Your truck (Henry's truck), the one you drove to Memphis (an eternity ago), sits on the parking pad behind our house (still with its New Mexico license plates), where it has sat, flat-tired, for a dozen years, neglected. Our son, who used to sit in the bathtub with you making shampoo mohawks and blowing bubbles, … Continue reading 1
We're going to need a bigger house, I said. You were not sure. The people who built this house and lived here for 52 years, the people who planted the twin dogwood trees in the front yard, they raised two children in this house, you said. But both children were girls, I reminded you. Our … Continue reading 16
I learned to drive in the fall of 1980, when the future tasted like a raindrop on the tip of my tongue. It was after the summer we moved from my growing-up house into one that, in my mother's words, didn't have room for my father. It was the year we packed up books, clothes, … Continue reading Independence day
We drove home from dinner, a cozy evening with a few friends, and changed into our nightclothes to wait. It was early, and it was cold, and we were winter-tired, feet moving to the rhythm of a primal hibernation call. Our children were nestled under covers, watching Netflix and avoiding homework. It had the normal … Continue reading Slivers of infinite happiness.
He thought his third wife was "the one," and for a while she was. But, to be fair, so were wives one and two, as would be four (and probably five; I wouldn't know, we lost touch). "The one" ultimately had nothing to do with the wives and everything to do with him. But wife … Continue reading Farewell, Bob the elf.
The advice, you'll recall, was this: You want them when they're little, but they need you when they're big. That's from my friend Barbara, admonishing me at the time (I was 7 months pregnant with my now-17-year-old son) to find excellent child care, throw myself into high-paying work, and save the "flexible hours, work from … Continue reading A few things: October/November 2018
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 … Continue reading A few things: November 2017
"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.