The shopping cart in an algae-choked Naples canal brings to mind Rob Hopkins’ 2019 book, From What Is to What If. With a teacher’s luxury of extra time to wonder (and wander) during summer months, both the inspiring and disgusting trigger daily “what if” questions. The first four are chapter titles from Hopkins’ book…
“So the colors of flowers have evolved to ideally tickle the eyes of bees, and I think that’s a truly wondrous result. It means that beauty, as we know it, is not only in the eye of the beholder, it arises because of that eye.”
Jay Griffiths remembers time “by the sea” at her grandparents’ place as a child:
“We learned about tides and chance, storms and sun, the vicissitudes of what is lost and found, flotsam and jetsam, castaway luck, islands, sea-songs, rings, riddles and pledges. We learned the sense of a clear slate in the renewal of the tide-smoothed sand.”
Today I find myself a long way from you and the children. I am at the State Prison in Reidsville which is about 230 miles from Atlanta. They picked me up from the DeKalb jail about 4 ’0 clock this morning. I know this whole experience is very difficult for you to adjust to, especially in your condition of pregnancy, but as I said to you yesterday this is the cross that we must bear for the freedom of our people.”
-Martin Luther King, Jr.
Over 300 former residents of the Georgia State Prison in Reidsville lie below concrete crosses with black stenciled numbers. Unlike Martin Luther King, who spent time here in October of 1960, these poor souls had no family to say goodbye, let alone write a letter to.