Poetry in the Garden

When I read the world’s first novel The Tale of Genji, I was a skeptic. Characters spoke to one another in lines of poetry. Romantic, sure—but unlikely. Until my stroll through the Seattle Japanese Garden on Sunday. I realized Lady Murasaki knew her stuff, and she was doing a lot more than building literary allusions. Suddenly,Continue reading “Poetry in the Garden”

The Desirable World

Tonight I attended Lynda Mapes’s reading from her recent book, Elwha: A River Reborn. She chronicles the world’s largest dam removal project, which began in 2011 right here in Washington state. More interesting, though, were the audience questions: What unintended consequences do you foresee? Is there any discussion of the complex issues this raises–as dismantling the sourceContinue reading “The Desirable World”

Unfold into Blossom

If you’re not sure that opening is for you, every life is better for it. And if you don’t think vulnerability is really your thing, guess again. Grief shuts life down. Locks the doors. Pulls the drapes. Shutters the windows. But at some point, you have to go outside again. And inevitably, in your firstContinue reading “Unfold into Blossom”

Something Like Family

Every year in June, one block south on Midvale Avenue, the parents throw a big birthday bash for their little boy. This year it was a mariachi bouncy castle. Latino children streamed down the street for hours, in twos and threes, black hair bobbed in bowl cuts, their mothers close behind, arms swinging, dressed inContinue reading “Something Like Family”