January 2015

The Things That Woman Gave Me

January 26, 2015

I have a picture of the two of us on my bookshelf. She is wearing her shiny blue windbreaker with the Wakarusa logo, her short hair mostly black, ruffled across her forehead, a little spiky. Me beside her, arm around her, grinning: deep-set eyes, hair parted flat against my head. I don’t pay attention to this half of the photo much, don’t like the too-big …

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The Sweat-Grimed Poppies I Hold in my Hands

January 19, 2015

A criminal and I have one thing in common. Like any good criminal, I view myself as a good person. Better than most others, probably. “Perhaps the most surprising discovery in my early years of trying to understand the criminal mind was that, without exception, offenders regard themselves as good human beings,” writes Dr. Stanton Samenow, author of Inside the Criminal Mind. “No matter how …

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Women in the Trenches: Carita Witmer, Los Angeles

January 12, 2015

Los Angeles, California. Its sunny streets and sprawling population are a far cry from International Falls, Minnesota, where Carita Witmer grew up. International Falls, nicknamed “Icebox of the Nation” has a population numbering a little over six thousand. Los Angeles? Almost four million. Carita lives with her family in a quiet neighborhood built on a hillside, about fifteen or twenty miles from Hollywood. She calls …

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