Category Archives: Summer 2020

What the Robin Doesn’t Know

What the Robin Doesn't Know

Jon Young is the Sherlock Holmes of the backyard. By watching birds through a window he can anticipate that a cat will appear. He knows that birds react one way to a slithering snake and another to a skulking weasel. And he can distinguish among a half-dozen purposes for a bird’s call thanks to his […]

Nature & the Birth of the New

Nature and the Birth of the New

Few aspects of life inspire artists more than nature. Whether in painting, poetry, music, theater, or dance, creative artists across the centuries have depicted and reflected upon the physical phenomena of our world. Both the grandest subjects (mountains, planets) and those most intimate and fragile (gossamer dragonfly wings) are defining elements in the arts throughout […]

Dappled Things

Dappled Things

“Michelle.” I whispered hurriedly to awaken her in the dark. “We must leave home earlier than planned. Snow and ice are coming.” Up she scrambled, softly so as not to awaken her twin brother in the next room. Quickly donning the travel clothes we had laid out the night before, Michelle met me downstairs. With […]

Nature Deficit Disorder

It has been called “Nature Deficit Disorder”—the problem of people who, partly because they do not have much interaction with nature and partly because they are not educated about it, simply do not know much about the natural world. The first cause of this disorder is simply that we don’t spend much time outside anymore. […]

All You’ve Got to Do Is Act Naturally

Act Naturally

Natural disasters, natural resources, natural gas, dying of natural causes. Natural beauty, but also freaks of nature. Going back to nature and getting a natural high. Mother Nature, nature hikes, all-natural foods, natural family planning, natural childbirth. There’s the natural order, and second nature. There are natural numbers. There are all the examples I didn’t […]

Protagoras’ Dilemma

Using a structure built from several different types of argumentation, the dilemma corners your opponent by presenting him or her with a difficult choice between two unacceptable alternatives. The most sophisticated and yet elegant argument form is the dilemma. If you know how to use the dilemma you have achieved the logical equivalent of a […]

How Grammar Can Save Your Life

I’m not a Latin teacher; I’m a doctor. I didn’t learn Latin growing up, other than maybe the conjugation of amo, but I’m learning it now as I teach my children. I have heard many times about the benefits of Latin—not only how it helps to build vocabulary knowledge, but how it helps you to […]

Letter from the Editor Summer 2020: Of Books and Beasts

Of Books and Beasts

One of the ways we can understand ourselves better is to look at the metaphors our culture uses. Medieval and ancient peoples drew their comparisons from nature. Today we often look at things in terms of machines or computers. We tell our unmotivated children they need to “get it in gear.” When we forget something […]

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