We might learn from the core concept of virtually any world spiritual philosophy that sentience prevails as the sole truth throughout time and existence--that peace settles upon the entity that chooses that eternal reality over the shadows that would obscure it. And what dark shadows--physical pain and suffering, the toil of making one's way in [...]

A Creature of Habit

I have long understood that a predictable pattern to my life offers me comfort.  For this reason, I thrive during the school year and tend to languish in the summertime.  I enjoy the regularity of being in a classroom from Monday through Friday, savoring an occasional holiday weekend, but sometimes dreading longer breaks for the [...]


We are as stars of greater mass Engendered of a cosmic germ Refulgent till our fusions pass Out of our stellar term. Then all collapses to the core; The core, in turn, withdraws from sight While our dimensions, as before, Pierce not the realm of light. And all that was our size and shape, Our [...]

Autism Awareness Month

As a humanist, I value the diversity of our species.  The science of our age has demonstrated the wonder of genetic randomness and accident, along with the glory of its implications.  Our varied traits–their potential imparted by inheritance and expression inflected by circumstance–have graced us as the human race with opulent potential and terrifying power. [...]

Deepest Gratitude

It was much harder for me to participate this year given a much tighter schedule, but I am pleased to have joined you all again.  I am grateful for the support of several writing colleagues, and several new friends have offered me valuable encouragement. Regrettably, little time presented itself for what I enjoy as much [...]

Who Can We Not Humanize?

Over a career of more than 30 years, I have taught some literature that has confronted students from late elementary grades straight through high school with the reality that human beings can do brutal things to each other.  In works of literary nonfiction, as well as in fictionalized depictions of abuse and atrocities that we [...]

Another Dimension for Quarterly Assessment

At my school, the marking period ends this Thursday.  I usually require students to write a reflection of their learning experiences so they can assess their growth.  Part of this includes a review of how their skills and capacities have expanded, but another consideration altogether can make all the difference. I have an old wooden [...]

Lovely Sunday

One vision for me of a pleasant Sunday starts with forbidding weather. It would rain, and depending on the season, it might be cold and raw as well.  In any event, the gray and wet would hardly invite. I might be alone or with a companion–someone who does not mind a day indoors once in [...]