Thursday, June 13, 2024
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Islander Essays

Writing from the Heart: ‘Who’s Tom?

In 1997 I was the recipient of the Artist in Residence award at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. Prior to my interviews with the board and the director there, I had never been to...

Woodside Story: Celestial enlightenment?

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Sometimes astrology can give us fresh answers for why everything is running amok. It’s def amok, right? And so we’d like to know what the heck is happening. And here’s the Big Data from...

Writing from the Heart: Out of the mouth of babes

Remember Bush Jr.’s No Child Left Behind? It was a lofty idea that didn't work then, and with one in five children living below the poverty line today, it's obvious that 15 million children have...

On My Mind: Thankful

It had been a month since I’d cantered through the hills and fields astride Tex — a giant, almost black Percheron. Over many years, he and I have had a special friendship, and have...

Writing from the Heart: Make up now

Here’s why you have to make up with your siblings. Right before my sister died, we had the biggest fight we had ever had. I thought, She’s gonna die, and we’re gonna not be...

Woodside Story: Losing folks

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This is that sad, sad aspect of getting old that you frankly thought, in your younger, daydreamy years, would never catch up with you. But all your older relatives couldn’t stop talking about it....

Writing from the Heart: Just the facts, ma’am

I love Mark Twain’s line, “Never let the truth get in the way of a good story.” So here is a story of how I let a good story get in the way of...

Woodside Story: Ya feelin’ it yet?

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We’ve all come up with different phrases for it: “the beginning of the end”; “the last chapter.” Here we all are in our “sunset years.” These adages hardly summon our “golden years.” We are elderly,...

Writing from the Heart: Accepting us

What other people think of me is none of my business, a mantra I repeat now and then just to remind myself to be myself. I only need to hear it when I'm feeling...

Writing from the Heart: Preferences

The great way is not difficult for those who have no preferences. The first time I read that statement, I was perusing snippets of the third patriarch of Zen, Hsin Hsin Ming. Before you scratch your...

Woodside Story: No more hating

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Yeah, the two sides of our country’s political struggles find each other, truly, revolting. But this is just the nauseating view developed from watching the news, something some of us have tried to avoid....

Writing from the Heart: Grandparents’ love

The difference between parenting and grandparenting is as wide a gap as a farmer is from an ear of corn. My grandmother reached just above my waist. It's true I am taller than most, but...

Brazucada!

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The word is brazucada. It comes from “brazuca” in Portuguese which is slang for “Brazilian.” When you have a large crowd of Brazilians all in one place — like we increasingly do here on Martha’s...

Writing from the Heart: Budding artist?

I hope you all get to age 82. For those of you who have passed this ancient number, you might know what I am about to say. It’s that if you live long enough,...

Woodside Story: Pass the readers

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I’m here to tell you that some of us still enjoy reading. All the same, as a lifelong reader, writer, and bookstore owner (Sun Porch Books in Oak Bluffs, 2002 to 2008), I can’t believe...

Writing from the Heart: Aging is a full-time job

Aging is a full-time job. I thought of that as a title while trudging through the woods yesterday. I say trudging because hiking is a thing, a word, an activity of the past. I have...

Woodside Story: The joy of pets

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For those of us seniors who love animals — seemingly loving them beyond life itself (come on, admit it, it’s that meaningful) — figuring out a way to make our last chapter desirable can...

Writing from the Heart: Different isn’t weird

The other night at a small dinner, one of our friends said she had just come back from Charlottesville, where she attended her 20th Dave Matthews concert this year. Someone said, “You traveled 20...

Woodside Story: The boogeyman of old age

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It probably wouldn’t matter to us if the only downside to elderliness was, well, to put it bluntly, looking crappy. We do endure that awful specter; crepey skin, gray hair standing in tufts on...

Writing from the Heart: Opposites attract

We've all heard the expression “opposites attract,” and I have to admit that my husband and I are almost the perfect example of that phrase. And it was never more obvious than what happened...