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Updated on November 25, 2013

Great Aunt "Little Nina"

Nina Goss (c. 1910). She died in childhood after accidentally falling into a vat of molasses.
Nina Goss (c. 1910). She died in childhood after accidentally falling into a vat of molasses. | Source

Can I trust you?

I have a secret or two I want to share, but fear the hidden police will- once and for all- lock me away in a secret vault in a secret cell with nothing left, but all my other secrets left untold.

Starlets, stars and starless… Secrets can make you famous, notorious and sometimes, shy. Secrets soothe. Secrets share. Overnight or in a moment of vulnerability you slip up and tell someone you thought cared: a secret.

Can I trust you?

Surreptitiously, secrets can fly off in every direction like feathers off chickens stuffed in crates on backs of trucks flying down the highways. As the trucks roll down the highways, the feathers fly off in every direction. Once they have flown away, there is no way of knowing where they will end up. No way of telling where the feathers will land. No way of predicting: friend or foe. Perhaps, the secrets land in places where you are not known.

I have a secret to tell. Can I trust you?

I have a ghost in my machine:

A wily, unruly ghost secretive and unpredictable-

A mystical spirit urging me to sing my private song-

A covert conversation commences.

Which secrets should I tell?

The ones that can send me to hell and back-

The ones nobody would ever guess-

The ones that left invisible scars on my back-

I can trust you. Right?

You have nothing to gain.

You have nothing to lose.

What I am about to describe really happened:

Great Aunt “Little Nina” died in a most horrific way.

In 1910, she accidentally fell into a vat of molasses.

What secrets did she take with her?

Are the ghosts in my machine her ghosts?

Am I her only friend?

On levels buried deep in my soul are ancient sinners, saints, generation after generation of mysterious secret holders wandering aimlessly through my machine. There is no formal promenade as to when they arrive, how long they stay, or why they will not go away.

What I am about to describe really happened:

My Great Uncle “Little Garrel” died in 1939 when he was hit by a car in a place where weeks could go by without seeing a car.

What secrets did he take with him?

Is his ghost my ghost?

Am I his only friend?

What I am about to describe really happened:

When I was Great Aunt “Little Nina’s” age, I caught my bed on fire.

Sitting on the floor at the foot of my bed with its sugar and spice comforter and matching skirt, I took the pack of matches and began striking one at a time. I would strike the match, look at it closely, and then blow it out before the fire reached my little fingers. I stared too long, felt the fire, threw the match down and the skirt of the bedspread began to burn as did the green carpet. I tried blowing it out like you would blow out candles on a cake. Instead of making things better, things got worse. I paced not knowing what to do. The smoke began to fill the room. I walked out, shut the door, and walked down the hallway into the dining room where my parents sat at the wooden table reading the morning news.

I told them, “Don’t Go in My Room!” and then I ran out the door and down the dirt bank and into the house of my grandparents practically jumping into the arms of my grandpa- who later would not let my parents spank me, shake me, strangle me…because my grandpa said, “The trauma of it all was punishment enough.”

Is that little girl still ghosting my ghost? Was that me?

One hundred years from now, will my secrets haunt progeny the way they have haunted me? Will another have dreams, visions and episodes of de ja vu? Will they have moments of clarity followed by feelings of doom? I hope not.

I hope they are celebrating the Summer Solstice. The sky is clear and creeping along as it turns the day into night. You are still feeling the leftover sun, maybe even a little burn from where you swam that day in the river, but you do not mind. You have a sweater if you need one. You relax. You breathe in the beauty. Across the river, there are only woods. Sky begins to touch the forest tops until you can no longer distinguish one from the other. Magic begins. Suns from galaxies begin to smile. The musicians play louder. Bolts of laughter can be heard coming from every direction. And then you see it. You really see it. And you can’t help, but smile:


Fireflies in a tree

The Boston Molasses Disaster, also known as the Great Molasses Flood and the Great Boston Molasses Tragedy, occurred on January 15, 1919, in the North End neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts in the United States. This is a photo from under the elevated tracks. By David Emery

The story you're about to read isn't an urban legend per se — it's all true, in fact — but there's a longstanding popular myth associated with it. On hot, summer days in one of the oldest neighborhoods in Boston, they say, a faint, sickeningly-sweet odor wafts up from cracks in the pavement — the stench of 85-year-old molasses.

Molasses Clocked at 35 MPH ... in January!

The Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919


This a photo of a 1938 model Hillman Minx. The photo was taken in the winter of 1939/1940 and the car is complying with blackout regulations. The car was red in


Stock passenger cars of the early 1930s would go up to 50 mph, and some later V-8's and V-12's went over 80 mph. By the end of the 1930s, cars were reaching the modern level of 100 to 120 mph.


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    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      3 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Kim I know I've read this before, although I can't seem to find my comment. This piece of work is just as incredible the second time around. Your very unique talent shines through. I'd love to read more like this. I hope you're well and enjoying life. I wish you all the best for 2015.

    • cleaner3 profile image


      4 years ago from Pueblo, Colorado

      Kim I want to introduce you a new poet friend of mine .. her name is Creative Novella.. please add her she writes excellent poetry .. thank you my sweet..


    • oceansnsunsets profile image


      4 years ago from The Midwest, USA

      Wow, I have never read anything quite like this! You are a very talented and have a wonderfully unique writing style. I too wonder about things from the past, stories and the real lives people lived and their heart aches and tales. It is good to wonder and remember and think about such things. Very interesting, thanks for sharing and for the photos too.

    • craiglyn profile image


      4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I truly enjoyed this hub. You have such a fanciful way of writing that is very intriguing. Loved the history and the ghosts speaking to you from your keyboard.

    • Sparklea profile image


      4 years ago from Upstate New York

      ocfireflies, a terrific write, I especially love your comparison of chicken feathers flying all over the place, not to mention your 'ocfireflies!' at the end...LOVED THAT. The accompanying photos added to this remarkable piece of genius. THANK you for this great hub! Blessings, Sparklea :)

    • ocfireflies profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from North Carolina

      Still dealing with net issues so please forgive me for my late reply.


      You are so kind to call this a "masterpiece."


      So wish I could draw, paint, sketch...can barely draw a tree. Thanks for the read. I have indeed enjoyed my hugs. Faith and Jackie are awesome.


      If I inspired two more hubs with this piece, than that just goes to show how hugs can be contagious. So glad to have you on HP.

      Dearest Romeo,

      How extra-blessed I feel to see you again. Still thinking of you and others dealing with the aftermath of the UK storms and flooding. Per usual, your comments do not disappoint. To find out I have a signature is pretty darn cool. Thanks for all the sharing, clickety-clicking and pinning.

      So happy to have made these comments before the net demons intervened.

      Blessings to all,


    • Romeos Quill profile image

      Romeos Quill 

      4 years ago from Lincolnshire, England

      A thoroughly absorbing and engrossing read Princess Kim.

      Trust....the $64,000 question; but your secrets are safe with me :)

      Introspection, consternation and revelation made it gripping, being interlaced with a segmented ' stream of consciousness ' approach via your tailored writing signature, which made this highly personal piece of social history a great read, even if the subject matter was morose in nature, which you handsomely made digestible.

      Sharing, clickety-click and pinning.

      Kind Regards,


    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 

      4 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      The artist at work. You truly know how to paint a story with words. As I read your two stories, one of Great Aunt "Little Nina and how your great Uncle “Little Garrel” died, and the matches you played with, you gave me ideas for at least two hubs of my own. You truly inspired me. Many thanks. Now I'm ready for the next treat, reading Labor day 1991

    • kidscrafts profile image


      4 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

      Beautiful and awesome! You are indeed a brilliant writer! I wish I could wrote like you about the ghosts of my past... instead, I will continue to paint with my brushes :-)

      Have an awesome day and enjoy all the hugs you receive!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      4 years ago from southern USA

      Kim! You are a brilliant writer! I am so sorry, but somehow, of all writes, I missed this masterpiece you have written here. You had me hooked right from the start. You have given me chills.

      Up and more and sharing

      Tons of hugs and bravo to you sweet Kim, the amazing writer,

      Faith Reaper

    • torrilynn profile image


      4 years ago

      You are more than welcome !

    • ocfireflies profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from North Carolina


      Thank You for calling my piece, "Amazing."


      I have not seen them as much as felt them, sense their presence, with one exception: there was a time when I became rather afraid to go to sleep for I would feel first something hovering, then last time it happened, something pulling me from the foot of the bed. People said I was having night terrors. I don't know, but whatever "it" was, "it" felt real to me. Thanks for stopping by.

      Best to you both,


    • torrilynn profile image


      4 years ago

      I believe in ghosts. I use to see them when I was younger.

    • Eiddwen profile image


      4 years ago from Wales

      Amazing Kim and thank you for sharing.


