The Kid and the Cowboy

For my birthday one year, my mom gave me all of her writings from 1960 to what was present day. In 1973, my dad had undergone open heart surgery, and they had been told he maybe had 8 years to live. Having trouble processing what was their new reality, she was assigned to write a…

Mama Always Said Choose the Joy

About a week ago, I put this picture on Instagram. The caption is simple: Choose the joy. That is what my mom always said. This picture was taken while I was laughing with a dear friend as we sat across the table from a man dying from a horrible cancer with a terrible prognosis. And…

Rosé for Mary

Rosé for Mary A Divine Comedy A prayer of sincerity (The Lift) Forgive of me The ignorance That haunts my being Into the Inferno Of my ghost Lift from me The inequities That bind my soul Into the Purgatory Of my mind Unveil to me The grace That frees my spirit Into the Paradise Of…

Somewhere Between

Somewhere between the first anniversary of your death and the second anniversary of celebrating your birthday without you – I have moved into a better space. The astonishment of feeling guilty for not missing you is not something for which I had prepared, nor was the feeling of overwhelming nostalgia for you as I sat…

The Morning You Died

I have no idea what I was wearing. There is really no way to figure out such insignificant details. Sleepy and confused I sat by your side. You gasped and heaved for a breath. Your eyes were wide and distant. Watching your chest rise and fall, counting each breath knowing your passage was near. I…

My Bravest Moment

Yesterday, I delivered the eulogy at my sweet mama’s memorial service. It was not nearly as hard as I had imagined and certainly won’t compare to the emptiness I will feel in the days to come. But for today, I can say that I am proud of myself that I tried to give my mother a proper good-bye. After…

unpublished love 5

trastevere, il primo agosto reveal to me what i left behind 19 years ago presented with choices i did my best to remain intact a battle insignificant to most gave to me courage bravery gratitude reaching into the coffers i request a large withdrawal that depletes my accounts as i beg for mercy and ask…

Family Gifts: The River and Cards

Ever since I can remember my family has combatted boredom in two ways: 1.) Go to the river 2.) Play cards My personal favorite is to play cards at the river. This does not literally have to be on the banks of the river, although when camping that’s fun too. My family has a great…

unpublished love 3

the rose petals have fallen, sunken, dropped italian frescoes crumble into piles of expensive dust  where cars whizz by without a care onto ancient roads of traveled souls, where gold seeps into the aqueducts  where the decadence of Rome poisons the people into believing that gratitude is not a blessing to be revered  when discoveries…

unpublished love 2

that first night I slept and you couldn’t that is where the separation started the faint blue ember of the curtains  showing the street lights below comforted me in a sad sort of way Rome again and I could not protect her from the grips even though she lay beside me the one I loved…

unpublished love

unpublished love comes to me like a cloudy vision that sounds like distant church bells* that wake me from sleep unpublished love is why i toss and turn because it whispers my name and then vanishes unpublished love lights the night sky with the brightest stars to remind us unpublished love waits for me at…

as i learn to walk again

at a pivotal age i learned that life ends and begins around me a pet deer a dead father tadpoles in the pool kidnappers behind the swing i begged for lighting rods ant bait and code words to protect me from my own mind i have experience with the dark night and the sun will…