"Hoping that possibly out of the process there may be matured a wholesome loaf of bread or, more likely, a small pan of biscuits."
Thursday, February 6, 2014
from "The Quick and the Dead" | 1931
film still of Little Family in Boston | c1926
My boys, after Christmas, had driven back East in
an old Chev that they had rebuilt. This is in a barn in the neighborhood, and,
though it is midwinter by the calendar, the weather is springlike, and we bring
out the car and start sixty miles to the north to make a call. Twenty-five
years ago in a northern mission field, I married a
doctor and a school teacher. Boston people, they stayed
at the mission after we left, but lately came home. Their boys and ours were born there. He died five years ago [Spring
1926]. Two years later the youngest died and I went East to bury him. So, my
boy and I drive up to the border of New Hampshire to have supper with the
oldest boy of the doctor's household and his mother. (Only a week later this
same fine lad of twenty is hit by an automobile and I come again from the West
to bury him. There is a text that brings me help at times like that. It is a
question asked upon the cross by our Lord, but never answered, "My god,
why?"). --Rev. Jesse Halsey
Anne Halsey lives in Central Texas with her husband and three small children, where she is writing a work of creative nonfiction about her great-grandfather. Grounded in extensive archival research and personal interviews, this book-length project reconceives our understanding of the modern decline of Puritan New England culture. That seemingly familiar narrative is complicated by the previously unsung narratives of the women who found increasing independence and autonomy as their culture struggled to adapt to a more secular age.
For six years, Anne served as Media Director at the Poetry Foundation in Chicago, where she created numerous radio, television, web, podcast, print, and film partnerships with major media outlets. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, and her MFA in poetry at New York University.