    • ocfireflies profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from North Carolina


      In my research is how I learned about the Boston Tragedy.

      I believe in ghosts, molasses and fireflies, too. Smile.

      Thanks for using words like "brilliant" to describe my work.

      You are appreciated my friend.

      Many Blessings and Happy Thanksgiving,


    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 

      4 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Brilliant absolutely brilliant I believe in all three ghosts, molasses and fireflies. Never knew such a tragedy had occurred. Fascinating.

    • ocfireflies profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from North Carolina


      You are too kind. Thank you for the vote.

      Many Blessings,


    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 

      4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Kim, very good. A story that grabs and holds you, you can't ask for more. ^

    • ocfireflies profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from North Carolina


      I am blushing.

      I love the idea of flying, but I am terribly afraid of heights.

      Your words of encouragement help me step closer to the edge of my nest. Thank you for that.

      I appreciate you.


    • cleaner3 profile image


      4 years ago from Pueblo, Colorado

      Wow.. Kim .. this is delicious as ... dare I say .. Molasses..

      very well written ..the secret is now out Kim .. you are a wonderful writer with a imagination as vivid as...

      the blue sky in the mornings glow.. thank s for the share .. I would say this is your best hub yet. you are getting better and better with each you publish .. so fly little Kim... you have spread your wings.. go now and fly...

    • ocfireflies profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from North Carolina


      I thank you for stopping by again. And I am glad to have a style. Sometime, maybe I will understand just exactly what it is :-)



    • Theater girl profile image


      4 years ago from New Jersey

      I have to comment again....just to say, you most definitely have a style!!!!

    • ocfireflies profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from North Carolina

      Dee aka Nonna,

      I wish I knew so much more and not just the tragic stuff. Thanks for all the great adjectives and for voting this piece awesome. Please know you are appreciated.


      Coming from you- one of the most prolific writers on HP, I can't tell you how much your kind words mean.

      Wishing you both a Happy Thanksgiving!


    • suzettenaples profile image

      Suzette Walker 

      4 years ago from Taos, NM

      Kim, this truly is excellent work. This was delightful to read. I was totally engaged. I love the poem! You have got to publish your writing - your style is so unique and creative. Your 'secrets' are safe with me! LOL You can express yourself in a way, I just cannot. This is so real and identifiable. If I don't 'see' you before, Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

    • Dee aka Nonna profile image

      Dee aka Nonna 

      4 years ago

      Oh my, you really got me to thinking. There are things that I have wished, many times, that I'd asked my mother and my aunts.....what secrets did they take with them?

      This is touching, haunting, thought-provoking, and just a wonderfully written hub. Voted up and awesome.

    • ocfireflies profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from North Carolina


      Finding one's own style is an ongoing process, and for you to describe me as having my own style means a lot. Saying I am talented feels pretty darn good, too. : - )


      I am so happy I was able to keep you engrossed which is always the goal. I am glad you enjoyed the images. I am related to Nina and Garrel. In fact, it was when I discovered the picture of Nina and read about her terrible death, I knew I wanted to write something...Thanks for Vote!

      Wishing you both a wonderful week,


    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      4 years ago from Queensland Australia


      I can only repeat what bill and Anna have already said. This was outstanding writing, probably the best story I have ever read on hub pages. It was engrossing from the start and never eased up. The images were perfect accompaniment. Are you really descended from Great Aunt "Little Nina" and Great Uncle "little Garrel"? Love everything about this, voted up.

    • Anna Haven profile image

      Anna Haven 

      4 years ago from Scotland

      You really are very talented. This was flowing and bohemian. Free and also controlled.

      Your writing style is very individual and really captivating.

      Loved it!

    • ocfireflies profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from North Carolina


      I am so glad that you took the time to return. I can't tell you how much your compliments mean to me for I spent the entire day working on this one hub. First day in awhile, I had the house to myself. : - )

      Thank you for making me feel it was time spent well.

      Many Blessings to You My Dear Friend,


      Theater girl,

      "Haunting and original" are comments I will take any day of the week. Thanks for reading. "Fantastic" is awesome, too.

      Many Blessings to You,


    • Theater girl profile image


      4 years ago from New Jersey

      Haunting, original and you weave such clear pictures with your words! Fantastic!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Now let me repeat what I said in my note to you. This is brilliant writing, the best you have produced here at HP. You had me hooked with the introduction and it only got better from that point on. Really, Kim, this is just beautiful work.



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