October 18, 2012

I still remember the weekend I went to Minneapolis with Sandy.

Allison Green

Sandy and the Mary Tyler Moore table plaque

Over twenty years ago my best friend in graduate school, Sandy Yannone, handed me a jadite Fire King mug filled with coffee and made me a waffle. Her fat tabby cat, Wally, aka Chew, sauntered between the legs of the vinyl stool I was sitting on. I don’t remember what prompted my angst that morning, but I know Sandy cheered me up. She drew, on a piece of paper I still have somewhere, the talent-discipline matrix, which showed that if I persevered in my writing, I could overcome any lack of innate talent.

Sandy was, in my opinion, the best writer in our M.F.A. class, a poet whose lines were both shimmering and tough. I didn’t envy her work because I loved her so much, this generous woman with an easy laugh, so prone to contagious obsession: kitschy 1950s dishware, Houdini…

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