Author Archives: janishaag

About janishaag

Writer, writing teacher, editor

Absence

Where there was something and suddenly isn’t,   an absence shouts, celebrates, leaves a space.   —Naomi Shihab Nye, from “Burning the Old Year” The shouts of the grieving forma collective wail, a rising lamentation that stings the eyes, chokes the throat—the absence of … Continue reading

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A doofus kinda love

Diego, the big doofus, loves to lie on people, and here he sprawls on my BFF, Georgann (Taylor) Turner, on this day in 2016. I believe this may have been her last trip to Northern California, despite her tremendous pain … Continue reading

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Repose

These days of the fallingI look to the gutters where gold gathers along withburnished red going to rust, delicate saffron fanshaving fluttered their last, garnet maple leavesthe size of my hand scattered belly up—not quite dead but dying, yet I … Continue reading

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Stranded

The Sea Ranch, Oct. 26, 2021 I’ve never held so many stars, butthe October storm washes them ashore,bright points of light wrapped in knottedropes of yellowed kelp and dulled mussels.Wave after wave bounces them to the sand,and, as the water … Continue reading

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Advice from a dead best friend

Put on your shoes and walk in the world,talking to me. I’m right here with you;I’m always within reach. It’s a good timeto chat, so go ahead. You’ll know it’s mewhen you know it’s me. But even whenyou’re not sure, … Continue reading

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Bidding Georgann farewell

About 50 people gathered in Sacramento the day before Georgann and Ron’s 25th wedding anniversary for a ceilidh. That’s pronounced kay-lee, and it’s Gaelic for a party, which Georgann loved. Her brother, Bill Taylor, opened his former restaurant for the … Continue reading

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Big red box

I don’t know. Maybe it’s because my partner, a 40-year photojournalist, recently chronicled the decommissioning of The Sacramento Bee building, and I provided some words to go with those photos (which you can see in the September issue of Sacramento … Continue reading

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Sept. 11

for Clifford, 20 years after Sitting in front of the TV, horrified, mesmerized,thinking, I’m glad you’re not here to see this,because, awful as it was, I was still wound up,sometimes in a ball on the bed, after your unexpecteddeath six … Continue reading

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The Best Cheese(cake) Pie in All the Land

In June, newly retired from teaching, I decided to tackle the art of cheesecake and began practicing in earnest so I’d be ready to whip up what ended up to be three cheesecakes for my mother’s 90th birthday celebration in … Continue reading

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Letterpress

Old wood type holds the patina of years of fingers caressing it, tossing it, placing it on metal trays or handheld composing sticks, and, once arranged, transferring it to the bed of a vintage printing press. I like to think … Continue reading

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