Showing posts from August, 2015

The World through Grandpa's Eyes

   My grandparents somewhere in Europe     We knew it was almost time. Uncle Bill and Dad carried a few chairs into my grandparents’ living room. Uncle George brought the projector and rested it on the metal folding table. We had to end our hide-and-seek game since the living room was off limits, or we could “take our game elsewhere” for the next twenty minutes while they got the room ready.    “Elsewhere” was easy in the old Brookline “mansion” Mom grew up in with its many bedrooms and bathrooms, a nursery, and Grandpa’s doctor’s office. Sometimes the seeker would give up, defeated. Sometimes the hiders didn’t know the seeker gave up and would remain hidden until hungry or bored. When Grandpa called everyone to begin the show, about ten of the nineteen grandkids would wander out of hiding spots often smelling like mothballs.     We were expected to get excited to see the slides from Grandma and Grandpa’s latest trip to Europe. “Okay, are we ready? Everyo

Planting My Feet in the Shadows

charcoal sketch by Terence McManus PLANTING MY FEET IN THE SHADOWS   At nine years old I was either a dreamer Or superstitious, Or odd; Following Randi’s steps, I planted my feet In my friend’s invisible footprints; The shadow of her being. Could I transport into her world? Her golden tendrils become mine? Her dimpled smile, mine? Her perfect home, mine?   Minor misstep-- It couldn’t happen, but Dreaming could. As I climbed her steps My hand grasped the iron railing Where her fingers touched Marching behind, Synchronized. Up to her pink room Dappled with dancing daisies and rose ribbons, Everything my room was missing.   I watched her mother part Randi’s hair Into a straight line Then gather her waves into bouncy pigtails. Randi twirled them around like propellers And they laughed. Was it strange to love my friend so much To want to be her mirror image? Would I follow her Into her battle with canc

The Long Way

  My destination   I should’ve arrived at Cairn University in Philadelphia in less than three hours. My problem was not listening to that sweet voice speaking from my phone giving directions. The brochure for the Greater Philadelphia Christian Writer’s Conference said take exit 44 off I-95 so that’s the way I wanted to go. I was sure my phone was rebellious and being annoying, insisting I get off at different exits…so I decided to ignore it until I reached exit 44.   My journey began around 1:30 without any glitches. There was the usual sluggish traffic leaving long island and the wonderful smell of exhaust fumes and pollution, but no major problems.   Shortly after crossing the Verrazano Bridge, clouds grew dark grey ahead until they burst. Sheets of rain poured as I drove to a rest stop, but I could relax since I had less than an hour to drive.   The smooth ride slowed down until my car was crawling along with traffic for at least thirty minutes. It look