Essay

Cordial Cherries

I forgot to buy a box of Queen Anne’s cordial cherries this year. I didn’t realize it until the week before Christmas, and by then I was sure most stores were already sold out. I was sitting on the couch…
December 27, 2020
Essay

Tracks in the Snow

Now here 15 years, I have a happy association of kid laughter and snow. Following the first snow last week, I did a little window-reconnaissance on the southern border of my sprawling 0.23-acre estate and there they were – small-bore…
December 26, 2020
Essay

Let It Be

For this Christmas Day 2020 I offer this meditation/sermon from Luke 1:26-38: Those of us who are parents, grandparents, uncles, or aunts all know what it is like to watch our children when they are in the spotlight. Maybe it's…
December 25, 2020
Essay

The Weary World Rejoices

In his perhaps most Ron Weasley-ish moment, Ron responds to Hermione’s description of the many emotions Cho Chang is experiencing as she grieves Cedric and then starts to fall for Harry with this exclamation: “A person can’t feel all that…
December 24, 2020
Essay

The Carol Sing in a Different December

“It doesn’t really feel like Christmas, Dad.” My daughter tugs sharply at my shirt to get my attention, and gestures dramatically down our street. She’s right. This Christmas is different. For her, it feels different because, after living the entirety…
December 23, 2020
Essay

In Gratitude for a Son

If he was worth loving, he is worth grieving over. Grief is existential testimony to the worth of the one loved. That worth abides. So I own my grief. I do not try to put it behind me, to get…
December 22, 2020
Essay

The Trauma of White America

When Mark Charles visits schools, college campuses, and communities, he always begins by introducing himself. According to the matrilineal Diné culture, his four clans include his maternal grandmother, of Dutch heritage (translated as ‘the Wooden Shoe people’), his paternal grandmother…
December 21, 2020
Essay

First Cry in a Stable

It's not a new story. I wrote it more than a decade ago, so it may well show its age. But I thought I'd try it, a father and daughter story, at Christmas. It's a bit longer than a normal…
December 18, 2020