The Plagued Parent

posts about surviving our children, the Baby Boomers who raised us, and everyone else with an opinion...

Month: April 2016

Zigging, Zagging, Zoom

Crossing the finish line, breaking the tape we stagger to a stop. Elation. Triumph and self-satisfaction at completing the challenge that had dauntingly lay before us. Strangely the route taken is not easily recalled. We know that we’ve travelled a great distance and we know that we struggled, but we don’t always remember exactly how […]


Between the electric teapot, the mug, and the tea bag wrapped in yellow paper, a strange distance resides. Between the ever fixed mark we know as love and the lover herself settles a strangeness familiar as a favorite quilt. The quilt itself sewn a strange and wondrous patchwork of shapes previously unrealated. Through an opened window a […]


When looking at glass, see sand. When looking at diamonds, see coal. In a flourishing flower garden see the pile of loam. That stone wall right there was once a chaotic pile of rocks. Before the bridge there was an un-passable chasm. Weeds plaguing the front lawn are as green as grass. In the forest dense […]


I remember this one episode of Gilligan’s Island where the castaways discovered quicksand on the island. In that episode something or someone was threatening them. It was not uncommon for Skipper, Gilligan and the gang to be harassed by some improbable plot device as insane as mobsters on the run, warring native islanders (insensitively portrayed), […]


For the listener, who listens in the snow, And, nothing himself, beholds Nothing that is not there and the nothing that is. Wallace Stevens “The Snow Man“ Sometimes lack of movement can be mistaken for immobility. Sometimes stillness may be interpreted as laziness. However nothing isn’t always, actually nothing. French existentialist J.P. Sartre says that “nothingness haunts […]


Lying in bed last night, after being asked to politely contribute to some silence, my wife said, “What do you mean you can’t think of a word?” “It’s not that I can’t, I’m just having trouble with finding an M-word.” “Your theme is self-improvement. Really? You can’t come up with an M-word?” “Right now, no. […]

Kindly loving kindness

Kindly love in the ways love itself yearns to breathe. Kindly speak unspoken words to open a heart yet unopened. We arrive where two roads meet, cross and intertwine. Failing to appreciate that fact I find myself here where the letter “K” resides. Starved for a theme, I ask my wife. Without missing a beat […]


My wife stood at the kitchen island and poured a glass a milk. I had just gotten off the phone. She rhetorically asked, “Why do people just decide to ignore things?”  By “things” I know she is referring to conflicts, both aged and new, that wedge themselves into our relationships with family, with friends. Moments […]

Identity upright and walking

Acorns litter my back yard. Most of them are split and hapless, but in the work of raking the remaining whole ones become delicately divided. In each — the broken and the whole —  there resides a name already known yet unexpressed. Many of these fallen seeds will never produce a tree. Most it would […]

Shining Happy People

A person approached Buddha and said, “I only want happiness.” Buddha considered and replied, “Simple. Remove I — that is ego. Next remove want — that is desire.” He smiled, “Now you have ‘only happiness’.” Happiness is a state of being and not a by product of some external source. Anything that offers momentary excitement — fashion, a smartphone, […]

Goals Tended, Intended and Upended

Ambition is something that I lack. This quality seems to be absent in my genome.  A lack of drive I suppose. Several posts ago I wrote about being perceived as aloof as a result of being shy. Something similar applies to this notable absence of ambitiousness which is often viewed in terms of laziness. I could […]

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