art

Last weekend, I went to Western Washington University for the first annual Poetry Camp. After the end of the sessions and right before Jack Prelutsky, the first Children's Poet Laureate, gave his fantastic reading of 'Rat for Lunch,' I went for a walk around the campus where I once went to school. I was hunting the… READ MORE >>

On Sunday, I drove across the Cascade Mountains to sunny Yakima for a three day teaching conference. In this city my grandparents once called home, I let the sun melt away my everyday stresses and felt my curiosity perk up. While strolling the neighborhood, I discovered churches with large blocks of  dark stone rising above the city… READ MORE >>

Jessica Lewis, the trombone soloist in our band, reminds me of Marci Kobayashi-Smith, my good friend in high school. Jessica is tall, with cropped dark hair and skin like the color of vanilla ice cream. She plays in the toasty church where we practice, wearing a knit hat in a quirk that Marci did not have but I wouldn't… READ MORE >>

Over ten years ago, I took a class on adult psychology in a small classroom on Pill Hill in Seattle. The professor stood in front of us in a button up shirt with slacks that blended into the dark background of the room behind. As he described his experience of a wrenching divorce, he said he… READ MORE >>

The other day my son said, "You know you've got a LOT of books on writing on your bookshelf. Have you read all of those?" Mostly, I told him. (He wasn't particularly impressed -- just astounded that I could stay focused for that long on reading books about putting words on paper.) And he doesn't even… READ MORE >>

My mother-in-law Vivian likes to read popcorn Christian romances. You know the type. There's a swooning woman and a shirtless guy on every cover of the stacks of books she keeps close at hand. God is always a player in these stories so they are not exactly Harlequins -- but they aren't far off. Once… READ MORE >>

"You know all those paintings your mother makes and then throws out?" My sister and I nodded as my dad said this. We knew. "Well, I pulled a few out of the garbage and stuck them up in the attic. Remember to get them out of there when I die so she doesn't toss them." I understand why… READ MORE >>

My friend Ruth kept telling me about the book Praying in Color by Sybil MacBeth. "I just love it!" she said many times over, her eyes all lit up from the inside and a soft smile with a shake of the head when she tried to explain it. I could not imagine a prayer in… READ MORE >>