Laugh lines: Celebrating the Beauty of Aging

These are photos I took of residents at Cathedral Square Assisted Living a few years ago, which feel particularly meaningful these days when so many older people have been socially isolated. I had the pleasure of working with these people daily as an activities coordinator, so I got to know their many faces and moods.Continue reading “Laugh lines: Celebrating the Beauty of Aging”

Calling all Poetry Lovers: Virtual Reading on January 27, 6:30 pm

I’m hosting a poetry reading and open mic later this month at the Dorothy Alling Memorial Library.  It’s on Wednesday, January 27 at 6:30 pm and will feature Vermont poets Geof Hewitt, Tricia Knoll and Joanne Mellin. The open mic spots are all filled up , but you can still hunker down at home toContinue reading “Calling all Poetry Lovers: Virtual Reading on January 27, 6:30 pm”

Bound by Silken Thread

Unraveling a Family’s Legacy in Silk City:  I like to imagine my great-grandma, Anna, at 37 walking home from the silk factory in Paterson, New Jersey, during the late 1930s. Her long, gleaming black hair, never once cut, would be coiled into a bun—sweaty tendrils escaping around her temples. Her olive cheeks would be flushedContinue reading “Bound by Silken Thread”

A Mystical Quest

Anyone with a taste for the arcane has heard of Kutna Hora, the medieval town 70 kilometers (43 miles) east of Prague, with its assortment of esoteric treasures – the Gothic cathedral of St. Barbara, the underground labyrinth of silver mines and the ossuary, or bone church,” in the nearby town of Sedlec. But ifContinue reading “A Mystical Quest”

The House Where the Muses Live

Passersby often ring the doorbell just out of curiosity. With its pointed roof and arched windows, the building appears to be a church. But the sculpture of a frowning giant above the door hints otherwise. Few pass the threshold — the doorbell doesn’t work and the building at 115 College St., in Somerville is usuallyContinue reading “The House Where the Muses Live”

Salem’s Little Italy

Some would say that Salem’s Italian neighborhood began in a small room next to a fish market at 27 Front St. in the year 1914. It was then that Rev. Pietro Piemonte began the city’s first Italian Mass with a group of immigrant families who didn’t speak English. According to city records from 1910, aboutContinue reading “Salem’s Little Italy”

Salem Bakery Provides Sweet Retreat

As Salem bakery-owner Malita Fiore will testify, the life of a pastry chef is no piece of cake.  At 2 AM while most people are tucked snugly beneath the sheets, Fiore is already in the kitchen wrestling with endless layers of croissant dough. She has endured painful blisters while shaping sculptures out of boiling hotContinue reading “Salem Bakery Provides Sweet Retreat”

Lipstick and Steel-toed Boots

Click to access peggystory-1.pdf A Real Life Winnie the Welder Recalls Her WWII Adventures The melancholy cry of gulls; the crackle of sparks; the click clack of work boots on a ship’s deck. These sounds play like a familiar song in the mind of 99-year-old Peggy Citarella when she recalls her days as a welderContinue reading “Lipstick and Steel-toed Boots”