Another morning comes and snow falls again, or still. In the middle of winter is when I feel that it will always be here. The cold, the wind, the white. The icy feet, the blankets, the scarves, the boots. I remember spring, summer and fall but the memory is distant and quickly receding, like a dream once awake.

I don’t know why, but winter is my time to sew, stitch, and knit. Perhaps I need to see color and hold soft things in my hands. Or I need to feel something real and physically immediate that I have generated with…


This girl, I’m looking at her. I recognize her in a way: I remember seeing this picture of myself throughout the years since it was taken, so I remember that it’s a picture of me, and I can figure out that I must have been around eleven years old. But I also don’t recognize her in a way: I feel I should know her but I don’t. I look at her and wonder, where is she now? Who is she? Is she still in me somewhere? Still a part of me? I can see why I’ve been drawn to looking…


Sparrow on a rail. Photo by Kate Hess
Sparrow on a rail. Photo by Kate Hess

There is a sound.

It is beneath the hum of tires cruising across pavement on the distant highway. Beneath the patter of raindrops on asphalt, trees, grass, sidewalk. It is softer than the crush of sneaker soles articulating across the asphalt on this empty street, softer even than the breathing, slightly labored, that only my ears hear this night. Beneath the breath is a beating rhythm. It seems strange to say my heartbeat is a sound. Well, of course it’s a sound. I know the sound of a heartbeat through a stethoscope, the amplified fluttering sounds of a tiny heartbeat…


“rainy window” by Jo Naylor. Licensed for reuse. https://flic.kr/p/5G4NWM

The day dawns densely clouded. Lightning flashes and thunder rumbles and rain falls steadily. I am around 4 years old and I am kneeling, faced backwards on the living room couch, my chin resting on my folded arms. I watch the rain and the ashen sky lighten ever so slightly with the invisible but surely rising sun. I dimly sense the sounds and smells of breakfast from the kitchen as I sit with this moment on this day in this space in this body through these eyes.

I’ve become more interested in this little girl as I’ve gotten older and…


Insects drawing by Daniel Schellberg. Used with permission.

I walked out the front door that day with a sort of destination in mind. I wanted to walk through tall grass and see what I might see there that I wouldn’t find in the mown grass around my house. I needed to find the butterfly net my daddy had made for me. But it was used for catching many more things than its name might lead you to think. As I looked for the net I thought about: the many many grasshoppers and lightning bugs it had held for a short while before their release; heart-racingly, the bumble bee…


Ruth’s house now, photo by Kate Hess

Ruth was born in 1905 in a mid-size city in Iowa. She was the youngest of four sisters, daughter to Julia, an Iowa girl, and to Louis, a Bohemian immigrant who worked as a carpenter and a contractor. Ruth and her sisters all went to college, and she and one of her sisters continued to work in education until they retired, both remaining unmarried and passionate about their work with students. Ruth had a degree in French and a 2 year degree from Chicago Normal School of Physical Education, a small women’s college. In college she participated and excelled in…


Oklahoma hills, photo by Kate Hess

When the world began, there was Love.

Think of all the creation stories you’ve ever heard. In each there is Love, shown as two beings sharing love, or as one being extending Love into the Universe. We are created with love and we create with love.

What about, you might say with cleverness, those creations that seem to come from darkness, from pain, from violence? Even these are created from love. Perhaps a love that is buried so deeply beneath pain that that in order to create, it must rise up, pushing the pain out before it like a boil…

Kate Schellberg

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