The Boy

Have You Seen My Trowel?

I imagine archaeologists to be a rugged lot. Thick-soled boots like the treads of earth-movers, caked in ancient and illuminating grime. Wide brims and handkerchiefs and mirrored sunglasses to guard against a bully-sun cracking its knuckles. Scrapes and bruises; dehydration and sunburns; fingertips raw, knees creaking, eyes gritty and red. And pockets. Lots of pockets. […]

Blood Moon Rising

Crisp and white, bars of light crept across the bedroom floor. I sighed and lifted the covers, awake after crawling to bed and not sleeping for five hours. I slouched to the window and lifted a slat to see a fullish moon hanging above the rooftops, washing out the imperfect glow of street lights lining […]

Cluck, Cluck, Cluck, Cluck

We spent the week eating corn fritters in the morning and ice cream in the evening, walking on the beach and building sand castles. As the sun sets on the gulf, tiny mollusks no bigger than a fingernail line the shore. They rise from the sand with each passing wave, popping to the surface in […]


Ian has this…laugh. It’s forced and painful, like a diversionary chuckle following an awkward pause after an off-color joke. It’s a role he assumes when he thinks someone should be laughing. The cats are chasing each other or he’s misplaced a book or I’ve dropped something. Those silly cats, my silly self, that silly Daddy. […]

The Rain Came Down

Doors in our home have been mysteriously closing. Bathroom doors. Which isn’t all that strange, I suppose: if you’d want any doors to be closed in your home, I imagine bathroom doors would follow a close second to the front. Except that no one’s using these bathrooms while the doors are closed. I knock and […]

She Tousled His Hair

Her name was Julie. Slightly shorter but slightly older, hair in a pig-tail and a missing front-tooth. She didn’t need water wings. Ian was enthralled. Ian wouldn’t play with me when Julie was in the pool. It was half-hearted and he was distracted, looking over my shoulder to follow Julie’s trail of splashes to the […]

So That’s Clear, Then

I take Ian to school on Wednesdays, which means I work late to make up the difference. It took him a while to get there, but I think Ian misses me, too: ‘I’m OK, but I’m sorted. That means when you break the rules, you get really tired. And please do the stuff that you […]


I’ve never worked the day after Christmas, before. Ian and Kelly are both on vacation, but I’m at work. Early, because we have a plane to catch on Friday afternoon. We gave Ian a soccer ball for Christmas. We took the ball to a park yesterday, because it was sunny and fifty-four degrees. Today’s not […]

Everybody Gets to Have Water

Ian’s class shares a writing kit, which each student takes home for one week. Assignment #3 was to create a menu and act as a server for a family member. The former half of the exercise didn’t make for exciting viewing, but the latter was better—if only to hear Ian’s ‘job’ voice.