Lydia & her Lizard by WinonaCookie

It can be immediately apparent that some men are going to be nothing but trouble, and if Lydia Esperanza were to be completely honest, she knew Jimmy Varanus was going to be one of them from the very start. But his dark hair was so glossy, his glittering black eyes so piercing, his voice so smooth it was almost a hiss – she found herself smitten despite her best judgment. Of course, Jimmy then wasted no time in slithering into every corner of her life, insinuating himself so firmly that dislodging him would be massively inconvenient if not downright destructive. Luckily, Lydia’s sister, Lena was not fooled for a moment and being unambiguously lesbian, was utterly immune to Jimmy’s dubious charms. She pressed a lavender powder neatly folded into a packet of waxed paper into Lydia’s palm. “Just in case, hon. You never know. I tucked the instructions into your tobacco box,” Lena whispered.
Lydia probably could have put up with the missing cash, drunken late nights and flagrant cheating, at least for a while, but when Jimmy’s words became viciously hurtful, she knew it was only a matter of time before she began accidentally walking into doors and falling down flights of stairs. She began collecting Jimmy’s cigarette butts, a few strands of his hair from the sink, a single dark eyelash from his sleeping cheek, and on a night so foggy it seemed a cloud had swallowed her house, she tapped a few drops of quinine and the mysterious powder (now green!) into Jimmy’s whiskey bottle and topped it off with some malt liquor. She pretended to be asleep as he drained most of it and instantly passed out cold. Mixing the items she collected into her pipe along with some tobacco, she lit the mixture and smoked slowly while she recited the words passed from sister to sister for generations for just such unfortunate situations. Lydia woke up with a jolt, a rude ray of sunlight smacking her right in the face and glanced over at the sofa.
On a stack of oriental cushions, an enormous black monitor lizard blinked its black glittering eyes at her. “Jimmy?” she whispered and the squamate critter flicked its forked tongue at her a few times. “Well I guess that’s that!” Lydia said, emptying the bottle of whisky down the drain. It turns out that Jimmy made a much better pet than he did a lover. He was quite affectionate, as giant lizards go, as well as protective – it takes a reptile to know one and he could sense a cad before he hit the front stoop.

This 4” x 6” x 3/4” original collage depicting Lydia Esperanza and the much improved Jimmy Varanus is constructed on a hand painted stretched gallery canvas with vintage images and is accented by black Dresden trim, brown satin ribbon and a brass lizard with a silver finish at the top. Lydia’s corset is adorned with silk trim and taupe crystals.

When Ramona Szczerba (a.k.a, Winona Cookie) is not being a psychologist in private practice in San Diego,she enjoys creating whimsical children’s illustrations in watercolor, but also loves working with collage and assemblage. Her artwork and short stories have appeared in several publications including The Steampunk Bible and can be seen at Originals available – check for availability.
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  • WonderlandGlass
    WonderlandGlassalmost 5 years ago

    as well he should… ‘it takes one to know one she smiled’ as Bobby Zimmerman wrote in ‘Desolation Row’ from the ‘HIghway 61 revisited’ album… now where the hell have I put that? Jimmy, as most, got just what he deserved after all, eh?
    Ms. Cookie, as ever, thank you for the smiles your creativity brings to many of us out here… on Desolation Row or in our own little slice of heaven. Now please pass the absynthe…Peace ;-}

  • A little absynthe can make any Desolation Row a little slice of heaven ;-). Thanks so much, Wonderland!

    – WinonaCookie

  • RobynLee
    RobynLeealmost 5 years ago

  • Thanks so much for the feature, Robyn :-).

    – WinonaCookie

  • IWML
    IWMLover 4 years ago

    i love pretty much everything you do. swoon…

  • okay, now you’re making ME swoon! ;-)

    – WinonaCookie

  • VenusOak
    VenusOakover 4 years ago

    awesome collage…..awesome story…….

    and the moral is that you CAN change a man?……lol

  • With enough mojo, yes you can ;-).
    Thanks, Venus!

    – WinonaCookie

  • mickpro
    mickproover 4 years ago

    wonderful art with a great story to match. what a combo.

  • Thanks so much, Mick!

    – WinonaCookie

  • © Kira Bodensted
    © Kira Bodenstedover 4 years ago

    September 19th 2010
    She’s got the Look

  • SteffiCraig
    SteffiCraigover 4 years ago

    SUPERB! Congratulations on the feature! :)))

  • Thelma Van Rensburg
    Thelma Van Ren...over 4 years ago

    fabulous work!

  • Diane Johnson-Mosley
    Diane Johnson-...over 3 years ago

    LOL, fantastic creation!!!

  • Thanks, Diane :-).

    – WinonaCookie

  • serikpai
    serikpaiover 3 years ago


  • Thanks, Serkpai!

    – WinonaCookie

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