Category Archives: language

Something Old

I still have the tattered Golden Book of Nursery Tales (1948) and Mother Goose Book of Nursery Rhymes (1953) presented to me at birth. At a time in my life when preserving the past evidently mattered less to me, I removed the … Continue reading

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Charlottesville, Boston, Berkeley and the Desecration of the First Amendment

August 19, 2017 Speaking my mind today may be impolitic. However, because what I fear most is the silence following the premature death of the First Amendment, speak I must. I am reminded of Paul’s recital of his unblemished pedigree: … Continue reading

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Finding Community: Prayer, Love, Work, and the Liturgy

I must be clear that this all happened a week ago, July 30, eighth Sunday after Pentecost on the liturgical calendar–or kalendar, if we’re being precious–Year A, Track 2. Everything would have different had it not been this specific Sunday … Continue reading

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Erasing History: The 2017 Version

“In February 1948, the Communist leader Klement Gottwald stepped out on to the balcony of a Baroque palace in Prague to harangue hundreds of thousands of citizens massed in Old Town Square. That was the great turning point in the … Continue reading

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50 Years Ago: My 15 Minutes on the Front Page

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Metatext: Memories in the Margins

Two weeks ago, on March 18, I saw The Sense of an Ending on the second day of its run at the Cameo Art House Theater in Fayetteville. In 2011–specifically, “Thanksgiving 2011, Lake Mattamuskeet” according to my notation on the flyleaf–I read … Continue reading

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Biology, Destiny, and the Politics of Dys-

I am aware that when Freud pronounced his now-vilified dictum of biological determinism, “anatomy is destiny,” he was referring specifically to sexuality, which is not my subject here–at least not my only subject. However, because I like to be well … Continue reading

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Hope Is a Thing

Twenty years ago today, so the legend goes, the hopeless step-grandmother of a wild child saw a red sign on a gray door: “Enter Here in Peace.” Though the parlous state of her soul belied the mode of entry, she took … Continue reading

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E Plebnista: A Sardonic Meditation on American Greatness

Twenty long days have passed since I last put thoughts to words and words to (virtual) paper. I have not written about the gleeful euphoria with which I anticipated the election of 2016, the exquisite pain with which I learned of … Continue reading

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Sticks, Stones, and Mayhem in the Marketplace of Ideas

In a lifetime of writing, I have spent many grueling hours perfecting the art of the compelling introduction–to say nothing of the time spent crafting clever and thought-provoking titles. For my current topic, however, I am afraid that I have … Continue reading

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