• Sketch of female head with visitors approaching house in brain area

    “It is because of visiting forces that we suffer”

  • The Political Afterlives of Poems

  • Excerpt from Dr. Seuss cartoon of hills, a castle and arch, and balloons floating into sky

    Oh the places they’ll build!

  • 2016 Holiday Letter (by Luke, Thomas & Zac Churchill)

  • Peace in Our Time!

  • Make America Think Again

  • Computerized Textual Analysis

  • A Family Fable

  • Serendipity: “Sead” for Yourself

  • What Poetry Doesn’t Tell You

Holiday Letter 2005 (the lost letter)

We thought our 2005 letter, “the year of the travel bug,” was lost forever, until we discovered this black & white photocopy in Matt’s father’s files.

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“It is because of visiting forces that we suffer”

Sharon Salzberg, a meditation teacher who helped introduced Buddhist practices to the U.S. in the 1970s, offers this lesson from the Buddha in her “On Being” interview with Krista Tippett: That was a very important image for me, out of the Buddha’s teaching, where he said the mind—your mind, my mind—is naturally radiant and pure. “The mind is shining.” “It is because of visiting forces that we suffer.” The visiting forces that cause us to suffer are not inherent or […]

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The Political Afterlives of Poems

I It is difficultto get the news from poems                        yet men die miserably every day                                                for lackof what is found there. – William Carlos Williams, “Asphodel, That Greeny Flower” (1955) It may be “difficult / to get the news from poems,” but you can get poems from the news. Just last month, a sonnet made headlines after the Trump administration announced a new policy refusing green cards to anyone who relies on government assistance. At a press conference, a reporter […]

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Oh the places they’ll build!

If you talk to almost any professor at Davidson, we’ll say that our students are the best part about working here. I’ve got to agree (though I’ve got some pretty inspiring colleagues, too). And while lots of folks like to bemoan the decline of Generation X, Y, or Z in the age of smart phones and social media, I’ve seen them do some remarkable work with their new-fangled gadgets. On or about December 2013, Davidson College unfolded “Davidson Domains,” an […]

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Peace in Our Time!

This morning’s newspaper headlines the N. C. General Assembly’s last minute power grab to limit the already restricted powers of Democratic Governor-elect Roy Cooper. The Republicans are defending their actions, saying the Democrats “did it first” 20 and 40 years ago. Colin Campbell reports: “House Bill 17, which legislators approved Friday, would limit the number of state employees the governor can hire and fire to 425. The current limit is 1,500 and was increased from 400 around the time Republican […]

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Make America Think Again

I haven’t posted on this blog in months. Now that Mom’s gone and Dad’s remarried, I get an occasional urge to write, but lack the urgency. …until this week, when the triumph of Trump convulsed me from low-grade anxiety to a fever pitch of terror and sadness. On Tuesday, November 8, 2016, I went to bed at 9:50 pm, unable to watch what already appeared inevitable. I tossed and turned in bed, my feet cramping. I tried to reassure myself that more than 50% of […]

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