Days of the Dead

I think a lot about loss. Past loss, future loss; past pain, future pain. The delicacy of existence, of life. The only absolute for each and every one of us: eventual death. There are times it nearly consumes me — it creates anxiety even in moments I am attempting to enjoy something as benign and … More Days of the Dead

Storm Surge

There’s something inherently Houstonian to me about living through the ritual disaster of multiple hurricanes. Maybe it’s the same for kids anywhere along the coast. During my childhood, I spent several occasions taping huge Xs across window panes with rolls of masking tape, ensuring flashlights had working batteries, and filling up the bathtub with water, … More Storm Surge

Free Solo

People in the outdoor adventure world and anyone who has read about it in the last ten years knows the name Alex Honnold. I’m certainly in the latter camp, an armchair explorer, strictly studying to try to understand, not actually experience. Honnold is so unique that when I came across his name along with the … More Free Solo

Fits and Starts

I turned 44 just before I attended my first Juniper Summer Writing Institute at the University of Massachusetts last month. Almost exactly 22 years before — half my life ago — I graduated from Hampshire College, just down the road from UMass, having spent the previous four years studying, writing, breathing, eating poetry. Degree in … More Fits and Starts

Dawn Choruses

It’s no revelation that spring brings the birds. But for those of us who grew up in Houston where seasons barely exist — and therefore plants stay green year ’round and bird migration means only that the feathered ones pop over to Mexico for a quick holiday and then come right back — the bird … More Dawn Choruses