Poetry helps me express my inner outsider

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may came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone

from “maggie and milly and molly and may” by e.e. cummings

The other day, I wrote a poem (a very mediocre, and maybe even bad poem) for the first time in a…

As summer ends, we can feel that time has a life of its own

Looking out at the road rushing under my wheels
Looking back at the years gone by like so many summer fields

Running on Empty, Jackson Browne

Field of Dreams

Nostalgia. The word is rooted in the Greek “return home” and “pain,” but personally I don’t experience it as pain only, I experience it…

Five years and not a crazy cat lady

“If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up someplace else.”
Yogi Berra

On a hot August afternoon in St. Louis, I sat in the very cold, air-conditioned office of my divorce lawyer. Though we had several mutual friends, Rachel remained highly professional at all times. …

Divorce and time change things, but not everything

Someday soon, you’re gonna have families of your own and if you’re lucky, you’ll remember the little moments like this, that were good.” — Tony Soprano

My niece was a new bat mitzvah on the afternoon of June 15, 2021. My daughter and I were excited to be there —…

Shifting out of the pandemic presents us with choices about redefining our relationships

That’s great, it starts with an earthquake
birds and snakes, and aeroplanes
And Lenny Bruce is not afraid.

It’s the End of the World As We Know It, R.E.M.

My maternal grandmother, Virginia, was born in 1908 in Granby, Missouri — the second youngest of 10 children. When she and…

How to find meaning in irreverence

There are no unsacred places. Only sacred places and desecrated places.
poet, Wendell Berry

In 2003, I was not yet 31 years old — a young, married woman and by June of that year, I was very pregnant. …

And the best books to help you through it

The art of losing isn’t hard to master…
Elizabeth Bishop, One Art

As a grief therapist, I immerse myself in the atmosphere of loss every day. I don’t expect much to be permanent in life. It doesn’t mean I don’t hold the same lunatic hope for permanency that we humans…

Lessons about Grief and Love, used under license.

“…I think this could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.”
Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca

February 2009

I held my three-year-old daughter in my arms in the elevator going up to Heather’s dad’s hospital room. He was about to be admitted to hospice care.

Heather and I were 36 years old…

This Is Us

After my trust was abused in my marriage, I learned to trust myself

Photo: Dennis Harper/Flickr

Suspicion is the companion of mean souls and the bane of all good society. —Thomas Paine

The porn videos sitting on his bedside table were the first thing I made note of. The one on top was “Poke-ahantas.”

It wasn’t unusual for a paid caregiver to answer the door at…

This Is Us

Even when bad things happen, the past influences us for the better

A lone woman walks with confidence up stairs coming out from dark tunnel into bright light.
Photo: Germán Vogel/Getty Images

Time isn’t the main thing. It’s the only thing. —Miles Davis

Working around death and dying, I often feel different from other people—alone in a way. Very few people enjoy thinking about dying, disease, and the separation of this life from the “Let the Mystery Be,” as Iris DeMent describes…

Katy Friedman Miller

I’m a grief therapist and former hospice social worker. Our stories don’t need to make us look good, just connect us. Check out my TEDx talk at

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