The Abominable

Posted by on Nov 17, 2017 in neighborhood | No Comments
The Abominable

Whenever I walk past your house I think of the abominable snowman. Remember how he scared us? We knew he was hiding behind the trimmed hedges beneath your living room window, fangs moist with anticipation. Sometimes he was in your basement, too, and we would get so scared your big sister would have to walk […]

The Trout Lilies of Grant Park

Posted by on May 4, 2017 in neighborhood | 2 Comments
The Trout Lilies of Grant Park

The trillium are rapidly expanding their white blooms in the beech and maple woods of Grant Park, especially to the south, along the bluff overlooking Lake Michigan, but along the Seven Bridges Trail the trout lilies are still in command: thousands of little bursts of yellow breaking out of the decaying leaves of autumns past. […]

Endings and Beginnings

Posted by on Mar 23, 2017 in neighborhood | No Comments
Endings and Beginnings

On my walk through Grant Park Monday morning I came across something sad: an old white pine I had always loved had met its end. Evidently it had snapped during last week’s heavy winds. The park’s crew had already sawed it up and cleared it from the bike path. It had stood at the edge […]

Evening Prayer of the Woods

Posted by on Nov 16, 2016 in land, neighborhood, wholeness | No Comments
Evening Prayer of the Woods

If the year were compressed into a day, it would be evening, with its lengthening shadows and descending chill. The trees of Grant Park are girding themselves for winter; they have let go of most of their leaves, and the musky odor of decay rises up from the ground as the beeches and maples and […]

The Trinity Flower

Posted by on May 18, 2016 in neighborhood, wholeness | 4 Comments
The Trinity Flower

Soon after the time of the trout lily, the beech-maple woods of the Seven Bridges Trail are decorated with the bright white flower of the trillium. This year the trillium were just starting to bloom when I wrote about the trout lilies, and they reached their peak a few days ago. A common name for […]

Time of the Trout Lily

Posted by on May 4, 2016 in neighborhood | 3 Comments
Time of the Trout Lily

On Monday morning a light, warm breeze and the promise of sunlight breaking through the clouds meant one thing: I had to walk over to Grant Park and witness the current state of spring. We had just lived through a chilly and often sunless April, but I knew that even here by the shore of […]

Dying and Rising

Posted by on Mar 30, 2016 in neighborhood, wholeness | One Comment
Dying and Rising

The last of our snow melted over Easter weekend, and yesterday I walked over to Grant Park to check out how my favorite part of the park had come through the winter. A good portion of the Seven Bridges Trail was closed all winter, because the paths leading downhill to the lower trails and lake grew treacherous […]

Black and Red and Spring All Over

Posted by on Mar 9, 2016 in neighborhood | No Comments
Black and Red and Spring All Over

Once March begins, I always listen for a special song during my journeys around my neighborhood. It’s not widely considered to be a beautiful piece of music, but it is lively, and always brings a smile to my face. When I hear the tumbling song of the male red-winged blackbird, I know spring has begun. Here […]

When the Red Bird Sings

Posted by on Feb 10, 2016 in neighborhood | One Comment
When the Red Bird Sings

Last Wednesday I hinted about an event that for me marks the true beginning of the end of winter. On Friday, it happened. It was a little past noon on a crisp, sunny day, and I was walking along the edge of Grant Park when I heard it: the loud, bright staccato whistling of a male […]

Groundhogs, Blizzards, and the Baby Jesus

Posted by on Feb 3, 2016 in cosmos, neighborhood | One Comment
Groundhogs, Blizzards, and the Baby Jesus

A major winter storm swept the Central Plains and Upper Midwest yesterday and today, dumping up to a foot of snow and producing blizzard conditions in some areas. As one intrepid TV reporter in Sioux City, Iowa, put it after nearly getting blown over, “It’s just not good out here.” My neighborhood escaped it, although […]