Partners & Pardners

In the pre-op room, my wife was given a scalene block for a brief procedure. She had shoulder surgery three months back, and now again they’ll anesthetize her to break up scars that have kept her in pain. She’ll be comatose, however…

2019

Some are apt to swoon over nature, loving what they call harmony. But Tennyson got it right on whoever Trusted God was love indeed And love Creation's final law, saying Nature, red in tooth and claw With ravine, shriek'd against his creed. The…

My Tribe & I

In a characteristically compelling essay called “Grub: A Man in the Market,”1 Garret Keizer briefly muses on his distaste for upper New England farmers’ markets. He concedes that those institutions appeal to what his wife Kathy calls “our…

Irruption

At dawn today, the fog still slept on the river. The sun of a seemingly endless, Hadean heat wave had not yet broken through, so I drove to the launch for a paddle. Green herons, smart as sentries, patrolled one bank. A beaver sculled beside…

What Smart People Think

To begin with, let me quote a bit from something written for George Jones in the 1990s by Nashville veterans Randy Boudreaux, Sam Hogin, and Kim Williams: I started drinking and actin' crazy Way back in sixty five Mama would pray and say,…

Reckoning

Let us not take it for granted that life exists more fully in what is commonly thought big than in what is commonly thought small. -Virginia Woolf, "The Common Reader" Once, on the steps of a cabin in wild Montana, just before dawn I…

Compunction

Decades back, and darkness falling. Puddles of dew had assembled themselves In a doomed but vivid community Across the field we gazed at below. The puddles winked and sassed at the sun, Half drowned behind the hill by now. Phoebus, the…

Free Couch

I can brood on things, such as why it's always the poor who fashion slapdash signs saying Free, then stacktheir detritus outdoors. Who'd want it? I wonder, as I pass a certain house.I know the people who live in there. Hell no -I don't know…