A few things: November 2017

An actual family dinner conversation: SON:  [to MOM] “So, why’d you move all that stuff and mess up the big room?” MOM: “I need more space for my art and sewing and things. Maybe I’ll have people over, teach a class; who knows? I might even teach you to sew, so you can sew a…

The way we were.

It’s thankfulness season, time for the annual spilling of gratitude that began mid-month and will end when a wave of resolutions takes over, as if gratitude must be bound by beginning and end points. I don’t mean to sound cynical. Certainly I have many things to be thankful for. Among my many blessings – beyond…

A few notes: October 2017

A little more than a year ago, I started a new job, taking the helm of a well-established but fragile nonprofit agency dedicated to ending family violence. Someday I’m going to write about the experience; but today isn’t that day. Today I have something else in mind, keeping with the theme of sifting and sorting…

Sex, death, and middle age.

“I know you said you don’t want any of this, but I think you’ll actually want one thing,” he said, dropping some folded papers on the kitchen table.

It was a letter, five pages in long-hand, from my mother to my father, a few months before they married. When we had gathered the belongings from my mother’s garage years ago, the letter must have slipped from a box into an adjacent pile.

Valentine.

Late on a Saturday night, after driving six hours straight from Knoxville to Memphis, I was working on a post, copying and pasting from an old, discarded draft. And I somehow accidentally published the draft. When I realized what I’d done, early Sunday morning, I changed the status back to “Draft,” hiding it again from…

Books, art, and the dog days of summer.

The letter, were there to be one (which there will not), might continue this way: And now it is finally October. The end of sandals, the start of boots. Irrespective of temperature (because, in Memphis one can’t be particular about such things), October is the beginning of stews and pot-pies, of flower beds going to…

Sorry, the number you’ve dialed has been disconnected.

We rose before dawn, in the dead of winter, when the only light was the moon’s reflection on the Nebraska snow. We lived in a small, four-room guesthouse – a generous term, as the “guesthouse” was a two-story garage, the top half converted into living quarters: two bedrooms, each barely big enough for a bed,…