Vox Populi

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Paul Christensen: A Cup of Light

Soon enough the stars will appear like little nicks of light gouged into the darkness. Voices emerge from the ambiguity of evening as the kids return from school, grumpy and starving, and reach for a cup of hot chocolate and the first sugary taste of cake in their eager mouths.

October 24, 2021 · 7 Comments

Paul Christensen: Where Summer Ends

My village lies there in all its stony composure under the first thunderstorm of fall. It meant cold weather was coming, creeping in like a procession of ghosts under the rumbling sky.

October 10, 2021 · 1 Comment

Paul Christensen: Messages from the Invisible

I am an outsider and always will be no matter how long I come and spend my summers here. I don’t mind; I like my existence framed this way, with enough sunlight to comfort my skin and aging body, and my ears thirsting to hear French laughter, and French whispers below my window.

October 3, 2021 · 3 Comments

Paul Christensen: A Velvet Gloom Before It Rains

The rain isolates you the way not even silence can.

September 26, 2021 · 2 Comments

Paul Christensen: The Changing Air of Nights

Night is a palace of memories, with the beams lashed to the roof and corded with fragments of childhood, vanished links of how we grew up, and faint traces of our mother caressing our hair and sending us up to bed after a rambling story about ghosts and goblins.

September 12, 2021 · 4 Comments

Rachel Hadas: Lessons of Poetry

It is easier to lecture about the time and place of a book, the culture that produced it, the special historical or linguistic problems involved in it. It is harderā€¦to face the book as a masterpiece and to help the student understand why it is a masterpieceā€¦.

August 22, 2021 · 4 Comments

Paul Christensen: Back in France

When we pushed open the door to our village house, an old familiar odor of sun-warmed plaster rose up to us as if to give us an embrace.

August 15, 2021 · 6 Comments

Paul Christensen: The Pandemic Blues

Everyone around here is sluggish. The young woman who checks my purchases off the conveyor belt dabs her eyes and stifles a yawn. She keeps shaking herself awake as the … Continue reading

July 25, 2021 · 7 Comments

Paul Christensen: My Mazda and I

The monks of Europe often planted their vines in cemeteries to ward off thieves, and believed you could taste the blood of ghosts when you drank. My mother would sip her wine and look away dreamily and then back at me as if I had come home from a long journey, with the Mazda parked in her driveway.

July 18, 2021 · 4 Comments

Paul Christensen: Summer’s First Visitors

It’s summer and the gods are playing tug of war with the wind and the sun. Some days are dead-weighted with humid air that clings to our our faces like … Continue reading

July 5, 2021 · 9 Comments

Paul Christensen: Early Dog Days in Vermont

It used to be you could live in Vermont without an air conditioner, or even a fan. The stores were very sparing in their shelf space for such things. Now, all the big retailers pile up boxes of cheap rattling room coolers as early as May, and sell them off.

June 13, 2021 · 3 Comments

Paul Christensen: The Emerald Landscape

  The hills have turned so green it almost seems the world could melt into an emerald blaze, a conflagration of jewels and diamond-crusted creeks. The birds are celebrating some … Continue reading

May 23, 2021 · 6 Comments

Paul Christensen: What the Rain Says

She would die soon but neither of us knew that. Right now, the precious hours were dissolving in the pale afternoon light, just as the rain began again.

May 9, 2021 · 8 Comments

Paul Christensen: Rainy and Cold Today

The soul is hungry in spring, and there is only the crisp, silent air to feed it.

April 18, 2021 · 4 Comments

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