How Can I Keep from Singing?
Almost home from our daily walk, just as we were walking past, we saw a neighbor we didn’t know come out of her front door, sit down on a chair on her cluttered porch, and sing. Loudly. As if in
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Talk to the Hand
Yesterday on a walk, I passed an elderly white person, warmly dressed, waiting in a bus shelter in Porter Square. (And by “elderly” I mean the same age as me!) A second look and, yes, although considerably aged from
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Cover Your Mouth!
More than forty years ago, when my oldest daughter was in elementary school, we’d lived in Wethersfield, Connecticut’s historic district, its Main Street lined with carefully-restored eighteen-century homes interspersed with newer yet still elegant dutch-colonials and Victorians. (We’d lived in
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What I’m Taking On For Lent
I’m not giving up anything this year; I’m taking on something. Something I’ve been afraid to take on for most of my life: I’m welcoming everything that happens to me. For, as Francis Weller points out, “This is the secret
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Butter-knifing
Here I am, once again, “circling Fort Knox with a butter knife trying to figure out how to get in.”* I know I want to write about loss, about sorrow, and about how, for most of my life, I’ve let
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It’s Complicated
Back in the day when I taught homeless women in greater Boston shelters, one of my students, young and lovely, suddenly looked up from whatever she was working on* to say, “You know something? It’s not that we don’t know
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Fallow
When I was working on WellingUp.net, I told its web developers: “You know? This is probably my last book.” “Nah,” Byron Hinebaugh replied. “You’re just getting started.” Turns out Byron was right. Turns out I just finished a new one
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Do I Matter?
This week I heard a story, a story I’d heard before, told by a friend held in solitary confinement. His tiny cell’s overhead light broken, for months he literally lived in darkness; only a beam of light the size of
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The Marmee Dilemma
Much is being written or vlogged about Greta Gerwig’s “Little Women.” May I join in? Seated in perfect seats in the Somerville Theater on a rainy Saturday afternoon, a beloved, grown daughter by my side, I was already prepared to
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Muscle Memory
  One Sunday morning every December, my Quaker meeting shortens its morning worship to put on a fifteen-minute Christmas pageant. Directed and performed by the children of our community, some First Day School students chose speaking parts, others opt to
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Two Toucans Touching
Sometimes I exchange books with a dear friend. Sometimes I’ll notice intriguing titles or descriptives in a box of give-aways on the sidewalk and grab a book or two. Sometimes my grandchildren tell me I should read the YA they’ve
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The Big Picture (Or As Much of It That’s Currently Available)
What I’m about to write may seem ridiculously obvious. And political—not spiritual. And yet this Ah Hah feels Spirit-given: Yesterday at a meeting on immigration justice, we were bemoaning the current administration’s latest attack: drastically raising the fees to apply
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Just The Facts, Folks
In order to be very, very careful, I must leave out most of the salient details that would make this post come alive. Pop. For the safety of the person I want to write about, I’m leaving out most of
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Out Of My Comfort Zone
One of the many reasons my husband and I subscribe to ASP has been that their (brilliant and well-acted) productions are staged in under-used spaces throughout greater Boston. We shlep. We explore. We have pre-play meals in parts of town
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Apples and Oranges
We talk about “speaking truth to power”; sometimes using just the right words, even if they’re highfalutin’, can be enormously clarifying. Like “false equivalency.” I am loving how, with greater and greater frequency, the media is calling out out the
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Yes, Ma’am
Take it from me, someone who’d stumbled around post-cataract surgery until I got my new glasses, I am now exquisitely aware of how we’re inundated with written stuff! It’s everywhere. It’s a given. (And when you can’t actually read it, it’s
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“Radical Acceptance”
I have a new mantra these days. And it’s powerful. And eerily, mysteriously effective. Here’s an example of how it plays out: This morning I read yet another news article about some egregiously, blatantly horrible thing Trump has done, and,
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Time-Sensitive
A coal barge slowly cruises up the Ohio River; it passes the Jeffboat Company, now shut down, where the rust-colored barge that coal’s resting on had probably been built. And I, sitting at a cafe across the river sipping an
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Freshly Brilliant
There have been many times over the past month as I either prepared for or recovered from both eyes’ cataract surgery, when I simply sat. Sunblocked, broad-brim hatted, adequately hydrated, I just sat. Earlier in the month I silently mourned
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Somewhere With No Service
It’s been almost three weeks since I last heard from the friend I used to visit in prison, recently deported back to trouble-torn Dominican Republic. “They’ll kill you for a pair of $25 sneakers over here,” he told me a
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Patterns, Examples
Forty years ago and just beginning to attend Friends Meeting at Cambridge, I’d considered the people I’d worshipped with every Sunday far, far superior to me. Until I didn’t. Over the years, although my fellow Friends have proved themselves to
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Just Imagine!
Saturday, at Art Beat, Somerville’s largest cultural festival, I experienced A Moment: The nearby band playing Elvis Costello’s “(What So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love, and Understanding,” an immigrant grandfather, his three grandchildren, and their parents decorated butterfly* pins, the adults
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“Why me? Why us? Why Now?”
There is an us in this famous Marshall Ganz statement. I keep forgetting that. Called to follow Micah’s admonition to do justly, love mercy, walk humbly, I keep forgetting that a huge part of my particular version of humbly is to remember that
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“Nobody’s Free Until Everybody’s Free”*
Tuesday,  having spent some wonderful time with our Tarrytown, NY family, my husband and I explored that part of the world a little on our own. Driving north, the broad, magnificent Hudson to our left, we’d gotten off Route 9
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