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Author: admin

Inhabiting a female body

Inhabiting a female body

Yesterday afternoon, my WALK was asked to smile more. I was in my neighborhood, heading on foot to my son’s baseball game, when a car slowed as it approached me from behind, sidled up to the curb, and the driver called out to me through the passenger window he’d rolled down. “Excuse me, miss.” (I am 52 years old.) “I couldn’t help but notice you walk very fast.” He smiled. He was missing several teeth. He sat there, expectant, had…

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On watching eighteen

On watching eighteen

My house smells like hyacinths. Leftovers from the flowers I bought to make a boutonniere and a corsage for my son and his girlfriend for their prom. Musky and sweet, the scent greets me when I walk towards the kitchen to make the coffee. The flowers they did not choose to wear are arranged in a vase across from where I sit in the stillness of this early Sunday morning. The only sound indoors is the hum of the refrigerator,…

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Tiny dramas

Tiny dramas

Taking a morning round through a garden is one of the small, perfect pleasures in life. It is a ritual that feels more necessary than ever, this spring, as balm in a deeply pained world. Just last week, I began again to carry my coffee onto the back porch—mug warming my hands as I peered over the railings—and then to wander in search of tiny unfurling plants. It is still not quite warm enough in Minnesota to rake out the…

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Rain. August 2021.

Rain. August 2021.

I wrote this in the summer, and then I held it close. I’m not sure why. Possibly because the thought of watching my first-born gear up to apply for colleges was a feeling of chapter-closing that I was unprepared to share. But I reread it today, and I realize that it is also a kind of chapter-opening. As we are all dealing with so much loss, we are also moving forward, sometimes imperceptibly. It’s important to sit with the bittersweet…

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Sticky figgy pudding

Sticky figgy pudding

May I recommend baking to add happiness to your weekend? I KNOW! Two years into our pandemic, and I’m the first person to think of this?!? It’s stunning, really. But more particularly, may I recommend this incredibly easy Sticky Figgy Pudding recipe, into which you can substitute any kind of dried fruit you prefer, reconstituting it with any kind of hot liquid you prefer (e.g. boiling water spiked with something boozy), and whose sauce can be made with light or…

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Deep feelings for small longings

Deep feelings for small longings

Do you remember LifeSavers storybooks? I received this as a Secret Santa present once in the mid- or late-1970s and could hardly believe my good fortune. Twelve rolls of candy. All mine. Twelve flavors. Each better than the next. I remember savoring the feeling of a single disk melting slowly on my tongue, delighting in the new flavors to explore..the wild cherry both tart and sweet, the wint-O-green startlingly cold, the butter rum simply perfect. I longed for another storybook…

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Snow

Snow

There is something mesmerizing about the first big snowfall every winter. The world is muffled, slowed. Everything feels at once more still and more alive. The atmosphere quiets, just before the snow starts. The air seems to be holding its breath. The birds hunker down instead of twittering in the bushes. And then it begins. Tiny. Impossibly tiny flakes. It is hard to imagine that something so small can pile up into drifts so large. And yet, it sticks. You…

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Up North

Up North

I love the phrase “Up North,” which, in Michigan and Minnesota, indicates not just a direction but an ethos. It is a place to go when you need to relax, to pay more attention to sunsets and lake water temperatures than email. For many, Up North is a ritual or habit — renting the same place Up North for the same week every summer, or owning a cabin Up North and retreating to it whenever possible. Up North is where…

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how to live your best sabbatical life (installment #1)

how to live your best sabbatical life (installment #1)

This afternoon, I re-learned the fact that if you are banging your head against a writing wall, you can just stop trying to work on the thing. You can doze off on the couch instead, for as long as your brains feel like sleeping. And then when you wake up, you can make yourself a brownie sundae, using the homemade strawberry-rhubarb sauce your friend gifted you recently, which has been sitting in your fridge just waiting patiently for someone to…

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Finding time

Finding time

I’ve tried a lot to write here in the last nine months. Or possibly I’ve only thought about writing here. It’s hard to know because time has felt both stretched and compressed, unclockable and relentless. And it’s often difficult to tell the difference between things I’ve been meaning to do and things I’ve done. But I turned in final grades for this module, and I can imagine breathing again, so I sat down just now to write a thing. Narrating…

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