The Persistence of Memory

I walked away from Pittsburgh 12 years ago to shut the door on the most painful chapter of my life, losing my sister to an unbeatable cancer. A flood of memories haunts me on my return.

Choosing the Light

I spent this week on the road in the typical whirlwind of updating a guidebook. As I drove home, I reached a fork in the road, a decision point. And I took it. Yogi Berra would be proud.

A Million Micro-Decisions

Dealing with masses of files and papers? Coping with clutter means millions of micro-decisions. It’s that accumulata of life that gets in the way of living.

Frei Die Toiletten!

I’ve been piddling away Euros these past two weeks while piddling in Germany. In my youth, pay toilets were uncomfortably common in the USA, thankfully no more.

Yo Gabba Gabba and the Mammogram

I dragged my feet for getting my baseline mammogram done, having heard horror stories of how it would hurt. Well, it didn’t. And Yo Gabba Gabba helped me through.

Auto Maintenance for Writers

There is a Zen-like quality to the time spent waiting for your mechanic to work on your car. If it’s a few hours, it’s an ideal time to nourish creativity.

Defining what Art is

Others made “better” art than me, art that glowed with realism. I felt defeated. If I couldn’t make the art in my head come out on the canvas, what was the point?

Dreaming Florida

Florida settled into my soul like a fine mist during my childhood, thanks to my father’s dreams. In the late 1950s, he came to stay with family in West Palm Beach to recuperate from major life changes he’d experienced, from the loss of his father to his mother’s remarriage and his dream of college slipping away.

Okeechobee Inspiration

On the Big O Hike, I can unplug. No computer tether for ten days, no cell phone til afternoons, awakening before dawn every morning to enjoy the zen of walking.

First Impressions of Taos

What is the desert of New Mexico really like? Not what I imagined, at all. An excerpt from a writing exercise, “First Impressions,” at the Lama Institute, Taos.

My Cousin, the Novelist

In Taos, my novelist cousin Sean Murphy and his wife, author Tania Casselle, live the writer’s life that I’ve always dreamed, writing and teaching writing

The Chattahoochee You Don’t Know

A chance meeting with botanist Leigh Brooks leads me to a tour of Chattahoochee’s botanical wonders and an introduction to famed Florida botanist Angus Gholson.