Thursday, July 2, 2020

Inside Out/Outside In...AND some writing news


On Tuesday night I saw "A Breath for George," shown outside on a tiny screen against the wall of the Guthrie Theater. It could have been shown on a grain of rice and would have still packed a punch. We said in the sanitized chairs provided, masked and socially distanced, some of us in lawn chairs carried from home-- a crowd, undistracted by birds, or motorcycles, or the voices of children somewhere in the park behind us. Only the helicopter flying too low pulled our eyes from the screen. I don't know if these showings will be only in the Twin Cities or if they will come somewhere near you, but the website of the theater that produced the movie is a must see. It is full of resources you might not have seen other places.

There's a mural of George Floyd on the front of the Guthrie, composed of little post-it note like squares. 


It's amazing how much the sky can change in an hour. Nature shows us change every season, every hour, every second. We can change too.

This is the view I see from my bedroom floor--the place where I do my yoga practice.


An essay of mine (along with 29 others) is on the shortlist for the Masters Review Anthology. I should know by the end of the month if I get chosen as one of the ten winners.

Thursday, June 18, 2020

I'm just sitting here watching the houseplants grow

the dining room group
Many loved ones stand on the front lines of Covid-19 and racial justice.
I sit at my desk next to these plants and make things-- Monetary contributions to organizations that I believe will change this f-ed up world; making zines, origami boxes, small handwritten books, hand bound journals, protest posters that will probably not go out into the street.

masu boxes with lids made of hand-marbled paper

While I completely understand that I don't know how to draw, I still like doing it. Go figure.  This is a slipcase for a collection of zines.

coptic binding in progress

I'm growing things on the balcony that I rarely used last year. This year it's an oasis (relative term) despite the noise from the a.c. units next door.

First tomato (and maybe jalapeños too) are on the way
So, the houseplants are doing fine. And for those of you who might wonder, I'm not actually drinking myself to death during quarantine. I know. I'm surprised too.

How are your houseplants (dogs, cats, kids, parents, hamsters, chickens) doing? How are you?

Saturday, June 6, 2020

The River

Dan Paik left this world six years ago today. 
He has not visited me in any dreams recently, but he and my mom are always with me. In the past several months my mom has had cameo roles in many dreams. 
It just so happens that this essay was published by a wonderful journal last week.

Monday, June 1, 2020

The Truck

"Let's go join in with those peaceful vibes," I said to a friend. We'd been watching today's protest on TV. There were thousands of marchers, proceeding into our neighborhood after a rally at U.S. Bank Stadium. We watched them kneel, group by group--because there were so many of them--on the Hennepin Avenue Bridge.
empty bridge last summer
Then the  designated pre-planned route led them onto I-35 which was closed to traffic to accommodate them. When we saw they were just a couple of minutes from my condo, we decided to join them for the very end of the route. We crossed the street at the back of our building and took the shaggy path behind the office building next to the embankment, thinking maybe we could get across the fence somewhere and onto the interstate (we'd forgotten about the fence.)

Then, the truck.

It came by so fast, horn blaring. The driver, pumping his fist (or is that how a trucker honks the horn?)

Oh!-- the trucker is supporting the march, honking like crazy to say yes, yes.

Thoughts in a crisis are so weird, non-linear, and simultaneous. So many thoughts, ricocheting off one another. No, no, there are people. He's going to hit the people.

Marchers flew over the fence and we all ran. People who'd been on the road were shrieking, traumatized. And then there were motorcycles. I've heard only one news report mention them. They came from the opposite direction--the more crowded side of the interstate, actually. Two neon yellow ones and a black one, going a hundred miles an hour. How they didn't hit anyone, I don't know. Two miracles. No one killed by the truck. No one killed by the motorcycles.

The rest of the evening was a mix-- marvel of relief that no one died, wafting clouds of tear gas, and lots of law enforcement.

Is the world being held together by fury and anguish or torn apart by it? It's hard to tell.

my tomato plant, state troopers, and Minneapolis police