Foggy Sunday at MoMA

The plan on this foggy day in NYC was to go to MoMA to see the Gauguin and Jasper Johns exhibitions, both new, both nice, both somewhat intellectual. No photography allowed, which was fine with me. I respected both exhibitions but was not hit behind the knees, my criterion for OMG art.

Then I joined the throng of foggy-Sunday people in the galleries of MoMA’s permanent collection, the paintings you see on postcards, calendars, and posters with good reason.

Before we proceed, however, I want to draw your attention to a little Odilon Redon still life hanging quietly in the corner. image

See in this photo of “Wildflowers in a Long Necked Vase” (1912) how no one is looking? Redon may be the best kept open secret in the art world. There used to be a small room devoted to his paintings tucked into the lowest level of Musee d’Orsay in Paris where we few Redonophiles gathered in silence, excepting an occasional gasp or swoon.image

imageRedon is my drug of choice, discovered when I was 21, unemployed, and newly arrived with one suitcase to Washington, DC. For two days I stood in front of his paintings at the National Gallery of Art instead of looking for a job.

I can spot a Redon across a crowded room. He was a real deal mystic not a William Blake angel-oriented one. He contained the ecstasy of mystical vision inside the “real” world of fear and monsters. His prints, unlike his painting, are seriously scary. But that’s what I think it’s like for mystics on earth.

And, living in this world, we are best to keep our eyes open, and embrace it all. I had a great time being infused with art, and embracing the Sunday crowd.

imageSee redhead in front of Frida Kahlo.


See blue haired girl in front of Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” just as the guide told her charges that Van Gogh’s stint in the south of France hadn’t gone so well, and he cut his ear off.

imageSee little Asian girl almost touching a George Seurat before a panicked guard rushed over.


See couple in front of “Christina’s World” by Andrew Wyeth (discreetly next to the elevators) as the young man asked his young women,”Does it remind you of when you were a girl on the farm in Russia?”

imageSee man in a plaid shirt in front of a minimalist Miro.

imageSee hair-flippity girl next to flippity red Matisse.

imageSee Max Ernst’s “The Blind Swimmer (1934),” and think how explicit is that! Cited as having a subconscious association, it’s perhaps not so subconscious as it once was.

See that humans can transcend, given colors, forms, and lines with which to re-pattern ourselves and to answer questions for which we have no words, subconscious or conscious.

War = Evolutionary Flaw?

War proves that evolution is hodge-podge. We create master works of art, architecture, technology, and exploration, and then we destroy them along with each other.

The glitch in survival of the fittest is that mean greedy strong people – think Huns, think small pox in trading post blankets, think any dictator – lack empathy and seem to have little appreciation for the arts, education, or other people. Well, some monsters appreciate the fine arts so long as they get to own them.

Since before the sacking of Constantinople, the multiple fires of the Library of Alexandria, and the Crusades, the dynamic has been the same. People strive together to learn, create knowledge and beauty, reveal the mysteries of existence, and build new cultures. Then some ruffians come over the hill with weapons. Destroy, rebuild, destroy, rebuild. Certainly humans have resilience and persistence. We keep striving to the light.

These days, the “destroy” part of “destroy and rebuild” is on the move, literally. Displays of strength everywhere. Russian troops along the Ukraine border, Israeli fighter pilots flying low over Gaza as a reminder, Egypt judges condemning hundreds of Islamists to mass executions, as hundreds of thousands of Syrians seek refuge from violent madness.

It’s been awhile since it’s looked this bad. The world is fracturing more than usual along the usual lines of fear, greed, suspicion, denial, self-righteousness, and beliefs of having a monopoly on the One True God – and which One True God is on our side, and we, being created in One True God’s image, should rightly rule over others. “Dominion over the earth” and all that.

Well, I don’t know if Putin has One True God beyond himself. He might take up his entire world.

Ever feel like a small fuzzy mammal trying to avoid being trounced by very large reptiles? Very large reptiles that never look down? Who think only they and the other large reptiles exist?

If my evolutionary metaphor is getting out of hand, it’s the panic speaking. Remember the dodos? They never got upset, and they were wiped out. On the other hand, lemmings jump off cliffs and wild horses stampede and it’s no benefit to any of them. What to do? What to do? “I’m late, I’m late, for a very important date (with peace).”

Last night I had dinner with a fellow peace worker . . .  Yes, dear readers, that is my background that until now I have avoided bringing into my emerging blogger career. So, last night I had dinner with a fellow peace worker, a veteran with decades of training. I told him I was worried.

