Category Archives: Uncategorized

Searching

February 3 is the 32nd anniversary of Hot Springs’ Wednesday Night Poetry, the poetry event (sometimes including music) held every single Wednesday evening since its inception in February 1989. The COVID-19 pandemic forced the event to become virtual for as … Continue reading

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Shaped by Circumstance

This morning, it seems I awoke to a different climate or, at least, a different season. Last night’s thunder and lightning signaled the change. This morning’s reality illustrated it in dense fog and warming air. According to my live-in girlfriend, … Continue reading

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Mornin’

A day, beginning as an immature bud, can—with a little tender loving care—unfold into a beautiful flower. I know this because I’ve experienced it. The challenge, of course, is to continue tending the blossom, keeping the bloom fresh and bright … Continue reading

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3500 Observations and Conversations

After eight years, five months, and two weeks, here is my 3500th post on this blog. If I keep up the pace, I’ll produce post number 7000 as I near my seventy-sixth birthday. I am confident I will not achieve … Continue reading

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Thrasher

It’s just after 4:20, twenty minutes after I finally surrendered to the forces of insomnia. I have been awake, more or less, for hours. Thrashing about in bed, I would first throw off the blanket because I was too hot, … Continue reading

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Tapestry

Yesterday’s inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris was a watershed moment. I think. I hope. It is well beyond time we had a woman in a senior executive position in our government. Many, many other countries … Continue reading

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Sleeping on the Job

Last night, I joined three friends for an evening reminiscent of “the way things used to be.” We sat in a pub, eating tacos, drinking margaritas (one drank a beer, as she has a dangerous allergy to agave), telling and … Continue reading

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My Take

How does a divided nation attempt to heal? How can a torn social fabric be stitched together again in a way that might ensure the cloth survives intact for at least a while longer? Purging Trump and his narcissism from … Continue reading

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Routines

Yesterday, I left so much unwritten. I had so much more to say. But today I struggle to write anything. It’s not that I have writer’s block, it’s simply that I cannot summon the intellectual energy to search my mind … Continue reading

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Painted in Pastels

God, what an emotional morning. An emotional morning that followed an emotional night. Last night, I invited my former sculpture and pottery instructor to come to my house for a visit. She and her partner accepted my invitation, arriving at … Continue reading

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Another Post

No surprise. Awake at three again. Thrashing around in bed, trying to empty the tangled fishing line, treble hooks, plastic bags, soda cans, and soggy empty cigarette packs from my brain. I just wanted to get comfortable so I could … Continue reading

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Early Wine

Synchronicity. I encountered an example of synchronicity yesterday. I spent some time with a financial advisor, asking questions about steps I should take to simplify my rather complex, but not particularly large, investment portfolio. Of course, the primary question for … Continue reading

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Somewhere in the Middle

I’ll probably write this post in two pieces: one, Wednesday night before bed, when I am contemplating sleep but knowing it will require effort to achieve; and, two, Thursday morning after I awake, either early or late but not likely … Continue reading

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Confrontation with Another Day

The clock has not yet reached 5:50 a.m., yet I am clean-shaven and freshly showered. I went to bed last night just after eleven, having watched an episode or two of Bosch, a detective story I know little about but … Continue reading

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Everything Is Broken Now

Everything is broken now. Thus begin the lyrics to a song, Or the thoughts within a poem. The words spilled from my lips in a panicked sprint, as if attempting to avoid pain or danger or an enraged predator, angry … Continue reading

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Cracking

The sun will not rise for almost two and one-half hours. Peering into the darkness, I cannot forecast what the day will look like. I could look into the weather forecast, but that would take the mystery out of what … Continue reading

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Incense

My wife was not a fan of the aroma of incense. I am and have been for years. I used to sit outdoors, alone, on the little patio of our house in Dallas, enjoying the scent of burning cones of … Continue reading

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Softening the Anxiety

My primary care doctor gave me a prescription for medications to help with depression/anxiety a couple of months ago. I was not sure I needed it, but I had been feeling anxious and a little depressed, so I had the … Continue reading

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A Thousand Thoughts

Yesterday’s assault on the Capitol will long be remembered as the primary lasting legacy of Trump. The rest of his nightmarish presidency can be undone over time. But his invitation to QAnon, Confederacy-loving anarchists, and other delusional groups to “protest” … Continue reading

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The Morning of January 6 2021

My drive to Little Rock to retrieve my wife’s ashes and a stack of death certificates from the crematorium yesterday was uneventful. The interaction I had with the crematorium’s representative was all business; she was polite, but I experienced no … Continue reading

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Why Disable Power Breaks?

The luxury of sleeping through the night is history. But I will try to avoid complaining. Lately, I have been able to nap, at least briefly, during the day; that makes up for sleepless nights. Today, though, I think I … Continue reading

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Even-Tempered

For the first time in a very long time, I participated yesterday in a “live” Sunday event with the Unitarian Universalist Village Church. “Live” via Zoom. The production took considerable effort by several people to coordinate and orchestrate the program; … Continue reading

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Just Beyond the Edge of Confusion

Yesterday was, for all intents and purposes, a washout. I woke up a bit late, after an unpleasant night. My morning coffee with my sister-in-law did not include any Words with Friends; apparently I was not sufficiently awake and alert—I … Continue reading

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Thumbnails

Leg cramps, deep in the middle of the night, used to plague my wife on occasion. When it happened, I began to massage her legs in an attempt to quell the pain. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it exacerbated the pain … Continue reading

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First Words

Here we are at the first day of the first month of the two thousand twenty-first year. There it is again, the contrivance of time. “Two thousand twenty-first year,” indeed. I have no better measure of time in mind, so … Continue reading

