The Sweetness: The Girl on the Cover

"So,” some may ask, “is that you on the book cover?” I shake my head…no. There’s no need to explain that the child adorning the cover of my novel, The Sweetness, was born years before me; and no need to say “but, we are related,” and certainly no need to mention, although we are second cousins, we have never met ... read more

“The Ring,” a Memoir

Published in The East Hampton Star 2013

Having attended nursery school since the age of 3, I skipped kindergarten and was enrolled in first grade at the public school a few blocks from our Brooklyn apartment. Even in 1951 the school had appeared ancient with its brick walls of hanging ivy ... read more

 

Punish

Published in The East Hampton Star 2009

“Over my dead body!” she shrieked, in response to my request to spend the night at my friend Ronni’s, and for a brief moment, it was as though she had read my mind. Watching my mother, standing at the sink pretending to be busy, when she had already sponged the same plate twice, I wished she would disappear down the drain ... read more

Saving Face

We are dining in a favorite trattoria, two couples, when my friend Judith, who prides herself for being two days younger than me, announces: “I’m having work done.” Because she and her husband recently moved, I assume she means renovations. Removing walls. Installing cabinets. But then Judith abandons her bowl of pasta porcini and says, “Watch.”
Palms down, she places ... read more

 

The Days of Bloom

In recognition of Professor Harry Bloom’s long and exemplary service, his humane teaching, and his inspiring dedication to all facets of the craft of fiction, the English department of the State University of New York’s College at Oneonta established the Harry Bloom prize for fiction in 1997.

He would have loved that I googled him, loved, even more, the sound of the twenty-first century search engine phrase. Professor Bloom stressed the use of words not only for their meaning, but for the uniqueness they lent to a phrase ... read more

My Film Career As An Extra On The Beach

Published in Dan's Papers, The Hamptons, June 2006

“Well, thanks, I think,” I replied and so, on a lark, I showed up for casting at Southampton High one gorgeous Saturday afternoon. This served as yet one more excuse for me not to have to sit at the computer and work on my thesis, or to re-edit my unsold novel for the umpteenth time. And while driving there, I even allowed myself the fantasy of being discovered at this ripened age ... read more

 

90 Day Wonder

Note: Finalist in Cup of Comfort for Courage Anthology. Used by the Stroke Foundation of NYC in meetings with families of stroke victims.

A few months after my birth in ‘44, my father was sent by the U.S. Navy to Officer’s Candidate School at Cornell University. He was among a very select group of men chosen to complete ... read more

In The Light Of Home Movies

Published under the title “Reel Time” in Chocolate For A Woman’s Dreams edited by Kay Allenbaugh. Fireside Books.

Vintage cartoons preceded the films: they were black and white, starring an anorexic Mickey Mouse. Like the films, the cartoons were silent, but the darkened room where we sat shoulder to shoulder roared with our laughter and commentary ... read more

 

Laundry

Recently accepted for publication by Ballantine Books anthology entitled, Aunties: Thirty-five Writers Celebrate Their Other Mother

“Come in, come in,” I say, hoping to convince her she’s welcome. She approaches my bed balancing a leaning tower of clean laundry she has finished folding. Somehow, laundry touched by ... read more

My Marilyn Monroe Blouse

Published in Ophelia's Mom by Crown

While Bari can spend hours in her room working on a crafty project, or reading a Judy Blume book, Jennifer is usually planning her next day’s wardrobe. This might entail her need to crawl past me like a soldier avoiding gunfire. She’ll sneak into my closet to borrow a blouse, sweater, or scarf ... read more

 

A Duck Pond Runs Through It

Published by Merrick Life Magazine

I had just gotten over the trauma of my baby brother’s birth (I already had one brother) when my parents packed up our cramped one bedroom Brooklyn apartment and moved the family to a little town called Merrick ... read more

My Robert Redford Minute

In the middle of all this change, was Steve’s big trial in D.C. The trial that took him away every Sunday through Friday, leaving me with the weekend fallout, shaking with fatigue. Even though the weather was spectacular, I drove to the airport that particular day, feeling the usual mixture of fear, anticipation ... read more

 

Pop Quiz

We were studying The Civil War, and I, for one, was having a tough time keeping up with the battles. I was upset when our eighth grade social studies teacher, Mr. McCullum, told how brothers had fought brothers, and then died in each others’ arms on the bloody battlefield ... read more

The Runaway

The instant e-mail from Miami reported: Dad’s been missing for six hours. At once, I was besieged by a terrifying image—my father’s sun-spotted face imprinted on a quart of skim ... read more