I told him that, since stepping back from the peace business, I’ve started to lose control of my professionally-imposed balance regarding cruel people and idiots. Yes, I said that. I said “cruel people” and “idiots.” I also said “blind people,” and “people who think they are liberal but aren’t.”

I told him that I had started wanting the last word, that my nonviolence was becoming tinged with the impulse to squash everyone I felt interfered with love and song and flowers and truth, and that I was on the last dregs of patience.

I also said that I felt there just might be something wrong with these impulses. He leaned back and said, “It’s part of getting older.” He told me we have earned the right to be cranky.

I said, “I can’t see a single reason why people fight each other. Not one. I just want to shake people and say ‘stop it, just stop’.”

He said, “Yes, they should just stop. Maybe in a year, maybe ten, maybe a hundred.”

And that is the flaw in evolution: not all humans can tell what is good for them. I hope the rest of us can live with that.

Creationism has it worse. Any God that nudged the pieces this way and that is a pretty sorry god.

So we’ve got evolution – and free will within the limits of what’s possible in the constraints conflict places on us.

My free will chooses to support those who create master works of beauty and exploration and answers and solutions. My free will supports the peace makers. My free will sides with those who see that it’s a miracle that we exist and who tend that miracle with grace, forgiveness, and generosity.

My free will still believes in the One True God of “love your neighbor.”

Feeling the Love

My father’s youngest sister, Phyllis, tatted lace. As a child, I was fascinated by the contrast between her, a stolid woman of few words wearing loose cotton dresses, and the white delicacies that seemed to escape from her fingertips.

My mother knit and my daughter crochets. She used to make bobbin lace. This inclination towards small arts that require nimble fingers skipped over me.


Wikipedia: Tatting is a technique for handcrafting a particularly durable lace constructed by a series of knots and loops, used for lace edgings as well as doilies, collars, and other decorative pieces. (Like the laces in Rembrandt paintings in my blog “Laces of Rembrandt.”)

What Wikipedia doesn’t say is that tatting looks very delicate. In French, the root word is frivolite, also the root word for “frivolous.” In Italian, it’s chaicchierino, meaning “chatty.” I’m heading into a metaphor here:

photo 3

Click to see video.

Tatting is intertwined strings that look delicate, but are durable – and are usually beautiful. As of a couple days ago, this is my image of love through generations.
You see, I had a private tea party with my 4-year-old granddaughter with teacups from my mother’s estate. The cups have been with me under two weeks and were featured in my blog “Falling with Teacups.”

My mother started collecting the cups more than 50 years ago, according to notes she pasted on the bottoms of them. I never saw them used, though decades ago she was in a women’s club that met every month. I think they drank coffee. The teacups are probably virginal.

I’m avoiding the subject, which is: knowing you are loved is different than feeling you are loved.

Secondary clause: not feeling that you are loved doesn’t mean you aren’t.

photo 5When I asked my granddaughter how much she likes tea, she said, “I love tea as much as you love me.” She knows she is loved, and has all the rights and privileges of that to be willful, difficult, loving, impossible, and adorable.

As an adult, I live in a zone of knowing intellectually that I am loved but not feeling it viscerally every moment. The sense of being loved is not in my cells as a natural state, and – oh, folderol and ta ta ta – I could tell you the circumstances that created this gap, but my childhood isn’t the point.

. . . and then the one person I viscerally felt loved by was leading a double life with another woman and apartments on two continents. Clearly I’m not good at this.

I am, however, good at loving others – strangers, friends, family. I love people hugely, immensely, consistently, bursting out of my chest-ly. This loving of others is a bath I live in most of the time.

But when it comes to feeling loved myself by others, it’s more of an intermittent shower. Truth is, I need a daily fix to feel loved.

Even as I write this, there are people who extend their love for me, express it in such measure that it is as though the universe is in my face saying “Get it.” So far I have gotten that I will never be like my granddaughter. There is no magic wand that will make me feel 24/7 that I am loved.

But if I cannot retain the visceral feeling of being loved, I understand, nonetheless, that I am surrounded by people who love me, and that is a blessing, and it is enough.

I write because I know I am not alone with a disconnect between being loved and feeling the love – and to give the reminder that we might be wrong when we don’t viscerally feel loved.


As I watched my granddaughter sip camomile tea with mountains of honey in it from my mother’s beautiful teacup, I literally saw between us a web of white tatted lace connecting my mother to my granddaughter through four generations.

