Archive for October 2010

The liberating poetics of low expectations

A dear friend of mine, the wonderful poet and fiction writer Lisa Pasold, and her equally wonderful husband, singer Bremner Duthie came to visit My Best Beloved and me last weekend.  As Lisa and I walked her whiskery hound, Barkley the talk turned, as it does among writers, to the writers’ life. Lisa told me…

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The Defiant Ones

…a while ago a young man trying to stay sober called me from another city and told me he was calling to “tell on himself,” meaning he needed to tell someone he was thinking of doing something he knew wasn’t in his best interests.

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Fame and fortune — step right up!

“Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.” — William Wordsworth Someone I’ve never met recently accused me (via, not surprisingly, an anonymous blog comment somewhere) of being a liar and a cynic because I lead monthly creative writing workshops.  This person stated I was essentially conning people, making money by offering false hope…

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Slipping past the troll

Do you remember the Scandinavian beastie of  folktale known as the Troll? Trolls often guard bridges and won’t let you cross until you’ve paid them (or perhaps they won’t let you pass at all, but will simply eat you!).  They are much larger than humans and particularly ugly. They are frequently said to be extremely…

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We are diminished by every broken heart

As many of you know, both my brothers died by suicide, and so, whenever I turn on the news and hear a report of another life being lost to despair and hopelessness, the little shard of ice in my chest which never quite melts, twists a little. This week, Tyler Clementi, a student at Rutgers…

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