A Different World

It’s the start of the new year. Another year of anxiety stretches before me. It’s a strange thing how my life has become a day-in-day-out struggle with worry. Of course, worry is not all that stretches before me. If I try, if I just try, I will hear and see and experience more than worry. […]

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Turning Sixty

At fifty, my own life has not come to much and my death sits in a straight-back chair under a lilac bush in the garden behind the house, reading my old letters, waiting. He is in no hurry to come knock on the back door. There’s plenty to keep him interested in the piles of […]

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The Nature of What We Are

Life bores deep holes in us in hopes the nature of what we are might sink into us…. —Jim Harrison There is a truth found in running long miles each morning. There is a realization that comes at the end of the first-half of the run that however tired, however hard the wind blows, however hot […]

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The Air Was a Cold -7

I asked a friend yesterday, “What propels us toward and along our life’s path?”     I have come to believe, I told him, that although I have choice, I choose — have chosen — unfailingly, unerringly and ultimately, my current path. My path is like that of the magnetic North Pole, and I am […]

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There Is A Field

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 […]

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Winter Again

I wake now to the gray skies of November, mornings begun in darkness, workdays ending in the same. Final skeins of migrating geese stretch pencil-thin against the clouds; snow squalls blow suddenly from the north, halt, then blow again. The sun makes its appearance, apologizes, and disappears. The wind bites. The temperature drops. Winter returns. […]

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I Dream of Journeys

From as far back as I can remember, I’ve wished for companionship — a companion. And now as I near the last years of my life, I realize that though this dreamed-for companionship will elude me, I have somehow, in some unplanned way, filled that need with my own self. As I bicycle down gravel […]

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Inevitable Change

Frost touched northwestern Minnesota early Thursday morning. Just like that, summer ended. We now watch the forecast closely, tarps at hand to cover late-ripening tomato and pepper plants. Beets and carrots are pulled; soups simmer in stock pots and slow cookers. Yellow squash is blanched and frozen. Spent plants are gathered and thrown atop the […]

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My Question

It’s a misty, overcast morning. The air is primed for rain. The sweet corn calls from the garden. It’s time — perhaps past time — to pick and process it for winter storage. The summer winds to a close on these last days of August. In northwestern Minnesota summer announces its exit without equivocation. The […]

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