It is the end of a year. It was not an easy year. I look back on the year past and wince shielding my inner-eye from the pain of my mother’s illness and death, the blur of unexpected activity, long hours spent on the road traveling between Minnesota and Illinois: winter weather, freezing fog, snow […]Read more "There Is A Field"
I have thought much since January how life is tentative. I have known abstractly the brevity of life – how war extinguishes breath, the soldier and civilian’s; how famine weakens and illness encroaches; how epidemics — smallpox, tuberculosis, yellow fever, and cholera —sweep aside generations in their path. Polio was the childhood fear of my mother. […]Read more "I Walk"
A decent day is promised after two days of high winds, rain and cold temperatures. It’s hard to give up an early June weekend to inclement weather — hard on my mind; hard on my body; hard on my creativity. In the face of the cold and rain, though, I slept late Saturday morning, sleeping […]Read more "Consider How the Lilies Grow"
I have not had words to write of late. My thoughts have been in Illinois. My thoughts have been of uncompleted things. My thoughts have been a-jumble, off-kilter, scrambling for turf, scrambling for traction, scrambling for a level place to gain perspective, to catch my breath. My mother is dying. My mother. And my heart […]Read more "A Mother’s Love"
Plant quiet like a seed within your heart And let it grow and split that organ through. Let the fierce root rive all such walls apart, Let the dark flourish, let your words be few. Out of the earth and dreaming in the sun Though the years burgeon, it is well […]Read more "Eiseley: Plant Quiet Like a Seed…."
To adventure. When I was young, guided by my imagination and the books I read, I adventured. My siblings and I laid planks between tree limbs and called them forts. We pinned blankets over the dome jungle gym and called it a tent. We dropped charcoal briquettes into freshly dug holes to bake potatoes and […]Read more "Some Other Dimension"
In the 1960s, when my brother Doug and I were young, we often ran away from home. Angered by some perceived injustice, we’d tell our mother we weren’t going to take it anymore. We were running away. “We’re leaving!” we’d announce. She’d nod her head as if to say she understood and then pull bread from […]Read more "A Short Story of Leaving Home"
It was a long time ago, perhaps thirty-five years, perhaps thirty-six. I was in the Twin Cities, single, living in a house in the Loring Park area of Minneapolis. It was an old sandstone home whose bedrooms were rented individually. Renters shared a common kitchen, bathroom and living room, but were otherwise unknown to each […]Read more "A Long Time Ago"
If I could hold time in place, if I could freeze-frame a moment in time, I would sit across from my father at the dining room table and simply watch him. I would watch him as he read the newspaper or made his to-do list, cigarette poised between the fingers of his left hand, coffee […]Read more "To Hold Time"
As a child, when books were few and far between, when I had not yet learned about libraries, I craved the written word. In our home we had a small bookcase containing a set of Encyclopedia Britannica and a number of my mother’s art books. I do not know why reading was not emphasized in […]Read more "Of Libraries and Wagon Wheels"