SATURDAY READING: Ghosts—A History by Kathleen Norris

September 30, 2017

From Dakota: A Spiritual Geography The church was music to me when I was little, an enthusiastic member of the cherub choir in the large Methodist church in Arlington, Virginia, where my dad was choir director.  We wore pale blue robes with voluminous sleeves, stiff white collars, and floppy black bow ties, which I thought made me look like one of the angels in my picture hymnal. I sang from that book every day at home.  One of my strongest memories of early childhood is of sitting on my mother’s lap at our old, battered Steinway upright as she played the hymns and I sang.  By the time I was three, long before I knew how to read, I’d turn the pages and on seeing the illustration would begin singing the right song in the right pitch. [...]

SATURDAY READING: A Worn Path, by Eudora Welty

January 17, 2015

It was December – a bright frozen day in the early morning.  Far out in the country there was an old Negro woman with her head tied in a red rag, coming along a path through the pinewoods.  Her name was Phoenix Jackson.  She was very old and small and she walked slowly in the dark pine shadows, moving a little from side-to-side in her steps, with the balanced heaviness and lightness of a pendulum in a grandfather clock.  She carried a thin, small cane made from an umbrella, and with this she kept tapping the frozen earth in front of her.  This made a grave and persistent noise in the still air, that seemed meditative like the chirping of a solitary little bird. She wore a dark stripped dress reaching down to her shoe tops, and an [...]