An essay by Marylhurst alum Ellen Urbani ’96, originally published in The New York Times, was recently featured on WBUR’s Modern Love radio program.
Misunderstandings are inevitable in relationships. Ellen Urbani wrote about one particularly painful episode with her sister. The title of this Modern Love episode, Flowergate, alludes to the offending action – a flower delivery.
“They’re just flowers!” I insisted. “Why can’t you accept that, however poor my judgment, I meant to do something to make you happy?”
“They’re not just flowers!” she countered, asserting they were symbols of my callous disregard for her loneliness.
The voice that brings Ellen’s essay to life in this radio broadcast is that of June Diane Raphael, known for portraying Brianna Hanson in the Netflix series Grace and Frankie.
Ellen’s essay, A Flower Delivery That Brought More Pain Than Pleasure, was originally published in the New York Times in 2015.
Ellen Urbani earned her M.A. in Art Therapy from Marylhurst University in 1996. She worked in the field of oncology counseling, designing and implementing a therapeutic arts program for cancer patients and their families at hospitals such as Legacy Health System and Oregon Health Sciences University, among others. Her work is the subject of a short documentary, Paint Me a Future, which won the Juror’s Award at the Palm Springs International Film Festival in 2000. Since 2007, she has focused entirely on her writing, producing Landfall (Forest Avenue Press, 2015), a work of historical fiction set in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, and the memoir When I Was Elena (The Permanent Press, 2006), a Book Sense Notable selection documenting her life in Guatemala during the final years of that country’s civil war.