In my podcasts, I’ve been mentioning how Western New York is awash in Spring sunlight, which has raised up everything green and golden. Here’s a picture of my front flower garden to show you what I mean.


Psalm 148

There are kings, and there are not-kings. Princes, dukes, lords rank below kings, and often vie for the throne, making for excellent reading and a handful of entertaining television shows and movies. Of course, for those of you who are not a king, a prince, a duke, or a lord (queen, princess, duchess, lady), you’re a man and a woman, a lad or a lass, a young man or a maiden: you’re nothing and you’re something. You, of course, cheer on your favorite prince, duke, or lord to obtain the throne, or your king to defend his throne.

As we dwell beneath the sun, the moon and stars, who wheel about us in their courses, we praise God, accompanied by the manatee and whale, the chickadee and robin, bees, bulls and bears, led by angels in the highest places, the unseen realm of heaven, which must be populated by great living mountains, echoing with the praises of man and angel, king and maiden, old and young of every created being in all eternity.

We praise Jesus, the Son of the living God, for everything he has done for us. He’s made us kings and queens (and dukes, ahem), a people for his own, and brought us near him, to exist with him as we are and as he is, just as he intended from the beginning. Let it resound!

Morning Skate: Hugging Winter Goodbye

The sun has no difficulty rising in the morning, and it has begun to hesitate before setting in the evening. The effect is that temperatures are seasonable, which is to say, the ice will begin to melt, now. In fact, daytime temperatures will remain above freezing for the foreseeable future, which means that our outdoor ice skating days have come to an end.

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On Home Schooling

The setup: Nachmu the Elder had a hockey practice at a rink foreign to me, so I dropped him off in front of the main entrance, then went searching far and wide for a parking space. Several minutes later, I appeared in the locker room to find another gentleman lacing up The Elder’s skates; it was the grandfather of our goalie.

I said thanks, which, apparently, opened the floodgates of conversation, and by “conversation,” I mean that Grandpa Goalie began to talk, and I began to listen. His prattling was only slightly distracting from getting The Elder onto the ice, but mostly interesting, since he has so much insight into younger kids and development hockey. And I mean to say that he talked without ceasing until I answered his question: “Where does your son go to school?”

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Snow Versus Time

“Also, God has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.”

It’s a question of causation: we are designed to ask, “How did all this come to pass?” but denied to have an answer. Nachmu is presently sitting in a room which has a clock which ticks. It also has a view of a large and empty lot which is covered with snow. There it goes: the seconds of my life are being dispatched while the snow lies undisturbed. So I ask the question aforementioned. What is wisdom here, besides madness? I’ll try, anyway: Continue reading

On Storm Hysteria

So, we had a snowstorm. If you can imagine what it would have been like had the temperatures been summer-like, we would have exactly zero hysteria. So it rained for a couple of days. Get the temps down a few degrees, and we have a named storm (I refuse to participate in that sign of the Apocalypse by acknowledging the name of the snowstorm), along with a host of rejoicing local TV advertising sales agents. Continue reading

A Riddle That Blossoms

It’s a poem I wrote, belonging to a couple of warriors in my book. They’ve just survived something horrible, and the anger and hatred which drove them to survive it–those emotions are giving way to a secondary primal emotion (if you will allow). The older warrior recalls a poem he learned as a younger man, introducing it to the younger with this sentence:

“It starts as a riddle, and then,” he paused for a moment, “it blossoms.”

I think it scans well. I hope you enjoy it.

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After Christmas every year, the city of Tonawanda floods Ives Pond Park, which is adjacent to the Comfort House, or Nachmu HQ. As soon as the persistent cold of deadly winter is forecast, a very predictable reality, in fact, city officials notify the DPW to close the drainage system of Ives Pond Park (which is a network of soccer fields and empty land in a four-foot deep depression dug out generations ago by a brick-making factory), and, once that is accomplished, they notify the water department to open the fire hydrant.

Between Christmas and the opening of the fire hydrant, anxiety rises throughout the city. Continue reading

Ode to the No. 8

It’s iron, the No. 8, cast iron, which makes using it a commitment. When you lift it, you are forced to reckon that muscles are going to be employed. Whenever I lift it, REM’s “Driver 8” leaps immediately to my mind, and I begin singing: “Driver 8, take a break/ take a break, Driver 8/ Driver 8, take a break, we can reach our destination.”

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