• Don’t believe them when they tell you how economical and thrifty nature is

    I have an office now. A genuine room of one’s own. It has walls of planked pine painted periwinkle blue and a ceiling that only just clears the top of my head. Most of the walls in the house are stone plaster, meaning you can’t just go hang up any old thing — but not…

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  • Sabes Que Ropa Me Queda

    June 17th Who lives in New York? People live here. Crossing guards who conduct the blaring Mac trucks and motorcycles and antsy travelers of Flatbush Avenue with impassive grace but break into smiles and coos at the glimpse of a baby live here. Excavators and enormous cranes and dump trucks and cement trucks live here. …

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  • Remains of the day

    Remains of the day

    Sunday, May 24th A load of laundry strewn across the guest bed, including all the winter socks I’d meant to bring with us.   Dishes in the dishwasher, cleaned March 19th but mildewed by May 22. The pork chops we’d planned to have for dinner stuffed pell mell into the freezer. The parchment ponytails of…

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  • Like a tree in which there are three blackbirds

    Thursday, May 7th “Turn out the light?” Buffalo girls won’t you come out tonight “Turn out the light?” And dance by the night of the moon “Turn out the light!” The light is the sun. Perry wants it out at night, so he can sleep. I’m constantly explaining my own powerlessness. I can’t fix the…

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  • While the stem is winding one of those little lines about itself

    Wednesday, April 15 Yesterday, it rained and rained. Sheets, sprays, steady drizzles. A warm rain, and when I ran on the wooded road that is really a long driveway, the forest was a conspiracy of greening pines and new ferns. A full-blown waterfall tumbled busily down the slopes. I thought of Bridge to Terabithia. Not…

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  • The Truth Is

    The Truth Is

    Monday, March 30 I don’t know what a swallow looks like. A medium-small bird whose wings moved radially flew over the duck pond, and I’m calling it a swallow. I didn’t know wings moved like that, in those tight little circles. It was a poignant bird in a close sky. There’s a war on and…

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  • But No Queen Comes

    But No Queen Comes

    Wednesday, March 18th There’s a passage in Rilla of Inglesidewhere Rilla’s companion, Mrs. Oliver, dreams about the upcoming Battle of Verdun. In the dream, a French soldier staggers up the veranda to where she stands. They shall not pass, he insists, over the peal of thunder and lashing rain. Rilla tries to take heart in…

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  • It’s only afternoon, there’s a lot ahead.

    Brady said we ought to keep a journal of this time, so when people ask, ten or thirty or fifty years from now, “what was it like,” we’ll be able to say: it was like [x].  Assume a susceptibility rate of y, and a transmission rate of n. Solve for x.  It was like the…

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  • Unreal Cities, or Love in the Time of Corona

    A month ago, there was a murder on our block. The memory of the incident feels very fresh, still, and surreal in the way that events that you haven’t conceived of happening do.  Our block is a longish one, but the murder happened only a few doors down, across the street from the playground where…

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  • Still in the Published City, or Revisiting My New York Canon after the Birth of My Second Son

    We arrived home after our annual Northeast Regional Christmas late last Friday. We were overladen with gifts (Our car, which had seemed quite a nice size a year ago, struggled mightily to hold two car seats and their respective occupants, a small dog, all said respective occupants’ lounging and sleeping gear, four suitcases, many, many…

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