A farewell to Seamus Heaney (1939-2013)

When celebrated poet and Raleigh native Gibbons Ruark heard that Seamus Heaney, his cherished friend of more than 30 years, had died on Aug. 30, he was bereft. Heaney, the Irish Nobel Laureate, had been a hero, kindred spirit, and touchstone…

A house, a dog and love

by P. Gaye Tapp A towering magnolia tree sheltered me from the rush of traffic on Glenwood Avenue for 10 years. There were moments when I thought a car might careen onto the sidewalk, crash into the stucco wall, invade…

Piece by piece

by Jesma Reynolds Born into a family of scientists and doctors, local rocker and entrepreneur Cheetie Kumar was marked at birth when her mother gave her the Hindu name Chitra, meaning “portrait” or “artist.” Her life has been a vibrant…

Delta rising

by Samantha Thompson Hatem Most of Raleigh might have missed it, but Delta Rae, the edgy alt-pop band, has quietly set up home here over the past year, and its six members are now on their way to becoming some…

Hard java

Coffee cocktails are having a moment. Not the steamy, desserty kind, thick with whipped cream and Bailey’s. Not the toddy variety, curing what ails you. This coffee cocktail is serious, and it’s iced. Dry – even lemony – and spiked…

Inner strength

by Charman Driver What a fantastic year of fun and fitness adventures I’ve had with Walter. I’ve run, kicked, jumped, stretched, melted, boxed, danced, climbed – even joined the circus! People often ask me how I maintain the discipline and…

Up all night with Lionel Vatinet

by Liza Roberts photographs by Nick Pironio At 2 a.m., as liquored-up college kids are polishing off a game of cornhole outside the Back 9 Pub in Cary, master baker Lionel Vatinet is arriving at work next door. The yeasty…

Betting on bluegrass

by Samantha Thompson Hatem The International Bluegrass Music Association and its members arrive in late September for the group’s annual conference, when they’ll turn downtown Raleigh into a bluegrass mecca with more than 150 bands, a street festival, and big-name…

A Boy and his Dog

by Charles Upchurch photographs by Geoff Wood Field trial champion Robert Vaughan, 18, has hunted since he was 9 years old. “The first time I went quail hunting, in the fourth or fifth grade, I remember two English pointers getting…

A Victorian dowager gets a facelift

by Liza Roberts photographs by Geoff Wood When Dan Forest, newly sworn-in as lieutenant governor of North Carolina, walked into the stately Victorian house with the wrap-around porch on Blount Street that was to be his office, he was amazed….

Greg Jones: The rockin rev

by Dean King Put an ear to a window of St. Michael’s Episcopal Church a little shy of midnight on a random Wednesday or Thursday night, and you might just hear music. Not sacred music, but roof-raising rock ’n’ roll….

A persistent pastime: Pete Sack paints baseball players and much more

by Liza Roberts photographs by Nick Pironio Artist Pete Sack, 37, has always been drawn to photographs of the human face. Strangers in yearbooks speak to him; archival snapshots of orphans, schoolchildren, and athletes hold unusual sway. One particular brunette…

Eureka! A glimpse of blue Tricyrtis lasiocarpa

by Tony Avent illustration by Ippy Patterson It was early in the morning, a sunny Monday morning, when Mark Weathington of Raleigh’s J.C. Raulston Arboretum and I sped down the winding roads of Alishan mountain on the island of Taiwan,…

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