By place

Monthly Archives: August 2018

A Metro to the Moon

As the train and your pulse both speed up, something happens. In the middle of a step, between the time when your back foot leaves the ground and lands in front of the other, you seem to be weightless.

The Art of Staying

I love the city I now call home, but it’s never been my destination.

I Didn’t Know Shit About A Lot of Things

I’m a youth director who wakes up most mornings wondering if God is even real. I’m prone to weariness from the locational and spiritual uncertainty of my future.

Sounds of Salamá

From the kitchen comes the pitter-patter of the pressure cooker, rap tap tapping, hissing spurts of steam, signaling that something delectable will be on the table at the next meal—most likely black beans.

In Life and in Death

A hot and electric pulse coursed through my body, like the shock you receive from an exposed wire, only longer-lasting, and warmer.

The Strip Mall Zoologist

Maybe when I have bigger problems I’ll consider switching my primary care physician to someone with a background in medicine.

Just a House

Just a House

by | Aug 25, 2018

I was suddenly aware of everything: the squelch of the slider door’s rubber seal releasing as my brother came in from the yard. The creak and crash of the screen door to the garage behind my dad.

Goddess of Weaving

Goddess of Weaving

Or maybe I was right to be scared. Maybe my parents only told me giant spiders weren’t real so that I would let my guard down.

The Glorious Summer the Ceiling Fell In: A Plan for a Poem

The Glorious Summer the Ceiling Fell In: A Plan for a Poem

I’d personify the pigeons that crowd onto the narrowest of ledges on the building across the street, their plumage flashing psychedelic green and pink.

Encounters of the Patron Kind: Three Memories from Work at a Public Library

Encounters of the Patron Kind: Three Memories from Work at a Public Library

I’m not allowed to comment on the items that patrons check out, so I try not to pay attention.

This Old House: Things I Learned Time Traveling

This Old House: Things I Learned Time Traveling

It is in the repetitive ritual of opening and closing the house each day—unrolling the broken shade by hand, wrestling with the deadbolt on the warped front door, seeing age—that I find inexplicable revelations.

A Pindaric Ode for the Paris Gay Games

A Pindaric Ode for the Paris Gay Games

So, in order to commemorate these tenth Gay Games, I have decided to pen my very own over-the-top, saccharinely sincere Pindaric ode. Let’s hope it’s not, well, terrible.

Teaching When You Shouldn’t Have To

Teaching When You Shouldn’t Have To

What I’ve keyed into is the difference between learning as a victim and learning as a perpetrator.

Pete

Pete

All I know about the donut scene in Champaign, Illinois, I owe to a man named Pete.

Chess Bots

Chess Bots

The people I know with whom I’ve recently played chess are similarly much better than me. When we play, I view it more as a self-esteem boost for them than a real contest.

Getting Around in Sicily

Getting Around in Sicily

“Sì sì sì sì,” he said. The letters had rearranged themselves in Italian. This is how we would communicate.

Solitude and I-80

Solitude and I-80

And then—after all that hectic activity—all I had to do was drive. For five hours. On the same road. Beside a repeating pattern of corn and soybeans.

My Husband the Cop

My Husband the Cop

Since I know it is theologically unsound to pray for my life to be comfortable, I find myself praying that Paul will be safe, promote justice, and stay out of the news.

Vivian Maier

Vivian Maier

She took photos because it was something she had to do, because creativity flowed out of her and became her way of life. Because she had something to say.

Another Verse for Teachers

Another Verse for Teachers

O teachers! my teachers! your fearful year’s begun.

To Clean Out a Room

To Clean Out a Room

I don’t like change, and I am an anxious person. Nice to meet you.

Four Meals with Strangers

Four Meals with Strangers

Danke, Louise.  Obrigada, João. Merci, Jess. Gracias, Vera.

The Queer Christian (?) Book™

The Queer Christian (?) Book™

There is the queer Christian story. And then there are the rest of us.

Harry Potter and the Humanist Podcast

Harry Potter and the Humanist Podcast

If I really believe that the Bible was inspired by the creator of the universe, it should be much easier to find that trust than it is with a series of young adult fantasy novels finished a decade ago.

An Ode to Trader Joe’s

An Ode to Trader Joe’s

You’ll know you’re getting close to the cashiers when someone tells you to go to the yellow cheese, the red pepper or the green grapes.

A Laughable Mistake

A Laughable Mistake

We welcomed the hilarity of our mistake, the unknowns of adventure, and the opportunity to give ourselves grace.

A Thousand Points of Light? When National Service Isn’t in the Budget

A Thousand Points of Light? When National Service Isn’t in the Budget

Taken as a whole, AmeriCorps VISTA is the lifeblood of nonprofit social service programs in this country, utilizing the interest and availability of young people for the greater good.

Sorry, Mary Oliver

Sorry, Mary Oliver

The last thing I want to read about is another long and beautiful and solitary walk.

Our Old Pup (and Other Pets)

Our Old Pup (and Other Pets)

She waddles so slowly and aimlessly on evening walks that it feels like you’re tricking her into moving forward. I swear her body’s just gotten doughier and wider while her head has stayed the same size.

Not Another Bite

Not Another Bite

When I first moved to Honduras three years ago, I ate everything my host family ate: beans, eggs, cream, tortillas. Heavy, simple plates—bland, but satisfying. But then suddenly one day, months in, I just couldn’t do it anymore.