Category: the past

The men at the wall.

Two men in tunics and hose, their backs to me, lean on the wall of a castle balcony and look down at something happening on the other side. A slim tree leafs out elegantly to the left. They’re relaxed, intent, faces totally hidden. What’s going on down there, in this picture’s entirely private world? Framed […]

Read more

Your native town, and the world.

“Learn from me, if not by my precepts, at least by my example, how dangerous is the acquirement of knowledge, and how much happier that man is who believes his native town to be the world, than he who aspires to become greater than his nature will allow.” – Victor Frankenstein to Robert Walton, Frankenstein; […]

Read more

Bittersweet.

You pull up to the little grocery store in a distinguished area of a small west-Georgia river city, near the country club and a ladies dress shop named after a Confederate novel.  There are beautiful old homes here, and old white people of the genteel and eccentric kind that live on mostly in Southern caricature […]

Read more

Common ground: politics, water, and life.

Checking my email on what is going to be my last full morning in Alabama for a while, I found some very troubling news: fracking may be coming to our beautiful little corner of northeast Iowa. You might say it’s technically not fracking, since the proposed mine in Allamakee County would be for what’s called […]

Read more