Category: Uncategorized

Ashes of Rose

Ashes of rose is a color name that has faded from view but was once celebrated in the sentimental English Victorian palette. It’s a blush pink toned down with a mild grey. And it’s an ubiquitous hue in every garden. I find it in the paler portion of my crab apple blossoms and my heirloom…

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Double Twenty

Each year I pen a New Year’s letter to our kids. Here’s what I wrote heading into 2020. December 31 My dear hearts: Another year is filing out the door and it’s time for this letter. Two thousand nineteen saw great upheaval in our country, in our world, and 2020 will decide the fate of…

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The Night Before Christmas

The Holiday cards are done at last, and Christmas Eve is here. I adore the exchange of Holiday cards but always struggle with adding to the waste stream with one of our own. I do use an eco-friendly card, but it’s still a product, and odds are it will not be composted. But it brings…

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The World According to Jessica

My father liked lists and made one the morning after my mother died. He did not want to forget the quotidian, the smaller gestures and all those details that we take for granted about our beloveds. So he reached for a pen and paper to impose some order in his shattered world. And he wrote…

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Old School

In the early seventies, my father accepted a post in the Nixon administration to represent the United States as its ambassador to El Salvador, and my siblings and I moved to a new country and a bilingual school. Half the day was in Spanish, the other in English. My father insisted that I would be fluent in Spanish in no time. Instead, I got a crash course in bullying.

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Gift in Kind

My mother was conflicted about the holidays. She was a spiritual soul and quiet Christian and was attached to the rhythms of the Christian calendar. She attended church if the architecture compelled her, or if it boasted a great choir, but was never drawn to the built in community of a congregation. My sister and…

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I AM AS MUCH AS YOU

These weeks have not been the nation’s finest. There have been millions of words written about the Kavanaugh/Ford hearings, and there will be many more now that he is confirmed. But I need to add my own voice to the choir. I was traveling with my son the day of the hearing and waited until…

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Arriving at My Own Door

I do regret the energy I spent trying to prove that I had something to offer. It made me vulnerable to sabotage – either through my own anxiety, or by crazymakers. I didn’t listen nearly enough to instinct…

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Poetry in Motion

The other day I explained to our son why I am such a poetry junkie. I told him a good poem could blanch a bit of darkness or make me feel more connected to this vast network of ours. And that a great line will cast something familiar into a different relief and make me look again. But, most of all, poetry gives me the next clue. “Like in a treasure hunt you mean,” he said. Exactly.

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Juan Felipe Herrera

Our son and Juan Felipe Herrera on stage at the Paepke Auditorium on the Aspen Institute campus. photo credit: Will Sardinsky “Not everybody wants to be looked at. Everybody wants to be seen.” Amanda Palmer Last week I took our children to hear our United States poet laureate, Juan Felipe Herrera, who opened the Winter…

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