A Gal in Kalamazoo

I’m here. The summer is passing, the weather is cooling, and I am here in Kalamazoo, officially a Graduate Student at the Medieval Institute of Western Michigan University. It feels like very little has changed. And it feels like everything has been upended and turned out and flung wide and strewn far and nothing is…

Summer: Up to the Wrist

There are signs that the summer is ending. A few days ago, I was reminded sharply that in less than a month, I will be returning to Michigan and school, turning my back on these fields and forests and the silence of my land, my home, this middle-of-nowhere, just-shy-of-paradise scrap of the Green Mountains, and returning…

Stars

[I was asked last night why I find such enchantment among the stars. I couldn’t answer–that is a thing I have never tried to put to words before. I’ve tried to respond to the question here, in some small and unsatisfactory way. My faltering words cannot do the most beautiful work of God justice. Not by…

April 30: Evenstar

[Two academic years ago, on October 26th, 2014, my best friend and I embarked on something new and a bit frightening–we gathered together a small group of friends and kindred spirits, a heap of books by Tolkien and Lewis and other like-minded authors and poets, a sheaf of Irish drinking songs, many mugs of tea,…

Spaces: Through the Chinks

In summer, it’s sunlight that filters in through the knotholes in the wood, breaking between the weather-decayed boards and striping the air within with pale gold like water, greened just slightly by the leaves of trees outside. The light looks motionless, sturdy, impossible to break. But peering closer reveals the dust motes that eddy and swirl,…

Sister Miriam

March 8, 2016 It’s the first week of March, and the trees are starting to bud. It’s odd—this much life shouldn’t be, so early in the new year. Not by this North-eastern farm girl’s reckoning. But I don’t mind, and won’t complain. It’s sunny, windy, and 69 degrees (a record high for March 8th, according…

Blackened Glass

I have gone around and around with the title of this poem. I don’t like it as it is. It’s too stark, bland, clinical, vague, or…something. But after wrestling with it for the better part of three days, I’ve given up. It’s adequate as a descriptor of the poem’s matter, and, while it wouldn’t leap…

Next Steps

Well. I guess I owe my readers a post by now. And I have news anyway, so this is rather overdue. I applied to grad school after all. Just one – Western Michigan University. It’s still in this general area of Michigan, which I like, and it’s got one of the top Medieval studies programs…

Vests!

Time at home seems to invariably fill with art. My mother and I hide ourselves away in the barn Studio surrounded by bubbling pots of dye from the armloads of Snapdragons or Black Eyed Susans or St. John’s-wort we gathered earlier that morning, or elbows-deep in soap suds as we stand over the felting table, or…

How I Came to Tolkien

[I just came across this post in my drafts folder. It was written late this past summer, and was definitely meant for publication then. Apparently I missed that part of the blogging process…so here it is, four months late but no less accurate.]   I grew up on The Hobbit. I don’t remember the first time…

Locus Amoenus IV: Home

Originally posted on Emily Abroad:
Locus Amoenus, Latin: the lovely or pleasing place. A common trope in Ancient Roman literature, usually a garden or woodland–a spot of inherent safety, comfort, and striking beauty. The concept features in works by authors as early as Homer, and it was reveled in by the later pastoral poets before being passed on to…

So, What Now?

Thanksgiving is a lovely time. It’s nice to get away from campus before the last mad dash of final performances, studying, exams. There’s actually time to sleep. And catch up on the homework I seem to be perpetually behind in. I spent five hours in the airport translating passages of the Prose Edda from Old…