Skip to main content

My Attachment to Things, So Embarrassing

When Daddy Joe died—killed by a train in what the responding officer called as clean a t-bone as he’d ever seen—Mother said she stopped caring about things. Only people mattered. I always took this to mean that attachment to things was shallow. Yet. I love my new burnt sienna pillow cases in wrinkly linen. I love my 1950s TV trays I’m...

Continue reading

The Bishop Came to Our House

Yesterday, in church, the Bishop came to our house. She wore her gold hat and white robes. She carried a carved shepherd’s crook, because she is the shepherd of our souls here on earth. At her side stood a tiny woman called the Bishop’s chaplain, as if the Bishop gets to travel with her BFF spiritual friend always. The Bishop was...

Continue reading

New Cowboy Boots: A Conversation

Suddenly, I was overwhelmed with the need to buy a pair of new cowboy boots. Every Christmas when I was a little girl, we got a new pair of boots. In lucky years, we got the whole nine yards: turquoise jeans, snap shirt, belt, hat, and the boots. My beloved husband agreed to wedge this shopping trip into an already complicated, whirlwind trip...

Continue reading

You’re Swimming Streamline

The guests are gone, the washing begun. A wind arrived and blew slashing rain down the streets. The palms shook their heads like Peanuts characters dancing to Linus’s piano. Then the storm, too, passed. Water filled the potholes; for the sake of your suspension, beware the unseen. I, who made no food for Thanksgiving, baked cookies...

Continue reading

All Saints’ Day

On this All Saints’ Day, as we left the church singing “Oh, when the Saints, go marching in,” I connected with my ancestors. If you’ve read this blog, you realize that’s no mean feat for me. I’ve spent a lot of time talking about my father’s family and their sins. I do not consider them saints. I don’t...

Continue reading

Putting Out Fires

My father used to tell a story about his job and putting out fires. He sat at his desk, concentrating, and the phone would ring. A problem had flared up, demanding his immediate attention, diverting him from what he really needed to be doing. It drove him bonkers—when would he get his real work done?—until he realized putting out fires was his real...

Continue reading

Happy New Year’s, NOLA

There’s a softness in the New Orleans air. The littlest birds make the loudest flutter of wings as they fly into the cedar next door. The white pup down the street calls his barking hello from his balcony, the door behind him open to let in the soft air. The sun slants. The man working on his house speaks, nodding. Black garbage cans dot the...

Continue reading

What Do You Do?

Searching for something else, I found this. It made me nostalgic, and I thought I’d share. What Do you Do? I’m telling an acquaintance about our get-away place in North Alabama. “It’s on the Tennessee River in the middle of nowhere. When we loan it out, we always tell people to bring food – it’s not the kind of place you can...

Continue reading