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Laughing at the Last Day of an Ugly Year

Thanks to good friends passing through, on Tuesday evening I enjoyed the spectacular taste of a beer I could not hope to find in Hot Springs (and probably not in Arkansas): Goose Island Bourbon County Brand Caramella Ale. The beer … Continue reading

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Early in the Mourning

They remain unfinished lyrics to what was shaping up to be a country-western song. The working title, “Early in the Mourning,” emerged from my mind as I pondered how long I might feel the combination of sorrow, guilt, and myriad … Continue reading

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Obsessively Avoiding Obsessions

There’s plenty to be done, but I don’t seem capable of motivating myself to do it. Finally, when I woke up this morning, I put a load of sheets in the washer, a full week after I should have done … Continue reading

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The Maritimes and More

Last night I awoke from a clouded memory—it was not a dream—and I wanted to ask my wife a question to help me clarify it. When I became sufficiently conscious to realize I would never again be able to ask … Continue reading

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More Thought-Skipping

Yesterday, a friend stopped by with some little gifts and a massive amount of solace and comfort. During our masked conversation, she mentioned a friend’s description of emotions at the loss of a loved one as something like shocked disbelief. … Continue reading

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Wasted

Every two hours, like clockwork, I awaken. Perhaps it’s the fact that I’ve been going to bed early that sets the mental alarm clock: 11:30, 1:30, 3:30. By 3:30, it’s almost pointless to go back to bed, because I know … Continue reading

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About My Wife

I want people to know who my wife was, the brilliant woman whose intellect was far superior to mine but who sometimes concealed her superiority, to the extent she could, so I would not appear so obviously dim by comparison. … Continue reading

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Good People Abound

Life-altering decisions may be best made during periods of relative serenity. I have heard and read that suggestion many times, and not just recently. The advice is probably sound, so I will plan to heed it unless circumstances forcefully argue … Continue reading

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Different Times

As I went about my usual Wednesday morning routine—showering, shaving, preparing trash to take to the curb for pickup, making my first cup of coffee, etc., etc.—it occurred to me that this Wednesday is no different that most Wednesdays. Except … Continue reading

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The Shortest Day of the Longest Year

Yesterday was the Winter Solstice. The shortest day of arguably the longest year. This year has been a monstrous beast, intent on testing humanity’s resolve to survive. I thought 2019 was a bit tough, beginning as it did with my … Continue reading

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After

All the sincere expressions of sympathy and messages of love and support I have received since my wife’s death have been immensely helpful and heartwarming. I plan to respond to every one—and I will—but I do not have the energy … Continue reading

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Permanent Emptiness

There’s a hole in the universe, an empty spot that cannot be filled. My beautiful wife, the woman whose smile was more magnificent and more genuine than any other I have ever seen, died last night. After I got the … Continue reading

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A Thousand Little Pieces

Just a matter of time. As if time were almost inconsequential; a byproduct of experience  rather than the framework within which experience is defined. It’s just a matter of time seems so dismissive, so insignificant, so brusque and crude. I … Continue reading

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Adrift

Over the years, my writing has made frequent reference to “context.” Understanding context, in my view, is absolutely crucial to interpreting experience. Without context, reality is experience seen and felt through gauze and vapor and smudges of translucent oil. That … Continue reading

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Internal Conversations

When one’s thoughts seem unable to focus on anything but matters too difficult and unpleasant to accept, I think the brain reacts by pursuing the meaningless and mundane. That is the only explanation I can think of to explain why … Continue reading

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Not Knowing What to Expect

After experiencing a strange blend of consciousness and dreams and, I suspect, side-effects from the Shingrix injection night before last, I feel reasonably stable this morning. My back still hurts and a new sensation—that I’ve been kicked in the kidneys—is … Continue reading

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Between Sleep and Its Companion

I spent another day at my wife’s bedside yesterday. She did not eat while I was there, from about 10:30 to just before 5. That worries me, of course, but the nurses say variations in appetite are not unusual. Relatively … Continue reading

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Commencement

I did not expect to wake up this morning to snow, but there it was. The car sitting in the driveway was covered with the stuff. Not a lot, but there was a dusting sufficient to completely cover the front … Continue reading

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Floating

My sister-in-law and I spent much of the day in my wife’s room at the inpatient hospice yesterday. Before heading to the hospital, my wife’s nurse called to give me an update; she said my wife had refused breakfast, but … Continue reading

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Stop

Sitting in her hospital room yesterday while my wife slept, I occupied myself with my smartphone, playing word games and reading snippets of the day’s news. “The news.” The words suggest factual information, but hidden within them are layer upon … Continue reading

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Time Cannot be Captured

Some hours and minutes speed by, while others have the earmarks of extraordinarily slow motion, inching along as if time were trapped in a viscous jelly. The difference between the two sensations of time is impossible for me to capture … Continue reading

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Maybe Not

I spent an hour or more this morning writing what I had intended to publish here online, only to decide a few minutes ago that it was too personal and too private to post. Too often, in the process of … Continue reading

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A Skeptic’s Brain

Finally, yesterday morning, I put air in the tires of the Subaru—not precisely the proper inflations, but enough air to cause the tire pressure alert light to go out. I bought gas from the gas station so I would not … Continue reading

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Twists and Turns

When I attempted to check in as a visitor at the hospital, I was told someone else had already signed in to visit the room. A quick check revealed someone else was in that room; not my wife. Through more … Continue reading

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Skating is a Choice

Vague memories of my childhood and teenage years include fierce encounters with the hard surfaces of roller skating and ice skating rinks. Slamming face-first onto the concrete floor of a roller skating rink, while in the midst of an adrenaline-fueled … Continue reading

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