Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Prayer at Breakfastime

   I was upset some weeks ago when President Obama spoke at a prayer breakfast in Washington. I was upset when he felt compelled to say how much he depended upon his Christian faith in his life and work. I was upset that he felt called upon to declare any kind of faith at all-- unless it were something like this little speech to the breakfasting prayerful politicians that I have composed for him here. Perhaps it will also make me feel better. Here it is:

Monday, April 4, 2011


  In what furnace was thy brain?

   When things are as bad as they are these days, when even good people line up as Volunteers against the basic human decencies, it is useful to have something immense, remote, and beautiful with which to divert ourselves, something to muse upon without any nervous responsibility for its disposal. I need something crazy and wonderful, nicely beyond my daily worries, something that will in the end take care of itself and leave me to enjoy myself and to ponder, however uselessly, the imponderables.
   I turn to Language for permission to pursue this or that obscurity with questions, questions quite beyond the limitations of my mind. But, I ask them anyway. Language bids me go ahead, ask away, and relax.