I saw its fragility, was awed by its durability, and knew that when my mother put little tags on the bottom of the cups with my name on them she was giving me her love as she knew best. I felt it viscerally.

Those of us who didn’t feel love when we were young can make sure that those we love are held, precious as porcelain, unquestioning of their gifts and limitations. This is the gift we can give with a little tag on it marked for them.

We who know the gap often know best how to love others for love is our way out. Camomile with honey, anyone?









Hope is a phoenix, not a dove

Common images of hope are wimpy: lights at ends of tunnels, birds’ wings, drops of water after a dry spell. But I don’t think hope is like that. I think it is a tide that can well up as a sea change from depths of muck, shipwrecks, and old tires. I think it is a hairy monster that refuses to die. I think it is growly and tenacious and says “f**k you” to things that prod it in the side.

How else would people in real duress survive. Birds’ wings? What? To fly over the 8-meter high concrete walls around the West Bank?

Drops of water? For what, to lift up a couple tissue-petaled flowers when you need a torrent?

A light that’s over there somewhere far away… ? Well, maybe my analogy breaks down on this one. A light in the dark is always a good thing. No metaphors are ever 100% exact because a thing is the thing it is, not something else.

What you need in real duress is not something that can be taken down quickly by a bulldozer, men with guns, poverty, or prejudice.

Hope is the power that rises out of compost. It is what allows families and loved ones to take care of themselves for their future’s sake after their daughter, sister, father, friend is killed in a revolution or protest of Arab Spring or….  Well, you name it. There certainly are enough battles going on around the world.

Hope is “I will not be stopped by you” by a woman raped in India, the DRC, or Minneapolis. Hope is Malala after being shot in the head by the Taliban.

Hope is “you harmed me, but I when I return I will be stronger and I will win, or I will die trying.” And some people win, which is why hope is an evolutionary plus.

Hope is somehow connected to morality. I am not, in case you haven’t gotten the tone, talking about hopes for wealth and power. I am talking about hopes for opportunity, for a chance, for equal rights, safety, expression of true selves, creativity, nourishment and heath, freedom of travel, education, justice.

Hope is somehow connected to morality. It is aligned with steely-backboned non-violence and creativity with little elements of playfulness that give it a Zen advantage and flexibility through repression and deprivation and prejudice.

Hope is somehow connected to morality because it aligns with joy, caring, truth, nourishment, education, being free to dance, and pursuit of happiness in just societies.

Okay, why today does hope rise in me as a tidal wave filled with muck? Oh, just one more idiot in the world against the LGBT community, just one more ploy by Netanyahu, just one more battered woman, just a few hundred more Syrian refugees. Just one more last straw.

And that’s before we get to the starving lions, tigers, horses, and donkeys in the world. Were they always there and only just now coming through my mail slot?

I think I am not alone in feeling that we make a decision to live with hope or live without hope. EXCEPT, it’s not a decision because it’s not a choice. Hope is hard to put down.Try to end it and it will evade you. Try to shut it in a dark room and it will wiggle out through the keyhole. Try to snuff it, and it will burn you.

Hope is life’s desire to live. It says, “You may give up but I won’t, so get over it and keep going.”

For me it’s easy, I’m not in Crimea, or Syria, or Gaza, or the DRC, or Brazil, or North Korea. I am not in poverty, and I am not without health care. I am not clinical depressed. I am infinitely blessed. So why am I kvelling? I’m kvelling because how can I be truly happy when others suffer? I cannot. It is that annoyingly true.

Hope is connected to morality. It does not allow us to be voluntarily blind, deaf, or dumb to others. Hope cuts through excuses. It saves us, individually and collectively. It’s unmercifully stubborn about getting things right.



Falling with Teacups

3:51 am. Insomnia has staked a claim on me, put its flag into my fertile potential for sleep and said “You are mine.”

3:53. I worry most about the children in Syria, that polio has returned, also measles. They are dying. I can do nothing about it. I worry about their parents, too, seeing them in mixed dress of drab colors and dirty bright scarves, but mainly I worry about the children.

3:57. Then there are the half million Palestinians in refugee camps in Syria. I read that they are the most abandoned, harmed, and isolated. Aligned with Assad for decades for relative safety, now they are the least safe. Could they be accepted on the West Bank? Israel would have a conniption fit first.

