Columns

Agricultural lessons and liberty

The summer day I saw Granny walking down her Appalachian alley, swinging a hen by its feet, the head dangling back and forth, I knew we’d find fried chicken on her supper table. Discreet in her butchering and processing, my sisters and I never discovered where she...

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The scent of rainfall

Iris Harkins, the only other Iris in our large church congregation, often sat behind my family of five during Sunday’s worship service. A friendly woman with a British accent, early on she said her husband Frank gathered with our pastors on the platform. Reverend...

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Staying confident we’ll see you in September

From Detour to Detroit, from Saline to St. Ignace and Traverse City to Tawas, all are ghost towns today. COVID-19 has seen to that. These are the most challenging of times and its full impact remains to be known. “Just stop what you’re doing, go home and stay there,”...

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The full moon reminds me

Moonlight cast mullion shadows upon my bedroom floor. The Man in the Moon had sneaked up on me again. Thirty-one years sleeping in the same place, I’ve learned lunar cycles from my southward view. Yet, somehow I’d lost track of the moon’s waxing and waning. “No...

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Back in the driver’s seat

I’ve never driven a car in all of the long spells I’ve spent overseas. Due to my not having an International Driving Permit, as well as a general lack of opportunities in the countries I’ve visited and lived, I’ve only gotten the rare opportunity to ride in someone...

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Magnolia memories and revelations

“I can’t wait for the Magnolia Fair,” cousin Kathy said every summer of our childhood. I could only imagine the fair, for I’d never seen it. Each summer vacation to Kentucky, those two words provoked a hope that this would be the year I’d walk the fair with Kathy....

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Forsythia season

I rise before dawn and drive south. The spring sunrise glows upon daffodils and forsythia along Rochester Road. I recall this golden hope in a season of grief while en route to my eight o’clock class at Oakland University. Twenty-six years later, forsythia blooms in...

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Viral thoughts

Never to be forgotten is the day I realized life would be on hold for a while. We had just gotten done with soccer practice on Friday, March 13th and a student came over and said he was told that not only was school closing for a while, but we wouldn’t be able to have...

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Lifetime of experiences leads to book

Lifetime of experiences leads to book

Have you ever given much thought to writing a book? My wife is the only one who has ever suggested it, bless her heart. There’s no book deal on my horizon, for obvious and truthful reasons. Imagine the time required, dedication and discipline to produce a book....

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Wayfaring gardeners

“For our Founding Fathers, gardening, agriculture, and botany were elemental passions, as deeply ingrained in their characters as their belief in liberty for the nation they were creating. From Founding Gardeners: the Revolutionary Generation, Nature, and the Shaping...

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