Of Cowboys, Doctors, Tradition, and the Individual Talent

We had walked to the other side of the rodeo, across from the grandstand, so that we could get a closer look at the calves dashing out of the chute and the cowboys galloping after them.  This was where families of the performers hung out, and suddenly my eye was taken by a child beingContinue reading “Of Cowboys, Doctors, Tradition, and the Individual Talent”

In the Mind’s Eye

Imagination.  The ability to picture what is not there.  An alternative reality.  A scenario that blossoms out of the brain, often eclipsing the reality all around.  Just like Ron and Hermione and Harry have eclipsed the school-yard acquaintances of so many children.  Or just like their school, Hogwarts, keeps eclipsing ordinary, “real” schools.  And whatContinue reading “In the Mind’s Eye”

In Praise of Wildflowers

Not tame, they grow out of bounds—outside the rules that humans would put on them.  Beautiful but hardy, they are found in the most unexpected places.  Suddenly blooming on the sandy hardpan of a desert floor, surrounded by thorns.  Dotting the dusty tallgrass prairie.  Or scrabbling along a rocky scree above timberline, where the snowContinue reading “In Praise of Wildflowers”


The earth is full of secrets—complete cities that have sunk into soil then been brought back to light by archeologists or unsuspecting construction workers.  Whole marble sculptures and mosaics, gold coins, ornate swords, clay warriors, alabaster figurines, jeweled goblets, carved urns, and stray cannonballs.  There is no end to the secrets either, because the earthContinue reading “Perspective”