Author Archives: dust exchange

In Front of People

            A room full of people, all eyes on the guitar… Going through the song, bar by bar… Every word, every line, no note too far… Four minutes a rock star… In high school, the … Continue reading

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Visitor Center

There was a war going on. A friend was in the Army, in the middle of the action. He could have backed out after September 11, but it only strengthened his conviction. There were gaps in my work history. I … Continue reading

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Ill Manners and Hope

My mouth was terribly dry. I was waiting for family at El Cazador, the only true Mexican restaurant in town. I figured that, when my family got there, I could go inside and order an iced tea. In front of … Continue reading

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Theft and Hope

I went to the bank for a roll of quarters. As I handed him the ten-dollar bill, the teller asked if I was going to wash my car or do laundry. There was a teller I liked standing behind him, … Continue reading

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The Promise Keepers

A friend from Seattle visited me in Nashville in the fall of 1997. We were both editors of underground publications. We had met briefly at a restaurant in D.C., three years earlier. In that cruddy little apartment on Evelyn Avenue, … Continue reading

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It’s Spring

The golden strandOf the ceremonial stringCalls out beyond intelligence:  it’s spring. Spring is never happy,Spring is always dull.It’s a lie that  flowers bloom  and the yellow moon  shines bright upon the earth.  It’s a lie. Fools play in the fields.They … Continue reading

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High School Biometrics

A long time ago, I graduated from Appomattox County High School. Things were simpler then. Not better, but simpler. Maybe different is the right word. This was before the horrors of Columbine, before the War on Terror, before internet bullying, … Continue reading

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The Horror

As dictated by the letter X, I liked Stephen King as a teenager. I read Firestarter, Pet Sematary, Thinner, and two short story collections. Pet Sematary was first-rate horror. It contained one of the most terrifying sentences in modern literature: … Continue reading

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My Tandy

To quote Milhouse, “I’m not a nerd…nerds are smart.” I don’t even know the difference between nerds and geeks. Yet, I have no problem calling myself a vintage computer geek. In its day, the Tandy 1000SX was one of the … Continue reading

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A Calm Place

My Dad liked to travel. He and I took two vacations down the East Coast several years ago. I was sleep deprived, so I didn’t drive much. I wish I had done more driving with all the trouble we had … Continue reading

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The James River Greens

At one time, I fancied myself an expert on politics. I was an infomaniac, a news junkie. Every weekday, I would watch two local newscasts, Tom Brokaw, and the MacNeil / Lehrer News Hour. My favorite show was Washington Week … Continue reading

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Strange Energy

Through high school and the college days, I heard whisperings of a New Age complex in the next county over, Buckingham. I would make deliveries to Buckingham for the family office supply business. There was one small sign on the … Continue reading

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In the Shenandoah Valley

I went to visit friends in Williamsburg, Virginia.  There was a lot of American Revolution history there.  They had the neatest visitor center—they even had a movie in a theater.  The woman at the help desk was perfect—she gave me … Continue reading

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The Flower that Became a Boy

On a mild Wednesday evening in August of 1970, I was born.  My first home was a ranch house with a full basement in Greely, Colorado.  I was the youngest of six.  My only sister had three older brothers and … Continue reading

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