Columns

Spring peepers, silver linings

I cried inconsolably when my father uprooted us from our Kentucky farm to Detroit in 1954. To soothe my homesickness, Mom taught my two sisters and me how to make hollyhock ballerinas with toothpicks. She bought us ice cream at Brown’s Creamery. I loved spinning on...

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Birdsong and a prayer

A harbinger of spring, we tackled the asparagus patch this week. Mel pulled dried weeds and pushed loads of compost uphill. With shovel in hand, I assessed my half of the labor. Yes, our food is worth the work. Fastidious about my gardens’ borders, I began with a...

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A nice but strange homecoming

I think I had forgotten exactly how much I had missed winter in Michigan. Despite wreaking hell on my nasal passages, there is something electrifyingly rejuvenating in inhaling the crisp outdoor air, with its ubiquitous scent of campfire. Even its chilly caress on my...

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The beginning of a new world

Living with uncertainty is bringing me down. I am a planner. How can I plan anything when every day I wake up to different parameters and damage reports? Of one thing I am certain, society is about to find out what it’s like to pare down our material items and make...

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Finding blessings all around you

Editor’s note: The following guest column was submitted by Catherine Minolli, the Times’ former editor, who retired in September 2019. She currently operates Peaceful Moon Yoga. Ahhh, the poetry of Spring! The season of rebirth and renewal...the time when the Earth...

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Light upon an unraveling world

Last Wednesday began in my sunny kitchen, chopping broccoli and onions for soup with Joyce. At 10 a.m. she arrived towing two photo albums, her memoir in progress, and coconut macaroons dipped in chocolate. Her immediate eye spied the ruffled bowl holding Granny Smith...

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Signs of life after death

My mom passed away on a Sunday morning. We went home after that to get ourselves together and headed for the funeral home. It was still very surreal. The fact that I witnessed her spirit leave her body when she died was pushed back into the recesses of my mind. We had...

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Babysitting honeybees

My one and only beehive survived the winter. Ecstatic with joy and disbelief, I want to shout it from my housetop, but have a feeling those pollinators are planning to swarm. My favorite beekeepers, heroes who know honeybee behavior, say swarming is a sign of a...

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So how many Leap Days ago?

Last night, the thumbnail moon and shimmering Venus stole my extra night of Leap Day’s sleep to count my blessings. I recalled the four Thursdays in February, thankful for safety to and from a memoir class. The thermostat fell the lowest, and snow piled the highest...

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Seeing signs of life

The very moment my mother took her last breath I was on the phone with the hospice nurse, but I was unable to talk. Just 10 minutes prior, I witnessed a miracle right there in her apartment. As she lay on the hospital bed hospice had set up for her, labored in her...

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