May 09
Lorraine Berry lives in the Fingerlakes region of New York, although it's her transplanted home. On weekends, she can be heard throughout the area, cheering on her beloved Manchester City F.C. When not writing at Does This Make Sense? or Talking Writing, she can be found hiking with her two dogs, hanging out with her two daughters, eating what her beloved Rob has cooked for her, or teaching creative writing at a small college in the area.


APRIL 7, 2011 11:32AM

The Roar that Makes my Heart Race


 Blazes guide me from tree to tree on my trail. It's my first hike in the woods sans snow, and the dogs and I take in the exposed earth, the free-flowing water, the promise that Persephone ventures upward.





The trail skirts the… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
APRIL 6, 2011 10:00AM

When Your Pharmacist Thinks S/He's a Priest

Once again, pharmacists have been given the option of deciding which medicines they choose to dispense.

Pharmacists in Illinois were told by a judge that they can say "no" to certain pills. And lawmakers in Missouri are attempting to pass a law that would restrict these same medicines.

What… Read full post »

MARCH 31, 2011 3:08PM

My Words

They are not gathered neatly together. In fact, in order to find them, I would have to dig through several boxes--some in a closet, some in my attic, and some in semi-permanent storage in a friend's garage.

Some of them have been traveling with me for forty years, even as… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
MARCH 22, 2011 10:57PM



I keep a bag stuffed in the under-the-bed plastic bin that I store under the bed I share with Rob. It's a silver-colored, heavy plastic sack, the kind of bag that you get from a clothing store. It must have been one that Yves' mother hadRead full post »

Editor’s Pick
MARCH 15, 2011 9:32AM

Sleeping With Bears

“If you’re really listening, if you’re awake to the poignant beauty of the world, your heart breaks regularly.”---Andrew Harvey

I have ached for spring these past several weeks. For a couple of days earlier in the week, we were offered respite from a winter that has been… Read full post »

The Discovery of Jeanne Baret: A Story of Science, The High Seas, and the First Woman to Circumnavigate the Globe by Glynis Ridley. (2010: Crown Publishers)


But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of of the garden, God hath said, YeRead full post »

Mr. President,

One of the first things you promised when you took office was that you would close Guantanamo, and you would restore justice. The men being held there are being held without benefit of habeas corpus, one of the fundamental tenets of our Constitution. Hell, they even referred to it… Read full post »

James Bond made me cry this morning.

The team of Dame Judi Dench and Daniel Craig have teamed up to make a video for International Women's Day. 


In the video, Craig dresses as a woman as De… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 20, 2011 9:21AM

Blogging My Hysterectomy

 Emily asks if there have been moments when, as a blogger, I feel that I have revealed too much of myself. The answer is not straightforward.

As a writer, and as a teacher of creative writing, I urge my students and remind myself that putting certain things down on paper… Read full post »

JANUARY 13, 2011 6:18PM

On the Same Track as the President

I wrote something while I was trying to gather my thoughts. Some may find it derivative of the President's speech, but it was where my thoughts had been all week.


IMG_0286Read full post »

OCTOBER 19, 2010 12:12PM

An Open Letter to Christine O'Donnell



WILMINGTON, Del. – updated link Republican Senate nominee Christine O'Donnell of Delaware on Tuesday questioned whether the U.S. Constitution calls for a separation of church and state, appearing to disagree or not know that the First Amendment bars the government from establiRead full post »

 I "cyber-met" Ted Genoways a few years ago, when I first wrote to him when Virginia Quarterly Review had published yet another terrific issue that I had read cover-to-cover. 

What surprised me was that in response to the "mash" note I sent, I got a personal letter back from the…

Read full post »

OCTOBER 4, 2010 8:38AM

I Was Demolished

“I know, I still look sick,” she said, though her cloudy eyes tried to smile as she spoke. “Just a few vegetables, that’s all I’ve eaten, since I was demolished.”


The word slammed my gut, made it clench. 

The woman speaking was 80-years old… Read full post »


My name is Tillie. And I have a problem. Cat-Mom is really, really mad at me. She's been on the phone today, asking folks if they might want to adopt a cat. I think she's being unreasonable.

This morning, the good cat and I (god
Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 22, 2010 3:06PM

Scalia Says Women Not Full Citizens

Editor’s Pick
SEPTEMBER 14, 2010 3:05PM

Once Again, A Fight Over Women's Bodies

I find myself torn like a rended garment.

The French Parliament voted today, by 246 votes, to ban the wearing of full facial veils and the Burqa in public. Women who are found to be wearing such clothing will be fined 150 Euros for each infraction. Anyone caught compelling a woman… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
SEPTEMBER 13, 2010 12:04PM

Frack You

Well, the contentious hearings are on. CNN is reporting live from them, and I noticed that Google News lists 575 articles about hydrofracking, including this one from the Christian Science Monitor.

It seems a good time to remind people why those of us who live here are vehemently opposed to destroyin…

Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
SEPTEMBER 9, 2010 12:53PM

Fireweed, The Blitz, and Fire

When I was a child, in England, in the North, there was still fireweed growing among the scattered bricks of empty lots. Fireweed is often the first plant to grow after a fire or bombing. It is the scab that covers…

Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 7, 2010 9:29AM





You could say that I read memoirs for a  living.

Okay, that's overstating it a bit, but, as someone who teaches creative non-fiction, I am always ploughing through memoirs, literary journals, and magazines, looking for essays and books to offer to my students as examples… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
SEPTEMBER 2, 2010 1:42PM

Is the Newest Oil Rig Explosion My Fault?


(Photo from Deep Water Horizon burning.)

I have the air conditioning on. Outside, it's 91 degrees at 1:10 p.m. By late afternoon, especially down on the Commons, it could once again top 100 degrees. 

September 2nd is usually the beginning of autumn here. At night, it should b… Read full post »

Friday night silliness.

Rob and I are driving to the supermarket, and this song came on the satellite radio. I found the video, and thought I'd share.


Play it tonight, and let us know if you got "lucky." 


  Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
AUGUST 26, 2010 8:32AM

Do I Owe Ken Mehlman "understanding"?

Sometimes, those stereotypes turn out to be true. Namely, that the more homophobic a man is, the more likely he is to have his own conflicted sexuality. A secure man, the story says, doesn't care what gay men do in their bedrooms.

Unless he's the Chair of the Republican National… Read full post »

 In a story that has become hideously familiar, the U.N. reported yesterday in The Guardian that 200 women and young boys had been raped by one of the seven marauding armies that regularly terrorize the population of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

I posted a note to my Facebook page… Read full post »

AUGUST 20, 2010 9:21AM

Losing Ourselves



In 2006, David Grossman addressed a crowd that had gathered on November 4. November 4 is the date that Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated. It is important to note, if you read through the entire speech (and please, please do so),…

Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
AUGUST 19, 2010 7:06AM

The Last Soldier


Today, we have left Iraq, or our combat troops have. 

Years ago, when I feared that the war might never end, when I watched Cindy Sheehan beg to understand why she had sacrificed her son, when I wrote to my representatives and heard nothing, when I cried at night from… Read full post »