birds in a barrel's mission is to release creative nonfiction into the wild.

40 Days & 40 Writes is its first project.


I was lucky; I had two of them while I was a child in Illinois. But unlucky too, because I had none after grade school when we moved to Colorado. Pearl and Daisy. They never knew each other though, as far as I know.
Pearl was thin and sickly and not much fun. Daisy was big and round and fun to visit in her one room at the state hospital (she was a dietitian) where she made us sandwiches of spam which she kept in a cupboard. Spam??? from a dietitian?? Go figure.

Pearl kept cats in her barn behind the big house at Kane's Tree Haven and I remember losing one in the haystack. She never forgave me and so I grew up feeling that she was always mad at me. Her son, my Uncle George, use to tease me by calling me a "cry baby" and she never got after him for being mean to me. But the trumpet vine that grew over the bridge to the cabin on their property was enticing enough to make memories of her house some of my favorites from happy childhood. I think she hated mice because I hate mice too and she has figured in my dreams when I am frightened. She lost an infant baby boy because she didn't have enough milk to feed him and so he died. So I understand how she may never have recovered a sense of joy in living, which I thankfully did not inherit from her.