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Charles Whitman’s Bloody Socks

Charles Whitman’s Bloody Socks post image

You can read about it here, but I was there and this is how it was for me. I don’t know why I’m publishing this now, sitting here at 7,000 feet in northern New Mexico so many years later. I actually tried to write a song about it, and I’ve rewritten this essay over a [...]

Hot Rod Anima Dream

Hot Rod Anima Dream post image

Seventeen years in this place, no wonder we’re going mad. The elms are eating the house, the spider webs and dust are eating me. We did all right for a long time: it used to rain, there were gardens, I even cut the grass—which means at least there was some. Now everything is weird and [...]

Crazy Wild & Busted

Lobo Peak

SAN CRISTOBAL, TAOS COUNTY, SUMMER OF ’99

“Welcome to the valley,” Ricky Medina said when we signed up for a post office box. We had no idea what we were getting into. At that time, San Cristobal had the only legal water system in the entire United States that operated without a treatment facility: just pure water piped into a small number [...]

Garbage Man

Llano Quemado scene

His kingdom for a can

They’d found a house, he dreamt. It was on a hillside. “I like it,” she said, stepping down onto the gravel drive that curved off from a wider one that led straight back into the woods. Pine woods, with space between the trees, and at the end a larger house where strangers lived. He had [...]

Homage

Homage post image

Some men are like that, though. The ones who “prune” a tree by cutting all the branches like they’re dealing with asparagus and not a being with inherent grace, a form, a destiny. I don’t know how we get that way. It’s just not possible for me. Every weed and flower has a soul. When we lived in Maryland, I’d walk past a field of barley waving in the wind and feel the power like the tramp-tramp-tramp of marching armies. And a tree, my God. You have to ask permission of a thing like that. It wants to live, it has a purpose. Just ask the birds, if you can find one.

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