Last Breath

El que niega la muerte, niega la vida.  (He who denies death, denies life.) — Octavio Paz Yesterday the last leaf fell from our maple tree as my grandmother succumbed to a long sleep. She is between worlds now, purring like a kitty cat. Fall catches us in a bed of vermillion and rust to…

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Night Visitor

Wind’s hands reachwith fingers of amber leaves,grasping for the deer thatdisappears into the night When does a deer become a pet? When you start to feed him apples? When he comes around regularly enough to earn a name? It’s deer-hunting season, so I’m surprised he still comes back. “He looks tasty.” My husband licks his lips.…

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Fair Shenanigans and Rogue Ferries

Sometimes I wonder if life is really an alien experiment to see how we humans react. The beginning and middle of our adventure was ridiculous, so there was no reason it shouldn’t end in shenanigans. The first time my four year-old ran away at the Haines Fair, we discovered her in the bouncy house. Later…

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Out of Gas & Cell Service on the Chilkat Pass

My husband has jerry-rigged so much stuff, his last name should be a verb: “Wow, you really Haffner’d that one…” “Dang, check out that Haffner!” And the more embarrassing, “Sort of a half-ass Haffner, don’t you think?” Don’t get me wrong, I mean this in the most loving way possible. If it weren’t for his…

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Thunder, Lightning, and I Found My Spirit Animal

Ahhhhh, Takhini Hot Springs… a lovely outdoor Olympic pool-sized bath fed by the natural hot springs of the Takhini underworld, where everything moves as if in slow-motion– like after dancing it up all night in the club then walking into daylight for the first time in a blurry-eyed state of blissful exhaustion just as the…

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Behemoth’s Maiden Voyage, Day 1: Wah, I want to go home!

The first five minutes in the Behemoth weren’t good. On first smell I could tell something wasn’t right. Then something in the truck caused my hyper sensitive lungs to react, and suddenly I needed my inhaler.  On our first corner we climbed a small hill, and our flatbed Chevy Cheyenne work truck slowly putted up…

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Yukon, here we come!

First time in the Behemoth, an old asphalt paving flat-bed truck that was completely undriveable just two weeks ago, road tripping with a camper on the Golden circle from Skagway, Alaska, to Whitehorse, Canada, and ending up in Haines for the SE Alaska State Fair. Maneuvering at top speeds of 25 mph through windy, winding,…

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Wildfire Birthday

Wildfires wrapped me in their hazy cocoon yesterday.Muffled all sounds and thoughts like a cold,Like the eerie quiet of underwater. Orange sun transformed my living room into a glass of Tang.  A parliament of eagles vied for salmon guts on the beach, chasing off the ravens over daisies and seaweed. Quarreling ravens forced out a…

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Other People’s Children

“Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me” — Mathew 25:40 Last May, when the Trump administration starting separating children from their parents and housing them in hieleras (ice boxes) and cages, under deplorable conditions with no clear intention or process for reuniting them…

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