Dahlia Obsessions

Jeff Sandys was gently pulling each petal of a miniature dahlia and pasting it into a 10×10 grid. There’s a raffle and the winner who guessed the number of petals on this particular flower would win, “Oh, I don’t know, I think it’s 25 dollars,” Jeff said, waving his long hands. “Do you grow?” Jeff …
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Mount Rainier, August

The snow has receded so much from the peak of Mount Rainier that the caldera — the round crater of the volcano — was visible, a thin line of black stone against the white of what little snow there is. The snow pack is half what it should be this year and 50 inches less …
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Some Thoughts After Book Passage 2015

1. Things Happen at Writing Conferences In the middle of my second day at the Book Passage Travel Writers and Photographers Conference, I went to get coffee. I shared the counter with a Bay Area literary agent. “What are you doing here?” the agent asked, and then he saw my faculty tag. “Oh, you’re teaching. …
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What the Sam Hill?*

You can reach the Maryhill Museum by shorter routes than mine, but I needed a road trip and was not in a hurry.  I crossed the north side of Mount Rainier, spent the night in Yakima, and then, continued south on 97, past wheat fields and giant white wind turbines and little fenced cemeteries which …
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