A Gentle Autumn

This autumn in northern Europe is unseasonably gentle and warm. The turning of the leaves from deep green to all the colors of flame and sunset, the baring of elegant dark, sloping branches, the abundant soft coverings on the ground, the scents of damp earth, fallen apples and acorns, crumbling organic growth. All these magnificent…Read more A Gentle Autumn

Of Blood and Air: Homelands Lost and Made

I feel must address the devastation, disappointment and the profound elation (for a significant number of people) spreading in shock waves throughout Germany at this time, the country that I call home. The results of the election were announced a few days ago and they were relatively grim: Chancellor Angela Merkel held on to her…Read more Of Blood and Air: Homelands Lost and Made

Open Ended

In my last post, Strange New Worlds, I wrote about the vastness of space and how “no man-made wall has ever proven so completely and perfectly impenetrable as insurmountable distance. Nothing has proven our absolute ineptitude quite like the unconquerable vastness of time and space.” I tried to capture that strange sense of not knowing—that…Read more Open Ended

What Do You Mean by “We”?

"What do you mean by we?"  These are the words of a favorite college professor. The question startled me, like an abrupt slap in an otherwise pleasant conversation. I couldn't find the words to respond. At the time, I had been a very enthusiastic student. I attended university like Darwin the Galapagos. Out on my own for…Read more What Do You Mean by “We”?

Deciphering Tea Leaves

The fragrance of the teas was overwhelming. Pungent leaves of brown, black and green, speckled with dried fruit and herbs. The leaves had been dried whole and rolled—humbled in their shriveled, preserved state. Comforting scents of dirt and new grass whispering of promises they might keep. If only it would rain. Abruptly, sharp citrus notes…Read more Deciphering Tea Leaves