an old limestone quarry in the middle of an island in Lake Erie; you can walk to
the rim, sit on a bench among the scrubby pines, and look out over what used to
be acres of wasteland, a strip mine for blocks and slabs of pale stone. Now
nature has re-asserted herself. Cedar trees have come up between the cracks, so
have a riotous variety of bushes, and paths have formed in the gravel. A pond
fills one end; people fish from the rocks that jut into the chemically blue
water. From your seat on the rim you can see across an interesting and varied
landscape. You can be inspired.
deep breath. (“Inspire” at its root means “to breathe in.”) Here we’ve
created a verbal landscape for you to explore. We’ve quarried a storehouse of
writings, come up with gems, and made a place for you to look out. We want to
interest you, to move you, even to bother you, provoke your admiration,
reflection, and thinking. (Look out! You might get ideas!) We expect you’ll
find possibilities you didn’t know existed.
edition of Inspiration Point features essays by students in Jeff Gundy’s
Spiritual Memoir class, written in the spring of 2005. We’re delighted with
the freshness, honesty, and depth of these works.
Eyes closed so tight, I wouldn't open them for the world. I don't
want to see what the depths contain. A lost plastic dinosaur leg, various nets,
and most likely a bucket or two. The place where both a go-cart and a mower
Grace, and Innocence
Turning to the box of CD's I picked out "The Greatest Hits
of Joni Mitchell." I needed a change in music and I hadn't listened to
Mitchell for over a year.
"...we ourselves are words of His." Thomas Merton,
New Seeds of Contemplation
Japanese believe in language, in Kotodama, the spirit existing in every
word that is a physical force beyond definition, letters and pronunciation. It's
a legend categorized with Bloody Mary: when you say a word its spirit is
summoned into our realm.
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and Receding: Living the Tides of Ohio's Climate
Chad Van Buskirk
I have never been to the ocean. I flew over the Pacific when I was
twenty, and my family has made the jaunt to Lake Erie on more than one
occasion, but I have yet to feel, smell, or taste salty, untamed ocean
waters, or see the advance and retreat of the tides. When I was young I
often imagined how exciting it would be to live in a place where the
landscape changed significantly every several hours, the moon pushing and
pulling on Earth's great sloshing aquatic bodies. The impermanence of each
grain of sand demonstrating how dynamic the environment is, there would be
no chance of getting bored on the beach.
The English Club
"Our discovery of God is, in a way, God's discovery of us."
So here I stand screaming at heavens, "Here I am, come get me and show
me the way. Show me the way to your home through the maze I have created
for myself." I shout at the sky and receive cold rain that soaks my
clothes and makes me heavy. It runs down my cheeks like pretend tears that
won't wipe away and I find myself shaking my fist at what I perceive as
betrayal. I feel this betrayal and scorn myself for ever thinking that
there was someone to find me in the first place.
with Dark Matter: Driving with Rumi
So let us not be sure of anything, only
ourselves, only that,so that miraculous beings
can / come running to help."
-Maulana Jalal al-Din Rumi
I've been talking into this little box with it
stuck on pause. But now here I am, going where I am led by the roads and the
signs and the map, trying to stay in my lane and in the clear, trying to drive a
little too fast without getting punished, trying to pass some of the traffic and
let the rest pass me.
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| English Festival April 10 Katrina Kittle
God Plays Racquetball
Only two weeks ago I discovered where the University hides both Racquetball
courts. I borrowed rackets and a ball from a guy who dropped the sport to
pick up ping-pong, an activity, he claimed, with the same idea but on a
smaller scale. "Not as much running," he said.
Mindfulness, and the Blossom of Peace
Erin Renee Wahl
"Peace is all around us-in the world and in
nature-and within us-in our bodies and our spirits. Once we learn to touch
this peace, we will be healed and transformed." Thich Nhat Hanh
In the early hours of the morning I feel the humidity
with my toes. It soaks the ancient air, heavy with tradition and history
and the condensation I can feel. The sunlight peeks through the reaching
fingers of palm leaves dipping almost imperceptibly in the mid-May breeze.
There is no turning back from the revelation.
Here and There: a few conversations, in the restlessness of January
“No one knows what makes the soul / wake up so happy. Maybe a dawn
breeze / is blowing the veil from the face of God”…or so you say. And you
say that birds are given wings while falling and miraculous beings will come to
On the 12:50 out of Fairfield
Say you are not moved by the soul
that looks out of every window,
seven cranes lifted
like a train of hours
floating into loss, dusk already sifting
splintered rafters of your heart.
Say you don't need Heaven, the fictive afterlife
cirrus blue and saints,
to get you through a rape, two deaths,
every lover that left
you all alone.
Or say there is not one God,
but a countless shatter of the
like rain inside a week of rain,
and all the pearly
fragments pour down
like desire, too large and brimming
to be held inside one
lust like a holy rush of sea
slapping up against the
of your flesh, the conductor
singing out the names where
and all the strangers you will never touch
stepping down to
swarmed with light.
So, go ahead. Say you are just fine.
Say this is enough, right here, right now.
That you will
learn to want
only what you have.
Go ahead. Try.
-Julia Levine, Ask