Christmas Star

I have a brass star that sits on the top of my Christmas tree. No matter the size or state of the tree, the star is there. It matches the star that lived on the top of my family Christmas tree; the one made by my father the second year he and my mother were…

Serpent’s teeth and the brilliance of Shakespeare

I hated reading Shakespeare as I grew up. The language seemed difficult, the concepts dry and old. I was, of course, ignorant. And a philistine. Now I know better, and am continually gobsmacked by what Shakespeare was able to contain in his works. I wonder who I was when I was younger - so sure…

The end of an era

There's something terrifically sad about the end of a generation, that moment when the last of a set of siblings pass away and you realize, with shock, that there is no one left who truly remembers your parents as kids and you forgot or were too busy or wrapped in your own details to ASK…

Suburban evils

Just finished Blind Crescent by Michelle Berry, a tale of a group of families living on a suburban cul de sac that follows well on the bizarre family relationships of August:Osago County. Initially in this story, you feel a bit like the suburban site is safely enclosing the residents, but decay is creeping ever closer.…

Mourning for Christmas

Ho oh ho! Celebrate! It's the big day next week! Let's laugh and play... Not so easy for those who have lost someone this year, or recently, or who have someone like my dad, who passed away on Christmas Eve, this making every year an ache of longing for him and his cruel/funny approach to…

The warped door

In every life, there seems to be a closet of unresolved feelings, undealt-with crises, unhealed wounds. I know I have one, and sometimes  it's all I can do to shove things in there out of my everyday sight so that I can focus on what needs to be done to get myself around in a…

Writing close to the bone

I'm currently writing a piece that is about a woman, looking at the body of her husband, and her conflicted feelings about the death of some one she had to care for for years. It's kind of about my mum, but not my mum. I have no idea how she felt when my dad died.…

How do you know when it’s ready?

I'm delighted to report my wonderful, smart, and confident niece has written and self-published her first book and is now marketing it to bookstores in her area, as well as on Amazon. It's called "Crescent" and I'll link to it here. When I first heard about this, though, I was startled to find in my…

Serendipitous Connections

  I'm all grown up now, no kids to tow to rugby games or class performances , no parent-teacher lineups or other shared parental volunteer activities to set up friendships with other grown ups. It used to be easy to meet new folks - we were doing the same things at the same time, our kids…

I want a “do over”…

Just back from watching The Great Gatsby. It astonishes me how different all these books are from what I thought they were when I was forced to read them in high school. The whole feeling of Gatsby was so different than what I remembered (truth is I just lived for Robert Redford (still do) and…