Here's something that troubles me. Some of the greatest people in history -- the leaders of nations, great musicians, artists, and the writers who give the library its most enduring worth -- often have very poor family values.
It's also troubling how frequently they come from hugely dysfunctional families. Their father beat them. Their mother was an addict. They were betrayed, seduced into crime or worse.
You have to wonder, does anybody just grow from a nice, normal background into a life of stunning accomplishment?
Once upon a time, there was a little white girl. She was born in America, although both her first name and surname were Irish.
From her earliest memory, Ireland didn't mean much to her. Instead, she'd been fascinated by another place - Africa.
Last week I attended a Douglas County School Board meeting. It was, at times, a tense night.
First up was the fate of the Colorado Visionary Academy charter school. It had been given some 30 days to solve a staggering set of problems. After presentations by various folks, some probing questions from the Board, and a recess to allow the two sides to huddle, it was decided to give the school district another week to digest all of the data presented that day. Then some 80 people or so got up and left.
I first encountered poetry in sixth grade. Mr. Smith, as part of our literature studies, had us focus on the Japanese poetic form of haiku.
In retrospect, that's probably because haiku is so short. The rules are deceptively simple. Good haiku doesn't only follow the overt structure of 3 lines (5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables). It also has a seasonal reference, conveyed by at least two, and often three, sharply focused images.