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Neighbors and strangers are holding bits of my childhood up to the sunlight, the better to judge them. Mom and I have arranged the tables in loose chronological order; attentive shoppers moving clockwise will see my unformed adolescent self unfold into hopeful young womanhood over there by the plum tree. Read the rest of this entry »

We all know the good girls and the men they travel with. I saw them this morning at the pet market and didn’t think anything of it. They were receiving instruction, yes, that is often the case; it is an education for them to be among people. Read the rest of this entry »

The secret I felt thrust upon me is nothing I wish to claim; a syllable it was that earned me this room and in itself the syllable was true. From my small town near Pisa where bread was scarce I’ve journeyed here to a room of my own, Read the rest of this entry »

Can a saint keep a diary? Only a saint could think so. For the rest of us the truth is in the life and all biography is betrayal. We have only so much perspective. Read the rest of this entry »

I usually have to tell my students to question the meanings of photographs and the motives of photographers, but not her. I sense instead, whatever I tell her, she’s wondering why. Read the rest of this entry »

People and things are so easy to lose it’s a wonder we end up anywhere with anything to show. The future too is insecure and can be misplaced as easily as the little pocket items of the past— Read the rest of this entry »

A steady breeze billows the laundry on the line in photograph after black-and-white photograph along the gallery walls. Dad says they make the breeze visible. Read the rest of this entry »

The girl who circled the world traveled sometimes by water, sometimes by wind, arrived always lightly carrying nothing but what she knew, departed again when she had delivered it all. If they were wrong, the lessons she taught, she taught wrong lessons well. Read the rest of this entry »

My daughter Magda is four years old and a frightening specimen. I’m running out of preschools that will take her. “We can’t tell when she’s kidding,” they tell me, “It scares us.” I know: you need an example. Read the rest of this entry »

We’re not complicated. Actors, men, all we want is a girl who can play the part. Is that too much? Naturally she has to be attractive. Even the ugly parts are played by attractive girls. You know that. I’m not telling you anything you don’t know. Read the rest of this entry »

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299-WORD NOVELS

Character, conflict, emotional impact. And sentences! Everything you want in a novel, without one extra syllable.

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The pen name David B Dale honors my parents Beatrice and Dale. David+B+Dale = davidbdale

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