The Artist as Witness

I was conducting a virtual school visit with a fifth-grade class the other day, talking about my children’s books about World War II, each of which are inspired by real people I interviewed. I’d already explained to the kids I wasn’t alive during the war, so I was surprised when one boy asked, “Did you...

What’s Your Poison?

I was thinking today about a fundraiser my husband, daughter, and I attended a little over a year ago for our local museum. We dressed according to the theme and enjoyed free food and drink. I had every intention of being on my best professional behavior — after all, I had been hired as a...

I Wanna Dance with Somebody

Two couples came over last weekend for a socially distanced, outside-in-the-cold birthday gathering for one of our friends. When he arrived, he had the “Celebration” song by Kool & The Gang playing on his cell phone. “Let’s dance!” he said. My husband and our other friends stood up to shake their booties. I got up...

What Do You Hear in the Silence?

It’s awfully quiet around here. Oh, there’s the noise of a mini bulldozer moving dirt at the neighbor’s house and a ridiculously loud motorcycle going by and a dog barking down the street. There’s the hum of the microwave running as my husband reheats his coffee and the dryer tumbling. I can create more sound...

Embracing Impermanence

I’m working on embracing impermanence. I’ve been reading When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chodron, and she reminds us that impermanence is our natural state. Babies don’t stay babies, people live and die, jobs come and go. But it’s not just reflected in the big things, it’s also the little things that happen every day....

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