After the painting episode, Gilda Jackson demanded preschooler Christie Mae Curry be removed from the finger-painting module. As the other teachers respectfully suggested modifications to the program, Gilda glared them into silence.
The new director of the Curry Institute closed her eyes and squeezed the bridge of her nose. The other teachers fell silent, braced for the storm. Gilda huffed disdain for the indecisive incompetent in charge of her school.
Finally, the director opened her eyes. She smiled at each individual, holding their eyes and nodding approval of their specialness.
“Gilda! Yet again, you have an issue with the daughter…
The first time David Davidson died on stage, there were only twenty people in the Riverview Amphitheater.
The stage manager was hollering directions at the crew, hoarse with anxiety, frustration, and too much caffeine. He pointed, waved, and swore he’d never work with these prima donnas again.
The roadies were ignoring the stage manager as they did every frantic, bossy idiot. Deft and surefooted, they set up equipment and lay out the band’s favorite oriental carpets.
Davidson was watching from a safe distance backstage. He still couldn’t believe he was here.
ILLUSIONALS had been paying tribute to the summer of…
I’ve heard it before — not all of it, but constant chatter and mindless drone
Can make it feel like I’ve heard these stories and can’t stop from yawning,
Working on my own stories in my head, and wondering what’s for dinner.
Do not misunderstand.
I read to quench a never-ending thirst
For stories that grab me by the throat, the heart, and the imagination
And will not let go because I won’t let them.
Never imagine that boring, desperate, and tedious will stop my quest.
I know that good stories are out there: short, long, and in-between;
True, false, a textured blend of…
On Sundays in Lambert Township, Congers Street restaurants take it easy.
Naturally, they want to uphold their reputation as the ultimate in destination dining. However, they also need to take a break from the night before. Their town’s Saturday nights challenge even the most accomplished to thrive and survive. Crowds are drawn to them from everywhere, ranging from titanium card holders in Ferraris to earnest poor kids hoping to get lucky.
It’s fast, it’s frenetic, and the pressure intense.
However, when you manage the right balance of creativity, service, and speed, you’re golden.
For decades, Grayson’s Bar and Grill had…
I don’t know what to say.
I’m guessing it’s the same for you.
When there are no words to say, no urgent thing that must be done right now,
What do we do next?
We could make up a song or make a pie from scratch,
Seal up precious memories behind a new wall for someone to find.
We could walk to the beach, drive somewhere beautiful to clamber up hills —
Comparing them to the mountains and valleys we’ve crossed before,
Kidding that these are easier as we puff, sweat, and groan our way up.
But I don’t know…
I’ve always been — plan on staying — that strange, wild-haired kid
Who asks too many questions, interrupting yammering to understand, Respecting you enough to struggle with word tangles even after
I realize word vomit means you don’t know what you’re talking about.
I’m sorry to be blunt, to break illusions of what a sweet-faced child
Is expected to be as she ages into strong-voiced, sweet-faced woman
Who delights in challenging ideas about what it is to be beautiful,
Smart, and opinionated in my own wild and brilliant way.*
Too young, I knew to be sorry for breaking illusions
The little ones don’t understand the confusion: dreading and loving the bus,
The clambering up the too-big steps into cavernous dark that lurches belching
Into the ruined early morning peace only to return with tired, burdened kids.
The little ones watch their beloveds leave home without a backward glance,
Ignoring dog pleas for one more chase, another long throw to retrieve ball.
Do they know what they’re getting into?
Some do right from the start: this is how they grow up out into the real world
Where dogs are pets and little ones are pests instead of disciples and peons
Eager to do…
If only Bliss had reacted to the sound track the way they’d rehearsed the scene, things would still be right. She and Chris would be the leads in THE HAUNTING OF MOUNTAIN MANOR. They would be passionate lovers, the envy of Baxter High School and undisputed rulers of cool.
But she hadn’t heard the cue as many times as they played it for her, louder and louder until the other actors covered their ears and waved their arms for Bliss to scream.
Who doesn’t hear a shrieking hinge?
Who doesn’t scream in response and run down the stairs into the…
While you were busy, I found something to do by myself.
I am resourceful that way, finding a new game that’s all me all the time
So you can do your busy and important things without any worries
About what I’ll get up to doing (I’ll figure something out).
That thin box snarled at you — and the big one, too.
You’ve used your mean voice on our pack and they’re hiding behind
Their own boxes, screens, and stories that make them feel better.
I don’t know what’s riled you up, but nothing seems wrong to me.
Our pack is alive…