Category Archives: Memoir

While The World Is on Fire

My dear friend Cornelia came very close to losing her house in the Thomas Fire this week. A sequence of text messages and pictures attests to the drama: fear and uncertainty, her husband’s vigilant presence, flames roaring in the hills … Continue reading

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Fire Light

Yesterday I walked up the canyon wearing a cowboy hat and a breathing mask, toting a pink bag with a birthday present for our neighbor’s two-year-old daughter. There was something comical about it, but also surreal. The landscape glowed in … Continue reading

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Smoke and Mirrors

The Thomas Fire is raging to the south of us with no end in sight. The air is filled with smoke and ash, and we have friends who have been evacuated. These are anxious times. But until I have some … Continue reading

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Making A Thing

It was a silvery-rainy Sunday in a country house in Brittany. We were finishing tea, and talking about art and creativity, and I was bemoaning the fact that I don’t know how to do anything. I was saying how much … Continue reading

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Upright and Mobile

 Late in the day I loaded up some podcasts, grabbed my hat and trusty walking stick, and went for a stroll on the road. The sun was slipping fast into the sea and the light was turning golden, a gentle … Continue reading

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I Have Seen A Manatee

I wrote this several years ago, but I’ve decided to share it here on this Thanksgiving. It is the day after Thanksgiving and we have gathered on a wooden pier at the Indian River near Palm Bay Florida in the … Continue reading

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There Was No Map

He was my brother, and the country of childhood was a tangled one, fraught with discord and shadowed by mystery. Dangers loomed, whether real or imagined, and tranquil moments could not entirely be trusted, for they were as delicate as … Continue reading

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Let Us Not Lose Heart

We get these amazing low tides now and then at this time of year. Negative tides. It’s fascinating to walk way out and stand where water usually is, to peer into pools, see hidden rocks revealed, curiosities uncovered. It feels … Continue reading

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A Favorite Tree

When I was in grade school, one of my most memorable homework assignments was to choose a tree and watch it over time. We were to draw a picture of it in a notebook, observe bark, branch, and leaf, note … Continue reading

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Filomena

In the course of doing research about our family history, my brother recently managed to locate some relatives who sent him the above photograph of our great-grandmother. Her maiden name was Filomena Rossi. She was born in Italy, and came … Continue reading

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