At a dinner party the other night some friends asked why my mother, born and raised in Manhattan, had lived her entire adult life in the rural foothills of the Adirondack Mountains. I told them she had always wanted to live in the country, that she had spent childhood summers at a camp where her … Continue reading Poem of the Week, by Denise Levertov
Walk slowly. All you can ever come to is yourself. (Middle Eastern proverb, at least according to the Reader’s Digest magazine you read it in, back when you were in middle school) Three decades after you both graduated from that high school in the foothills, you feel a tap on your shoulder and turn to … Continue reading Andes Mint #13: Walk slowly.
When you think of Charlie, which you do every day, he appears to you smiling, sitting on a chair wearing dark pants, a white shirt with a faint stripe, dark shoes. The chair is simple, one step up from a folding chair, and it’s set on the linoleum floor of the dark pantry-like space in … Continue reading Andes Mint #6: Phantom ice cream
I’m talking to you, 2012. You were a long and hard year for so many of those I love. You felt helpless and horrifying at times. And you are almost over. I’m thinking about the smallness of human life. The smallness of my life. Of this year. The smallnesses are what I remember. Like the … Continue reading "Though your life felt arduous/ new and unmapped and strange. . ."
Last week you had a vivid dream in which the lyrics to a beautifully sad Willie Nelson song you’d never heard before went scrolling through your head. When you woke up you went to the computer and googled the first line: I have a thing for the things of this world, but no such Willie … Continue reading Things of this world
Unlike most friends, this friend has been part of your life for as long as you can remember. He figures in your earliest memories, and there hasn’t ever been a stretch of longer than half a year when you haven’t been in his presence. That hat and shirt in the photo to the right stand … Continue reading Portrait of a Friend, Volume IV
You must have known her from kindergarten on, although it was in middle school that you became close friends. She lived in a small bright green ranch house right across the street from the middle school, which was right next to the high school, which meant that all she had to do was walk out … Continue reading Portrait of a Friend, Vol. 2
See that photo there, in the upper left? Of course you don’t. That’s because there is a tiny mutant rebel army wielding swords and running amok in the walls of this blog, much as tiny mice used to run amok in the walls of the very old house in which I grew up, and they … Continue reading from an unfamiliar photo sent by a friend
Here is what you remember from the 60’s: 1. Some of the high schoolers, who were huge and terrifying to the elementary- school you, wore black armbands. 2. At the yearly high school talent show, something you lived for because you idolized those huge and terrifying high schoolers, a girl with long dark hair and … Continue reading Long Time Passing
Her photographer friend Dani loves faces best. Eyes particularly. Dani laughs and shakes her head, surprised that after a decade of taking photos she is still and always drawn to eyes. What can I say? They’re the window to the soul. Her youngest child notices hands, the size of someone’s palm, the length of their … Continue reading Les yeux sont le miroir de l'ame