What makes life worth living for a tree? Oxygen production? Really? What goes through your mind every time you exhale? This one's for you, broccoli my love? Show me some gratitude, oh lawn of mine?

I didn't think so.

I think trees are in it for the art. Look at any oak desk, maple cabinet or knotty pine wall, and you will get some idea of what has been happening over the years within the living heart of trees. Yet lovely as are the pieces we construct from a tree's original conception, it can be worth our while to wait for the finished piece. Read more about Stourhead

My Favorite Robin

My favorite robin is an English robin. But I didn't know they existed outside of nursery rhyme books until I went there and saw one. I imagine most of us think of the little robin redbreast that sat on apple boughs in the picture books of childhood as the fanciful figments of poetic imagination. If we think of them at all. Those fat cheery little birds with a puff of ruddy breast feathers. They do not look at all like the "real" robins that are so ubiquitous in our yards and gardens. Read more about My Favorite Robin

The Man From Mycenae

"The Greek pantheon roared out of the Lion Gate of Mycenae ..." That is from an paper I did for a class some years ago when I was writing about the submergence of the Great Goddess into the male-dominated pantheon of the Greeks. A bit hyperbolic, perhaps, but I still like the image. When I was in Greece a few years ago, I wanted to visit Mycenae, but it lay across the Gulf of Corinth and bus schedules vs. my remaining time in-country did not correlate. Read more about The Man From Mycenae

Stepping Stones

Inspired today by two bits of serendipity: A Facebook notice from Rory Stewart () that he is off to Cumbria and an e-mail from a chance met friend of the road, Scott, who has walked England up and down and sideways, and at whose invitation I took this walk out of Ambleside, Cumbria, and to whom I remain grateful.steppingstones.jpg Read more about Stepping Stones