Category Archives: memories

Metatext: Memories in the Margins

Two weeks ago, on March 18, I saw The Sense of an Ending on the second day of its run at the Cameo Art House Theater in Fayetteville. In 2011–specifically, “Thanksgiving 2011, Lake Mattamuskeet” according to my notation on the flyleaf–I read … Continue reading

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Letters from Margaret

It was the spring of 1976. I was 23, smart, fierce, on everybody’s most-likely-to succeed list. But as my undergraduate mentor had predicted, I was still a babe in the woods, having wandered 2,059 miles from the sheltering mountains of my childhood … Continue reading

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Waiting for God

Several days ago, I found a box taped up when we moved here seven years ago and never opened since. Amongst the knickknacks, costume jewelry, and small-appliance instructions I found there was this photo. Two friends hamming it up in over-the-top seasonal regalia sweaters … Continue reading

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Extrospection: Globe, Google Maps, and the Wound of Geography

I have studied with depth, breadth, and passion not only the literature, but also the history–both political and intellectual–of the American South. During the most impressionable years of my intellectual formation, I was reading Wilbur J. Cash on The Mind of the … Continue reading

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Not Exactly Epiphanies

At the age of 36, I decided to get a master’s degree in English. I have elsewhere–well, everywhere, including in the introductory lecture of nearly every class I teach–suggested that I was standing in a bookstore, staring at the American literature selection, when … Continue reading

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My Name Is Vicki, and I Am a Taphophile

1960: My sister, my cousins, and I scrambled into the back of my uncle’s 1948 Ford pick-up and headed with our fathers to the cemetery overlooking the dusty town of Globe, Arizona. We played among the graves while they watered the grass … Continue reading

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Forever Becoming: A Meditation

Written at Oakwood Cemetery, Raleigh, 11 Nov. 2009 I was only 36, beginning a second graduate program—clearly, I was far from complete.  We who continually reinvent ourselves retain the illusion of eternal becoming far longer than those respectable adults with 2½ … Continue reading

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Master, Mentor, Friend

This is the last installment of my reminiscences about my decades-long and life-altering relationship with Professor John V. Mering, 1931-2009. Vicki/Victoria I spent hours during the summer of ’74 in the office of the history graduate students. We discussed history as … Continue reading

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The Mering Chronicles (cont. from 6/11)

Hang-ups, hanging out, and hanging on I visited Dr. Mering’s office often to receive assistance with my writing, to ask for suggestions for outside reading, or simply to satisfy his curiosity about how “this girl from a little mining town in the West” … Continue reading

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Rites of Passage Part III: John V., Il Miglior Fabbro

Learning at the feet of the master  In furtherance of my naïve but exuberant efforts to learn how to think, my history T.A.-cum-guru John Hosmer suggested that I take a class with his Ph.D. advisor, John V. Mering. It was the … Continue reading

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