Skunk Cabbages, Hooray

From my earliest memories, skunk cabbages have been a big part of my spring. Where I grew up in what is now Mississauga, my father took me to visit the mysterious odiferous spathes that emerged from the wonderful swamp at the back of our land. Very quickly, and before any other wild plants bloomed, enormous green leaves thrust up to surround the skunk cabbage’s heart. When my father knew he would have to leave his beloved forest home, somehow he …

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The Vanishing Tribe

  Two years ago, we saw three does and their four yearling fawns roamed the neighborhood as they always did, following their habitual trails up from the valley, boldly gleaning twigs, rose canes and compost. Then, just before Easter, we witnessed something rare and inexplicable. It started with three does hurrying down the road in front of our house on a grey, cool Sunday morning. “Come and see,” I told Barry. “They look so purposeful,” “There are more,” he gestured. …

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An Artist’s Unique Christmas Cards

One way in which my parents reached out to people was by designing their own Christmas cards. The first year that my mother had been back at art school after her marriage, she took a commercial art course, which included illustration. O.C.A. students then were encouraged to integrate art into their daily lives. At Christmas all of them were assigned a project making a linocut Christmas card. My mother was pleased to find that the other students were impressed by …

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