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Cobalt Blue: A Novel

A novel for courageous readers and seekers, COBALT BLUE is a turbulent, gorgeous ride into sacred sex..

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Powerless! The Unsettling Effects of Power Outage

December 11, 2018
Dear Nicholas, The power came back on at my house 36 hours after the start of the weekend winter storm. Now I feel like a complete person again. It was only a day and a half– hardly a blip.  But effects of power outage are a psychic shock, much more than simply a sudden inconvenience. […] Read More

thankful for Freddie Mercury, Bohemian Rhapsody

Feeling Thankful for Freddie Mercury

November 21, 2018
Dear Nicholas, I’d never heard of the guy until a few months ago or his band Queen. Never expected to be feeling thankful for Freddie Mercury on this Thanksgiving holiday. My acquaintance with his music came about in a curious manner. At Sea With Scaramouches By chance, I’d  joined the first (and for me, last) […] Read More

stage of grief old letters baby shoe

Surprising New Stage of Grief

November 12, 2018
Dear Nicholas, My new stage of grief is flashing lights. Visual distortions, like at the start of a migraine, but the headache never happens, and the lights go on and on. This past Friday morning, my brothers and I began the process of dismantling the homestead, clearing out my mother‘s house. Much of the time, […] Read More

coping with losing mom, flowers, funeral, brilliant color, memorial service,

Coping With Losing Mom

October 31, 2018
Dear Nicholas, This subject gets harder to write about. Writing a tribute was easy. Now three weeks after  her death, losing Mom is no longer a hurricane-style crisis full of shock and activity, but instead the start of coping with losing Mom, a long jagged process of dealing with the emotions and changes. First, we […] Read More

losing Mom

Losing Mom

October 12, 2018
Dear Nicholas, I don’t know how to begin about losing Mom. Except to say: she died. My mother.  I don’t know what I want to “discuss,” except maybe just to talk about her.  Her name was Margaret Tucker Payne, nickname “Tuck.” Tuck Forever For so long, we — my brothers and I, and a lot […] Read More

riding out hurricane Florence Wilmington

Riding out Hurricane Florence in Wilmington

September 25, 2018
Dear Nicholas, I’m sorting through the emotional results of riding out Hurricane Florence in my hometown of Wilmington. I was there ten days, nine without power. My brothers and I were keeping Mom company; she’s 96, has sat out many hurricanes there and didn’t want to evacuate. This is not a position paper. It’s an […] Read More

Low Energy Warning Signs?

August 28, 2018
  Dear Nicholas, I would like to have a gizmo that tells me when low energy/energy crash threatens. Cars have such devices. Suppose we had to guess when we were about to run out of gas! The shoulders of roads would be crowded with people waiting for AAA to arrive. Surely there’s some way to […] Read More

astral novel sending out a book

Sending Out A Book Manuscript

August 18, 2018
Dear Nicholas, Thursday, after a bout of revising, I sent my new novel back to my agent. Sending out a  book is a big deal, perhaps akin to taking a child to their first day of kindergarten. Sometimes I’ve felt bereft by the loss of the deep immersion in the story. I think I’ve mentioned […] Read More

step-grandmother, grandparents

How Do You Say Step-grandmother in Polish?

July 27, 2018
Well, Nicholas, I was already an ex-step-great-grandmother, through my early first marriage, though I’ve never met the most recent generations. Now I hear I’m to become a step-grandmother. Golly! My extended family grows more extended, especially since the parents-to-be live in Poland. What Brought It Home Didn’t seem real until the sonogram arrived in an […] Read More

being and doing obstacle course children

Being and Doing: Do We Have to Choose?

July 18, 2018
Dear Nicholas, Here’s how I choose between being and doing in a given situation, if it seems there’s a choice to be made. I go by Niebuhr’s “Serenity Prayer.” The one that AA relies on. “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom […] Read More