Tuesday, September 29, 2009


…I mean it. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Without writers with the guts to push the envelope, our literary landscape would be flat and always green…the kind of surroundings that, while pretty, could completely put you to sleep on a long drive…

Monday, September 28, 2009


...And tarnish, and yellowed sheet music. Chipped book jackets. Scuffed piano benches. Antique glass so old, it’s turned purple. Cracked celluloid mirrors. Trunks with broken hinges. Faded plastic beads in clip-on earrings. Once-upon-a-long-long-time-ago buildings like this old mill…

I’ll admit, it’s not just the rust I love, but the history that comes with it. I like to pick up an object knowing that it’s got its own story to tell…and the rust, the dust, the tarnish, the cracks? They’re like the opening sentences in a thick, juicy novel…

Monday, September 21, 2009


Poet Omar Khayyám (with his “Loaf of Bread beneath the Bough”) has got nothin’ on this picnic table carver, who is obviously the true master of turning any afternoon picnic into a romantic interlude.

Ah, the poetry of modern-day life…maybe not exactly Khayyám’s “Paradise enow,” but at least it’s good for a laugh…

Monday, September 14, 2009

WHAT THE...?????

When did kid and criminal become synonyms? People around here can tell me all they want that security like this is simply for a student’s own good (this photo was taken in the parking lot of a local middle school), but really, doesn’t this just sting of complete and total distrust?

…Makes my own junior high years look completely unrestricted by comparison.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009


So I’m getting rid of the car I’ve had since college…cleaning it out was like an episode of This Is Your Life.

Sedimentary layers in the glove compartment and under the front seats contained ancient parking permits, faded receipts, a long-forgotten villanelle written for a poetry course, and a couple of notes from old friends: “Hey—I’m home from work. Come on over.” (Remember the pre-cell phone days when you stuck notes under windshield wipers??) Not to mention broken guitar picks, squeaky dog toys, hand-knitted winter hats, and paperbacks I read at lakeshores…and even a few scraps of paper I used to plot out my earliest attempts at novels, right out of grad school.

It’s just stuff—but really, it’s also the triumph of graduation, the heartbreak of friends that scatter like dandelion seeds, the thrill of new creative ideas that have to hit paper before the front wheels hit the driveway on my return home…

In a way, it really does feel like one of life’s chapters has come to an end…but it also feels like I’m standing right smack in the middle of the first paragraph of a new chapter...like I’m a little girl reading past her bedtime, hunkered down under the covers with a flashlight, anxious to find out what happens next.
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