The Globe and the Village

We weren’t looking for a globe, or actually anything at all, for that matter. Aimless was the point, the peregrination of our four feet, sizes one and nine, carrying us in squares around our neighborhood on Garage Sale Day. This, of course, is exactly what it sounds like, when everyone who half wants to have…

Small Lives and Unhistoric Acts

Every recent generation, I expect, had an Important Movie that somehow explained, shaped, or defined it. According to the rules—movies made about young people when I was that kind of young (now I’m just a different kind of young), I think I was supposed to resonate with the mood of Garden State, or a panoply…

Things That Made 2022 Better

2022 hasn’t been the most prolific year of my writing life—few poems, chapters and blog posts found their voice in the midst of a busy life. Perhaps I’ll write more about that later, but lest anyone think I’ve been doing nothing (I know that no one thinks that), here are some of the things that…

Limited Superpowers

Halloween evening, we follow fantastic little figures through the neighborhood: a knight, Link, Princess Leia and Grogu (better known, to the chagrin of Star Wars purists, as “Baby Yoda”). As the last color fades from the still-brilliant foliage, the last light sinking low behind the ridge to our west, the foursome zigzags down the block,…

Bells, Books, and Echoes

I think I hear church bells one night. I step outside onto our back doorstep, lean over into the humid, still-hot evening, and strain my ears, my soul, my whole being toward the sound I thought I heard. Nothing. Just summer-still evening air, quieter even than a normal August night. No bells. This is maybe…

Plans and the Pet Store

The pet store wasn’t supposed to be today’s highlight. I actually didn’t plan to go there at all, as I almost never plan to go the pet store. Certainly not this one, anyway, a dimly-lit, big box affair off of a wide and depressing avenue in the north part of our city. (Yes, our dog…

85 Sunflower Seeds

How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour, and that one, is what we are doing. Annie Dillard, The Writing Life A day such as this, in which I endure a measure of sickness or unease, is a reminder that the redemption of all…

Of Raspberries and Resurrection

 Truly, truly I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. John 12:24 (NASB) I really did think the raspberry bush was dead. I’m not the primary gardener in our family; that’s my husband, the garden visionary, shopper, planter,…

Blood, Proximity, and Things We Learn to Love

I’ve never known as much about sheep farming as I do now. I could say it was an accident, that I didn’t know quite what I was getting into when I started reading James Rebanks’s A Shepherd’s Life: A People’s History of the Lake District, but that wouldn’t be technically accurate. I worked hard to…

A Little Like Teaching

Late at night, I open my laptop again and retrieve a Google Slides presentation. It looks eerily familiar, the same layout of a slide that used to gleam each morning at the front of my classrooms. On one side, a word of a orientation for those entering the room. Where am I? Language Arts 9!…