Duke Southard

Author, Educator, Lecturer

Uncategorized

On horseback- then and now . . .

Sixty four years since my last horseback ride, I finally climbed back on last Saturday. Here, from my short personal essay, “The Dude Ranch” are a few snippets of my experience as a thirteen year old spending three days at a dude ranch in northern New Jersey. (yes, I said New Jersey!)

“When he finished his demonstrations,  Cowboy Earl turned to face us. “Now, let’s get acquainted with our animals,” he said,  intoning a final piece of advice. “And make sure you let them know you’re the boss, right from the get go.”

My horse’s name is erased… Continue reading

On Ice Dams and Frozen Pipes

The bitter cold currently holding so much of the country in a seeming death grip brought back memories of our dramatic move from the mild climes of New Jersey to the  harsh winters of  New Hampshire in December of 1970.

For three months, we rented an older, very large house on N. Main Street in Wolfeboro, N.H. Overnight, the first night of our living there,  the new studded nylon tires we had brought in Jersey to help our Ford Country Sedan deal with the snow developed flat spots frozen into them because the car was not garaged,… Continue reading

Merry Christmas

I’d like to wish all the readers and contributors to this blog a very Merry Christmas and a New Year blessed with good health, peace, and contentment.

I look forward to a new year which will see a new Parker Havenot novel and possibly two anthologies of short fiction and non-fiction I’ve written over the years, including some award winning essays and short stories.

I also will be praying that one of my correspondents is correct in the prediction that there will an arrest in the Stacey Burns murder case, and I can finally finish Murder in a Small Town:… Continue reading

Writer’s Digest Review

              I wanted to share this commentary from Writer’s Digest with my readers/followers on this blog as it make me pretty proud of my latest novel, Cracks in the Wall.

“Cracks in the Wall presents with a dramatic cover art design. . . . No issues with the over-all production quality—well done. As I stated this entry, something seemed familiar. I do believe I may have read and perhaps judged another book with the character Parker Havenot. I say this because I love the character. This author has an excellent mystery writing voice… Continue reading

Relections of Trust

Our pastor this morning used the phrase “failure to trust” as a lynchpin in his sermon. I started thinking about how much my trust in so many things has eroded. His reference, of course, was to the trust we have or do not have in God. My thought drifted to another area, primarily my belief that people are telling me the truth. This belief, for sure, has eroded, and I don’t think that erosion is related to my cynicism increasing with age. I think it has to do with the reality that the truth has become a tool to stretch,… Continue reading

Ouch! A Response

“In an open case, such as Stacey Ann Keane Burns, specific investigative steps that have been taken or have not been taken are not open for discussion. That includes who may have been interviewed or have not been interviewed.

The above statement came in an e-mail from a frequent correspondent, one who has worked diligently on keeping this case alive. It apparently is an official response to Wednesday’s post regarding “in good conscience” in which I suggested (dared to suggest) that perhaps a “minimal update on the case” could be supplied to the general public.
I don’t think I… Continue reading

In Good Conscience

“In good conscience” is a wonderful phrase, just recently used by John McCain as he explained his vote against the current health care bill in the U.S. Senate.  It’s like the “do no harm” phrase in the Hippocratic oath.

If a person truly means it, in good conscience tells us that the person has thoroughly explored an issue or an idea and has drawn a conclusion based on that exploration. McCain followed his statement with a whole litany of reasons for his position.

It doesn’t matter where John McCain stands in your political eyes. Would that we would follow… Continue reading

Back to work

After a two week hiatus, I will begin posting regularly on this blog. The last couple of weeks have been fun, spending quality time with our grandkids visiting from Maryland (shown in the photos petting stingrays at the Desert Museum and taking a horseback riding lesson) then traveling back with them and visiting friends in New Hampshire and at the Jersey Shore.

 Watch for a post on Monday which will provide an update on the “progress?” in the Stacey Burns murder case.

Despite the great times on the east coast, it’s always nice to come home.

Thanks to all… Continue reading

Catch up

For this past week and the next, any posts will be sporadic at best. We’ve had our grandchildren, ages 9 & 12, here for this week and then we travel to the east coast with them back to their home in Bel Air, Maryland. What a great visit with young kids! Needless to say, writing and posting have not been high priorities-just keeping up with them is a fun challenge. It is the second year of what we are calling Camp Arizona, with horseback riding, museums, plays, and a lot of just plain being together.

I will… Continue reading

Two wrongs

Do you remember your parents admonishing you for retaliation on a sibling or a classmate who had wronged you in some way? “Two wrongs don’t make a right,” they would say as you wondered why it is always the second person into the fray that takes the blame.

Isn’t it amusing the way people in general but politicians in particular use the poor behavior of others to excuse their own? For example, the abhorrent, amoral sexual behavior of Bill Clinton is used as a reason that is all right for more than one contemporary… Continue reading

I'm Duke Southard, author, educator, and lecturer.

 Follow me on Twitter
 Connect on Facebook

 Amazon Author page

 Connect on LinkedIn

Blog Archive


© 2015 by Duke Southard