Last Christmas with Mom

My mother died on December 9, a little over a week ago. The ravages of pneumonia were too much for her tiny frail 91 year-old body. She spent her final days in inpatient hospice care. This unassuming wing of a quiet Albuquerque hospital was like a Zen monastery – serene and oddly sublime. Here, she was finally able to get relief from her suffering and to rest comfortably as she settled in for her transition. The hospice nurses were some of the most compassionate people…

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Nothing & Everything

Since the inauguration, I’ve been experiencing an uncharacteristic inertia. A malaise has insinuated itself into my psyche, and my days are often void of the requisite energy to write or practice.  As such, my productivity has tanked to a troubling low. This feels different than depression. Still, I’m not exactly sure what’s up. I’m curious if other artists are experiencing this too. Reality has flipped on its ear. Every fucking day is weirder than the one before it. Lying is the new norm. Corruption and…

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A Parent’s Grief

Last week, I received the heartbreaking news that a friend’s very young son had died. This child was a tiny warrior with an old-soul demeanor. He endured more challenges in his short time here than many of the rest of us will face in a full lifetime. Despite his suffering, however, he seemed to float above it all– Zen-like, calm and full of love. When I heard of his passing, I was stricken with an immediate and crushing sadness, not only for his death but…

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When It All Makes Sense

    Maybe it will all make sense in the end. Maybe things will all tie up neatly and in our last gasp, we will say: "Aah…Now I get it." Maybe our longing will be sated and our curiosity will be satisfied. Maybe there’s a plausible explanation for every second we’ve spent here. But we don’t know that now. We can’t know that. We have to bake a little longer. Still, we want respite from this ambiguity. We jump up and down impatiently like a…

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Grace & Love

  It seems that all roads lead back to grace and love. For the past several days, I’ve watched as a community has shared collective grief over the untimely passing of one of its own– Joshua Wolff, who died yesterday from pancreatic cancer. Joshua was a highly regarded jazz pianist and even more, a great spirit who clearly touched the hearts of many. From the time of his diagnosis, just over a week ago, to his death yesterday, Joshua’s friends and family have held a…

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