When Vermont Comes to You

I met Annabelle at a time when she was lost and I was really, I mean really, high. It happened in a lonely area of Vermont where I knew I could grow my marijuana without fear. Although my rusty pick-up usually scares girls, Annabelle thought my car was her salvation. She had run out of water a few hours earlier and had no idea how to get back to her car. When she approached my camp something told me she didn’t want a puff of my joint; she asked for water and I showed her my six-pack. Watching her downing two beers I thought she was tough but as I found out later, she rarely drank. That was without doubt the reason she started sharing her personal life with me.

“Every summer we would hang around the foundation that my father built. If I close my eyes I can easily travel to that time when dad showed me how to select the best stones: ‘Do not trust limestone, granite is far more reliable. We are going to build a house that will last forever!’ Poor soul, his foundation never had any purpose other than storing the empty cans of beer that during college years my cousins and I didn’t care to pick up. You probably think that I’m just a nostalgic person. Normally, I’m not, but today I thought seeing the one thing my father ever built would help me. The truth is that I haven’t been here for a very long time and I’m afraid I got lost. Thank you for the beer.” Continue reading…

Palm Sunday

My heart swells with blissful anticipation as I welcome spring each year, red-breasted robins feasting on worms and early morning birds chirping in the quiet distance. Happy days of drenching rains nourishing all that is life and all that brings joy to the world. I eagerly wait for another Palm Sunday, a most festive day for my family and me as we celebrate the memories of so many loved ones who have died and left us to remember their lives of grace and integrity and so much soulfulness.

My father woke us early to attend Mass at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston’s South End. I remember the long procession of parishioners as we slowly made our way through the colossal church while Cardinal Cushing spoke those odd Latin words that all of us, somehow, understood. This Catholic tradition, still deeply ingrained in our Palm Sundays, except that now we are without Uncle Joe, as he accompanied us each year and loved us all as he loved his own child. I never thought he would die. I always believed his love for me would keep him alive forever. And when I kissed him goodbye, his icy cheek wasn’t real anymore. His lifeless body, gone perhaps, but his generous spirit lives eternally within those of us who loved him so much. Continue reading…

Before You Send Your Son to College

You know the day is coming when you will have to go to these events because your son is a high school junior and he is talking about college every night at the dinner table. So, you go one evening to a MEFA presentation, you are given a brochure and a free pen, you are […]

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Ticking Time Bomb

James Joyce once said that every story must have an “epiphany”. In the dictionary, epiphany  is defined as ‘a manifestation of a divine or supernatural being’, or a ‘moment of sudden revelation.’ The reader’s world is changed through this revelation, and the change is permanent. What’s true for stories is also true for poetry. It is […]

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Alone by Edgar Allan Poe

From childhood’s hour I have not been As others were; I have not seen As others saw; I could not bring My passions from a common spring. From the same source I have not taken My sorrow; I could not awaken My heart to joy at the same tone; And all I loved, I loved […]

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