Pope Francis and Moral Justice

Posted by on Jul 10, 2015 in Essay | 1 comment

It was one of the strangest sights I had seen in my twenty-four years: Vietnamese nuns in traditional black and white habits riding in the back of a garbage truck.

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First Christmas

Posted by on Dec 12, 2014 in Short Stories | Comments Off on First Christmas

First Christmas

Santa Claus is in my house! He arrived just moments before when a thud shook the house, followed by loud banging, sounds of sleigh bells, and stomping on the floor above us. I was five years old and paralyzed with excitement: Santa had flown all the way from the North Pole to my house in Ashland, Kentucky.

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The Gift

Posted by on Dec 5, 2014 in Short Stories | 1 comment


Published by the Blue Lake (California) Literary Review, October 2013


I was spending a little time with my mother in Ashland, Kentucky, in the summer of 1998. We were on a day trip when she put her hand on my arm and said, “You’re such a nice young man. What is your name?” It took me a second to understand that she was not kidding—my mother had forgotten my name.

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Natural Wonders

Posted by on Aug 5, 2014 in Short Stories | Comments Off on Natural Wonders

My ten-year old grandson and I were sitting on the deck of my home waiting for a summer rain to start. The deck faces east and is protected by an overhang, and I have sat there often over the years as Michigan rainstorms have passed over. Having him with me as he eagerly awaited the coming storm made this storm special: I’m passing along a tradition I learned from my mother.

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Death of the word, Hero

Posted by on Oct 8, 2013 in Language usage | Comments Off on Death of the word, Hero

As a people, Americans are big-hearted and have boundless enthusiasm. But occasionally in our enthusiasm, we mangle logic and misuse words. When this happens, powerful words are weakened to the point of becoming meaningless.

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Mending Fences

Posted by on Sep 20, 2013 in Language usage | Comments Off on Mending Fences

“Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,” Robert Frost wrote in one of the most misunderstood poems in the English language. “Misunderstood” because all that people remember is the response of the thoughtless neighbor who “will not go behind his father’s saying…” which is “Good fences make good neighbors.”

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