Bacon on the Bookshelf

Savory picks for the free range reader

February 25, 2018
by jenniferpuryear

Pepper and The Very Rainy Day

In February it rains and rains and rains while unhappy pets sit at windows wishing they weren’t stuck inside. Yards are muddy and sludgy and spotted with pools of standing water.  An especially large pool developed in the back corner of our yard. Pepper sat by the window, patiently at first and less patiently as the day dragged on. She sat, then she paced, she …

Continue reading

February 14, 2018
by jenniferpuryear

Valentine’s Day Special, Part 2: Not a Red Rose or Satin Heart

My friend’s daughter, a freshman in college, just wrote her first article for the school paper (The Crimson) – “Top Five Reads for a Vicarious Valentine’s Day.”  Allison Pao’s intriguing list includes a link to one of the best poems I’ve ever read about this silly, wonderful, aggravating, awful, hopeful day…    Valentine By Carol Ann Duffy   Not a red rose or a satin …

Continue reading

February 14, 2018
by jenniferpuryear

Valentine’s Day Special: Pepper and The Gorgeous Dog

Pepper and I returned from a damp and dreary walk in the neighborhood one recent afternoon. Early crocuses blooming at the base of the old oak tree were the only signs of a spring still distant. As we approached the house, Pep and I both heard it: our favorite loud, deep bark. “It’s Hotch!” she cried, and I let her off the leash. Pep dashed …

Continue reading

January 12, 2018
by jenniferpuryear

Snow Day – Maybe!

It’s not a snow day in Nashville yet – but it might be! The schools are closed. I’ve cancelled my morning appointment and dinner plans. This is how we roll in the South, dear readers who live elsewhere. Billy Collins captures a snow day best. And oh my God – does he understand girls on the playground? Yes. Snow day Today we woke up to …

Continue reading

January 11, 2018
by jenniferpuryear

Bad Things Are Going to Happen

There’s something to be said for the things we can’t make New Year’s Resolutions about. The things we can’t change, coming at us like a freight train – or with a whisper. Today’s poem by Ellen Bass offers some food for thought. Relax Bad things are going to happen. Your tomatoes will grow a fungus and your cat will get run over. Someone will leave …

Continue reading

January 2, 2018
by jenniferpuryear

When Icicles Hang By The Wall

It’s 5 degrees in Nashville this morning and there’s not much to recommend it. In times like these one turns to art for consolation. A winter song comes to mind, sent by my friend Jack Barnwell and dreamt up by the Bard some centuries ago… When icicles hang by the wall, And Dick the shepherd blows his nail, And Tom bears logs into the hall, …

Continue reading

October 3, 2017
by jenniferpuryear

Tom Petty Remembered: Guest Post by Kevin Crumbo and Captain Jack Sparrow

Kevin Crumbo and Captain Jack Sparrow were up early this morning, one of them sad. From Kevin: “Don’t you think 4:00 am is a bit early to be tuning a guitar?” Jack said as he pondered why I wasn’t gearing up for the morning hike in Percy Warner Park. “I lost a good friend last night. Tom Petty died.” “That is terrible news. Are you …

Continue reading

September 17, 2017
by jenniferpuryear

Pepper and The Hurricane

The weakened remnant of Hurricane Irma brought 3 days of gentle but persistent rain to Nashville. We had nothing to complain about.  “I’m bored to tears,” Pepper complained on day 1, stuck inside, and I gave her a large bacon and cheese stuffed bone to help pass the time. “I’m bored to tears,” she complained on day 2, and I gave her a large peanut …

Continue reading

September 3, 2017
by jenniferpuryear

Pepper and The Feathers

Sometimes we see things we wish we hadn’t. One recent afternoon, late in the day, Pepper dashed from the back yard up to the door, scratching to get my attention. I opened it, expecting her usual rush into the house, but instead she dashed down the back porch steps into the yard. “What’s going on?” I called. “Come, come!” she cried. Well trained to that command, …

Continue reading

July 2, 2017
by jenniferpuryear

Pepper and the Third Ice Cream Sandwich

Pepper was enjoying a marvelous nap in the kitchen one recent afternoon while I caught up on Facebook. Correction: I thought Pepper was napping. After my third trip to the freezer in as many minutes, she sat right up in her bed. “Do you plan on eating that third ice cream sandwich?” she inquired. “Oh gosh!” I stuttered. “Have I already eaten two? They’re really …

Continue reading