One Year Ago October 17th

One year ago, on October 17, we gathered 500 strong for a day-long event we called Death:OK (Let’s Talk About It). From my reflections, two weeks later: Keynoter Stephen Jenkinson alerted us to “Coping, hoping, and – when all… Read More

Death: An Oral History

Portland journalist Casey Jarman is winning praise for his eclectic collection of interviews, including one with yours truly. Of all the conversations I’ve had amidst the current crest of death talk, the one I had with Casey stood out: wide-open,… Read More

No Crying in Front of Her

Earlier this month my news feed filled with the headline Terminally ill woman holds party before ending her life. As someone who believes in the importance of funeral and bereavement ceremonies, I was intrigued by how Betsy Davis, a… Read More

“Living With” Death, Not Just “Coping With”

As with many of you, my Facebook feed and email in-box are full of the new wave of memes, articles, and programs relating to death, dying, and grief. Coming off a year of four very personal deaths, I’ve… Read More

After Orlando: Community Memorials

Google “public response to Orlando shooting” and you’ll get a long list of hits about Trump’s offensive response to the massacre at the gay nightclub and the quagmire of gun legislation. But my Facebook feed was full of the… Read More

Rituals of Remembrance 4

“Rituals are cairns marking the path behind us and ahead of us. Without them we lose our way.”  Robert Fulghum How do we keep a seat at the banquet table of our lives for those no longer living? What… Read More

Rituals of Remembrance 3

“Rituals are cairns marking the path behind us and ahead of us. Without them we lose our way.”  Robert Fulghum How do we keep a seat at the banquet table of our lives for those no longer living? What… Read More

Rituals of Remembrance 2

“Rituals are cairns marking the path behind us and ahead of us. Without them we lose our way.”  Robert Fulghum How do we keep a seat at the banquet table of our lives for those no longer living? What… Read More

Rituals of Remembrance 1

“Rituals are cairns marking the path behind us and ahead of us. Without them we lose our way.”  Robert Fulghum How do we keep a seat at the banquet table of our lives for those no longer living? What… Read More

When you picture death…?

The first Death Cafe I attended, the host asked, “When you picture death coming for you, what do you see?” A professor of comparative anthropology, she pointed out that most cultures throughout time have personified Death – think of the… Read More