Having spent the better part of two years writing a memoir about how I learned (and am still learning) to live with grief, I can say for certain that grief isn’t exclusively linked to death.
I read the letters, but not the ramblings because, you know, I'd have plenty of time before our next Zoom call to do that. Then he up and died, just like that, on Monday night.
I’m writing this on February 28, 2021, and I hear a train a mile away as the crow flies. When the wind blows a certain way, its whistle is as loud as if that train was passing through the valley that is my backyard. On February 28, 1983, two weeks before my due date, the … Continue reading The Feeling that Will Never Have an Explanation
Watching Dad drive the Mustang home, cigarette smoke flying out the window, he became a little more hip, a little more Rockford, a little more than just Dad.
"Nut Goodies are Minnesota, same as Old Dutch potato chips, lutefisk, lefse, and pickled pigs feet on Krispy crackers."
A month ago, I starting writing what I imagined to be a simple, sweet piece about when I was in sixth grade. But I’m forty six years removed from sixth grade, which became apparent as I wrote a few paragraphs, erased, and tried again. The problem, if problem is the right word, is that writing … Continue reading The One About Sixth Grade
It’s never easy to hear that someone you care about has died, especially if you’ve kept that person alive in your mind for a long time because a good fiction is sometimes better (well, maybe not better, but certainly easier) than the truth. For more than four years I’ve told myself that my friend Barbara … Continue reading For Barbara…
Over the last several weekends, I’ve been (finally) sorting through photos from each of my daughters’ photo albums, the ones I started when they were born. When they grew up and moved into places that weren’t dorms or student housing, I gave each of them their photo album, then in late 2018, they gave them … Continue reading Let’s Do the Time Warp. A Photo Time Warp.
While December 31, 2019 is not technically the end of the decade, it is the end of the 20teens, and despite my fussiness about calendar time (which is arbitrary anyway), I was still drawn to a question someone posted on Twitter a few weeks ago: “As we near the end of the decade, what is … Continue reading Looking Back… (kind of the Get-Outta-My-Yard-You-Damn-Kids version)
I wrote this column a week after the 9-11 attacks in 2001, when I worked for The Clarion News. Reading it again today, on the 18th anniversary, I vividly recall the fear, confusion, sadness, and anger almost everyone in this country felt that day. Some things you can never not feel or see no matter … Continue reading Remembering 9-11