Menu

Good Letters

“No Man the Island that a Woman Is”

| | 0 Comments

I was just finishing graduate school when the feminist movement began—around 1970. It spoke so powerfully to my personal experience that I wrote part of my dissertation on how the movement was transforming women’s language: allowing them to discover their own voice for the first time in Western history. As a brand new Asst. Professor…

Cloud of Witnesses

| | 0 Comments

“The only really effective apologia for Christianity comes down to two arguments, namely, the saints the Church has produced and the art which has grown in her womb.” –Joseph Ratzinger Those who know me only from the Glen Workshop may not believe I’m an introvert, but it’s true. For all my chattiness and conspicuous upstaging,…

Undoing our Undoing: Reva Williams & Gretel

| | 0 Comments

For two years, I lived in an artists’ colony in Hyde Park, Massachusetts, just on the outskirts of Boston. We set up house in a drafty three-story Victorian—me along with six musicians, one painter, one sculptor, and one band manager (in addition to a steady stream of guests, most of them of the musical variety).…

Do This in Memory: 2008 SPU MFA Commencement Address

| | 0 Comments

The following post is an adapted version of the commencement address for the 2008 graduating class of the Seattle Pacific University MFA in Creative Writing Program. I’d like to say a few words today about memory, inspired by St. Augustine, whose Confessions we have been reading together. The Confessions are the first great work of…

Imagining Christ at the Getty Center

| | 0 Comments

Oh how much I’d been looking forward to this, after five weeks in Los Angeles with nary a chance to make it to my favorite place in town. You can have the Arclight, Gladstone’s, Venice Beach, and the Promenade; go ahead, take LACMA and Griffith Observatory while you’re at it. Just give me The Getty…

Imagining Christ at the Getty Center

| | 0 Comments

Oh how much I’d been looking forward to this, after five weeks in Los Angeles with nary a chance to make it to my favorite place in town. You can have the Arclight, Gladstone’s, Venice Beach, and the Promenade; go ahead, take LACMA and Griffith Observatory while you’re at it. Just give me The Getty…

Double

| | 0 Comments

For a bureaucrat, there is no greater ignominy than getting upstaged by a political appointee. I did not feel the bite of this truism until last Wednesday, when I found myself, in peep-toe heels, trundling fifteen painstakingly prepared briefing binders in a dog-hair-covered hiking backpack to our agency’s Office of the Deputy Secretary. Regarding the…

How the Messages of God Come to Us

| | 0 Comments

Imagination has been a motif in Good Letters of late, so I was intrigued to hear a new variation on the theme in my pastor’s homily last Sunday. He began by quoting Shaw’s play St. Joan, from the scene where Joan of Arc is being interrogated: JOAN: I hear voices telling me what to do.…

Meaning and Memory

| | 0 Comments

I made a trip to DC a couple of weeks ago. A co-worker told me she was going to go with some business colleagues to Wolf Trap for a concert. Since I am known by a few folks in the company as one of those “music types,” she asked if I wanted to join them…

The Fate of Patroclus

| | 0 Comments

About eight years ago, my brother Craig allowed me to borrow his new Honda Civic, which he had named Xanthus in honor of Achilles’ immortal horse in The Iliad. “Beware the fate of Patroclus,” he warned, reluctantly handing me the keys. Yes, Craig is a tiny bit strange. But he’s Southern, and we encourage that.…

Image’s Daily Blog

For the humanists of the Renaissance, literature mattered because it was concrete and experiential—it grounded ideas in people’s lives. Their name for this kind of writing was bonae litterae, a phrase we’ve borrowed as the title for our blog. Every weekday, one of the gifted writers on our blogging team will offer a personal essay that makes a fresh connection between the world of faith and the world of daily life, spanning the gap between theology and experience and giving language a human shape.

Access one piece of artwork every month for free! To experience the full archive, log in or subscribe.

Pin It on Pinterest