Barbie, We Need to Talk

My daughter approached me with Barbie’s plastic head in one hand and her torso in the other. “Mommy, can you fix her?” Growing up, I’d learned to snap the head back on. It didn’t appear that my daughter’s Barbie would fare so well. The rim of the neck had cracked apart, rendering the swivel useless. […]

What I Learned From Being In A Beauty Pageant

I have a dark secret, at least for a feminist. Knowing this is a safe community, and you will not judge decisions of my youth, I confess—one time—to parading in a blue mermaid gown with hair sprayed as high as the Rocky Mountains. No offense to anyone who has been in a beauty pageant. It turned […]

God Called Her Human

At some point, on creation day six, God concocted an unfinished community. We know this because God announced plans to make a human who would be part of a larger unit. It’s odd, really, the way it came together. God announced the creation of one human in the same breath as explaining the purpose of all […]

A Soft Place To Be Real

Our shoulders rubbed years ago in a Roxbury, MA sandwich shop. You stood behind me, chitchatting with your friends. You sounded sassy, loyal, and smart. I studied the menu, aware of your eyes on the back of my head. A handwritten sign taped to the register read: “Cash only.” I rummaged through my purse for my wallet. […]

The Little Flowers of Fred Fels

In many ways it made perfect sense that Grandpa had mounted a rubber eagle to the dashboard of his sedan. I smiled at the bald crown of the toy bird as we moved through traffic. A driver in an adjacent vehicle studied the dashboard curiously. His eyes darted from the eagle to Grandpa to me. […]