A tapestry of female empowerment

Wild geraniums, McCall, Idaho; Photo by Wendy Cohan

My summer of beautiful women followed the breakup of my nearly-thirty year marriage. I left our family home in Portland for a vacation rental in McCall, Idaho — first with the intent to heal my body from an accident, and later, to heal my spirit after my long marriage came to an abrupt end. I rode my mountain bike, swam, kayaked, and hiked — mostly alone, except for the company of my dog, a huge malamute-mix. And let me tell you, friends, every woman in the turmoil of divorce needs a good dog.

As the cacophony inside my head began…

A Photo Essay

The light in my forest; Photo by Wendy Cohan

In the past decade of my life, dogs have become very important to me. When I defied my former husband to adopt the love of my life, now an eleven-year old snoring softly at my feet as I type, I did not know what a strategic, or inspired, decision that would be. If I could give any piece of advice to a woman about to undergo a divorce, it would be to get a dog and hold on tight.

Read and repeat, as often as necessary …

Photo by Austin Chan on Unsplash

As if it were the most appropriate thing in the world, on the wee hours of Easter morning, 2021, I had the most amazing dream. The kind that stays with you forever. And it occurred to me that it might contain useful wisdom for others, too.

I wandered into a new shop with which I was unfamiliar. It might have been some representation of a local pharmacy here in Albuquerque, New Mexico, The Land of Enchantment. …

A poem

Photo by Wendy Cohan

Newness entering the world —

Kittens, foals, humans, ideas.

A long life ending in the comfort

Of loving arms.

The peace that tells me

There is something more.

The laugh of a lover as I walk

Towards him across the dance floor.

His whole body telling me he is

Pretty damned happy to see me.

The love and devotion in my dog’s eyes,

A constant I do not deserve.

The spotted fawn nestled in a bed of ferns.

The wide-eyed face of an elk calf

At ten-thousand feet.

The ermine popping its head

From the snowbank,

Watching me eating rye…

For Your Holiday Viewing on Amazon Prime

Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

Traditionally during the Christmas holidays, millions of us travel by train, plane, and automobile to spend time with our families. This year, things are likely to be different. In the interest of not getting our loved ones sick, please stay home. But if you’re like me, you’ll be missing your quirky, beloved family more than ever. If you’re looking for a good fix for missing out on the real thing, check out some of my favorite movies featuring families of all kinds.

They’re my favorites for different reasons, including stellar ensemble casts, quirky humor, the most accurate depiction of a…

Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

For one memorable year, I taught full-time at a school for certified nursing assistants, or CNAs. My students, ranging in age from sixteen to sixty, came through job corps or workforce training, with a few taking the course as required training before launching a healthcare career. Many were family caregivers with hands-on expertise and their own ways of doing things. My students’ unifying quality was the desire to help others in a direct and immediate way.

They were an empathetic group, helping each other to succeed in skills’ lab, encouraging those with tenuous ESL skills, and even expressing concern during…

Things I said to indicate my unhappiness, in approximate chronological order

Photo by Nathan McBride on Unsplash

Let’s work on our marriage. Doesn’t every garden need tending? We have no connection. I don’t feel loved. I promise if you let me know you appreciate me, You will see the benefit in the way we get along. You could be nicer to me. I wish you were nicer to me. I’m done trying — I need you to step up and make an effort. Things aren’t working: Our marriage isn’t a priority for you. I’d like to be included in the group of people you say you love. It really hurts that I’m not. Can you try to…

Inhabiting Love and Courage

Photo by Mark Timberlake on Unsplash

“She told me once, when we read a story, we inhabit it. The covers of the books are like a roof and four walls. A house. She, more than anything else in the world, loved the moment when you finished a book and the story keeps playing like the most vivid dream, in your head.” Thus starts the remarkably charming movie, “The Bookshop,” from the novel by British author Penelope Fitzgerald. I loved everything about this movie.

Set in 1950’s England, the film stars Emily Mortimer, who wears Wellingtons with a dress as well as any actress working today. An…

Wendy Cohan

Exploring relationships, travel, the arts, and entertainment. Seeking literary representation. https://www.facebook.com/WendyCohanWriter/ & https://twitter.com

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