Category Archives: Blog

Myths Are Good Medicine by Kelly McGannon

Path through woods in fall
 

It’s hard being human, especially when the world feels hard. Nowadays, we live in a fishbowl of constant exposure to the unnatural noise of unnatural tweets and digital pings, chimes, and chirps. I miss bird song and the sound of my own inhales and exhales. I miss the wonder of watching a golden eagle soar overhead and stare me down. This is real connection, and I don’t have to push a single button to find it. I just have to put less nourishing things away and step back into the physical, natural world that is … Continue reading Myths Are Good Medicine by Kelly McGannon

All Steamed Up by Gayla Mills

string bass and acoustic guitar
 

I never imagined that one day I’d be straddling a toilet while playing upright bass in a steamy bathroom with a naked man taking a shower on the other side of a sheer plastic curtain. But that’s exactly what I did yesterday. It started a few weeks ago when I noticed a buzz when playing a B flat. You might think this wouldn’t be all that noticeable. It is B flat, after all. But we actually play a lot out of that key. It’s a good one for Gene’s voice. We spent some time messing … Continue reading All Steamed Up by Gayla Mills

With These Hands by Shelley Sarna

white clay hand
 

  I was born in Montreal, Quebec. My parents were highly cultured people; they had a large collection of books on art, music and sculpture. I was a curious child and doubtless my parents’ interests rubbed off on me. My early favorite artist was Marc Chagall. The absence of gravity in his work gave it a dreamlike quality. At Concordia University (then known as Sir George Williams University) I was enrolled in a general BA program, and during my second year I took an art course that comprised sketching, painting, and sculpture. The instructor was … Continue reading With These Hands by Shelley Sarna

Language Acquisition & its Opposite by Ann E. Michael

Alphabet letters on table with children's hands
 

When my children were learning to talk, I developed a fascination with language acquisition. The process of learning to communicate with other human beings in the lingua franca of the culture (speaking US English to adults) was taking place in front of me. I felt awed by the intelligence required to decipher language and delighted by the myriad ways the process and behavior unfolded. For about a year, I seriously considered enrolling in university to pursue a Master’s degree in some sort of language/linguistics-related discipline. But I had two toddlers and lacked the energy, time, … Continue reading Language Acquisition & its Opposite by Ann E. Michael

Appetite For Destruction — Fixing Roofs in Waverly by Alex Joyner

Plastic vulture on roof overlooking street
 

“Simply to look on anything, such as a mountain, with the love that penetrates to its essence, is to widen the domain of being in the vastness of non-being. Man has no other reason for his existence.” —Nan Shepherd, The Living Mountain   I walked warily through Waverly—aware that I felt at ease there. It was in the wake of destruction and the town was slumping under the weight. But I am comfortable with narratives of decay and hauntings. The other day a friend pointed out a fir outside my window. “It’s dying,” she said. … Continue reading Appetite For Destruction — Fixing Roofs in Waverly by Alex Joyner

Goal! by Spriggan Radfae

wood boardwalk on hill
 

Who am I? Why am I here? What do I want? What do I offer? Last week, when I attended an event about purposeful living, a group of 10 people meditated briefly and answered these same questions. We had agreed to confidentiality in advance, and for an hour, we took turns sharing our answers with each other. Since many in the group were strangers, I worried that fear would obstruct emotional vulnerability or honesty. But several people who were in their twenties and thirties described themselves as “lost” and “directionless”, so it was no surprise … Continue reading Goal! by Spriggan Radfae

Be a Woman Bug by Susan McCulley

cartoon of cat watching ladybugs
 

“Be an ant,” he says. “Don’t look at the whole project at once and try to do it,” says my stone-steady, clear-eyed, logical-thinking husband. “Be an ant. Do what’s in front of you. Do this one thing, take this one step, then do the next one.” I’ve seen the ant approach in action over and over. This man has renovated dozens of old houses by being an ant. He has a vision, then he “ants” them, piece by piece, bit by bit, until they’re finished. Things that once resided only in his imagination become real. … Continue reading Be a Woman Bug by Susan McCulley

Room For Grace by Daniel Kenner

person standing in middle of water
 

You Held My Hand And Walked Me Out Of The Water     Sometimes I look at the photos of my parents before they were sick to try and find clues of the diseases to come. There’s one of them courtside at a Providence Friars basketball game, three days after Valentine’s Day. It’s a Thursday, a school night, timestamped 9:25 p.m. Mom must have skipped Survivor. It’s almost a year to the day before Dad’s official diagnosis. They look bold and bright. They belong together, they’re soulmates. And I cry. Mom chose “Grace” as her … Continue reading Room For Grace by Daniel Kenner

Quetico by Larry Glass

Fog over water and trees
 

At some point—I’m not sure when—I came to accept that there are quite a few things that I can’t control. It was not a conscious decision, no epiphany, no wrestling with big ideas. It’s not really ceding control—it’s accepting what has become increasingly obvious, in truth probably somewhere between realizing and accepting. The stock market, terrorism, famine, middle of the night trips to the bathroom, gray hair, the clutter that my wife and kids leave on the kitchen counter where I’m trying to cook, the hair that our dogs shed on the furniture, the weather. … Continue reading Quetico by Larry Glass

A Circular Argument by Miles Fowler

Older computer monitor and keyboard
 

I am a compulsive researcher. If it were not such a useful compulsion, I would need a twelve-step program to break the habit. I can get hooked on almost any research project, although I tend to obsessively research things that interest me like history, motion pictures and the supernatural, which, like religion, has long been a topic of interest to me without my necessarily believing in the suspension of the laws of nature. I am especially motivated to spend hours poring over records if I feel an emotional connection with a subject, for example, a … Continue reading A Circular Argument by Miles Fowler