illegal not to do so, I did.  So go ahead, I’d like to see you keep a keen watch on our government ~ locked and loaded ~ and licensed registered insured…


2nd Amendment


A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.


Gun Logic


I’ve noticed whenever a gun “expert” argues against gun regulation of any kind, that eventually, if not right away, their logic falls apart 2 or 3 times by the time they’ve made their point.
For example, when the celebrated National Rifle Association (NRA) spokesman, Wayne LaPierre, explains the uselessness of government gun buybacks, he says in a book he wrote, Shooting Straight, that some people are thus encouraged to steal guns to sell them.  I think he’s stretching logic like a rubber band here.  So I say, well, Wayne, lock-up the guns you want to keep during the gun buyback so that nobody steals them.  There you go: 1+1=2…
~ Rawclyde!