Published Work

“Snow Shelter,” Reader’s Notes on the theme of Shelter, Ruminate Magazine, Issue 53, December 2019.

“The Errand,” in the anthology Memory into Memoir, 2016, Penchant Press International, LLC, Cami Ostman, ed.

“Through the Floor,” Cirque: A Literary Journal for the North Pacific Rim, Vol. 7, No. 1, 2015 (page 95)

“Waltzing My Piano,” Whatcom Watch newspaper, Bellingham, WA, March 2017

“More than Meets the Eye: A Beach Story,” in The Bellingham Herald in April 2011, keyed to Mayor Dan Pike’s proclamation of Plastics Pollution Reduction Month.

“Income Stratification at Retirement: Continuity or Change?” Research in Social Stratification and Mobility, Volume 16, 1998, Kevin T. Leicht, Ed.JAI Press, Inc., Stamford, Connecticut.

 

Excerpts

From “Through the Floor

From “Waltzing My Piano”

An old envelope fell out of the piano bench the other day, and I asked Bill about tossing it out. But the chickenscratch on the envelope held details of his 1989 trip to collect what is now our good, heavy, rather old upright piano.

From “The Errand”

Inside the broad tiled foyer of Sunrise Towers, I ignored the living room on the right, which threw open its French doors invitingly, and proceeded to reception, a safety-glassed station, for my appointment.

The receptionist said Gary was ready for me.

He asked after my travels and ushered me to a seat in front of his desk. His starched long-sleeved shirt rested on muscular arms. The strength I could see seemed a bulwark against having to prove anything. He reminded me, in a good way, of middle managers I’d worked with at insurance companies. Practical. Competent. Fair.
I said, “Thank you for keeping the . . . gun . . . until I could get here. After what Dad said to the 9-1-1 operator I appreciated how you handled the police.”

Gary said, “I was sure we could resolve this privately.”

“Gary, did you check . . .was it . . . I’m wondering if could it be loaded?”

“It was.” Gary said, looking at me steadily, with a flicker of a sympathetic smile. “I unloaded it.”

I waited for Gary to editorialize about what poor judgment my father had shown moving in to this secure, gracious place concealing a gun against his rental agreement and against all common sense. But he sat silently, waiting on me. Could it be that getting rid of the gun was his only concern? Maybe he wasn’t going to evict Dad after all. A faint snippet of the Hallelujah Chorus came into my head, up through my wooziness. But I wasn’t going to ask if he’d evict Dad—it felt like talking might make it happen. I just gave him the nod.

He got up and stepped behind his desk to a lockbox hidden under a leafy plant, and brought out the offending handgun. Some sort of Saturday Night Special, in its original glossy paperboard carton, the color artwork advertising to the world the shiny barrel and crisp precision of some 1970s Clint Eastwood fantasy. He went back to the safe. He placed three small but heavy cartons of ammunition on the edge of his desk in front of me.

I looked at him. And looked at the gun. And the ammunition. He looked at both. We looked at each other.

I said, “Do you . . Can you help me find another box for all this?”
He beckoned the receptionist. She brought back a box. And this is how I came to be riding in an Arizona cab with my father’s pistol and three cartons of ammo concealed inside a box labeled . . . Del Monte Pineapple.

Work in Progress

I am now working on a second memoir: “My Mt. Hood: A Twenty-Five-Year Memoir of Timberline Lodge”

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