Testing Limits

UPDATE: 6/7/17 Accounts from people present on Sunday must come into play. Late in this blog, I suggest that the “protesters should not be dismissed as childish.” The photo above also implies these officials as proxy for the balance I describe. The new information indicates that undue force was used by the police – physical force, tear gas, rubber bullets. It indicates that once again, people of color among the counter-protesters were… Read More

My Nephew’s Body will be Buried Today

“It will always be important to have a community of people who support each other and work together for the struggle.  Yes, for the struggle for all people.” Bruce McQuakay Saturday Memorial Day weekend, 2017 Seven years ago, on Fathers’ Day, Bruce McQuakay and I saw one another at the annual Delta Park pow wow. Bruce, who described himself as Tlingit and Apache, was not a father yet – that was still… Read More

Christians, Muslims, Jews and the Return of the Light

It’s the winter holiday season. The eight days of Hanukkah have already come and gone. Malid un Nabi, Christmas, Kwanzaa and the turn of the year to 2016 are not far away. And, yesterday we in the northern hemisphere turned the corner from increasing dark to increasing light. Winter Solstice. The shift will be gradual, but the sun’s time above the horizon will grow and grow until, of course, it turns again… Read More

Standing in Wildfire

Yesterday, my husband Gary and I began a drive to Montana.  We live there parts of the year.  Just outside a really small community tucked into muscular folds of the Intermountain West.  With water and trees, with big mammals like Elk, Moose and Bear – with Eagles and Hawks, and this past spring, with a mama hummingbird nested just outside our window. It was early when we left Portland – the place… Read More

3084 Miles of Road

“We’ve just driven the entire length of Interstate 84,” Sara said, “and we’re only in Utah.” She was in the driver’s seat at that moment, and we were 500+ miles east of Portland, Oregon – the hometown we’d left at sunrise, encased in a rectangular cube of mostly yellow – a rental truck filled up with Sara’s 28-year lifetime of belongings. For a mom and daughter, this is one of those big… Read More

A Heatwave of Independence

For three weeks plus, temperatures in Portland, Oregon have been above 90°.  There has been no rain since June 1.  I find myself longing for Slip&Slides, for Mr. Wiggle (video link for those who’ve forgotten – and for those who may have never known)  – and resorting instead to random sidesteps into the spray of lawn sprinklers. In Portland, and all across the Pacific Northwest, June has generally been a mostly rainy month. … Read More

Today with my Buddy, Wild Nature

Gary and I are on the road between Rexburg, Idaho and Portland, Oregon. Powdery fingers of snow insist on whispering across I 84 and, because of forecast warnings, we’re in close touch with Oregon family and friends to monitor this mid-November storm.  This matters particularly today because we’re supposed to be on Hawthorne Avenue at Powell’s Books this evening.  That alongside informed rumors of snow and ice that threaten to take hold… Read More

Grief Comes Home

Recently, a friend just older told me something about death that seems now obvious – the observation that sometime in a person’s fourth or fifth decade there is a subtle shift of awareness that shows up as no longer understanding one’s life in terms of how long it’s been since birth, but rather in relation to how much time is left.  It’s a shift that calls forward a new relationship with death… Read More

Portland Boil Alert – Noticing what Works

I just got a phone call from a woman I don’t know.  It was my second time to hear her voice.  The first time was yesterday afternoon when she called everyone in Portland, Oregon to tell us we needed to boil our drinking water.  E Coli had been found in the drinking supply.  We needed to be careful and via ‘reverse 911’ the officials of our city were letting us know. So,… Read More

Zaher Wahab – Educational Leader Extraordinaire

NOTE:  I’ve just received a note from my mentor, friend and colleague, Dr. Zaher Wahab.  A few years ago, Zaher retired his position as a professor.  We were faculty colleagues for 24 years.  Throughout his 40 years in the professoriate, he returned regularly to his homeland in Afghanistan.  Here is what he wrote today: Dear Colleagues and Friends, Greetings from Kabul. Yes, I know I have not written to you since last… Read More