Barry Fleming: Mastering the Art of Observation

Barry Fleming is one of my favorite humans on the planet and this “Alabama People” feature, which came out in the September 2019 Alabama Living magazine, offers just a glimpse into the many reasons I adore this brilliant naturalist, artist and philosopher. You never know what Barry Fleming might be up to — spinning mud […]


It was early, that time of day before birds find their voices or vagrant dogs begin their morning rounds, when I rose from my childhood bed. I’d crawled into that bed the evening before, tired and looking forward to a rare sleepover at my parents’ house, but sleep had been elusive. Being in a place […]

In Praise of Birds in Barrels

It may not be obvious here since I am such a slacker about posting to this site, but I have been writing…writing furiously in fact. And it is glorious! The things I am writing? Some are articles–my beloved gardening column in Alabama Living magazine top among them–and some are books (I’ve published two in the last […]

Rabbit, Rabbit, Rabbit…and a Red Bird

Before my feet hit the floor this morning—the first day of 2019 AND the first day of January—I made sure to speak these three words aloud: “rabbit, rabbit, rabbit.” I heard about this monthly rite from the late Alabama storyteller, Katherine Tucker Windham, a woman who believed in ghosts, in the richness of tradition, and […]

Fresh Starts

A new year is approaching–rapidly! As in any day now…how did that happen? It’s true that the older one gets, the faster time seems to pass. And while I wish I could slow it down, I’m looking forward to a fresh start in 2019. I gave up making New Year’s resolutions years ago–they just seemed […]

Eavesdropping on the Rain

I went out to my front porch last night just three minutes before midnight to listen to a rain storm move in. I had the house all to myself (if you don’t count the two dogs sleeping on the sofas inside) and, as always, that aloneness was freeing. There was no one here to care […]

Again…With Owls

When I started this blog four years ago, I intended to use it as a place to post my many random thoughts, write about things that intrigue me, and give myself an excuse to just play with all the great words that exist in this world. Since that time, though, I’ve been a wretched blogger. […]