peers collaborate

A while back (a long while back) I attended a speed version of the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius. The full form is thirty days; there is a week-long form that time has hallowed; there also is a four-day form, which might have been shaped as a concession to the late twentieth century, or perhaps […]

everywhere is garden

My friend C is a member at the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center. And for the past… six weeks? two months?… we’ve met here on Wednesday mornings at next-door-to-8am in order to walk through whatever is jammed up in our hearts and heads. And for me to say out loud what faithful work I intend to […]

coffee and nerves

Here’s something I’ve been ‘doing’ but not writing about: waiting in hope to get into / start a PhD program in Fall 2022. My applications? Committed & sealed in mid-December and mid-January. My responses? Of 4 applications: one decline, one decline with a counteroffer of a ThM acceptance, two waitlists. The institutions let me know […]

coffee and contemplation

Back a while ago — when the girls were young, and I was in one of my desperate seasons — I consulted my first spiritual director. She was someone I was friendly with at church, who had recently decided to add this skill to her capacious repertoire. I was early on in my journey into […]

computing in a frictionless sphere

So I’m drinking my second cup of coffee and reading Twitter, as one does, and I wander into a thread on the morality of the death penalty. Not very far, just far enough to see some “teacher” qualities and some “Christian” qualities (go algorithms!) and to notice someone asking the original poster whether they think […]

by definition on time

“Nobody is born ahead of their time!” —Hannah Gadsby, from the one-person show Nanette Gadsby exclaims this at the crux of her thorough discussion of Vincent Van Gogh’s stylistic and thematic choices. She’s reacting to a commonly-repeated thought: that, during his life, Van Gogh’s work wasn’t collected widely or financially rewarded because his ideas (as […]

twice exiled

A little while ago my spiritual director asked me to cast my mind/heart across the Bible and tell her what ‘rhyme’ came to me as I considered myself in the moment. (She uses ‘rhyme’ here to refer to passages that strike one as similar, without needing to be a full match.) I thought: Second Isaiah’s […]

stiff upper lip

Well, the aligners arrived later than expected — I just got them Wednesday. One effect of contemporary computer imaging and computer modeling is: the simulation says my lower teeth won’t all fit in my mouth together. Or maybe the simulation takes into account that the jaw in its 50s is likely less accommodating than the […]

inside-out

My English-major work happened a long time ago now, but it — and the literature-learning culture that surrounded it and me — taught me the glories of coming to a bit of writing with no (or few) expectations: read what’s in front of you, listen inside yourself for what chimes or clunks, jot that down. […]

minimum time ‘till crash

My evening ritual is as bare-bones as I can make it.Some of this is because, at my core, I am a morning person. The shape of my evenings?There’s the two-level go-to-bed alarm — even at my weary end of the day I have a tendency to hyperfocus — that sends me off to the back […]