Monthly Archives: September 2022

How to Spend Your Retirement

I didn’t know when I got up this morning that I would be writing about T. S. Eliot’s poem “The Wasteland” this afternoon. Who knew I would ever write anything about “The Wasteland”? Not I. I haven’t read the entire … Continue reading

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Animalia: Some Words That Derive from Animal Names

The Canary Islands, one would imagine, were overrun with canaries. But, no, they were overrun with wild dogs, or canes in Latin. The birds were named for the islands. Capricious comes from the Italian word for “goat”: capro. A Roman … Continue reading

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Fall Cookies

The story of Proserpina, her mother Ceres, and the god Pluto is my favorite myth. Many of you know it. Proserpina (Persephone in Greek), while frolicking in the fields with other maidens, was snatched away to Hades (or by Hades, … Continue reading

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Horses, Dogs, and People

I have in mind a particular genre of non-fiction. I don’t know if it’s already a category, or if I’m making it up. The Ride of Her Life: The True Story of a Woman, Her Horse, and Their Last-Chance Journey … Continue reading

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Days, Diets, and Divinities

Thursday of this week marks the autumnal equinox. Autumnus in Latin word names the fall season we’re about to enter. Equinox combines two Latin words: the adjective aequus, which means “equal,” and the noun nox, which means “night.” As you … Continue reading

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Instant Terror

Feeling like some savory fall recipes already, even though the temps here today are mid-70s. The curry recipe below sounds satisfying, but I neglected to start it six hours ago; we had no cauliflower on hand this morning. Now, after … Continue reading

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The Buzz on Vergil

(for Trevor Thoms) I can’t close out our week of bees without sharing what is possibly my favorite poem, The Georgics, by the Roman poet Vergil. I know, this might strike you as a stodgy and obscure choice, but believe … Continue reading

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Bee Lines

A beekeeper can also be called an apiarist. These two words demonstrate how the English language developed on different tracks. Bee derives from the Germanic roots of English, related to Dutch bij and German Beie. The api- words derive from … Continue reading

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A Honey of a Post

Did you know that honey bees have little baskets on their legs to collect pollen and nectar? Reading the novel Grey Bees, about a Ukrainian bee keeper, has piqued my interest in bees. I’ve been reading about how worker bees … Continue reading

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Artists ever since Homer, and probably before, have created anti-war art. You may know Picasso’s painting Guernica, Jean Renoir’s great film Grand Illusion, novels such as All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque and Stephen Crane’s Red … Continue reading

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