Aziz Acharki via Unsplash

My wife is an alcoholic in recovery — and she’s divorcing me.

This is not how the story is supposed to go. Normally the non-drinking spouse in a relationship gets fed up with their partner’s alcoholism and ends the marriage. But my alcoholic wife of 24 years has initiated a divorce from me, despite my years of support as she entered recovery and frequently relapsed. Now she is living apart from our two children (ages 16 and 21) and me in a sober house, as she continues the long, arduous and uneven process of recovery from addiction.

She says that…


“In cycling or in life one can never be assured of victory, of the inevitability of triumph, or of the steadfast and pure motives of a gift.”

Signore Sandro Bono was on an off-year in 1988. Married to an American grad student at the University of Maryland, the Italian cyclocross specialist took up residence in a foreign land, away from quality espresso and parmigiano-reggiano, and reduced to that most American of cycling pursuits: the criterium.

At its core, the criterium is something like a cyclocross on pavement, with sprints and bursts out of corners every lap, so Bono adapted quickly…


Photo by author

U.S. Senator “Little” Marco Rubio of Florida has barely disguised his disgust for the second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump.

“There are millions of people suffering across the country and especially in my state due to the socialist policies of Joe Biden, and we’re here playing around trying to sanction a president who magnanimously left his office even after a clear majority of voters expressed their desire to have him remain there,” said Rubio.

“Besides, the trial is clearly unconstitutional,” added the senator.

Enacting the legislative (and geographically appropriate) equivalent of making freshly squeezed orange juice from sour…


Photo by Jackson Simmer on Unsplash

Cancer took my mother’s life in 1994 when I was a young man in my first real relationship. My then-girlfriend and I had gone to church together the morning she died. Prayers successfully lodged, we returned home in time to see the flashing lights of rescue vehicles in the driveway of my boyhood home. We walked up the stairs with dread as we heard her plaintive gasps for breath. Surrounded by EMTs, I managed to hold one of her hands to say goodbye. I felt her touch shrink and then slacken.

Partly to honor my mother’s memory — because she…


By Rainer Maria Rilke

Photo by Andrea Contieri on Unsplash

We cannot know his legendary head
with eyes like ripening fruit. And yet his torso
is still suffused with brilliance from inside,
like a lamp, in which his gaze, now turned to low,

gleams in all its power. Otherwise
the curved breast could not dazzle you so, nor could
a smile run through the placid hips and thighs
to that dark center where procreation flared.

Otherwise this stone would seem defaced
beneath the translucent cascade of the shoulders
and would not glisten like a wild beast’s fur:

would not, from all the borders of itself,
burst like…


By Czeslaw Milosz

Photo by Babin shrestha on Unsplash

Love means to learn to look at yourself
The way one looks at distant things
For you are only one thing among many.
And whoever sees that way heals his heart,
Without knowing it, from various ills —
A bird and a tree say to him: Friend.

Then he wants to use himself and things
So that they stand in the glow of ripeness.
It doesn’t matter whether he knows what he serves:
Who serves best doesn’t always understand.

This poem is an enduring favorite of mine, and it has provided comfort recently as my long term…


Photo by Caleb Perez on Unsplash

In the wake of last week’s riots that saw a mob enter and gain control of the U.S. Capitol building, many lawmakers from both sides are seeking the most efficient and least disruptive way to remove President Trump from office.

One solution being postulated is invoking the 25th Amendment, the end result of which is the removal of the president from office. The 25th Amendment allows for the president’s removal due to physical or mental incapacitation, and requires the approval of the vice president and a minimum of eight presidential cabinet secretaries.

Among the secretaries said to have considered using…


A poem about survival

Photo by Genessa Panainte on Unsplash

I.

Sparrows starve in winter;

Barren fields yield diminishing returns

Of crop-stubble for their plunder.

The fruit of dustbins lay buried in piles

For the cause of a greener cosmos.

II.

Mid-day pulsing of wings shatter

Porcelain air, every quotidian sortie

Quests mild updrafts, gliding helplessly

Without hope, dulcet drones scanning

Smolders in the ashen Dresden below.

III.

Nightfall beckons death, entombment

Under stone ledges, canopies of twigs,

Vaults of sodden leaves. Avian flocks in

Fettered communion, heads tucked, wings

Shrouding drawn eyes, heartbeats dwindled.

IV.

Rifle cracks greet the dawn, brethren scatter

With animated flutter…


Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

Covid 19 has put a damper on the spirit of this season, particularly the reassuring jingles of coin donations. Feeling anxious over abrupt declines from pre-pandemic free loading? Or envious of the clanking in those red metal tins of the Salvation Army? If you’d like to divert some of that good will over to your own street corner, without stooping to lively bell ringing, here’s your holiday guide on how to scale up.

By following a few simple steps, those of us on the dole this holiday season can massively expand our beggar’s share without the need for a hapless…

Matthew Butterman

Beautiful Precision is my goal… Robust and effective communication through the written word is my passion! www.matthewbutterman.com

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