The journey that brought me to a table in a small Emerald Isle coffee shop in the days following the devastation of Florence began in my parents' house in May of 2011. It was in that place and at that time (a late afternoon it was, bright sunshine, warm spring) that I heard the saddest... Continue Reading →
The Polar Bear
I. The nightmare memory of the polar bear haunted her every waking moment-- the huge white monster in his "environment," lethargic, glassy-eyed, thin, dingy, stained fur. She imagined that he longed for either freedom or death. The hot North Carolina sun beat down on his habitat in the dream/memory, and the water was never even... Continue Reading →
Master’s Thesis Redux
Are we waiting for the end of time? Are we waiting for the end of light and air? Are we waiting, or are we wishing for a conclusion to this business, life? Are we waiting to care about the deaths of billions? Are we waiting for an exorcism? Are we waiting for permission to kill?... Continue Reading →
The Tower of Babel: Reflections on Personal Responsibility in the Age of Neo-Facism
In the Biblical story of Babel, the peoples of earth come together to build a tower that attempts to reach the heavens. For this act of hubris, the tower is destroyed by the Creator, and the peoples of the earth are scattered and (significantly) separated by languages. This story always haunted me as a child.... Continue Reading →
An Un-Ghost Story
"Every single time he and Jess went out, she had to do an emergency stop. Somewhere deep inside, he believed this was on purpose. He got so sick of her same-old-same-old behaviors. What had started out as a nice Sunday afternoon drive was now a frantic search for a crappy roadside pit stop. Sometimes he wondered why he stayed with this woman." . . .
Hope and Despair in the Latter Days: Reflections on a Trip to Los Angeles
"How can we be so at odds with each other over race and class and philosophy and religion? How is it not enough that the earth sustains us, that we work and play and live and die under the same sky and stars? How is it not possible for us to live as ONE HUMANITY?" . . .
Remembering Greyhound Buses and Fried Chicken: Looking for G-d
"The other night, I asked my husband a question. If he had to distill all of childhood into one memory, what would that memory be? He had to think about that one, but I was ready to share." . . .
Of Witch-Hunts and Fake News
"The one underlying truth was that the "witches" were victims of prejudice against the "other"--many witches were women who practiced herbal medicine and midwifery." . . .
Confessions of an Ex-Teacher
"In the New Testament, John says, "In the beginning was the WORD...". The idea of the WORD is equated with the prime cause, the font of creation. In the world of scatter-shot political rhetoric and misleading advertising, the WORD has become a poor shadow of what it was meant to be." . . .
From Manson to “Me Too”: The Death of Freedom and the Triumph of Fear
I am 54 years old now. I grew up, spent my youth, raised a family, and throughout it all maintained a keen interest (if not obsession) with horrible crimes. It seemed to me that if you could look at the face of evil you could perhaps inoculate yourself and your loved ones against that evil.