4:01. I worry about Israel, I worry about the West Bank, I worry especially about Gaza. I cannot imagine inside Gaza. I want BSD (boycotts, sanctions, divestments) applied against Israel. I realize with a small shock that I’ve come off the fence. I want the Israeli people to wake up, but they are harmed – more, they HAVE been harmed – to such a point that it seems unlikely that fear and denial will soon loosen their grip. Being heartbroken over Israel is not helping me get to sleep. I don’t want them harmed, I want to tell them they are safe and loved, so stop it!

4:07. I pet my dog, sleeping fretfully beside me, what with the light from my iPad and the wind they say will take away our two days of bird song and rising tulips.

4:10. They tested my ears today for hearing loss. There is some, high tones especially. Both ears. They talked to me about a hearing aid. I said “Not on your life!”

4:12. I worry about not hearing, I worry about never typing my computer code in right the first time. I worry because I left the trunk door up on my car in the street today when I returned home from taking my dog to the vets.

4:15. I worry that I fell tonight, missed the bottom step while carrying a box of my mother’s teacup collection that arrived yesterday with other items from her estate, the cups I remember as the most beautiful things she had.


I know them by heart, those with roses, those with thistles, those in gold, those with violets. They were divided among several of us so when I fell with them by missing the bottom step there were only six in the box, all more or less wrapped in plastic to go to my daughter.

yellow4:19. I fell, the fear of every woman of a certain age. I was only thinking two days ago that it had never happened, at least not from miscalculation. Now it has, the first time is over. My mother broke her hip when she was younger than I am, water from the dishwasher on the kitchen floor. She had to have a pin put in and use a walker. I compare my body with my mother’s. I come out way on top.


4:23. My grandson is being put into the after-school chess club, grades 2 to 6. He’s in kindergarten. I’m concerned if he can hold his social skills together to make it work.

4:27. I start to panic counting the people I owe emails to, and that I need to file Mom’s final income tax, and ….  I stop thinking about this, it doesn’t help me sleep.

4:32. The house where I lived with my ex-husband is being put on the market, gutted and floors sanded and walls painted. It turned into something resembling a college dorm after I wasn’t there, so people said. I remember the nooks and crannies of beauty, and of beautiful moments, gone. Surprised how little I care about the house, surprised that nooks of love survived the crash.

rosebuds4:37. When I fell, I hit with both knees on the slate floor, my upper body followed. Anyone walking by could have seen my prone body through the windows, immobile. I wanted someone to see, wanted someone to come, but no one did. I heard the teacups in the box clatter as I held them forward, safely, even as I fell. The sound was so loud in my ears, like life as glass breaking. The teacups were in my care for one day.

4:42. My last lover (or whatever that was) freeze-dried and rehydrated and freeze-dried and rehydrated and freeze-dried and rehydrated the feelings between us so often that I’m not certain they exist in real time now. I slip into the sweetness of what it felt like – what it, in fact, feels like now except that now it holds hands with a hollow ghost that also exists. Not his fault, … well, being bad at friendship is mainly his fault … but not his fault that it was impossible. I worry that knowing I could feel this powerfully could become a curse if it never happens again, but … whatever, I don’t know, I worry that …

4:49. I pet my dog, and imagine the next time I would see him (the man, not the dog). I imagine saying, “You are a lousy friend.” I worry I might say that.

4:52. I really worry about the lack of abortion clinics now in Texas. People having root canals or laser eye surgery don’t need to go to places fully equipped as hospitals. I think women are being hunted. I think the Inquisition has tentacles.

4:58. I think I read something on FB by Maria Shriver and how much weight she lost. Was it really 115? No, it must have been 15. I’ll have to check tomorrow.

yellow flower5:01. Soon as I could move, I reached out, still prone, to feel the teacups in the box. I thought this was the pose in cartoons of men in deserts reaching for water. The teacups felt okay, as though nothing was broken. I, too, seemed unbroken.

5:04. The melted bag of frozen peas I used as a pack on my left knee is on the floor. Has it melted? Will it leak?

5:07. My dog leans into me. I worry about the Syrian children.

5:10. 4% battery left.

5:11. I open the window. The wind is blowing.

5:13. 3% battery left.


7:30 am. I wake from a tense sleep and recurring dream. In this variation of the dream, I have a short time to find and leave with the small things of beauty that I own in the overflowing storage rooms of small things of beauty inside the Smithsonian Museum. It is separation time. SMITH SON (daughter) MUSEum. Will my muse stay behind? No answer.

