Every summer in my teens I canoed with friends through the Rideau region of lakes and canals in Ontario. We camped every night, swam, cooked, laughed, told ghost stories and played games. One annual camping spot was on a lake with an enormous rope swing tied to an overhanging tree. You grabbed the rope, stepped … Continue reading Poem of the Week, by Izumi Shikibu
Once, when I was ten years old and the proud owner of a three-speed Schwinn with a basket and a speedometer, I rode to the top of the biggest hill nearby and surveyed my surroundings. Pine woods, fields, farmhouses and barns, and the lonely two-lane road in front of me. Breaking my land speed record … Continue reading One new book and three new one-day classes!
A few years ago my brother sent me a photo of my nephew, with the caption Getting his mind blown at Nickelodeon Universe. Nickelodeon Universe is a crowded and noisy place, but in the photo, my tiny nephew stands alone in a huge open space, his head craned up, staring at something I can’t see. The … Continue reading Poem of the Week, by Thomas Reiter
Once, a long time ago, someone close to me handed me a memo and asked me to read it. It was a work memo that summarized some unfair working conditions. I didn’t know who had written it, but my first comment was “Wow. Whoever wrote this can’t spell worth a damn and doesn’t know how … Continue reading Poem of the Week, by Jalal Al-din Muhammad Rumi
My youngest didn’t walk until she was 22 months old. Instinct told me she was fine so I didn’t worry about this, but I observed her with interest. One day, when I was in the kitchen and she was sitting in a patch of sun on the living room floor, her back to me, I … Continue reading Poem of the Week, by Peggy Shumaker
Neither my friend nor I had been to a high school reunion in many years –in my case, decades–and we were both nervous. The years we had spent growing up together in upstate New York seemed far away, and we hadn’t kept in touch with many classmates. So we met early, at the bar in … Continue reading Poem of the Week, by Maria Mazziotti Gillan
Long ago, when I taught Mandarin at a big city high school in Minneapolis, some of my students would stay after school and talk with me. One was a Hmong young man, quiet and shy, with halting English. He would sit in the chair by my desk and cast his glance at the floor. For … Continue reading Poem of the Week, by Laura Hansen