Of Bedheaded Boys and Lavender Shampoo

Shampoo. The word is vaguely obscene. Sham + poo :these hardly sound like substances that, combined, could render one clean. Sonically, shampoo does not present as a hygienic herbal solution bottled in a shower stall. Instead, its syllables tell of a darker substance...

The House

It is times like this—at night when I should be sleeping—that I miss England the most. The window in my third-floor bedroom that was always half-open, even on those freezing February nights. If the window was closed, I felt trapped—like I was in some sadistic snow...

Skin

I’ve recently begun to think of my skin, the largest of organs, as a container filled up with all kinds of interesting stuff. Malleable, simultaneously strong and fragile—a proper tear in a vulnerable place and the breath goes out of my body, escapes my container, in...

Countering Semantic Poison

“… nothing in the world … has as much power as a word.” Emily Dickinson Once upon turbid waters, the Cuyahoga River caught fire in Cleveland, Ohio, and moms—mine and many others—believed Lake Erie into which the river oozed during the 1950s was a source of polio....

Dear Montana

Dear Montana, It’s over.  I should have written this letter years ago, but things happen, and I’ve held on to that memory of your summer nights even as we’ve done nothing but grow apart.  Life gets hectic, right?  Oil changes, recycling, job interviews,...

Beast File No. 124

I’ve been thinking about loss lately. What usually comes to mind is my grandmother, who passed away one Christmas Eve almost thirty years ago. Whenever I think about her and her passing I feel happy. I never had the displeasure of seeing her on her deathbed, so my...

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