Right-of-Way (Collisions Versus Collusions)

“One of the sad facts of the modern world is that humans are a nightmare for non-human animals. This is manifested in many ways, but one of the most devastating is how voraciously we gobble up wildlife habitat to suit our own needs.” ~ Melissa Breyer It was dark and my headlights had just picked […]

The Arts of Living

“Some students who don’t excel academically, they’re more engaged, because it gives them a different way to learn,” ~ Tiffany Thompson In Junior high, the school counselor asked us to think about what kind of future work we expected for ourselves. We had taken some proficiency tests to help inform our thinking and my test […]

Hard Work and Invasive Species

A weed is a flower growing in the wrong place. ~ George Washington Carver The crew was clearing the Texas ranch of mesquite trees, using a bulldozer and drag chain. Then the small group of “illegals” would pile up the small trees and brush for burning. It was dirty work, and between the heavy equipment, […]

Harmony of Nature

“In forty years of medical practice … I have found only two types of non-pharmaceutical ‘therapy’ to be vitally important for patients with chronic neurological diseases: music and gardens.” ~ Dr. Oliver Sacks in Jones   We deal with stress and the hardships of everyday living in different ways. Some take a long walk in […]

Garden of Delight

My garden is something of a chaotic mess this year. Luckily, at this time of year, I am deluged with gardening advice — most of which I should have heard and applied in late spring. Of course, the key to a ‘perfect’ garden is always intent. What kind of garden do you want? Flowers? Vegetables? […]

Late-Comers

Sometimes it is a little better to travel than to arrive. ~ Robert M. Persig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance I don’t watch horror movies, but a consistent plot seems to be that someone builds a new house over an old cemetery, and the evil dead rise up through the floor to terrorize […]

Bumbling Along with Nature

“Scientist Sánchez-Bayo said he had recently witnessed an insect crash himself. A recent family holiday involved a 400-mile (700km) drive across rural Australia, but he had not once had to clean the windscreen, he said. ‘Years ago you had to do this constantly.’” ~ Damian Carrington One of the scary effects of human actions on […]

Pines in Lines

Once, while studying groundwater contamination at an air base in Florida, I was taken to several old, abandoned landfills to determine which of them should be drilled for testing. One presented a real problem: In the twenty years since it had been closed, the landfill had been planted with pine trees — part of the […]

How High’s the Water, Mama?

How high’s the water, Mama? Five feet high and risin’. How high’s the water, Papa? She said it’s five feet high and risin’. Well, the rails are washed out north of town. We gotta head for higher ground. We can’t come back till the water goes down, Five feet high and risin’ ~ Johnny Cash, […]

The Vegetable Garden in my Mind

Gardening is about optimism. I look through the catalogs in winter and read articles about plants and vegetables, dreaming of what this year’s garden will be like. I am excited to order seeds and get excited all over again when they arrive. I dream of fresh veggie dishes as I ponder the cold and snow […]