I am in a dulled reverie from seeing, one at a time, objects of purest crystal and gold, small as ivory netsuke and Limoges pill boxes, exquisite – the last a small faceted crystal globe held up, embraced, by Atlas who looks as though he was poured, liquid gold, into his kneeling position.

AT LAS holding crystal, from the Greek Krystallos for “frozen light.” At last.

Porcelain Terrors: art reflecting us

Who knew porcelain bleeds and ceramic can be sliced? Reader Alert: this post contains gore.

The recent exhibition at the Museum of Arts and Design (NYC at Columbus Circle) was titled “Body and Soul: new international ceramics.” I call it “Porcelain Terrors.”

Three life-size children, shiny white, greeted me. A boy and a girl appeared to be begging on their knees in front of another girl. Was it a game, a new form of “Mother, May I”? Then  I walked around the standing girl and saw the gun she held behind her back.

IMG_1316The show, which closed a week ago, was a Hall of Mirrors made personal by human figures martyred to cultural violence, anxiety, and fears. The 25 artists show, once again, that art with meaning reveals us to ourselves.

Also, that beauty can be an exquisite door to ugly truths. That’s why I, for one, need it. It is a conversation of deeper measure than politics as usual, reality shows, casual flirtations, fast foods, and implanted prejudices. It talks to me where I live, fret, and need answers.

An artist told me decades ago, if a painting doesn’t come off the wall and hit you behind the knees, it’s not good enough. My definition is gentler: good art either has to hit you behind the knees or play your heart like a stringed instrument. Audible gasps are good.



In the show porcelain heads were chopped off and ceramic hearts and intestines pulled out. Such fine materials, such lamentations.

China skulls were sliced by fine china plates. Lust and gluttony were glazed. Much piercing was done. See “The Volunteer” (below) for surgical procedures.

The volunteer


Another exhibition was on view, and will be until June 1. “Out of Hand: Materializing the Postdigital” shows objects of various materials made by 3-D printers. To me, the objects lacked heart and soul not to mention blood and guts. They felt like next-generation decoration, furniture, and clothing, which, in fact, they were. Harbingers of our future.

Not incidentally, 3-D printers already manufacture real guns that look like the one behind the girl’s back.


That is, the first show showed the violent subset of our propensities while the second supports our propensities for pretty things and/or power. That said, a friend of mine adored the 3-D show, and you may, too.

(More 3-D pieces, besides this lace chair, are shown below. Note the black lace dress especially.) 

The thrill, or shiver, for me, however, was “Body and Soul” because it showed who we are, how we kill each other, how we use each other, and how we consume each other, and how we want to be consumed. I was not printed by a 3-D printer. I am flesh.

Titled “Broken,” a collection of delicate English women with names like “Claire,” once exquisitely dressed and coiffed as figurines, held up their slit wrists, offered viewers their heart or head or guts – all with sweet smiles. Always in petticoats, sometimes with hats.

KarenIMG_1264 IMG_1261


Lust and Gluttony


A dinner party turned into a bacchanal of sex, food, lust, gluttony. Louis XIV, or your neighbors? A reality show, or secret fantasies? More than indigestion is at stake here.




A woman of indeterminate age stood naked and vulnerable with pumped-up lips slavered in lipstick, turning innocent self-conscious beauty into something sexually grotesque, and common place.

One skull was sliced by fine china plates, another woven through the eye sockets by a cheap oversized bead necklace. We live, we decorate,     we die.

Infinity and more The Silence of the Waves







The ceramics of men touched me immensely, wounded as they were, strong men, warriors, fighters made of fragile materials that, like them, could be broken easily. A man hauled his idealized sleeping woman on his back, a boxer was cut, St. Sebastian in a hoodie was tied to a chair surrounded by flattened porcelain penises, a man with a mirror in his face burst his heart.

Drop the bust on the floor and it’s over. IMG_1281 IMG_1274 IMG_1298 St. Sebastian















Why is this mesmerizing? Literally, you see, it is beautiful. Exquisite surfaces, delicate colors. And you see through it to what we see on television and in our media of what we do to each other, our collective and individual stupidities that result in inner and outer devastations.

Yet, there are artists in every culture who turn that into something so poignant that our humanity is restored. They return us to feeling and caring. Their art gives us hope by making us honest, by not letting us get away with it.

