The Cost of Demonization

Perhaps you are familiar with one of Shakespeare’s more famous sonnets, “My mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun.” In that sonnet, he repeatedly violates our expectations of love poetry by rejecting traditional–and exaggerated–claims of loveliness in describing his beloved: “If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun; if hairs be wires, black…… Continue reading The Cost of Demonization

A Prayer for our Leaders, A Prayer for Ourselves

Today is an election day like no other, and I think many of us are feeling lots of different emotions today: exhaustion, hope, anxiety, apprehension–and that’s just for starters. In this fraught moment, I could say lots of things, but I think all I want to offer is this prayer from To Bless the Space…… Continue reading A Prayer for our Leaders, A Prayer for Ourselves

“Stranger Fruit”

If you get National Geographic, you saw this compelling article, which came out in the October 2020 issue. It highlighted a new art installation called “Stranger Fruit,” in which “black mothers pose with the sons they fear losing to violence.” Here are the opening sentences of the article: “There is a demand put upon you…… Continue reading “Stranger Fruit”

A Reflection on Voting…

So, I voted earlier this week, and today I received the email confirming that my vote has been received and recorded. It was a great feeling, and it reminded me that voting is both such a great privilege and an important responsibility. Certainly, casting your vote has critical, practical importance in this moment for choosing…… Continue reading A Reflection on Voting…

Revisiting “Mere Christianity”

This year at Gettysburg College, I am working with several first-year seminars as a Student Success Advocate (a new program this fall). All of the these seminars are very interesting and very engaging: one of them, which is about the history of tea, has started me doing Japanese calligraphy and practicing the Japanese tea ceremony;…… Continue reading Revisiting “Mere Christianity”

Seeking Peace in Hard Times

Tributes have been pouring in all weekend to Ruth Bader Ginsberg, may she rest in peace. Regardless of your politics, you can and should admire her tenacity, her endurance, and her long, rich life that was characterized by a fierce commitment to issues of justice, equality and dignity. She was a dynamo in a compact…… Continue reading Seeking Peace in Hard Times

A Love Letter to Mary Oliver, on her Birthday

Dear Mary Forgive the formality, but I feel as though we are old friends, because I know your words so well. Today is your birthday, and it seems to me to be a fine time to write you a love letter. And, I promise I will take your advice: consider this my few words patched…… Continue reading A Love Letter to Mary Oliver, on her Birthday