borschty-borscht borscht…

There’s something you should know: I love beets. Which means, of course, that I also love beet-y, beefy, vinegar-y borscht. Here’s the borscht I made this morning: Beets remind me of so many things I love…many of them literary. Tom Robbins, for one, and his Bohemian King Alobar, in Jitterbug Perfume. Diane Ackerman’s lucious A Natural History of the Senses. There’s even a wonderful point in Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist (the book!!) where borscht plays an important role for Norah’s character development. Beets add an earthy insistence to life; they feel like blood, like dirt, they make you think. … Continue reading borschty-borscht borscht…

good guy with gun…

One of the things I most love about vacation is having time to read. Over the last few years, my tastes in reading material have expanded to include crime thrillers — the sort you might find on a dime store rack. And you know what? This English major isn’t ashamed at all. Give me a Michael Connelly thriller, or a Jack Reacher novel by Lee Child, and I’m happy. Just recently I picked up “Pronto” by Elmore Leonard because I love how Timothy Olyphant portrays his cowboy hat-wearing marshal Raylan Givens on FX’s “Justified.” I have to say, it’s all … Continue reading good guy with gun…

a muse and some discipline…

I just read Patti Smith’s autobiography, Just Kids, an amazing account of her early years in 1970s New York City just starting out with lover, lifetime friend and muse Robert Mapplethorpe. It’s about being an artist above all else. Reading this book makes me realize several things: Patti Smith is a genius. She’s incredibly well-read, completely enamored of the context and history of every moment, and has a terrific command of language. I am ridiculously jealous. Also, I love her hair. It’s very, very important to write all the time. Patti Smith kept a journal every day of her life, … Continue reading a muse and some discipline…

Poetically stumped…

That is not to say I have given up, but I must say this: the ocean does not want me to write about it. I spent a week there. I didn’t think I’d like it nearly as much as I did. And once it began to grow on me, I started having ideas. So many ideas, changing slightly each day. So many ideas, I thought I’d put them away for later, right? Let them simmer? Now, of course, they all seem silly, and I think I know why. What can I possibly say to describe the ocean, or a moment … Continue reading Poetically stumped…

Walking to Clear My Mind…

The chances to take a loooooooooong walk are few and far between these days, so when one falls unexpectedly into my lap (thank you, ultimately harmless generator explosion at UMBC!), I grab it. The day was perfect: 75 degrees and sunny. I’ve had a lot on my mind, but a nice two-hour walk was just what I needed to 1) clear out the old stuff, and 2) invite in about a bazillion new ideas. During my walk I walked over an overpass and watched the cars beneath me. I found a stream I hadn’t noticed before. But most of all, … Continue reading Walking to Clear My Mind…