Work, Wonder, and Windows

Welcome to my blog. First time here? Check out May’s blog for info on my intentions for this space.

Work: Last October while reading Judith Kitchen’s The Circus Train, a novella-length essay in fragments about, to name a few, mortality, Samuel Beckett, and memory, I came across this line: “I like the phrase ‘time on your hands’ when you can actively hold it and feel its weight.” In that moment I was transported back thirty years to an experience that altered my perception of time. I grabbed a pen and a notebook, and wrote the first draft of “Twenty Seconds,” an essay out in the current issue of Two Hawks Quarterly.

What does the phrase “time on your hands” make you think about?

Wonder: I’m pondering the various ways a book might be structured, the interplay between form and content as I explore the structural possibilities for my own book.

In Aftershocks, Nadia Owusu uses a variety of structures, linear and nonlinear. One chapter is a hermit crab, using a resettlement registration form as its template. Another chapter is in second person. She divides one week into four sections spread throughout the book. Some chapters are organized around each of her parents, the places she’s lived, and her ancestry—Armenian and Ghanaian. Alongside her personal story, Owusu weaves in a 1909 US court case that decided Armenians would be classified as white, and the roots of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda.

Does a book with an interesting structure spring to mind? Tell me about it!

Windows: Birds I have seen out the window this month: Juncos & their babies, Robins, Towhees & their babies (one of my favorites!), Black-headed Grosbeak, Purple Finch (looks more reddish than purple), American Finch (love the flashes of yellow), a pair of Tanagers (we usually get one pair a year; they come for the blueberries), Red-breasted Nuthatch, Brown Creeper, Downy Woodpecker, Flicker, Ravens (a talkative bunch of six), and this Barred Owl surveying our backyard:

What are some of your favorite birds?

P.S. If you’re reading this on a phone and would like to follow my blog, please let me know in the comments and I’ll add you—you’ll get an email to confirm. The follow button on my website isn’t showing up on phones and it’s a tech issue I’m almost ready to solve.


  1. Jes Hart Stone

    This is beautiful, Laura. You are such a talented writer! Thank you for sharing your work.

    • Laura Rink

      Thanks for reading!

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