Letters & Essays
Art & Photography
Dad gave me a copy of On the Road for Christmas when I was sixteen. At thirteen it had been The Great Gatsby and The Grapes of Wrath, then The Catcher in the Rye the year after that. In our house there was a wall of impressive hardcover books in t…
In these situations / I’m trying to figure out what is going on. / So is he too. Purged for oversharing, / he launched a partially / deflated football / into the stands. The crow went wild. / We’ll ski the gorse on our ankles / provided that makes anyone feel better. / If not the cheapest scent availeth not. / We are all captured, out of work, / clinging to spruce dominions.
Early on in my writing life, which for me was in my forties, I wrote a thinly disguised as fiction piece about a woman who needed to make immense changes in her life and how she was going to build the courage to live through the consequences. The s…
In the dark Edgar Haney walked from his truck and turned up the sidewalk to the cafe. It was an hour before light, and he shuddered inside his coat as the cold touched his flesh. And this is the thing that came to him.
STEINBECK The craft or art of writing is the clumsy attempt to find symbols for the wordlessness. In utter loneliness a writer tries to explain the inexplicable. And sometimes if he is very fortunate and if the time is right, a very little of what he is trying to do trickles through—not ever much. And if he is a writer wise enough to know it can't be done, then he is not a writer at all. A good writer always works at the impossible.
In the end, we’re left with the music: those luminous gospel recordings she made as a young teenager, still under her father’s wing; the halting, if promising, cocktail-blues recordings from the early sixties; those earth-shaking singles and al…
I wished you awake for the bird song, / Such a sophisticated bird song at five in the morning, / Like a twelve bar blues, each chorus had a variation—
The first of the undecoded messages read: “Popeye sits in thunder, / Unthought of. From that shoebox of an apartment, / From livid curtain’s hue, a tanagram emerges: a country.”
Mid-July 1955, 889 years after the Battle of Hastings, the townspeople of Auvers, a one-steepled, overgrown tarry town near Paris, woke up to a spanking, hand lettered, red-white-and-blue poster festooned across the front of the cafe A Van Gogh.