Three-D pieces below. I’m sure we’ll see more of them. I’m waiting for them to hit me behind the knees or play my heart like a stringed instrument. IMG_1353 IMG_1363 IMG_1350




IMG_1338 IMG_1369

Best Definition of Imagination

One night a year or slightly more ago I asked Ben, then five, if he did multiplication in school.

Ben: What’s multiplication?

Me: Like adding 2 twos, or 3 threes.

Ben: No, we don’t do multiplication.

Me: Want to?

Ben: Sure.

Within the hour he was doing, in his head, problems like “What’s 3 times 7 plus 12 times 3?” Within two hours he was doing, in his head, problems like “What’s 7 times 12 times 3 subtract 4?” After going silent, putting his head face down in the pillow and wiggling his body this way and that, he would look up and give me the answer. Correctly. Each time.

He asked me not to call them “problems” because they weren’t problems. I told him it was past his bedtime.

A year later he says things like,”If 1 wasn’t a number, there’d be no prime numbers, right?” Think about it.

Or “Look! When I add 1 and 3, I get 4, which is 2 times 2. And then when I add 5 to that, I get 9, which is 3 times 3. And then I add 7 and I get 16, which is 4 times 4. And it keeps going all the way up to 100!” That is, when you add up the odd numbers sequentially you get answers that are square numbers. Who knew?

Recently he counted by 17s up to 3000, then by 18s, then by 19s, and on up while walking, dancing, eating, and taking breaks to do normal kid things. He made up songs and dances for the two of us of his growing totals.

Attachment-1Last night he was multiplying 99 by 99, then 98 by 98, then 97 by 97, as entertainment, silently, while eating pizza, four cheese.

Several months ago he was doubling numbers and when he got somewhere over thirty million, the going got rough. I thought it was a time to learn how to write this stuff down.

Now, if you have a child who is fluent in French and takes exquisite joy in sounds, puns, rhythms, and rhymes in a perfectly calibrated language, and you abruptly tell them it might be better if they did it in Chinese, of which they knew not a word, what would you expect them to do? What Ben did was scream – shriek actually – and run out of the room. Not immediately but after five minutes of valiantly trying to speak in Chinese. Nothing about it made sense to him. It was horrendous. An identity crisis, a disaster, a massive failure by grandma.

Nonetheless, he recovered and a couple weeks later he figured out the number of seconds in a year. It took awhile and a little guidance from his dad, but he did it, and he did it in his head.

So he does it all in his head, and he can explain his process to you later, though you might not understand. I seldom do. (However, if you happen to want to multiply 97 x 97, I recommend his method, which I do understand. Multiply 97 x 100 and subtract 97 x 3 from that.)

Recently, he referred to a computer in his head. Last night we talked about that. I asked if the computer was his whole brain or only a part of it?

Ben: Well, if the whole solar system were in my head, and the sun was in the middle, the computer would be about where Mars is. (He indicated a place behind the “sun,” which was in the middle of his head, and, yes, he is also absorbed with the universe as big and quarks as little. It’s all quantitative scale.)

Me: Does it move?

Ben, with a puzzled look like how could I be so dumb: Noooo, of course not.

Me: So that is where the things you know are?

Ben: Sorta.

Me: Is that where your imagination is?

Ben, with a look that I was even more uninformed about brains than he realized: No!

Me: So where is your imagination?

Ben, short thoughtful pause: It’s like a big bubble . . . (tracing a large circle in front of himself that includes his head and body.) . . . and it’s filled with words floating everywhere and there’s a sentence in it, and then that sentence disappears and suddenly there’s a new sentence in it. (His face lit up when he said “new sentence” like it was a gift written in light.)

Me: The sentence is like a new idea?

Ben: Yes.

photo 2And with that he got on his little sister’s mini-scooter and rode from the dining room to the kitchen while his aunt and I looked at each other in amazement until we heard the crash and wail of the scooter against the cabinet and the boy against the floor. Ice packs on his back, kisses from his aunt, and some tears in gramma’s arms. He really is only six, which is a small number after all.

More “Ben-isms” on Facebook at whatbenwonders, posted by his mom.





Room with a View: NYC sunsets


I was in NYC last week. I stayed high up in an apartment in the mid-60’s on the West Side.

I took photos every evening between 5:00 and 6:30 of the city, Hudson River, New Jersey, and the setting sun.

It was magnificent every time.DSCN3694


(Click on any photo to enlarge for better viewing.)



DSCN3746 DSCN3683




A million lights, a million lives.





Every day a reminder . . .







. . . every day beyond words.