Although I ran away in second grade, I obeyed my mother and did not cross the street. Seven years later, anxious and unhappy—and unable to understand or articulate this angst—I tried the same technique. My good grades, composed demeanor, and compliant personality earned me an exchange student assignment in South Africa within three months of application [...]
Far Away (So Close): Memoir of A Friend’s Descent
I am at the Vancouver airport, frantically searching for a lost, rogue Buddhist nun with my three-year-old son in tow. Then I spot her, looking like a wan otherworldly creature in her grey and brown kimono-like jacket. I wave and yell her name repeatedly until she slowly turns her face towards me, her eyes looking out at me from a great interior distance.
Absent Presence in Temporary Space
There is much more that makes a city truly livable than putting a roof over your head, clothes on your back, or food in your belly. Can you get from place to place with ease? Can you call that place livable if you constantly find yourself fearful of sitting on a bus or waiting for a train? [...]
In Search of a Good Place
Forget the rhetoric spewed out by politicians like Donald Trump. Forget how people from Africa and the Middle East are suddenly finding themselves persona non grata across vast swathes of the planet. Instead, think about the nitty-gritty [...]
Our own tribal name for ourselves is simply “Ishak,” which means “Human Beings.” We refer to ourselves as both “Atakapa” and “Ishak” – both names being part of our history and heritage. Perhaps what I admire most about De Batz’s depiction of an Ishak man is that his depiction is so human. There he is, a member of a supposedly fierce nation, and yet his gesture is one of friendship.