A writer, teacher, traveler, and long-distance hiker in pursuit of a life that blends them all. Read trail dispatches and adventure stories at my website.
A Fall Vignette in East Clear Creek
Across the water from the squeaking red boats, there is a bank of reeds rustling in the wind. It doesn't take much to move them—just a little breath, a small breeze. They show no discernible difference from the colors of summer, and their green bodies dance in a uniform swaying motion. Above them, the striated rock stands silent guard. The pain that sandstone has had to endure is obvious: weathering, cobbled blocks, where cuts dash back and forth along their faces. The sun comes out every few moments, poking its face from behind a puffy cloud and going away again. When airplanes fly overhead, the firmament sounds muffled and toned-down, about to sleep. Fall has arrived at East Clear Creek.
How I Dove Back Into Fiction with Vocal's Summer Fiction Series
When I was a kid, I wrote stories all the time. They seemed to bubble to the surface constantly, completely out of nowhere. Looking back, I'm envious of my younger brain. I never stopped thinking of characters, names, plots, settings, and fictional worlds. I never seemed to run out of ideas, and I never got discouraged. I miss this creative younger version of myself.
What's In the Pond
Summer has come again. The nights are loud with insects and bright with lightning. Fireflies dance among the trees flush with fragrant leaves, their lanterns a ping ping ping of waves lilting in the darkness. The lily pads float on the surface of the pond again, on the brink of blooming.
As Close as a Star to the Moon
Mrs. McMillan was obsessed with The Great Gatsby. She read it at least twice every year: once in the summer, and once at Christmas, from her old taped-together paperback copy she got when she was a student at Our Lady of Lourdes herself.
I mean, were the balls really necessary? They're unmissable. But then again, so is the entire bull. The black silhouette stands stark against the brown landscape and hazy blue sky. It is utterly visible: its horns rising heavenward, its four hooves planted solidly on the earth, its back perfectly parallel with the ground. And the balls. They didn't skip the balls. Not by any means. The outline is almost comically circular. It's very Spain.