• Can’t See the Forest for the Trees?

    Hiking our forest in New Jersey is the only good thing that came out of the 2020 lockdown. We were the only ones on the trails and we came back every weekend to catch some air. With every change of the season, we experienced the forest in a new way. No matter what time of year, roaming our forest got our blood flowing and filled our lungs with fresh air. Climbing up to the Appalachian Mountain ridge, the wind cleared our minds. We watched hawks circle over the canopy of trees. Dressed in Green with an underskirt of thick brushes…

  • Still believe in Santa?

    Lies My Parents (Never but Maybe Should’ve) Told Me* an essay by Shukree Hassan Tilghman got me thinking. Not for the first time I remembered my conundrum of telling the truth without crushing my children’s spirit. Thinking back to my own childhood I always loved this time of year when the world was full of wonder. How I felt looking out the window searching for a sign of the Christkind. Where I grew up, the spirit that brings gifts is pure and innocent, a more juvenile version than Santa Claus. It takes Santa all night to drop presents under the trees…

  • Transitioning

    Today, it’s been a month since my father left us. I realize that aside from his birthday I now have a second date on which I will commemorate his life. My father’s death divided time into before and after.  A month ago, my first physical reaction was a gut reaction. An invisible hand squeezed my stomach. But this brief convulsion of my body wasn’t going anywhere. I did not throw up and no tears came. On that day, when sadness overwhelmed me, the muscles in my face contracted as if preparing for a sneeze. Was my body expressing what my…

  • Surprises in your published work

    Who cares for the spelling of a name they can’t even pronounce? A recent publication where one of my narrations appears alongside the stories of my fellow writers was sent out to me on a high holiday. Yes, 11/11 is a high holiday. Where I come from, the Rhineland, it’s the beginning of the Carnival season. Returning from my home country, I found the publication waiting in my mailbox in New York City. After opening it I started reading. Of course, I read my piece first. Nothing more exciting than to read your work printed in a book. Aside from…

  • If you can make it here…

    It was the first week after I moved from Los Angeles to New York. I walked the streets to get a feel for my new home town. Twice as many people live here than in Los Angeles. Add the tourists and the number of people doubles to about 16 million people. I had spent a serene hour at Madison Square Park and was on my way home. It was a lovely sunny afternoon. A commotion and a few shouted words caught my attention. Crossing a side street, a young woman concerned herself with an elderly man who waved her away…

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