Johann Sperl Mädchen im Bauerngarten

On Cultivating One’s Own Garden

Recently, I caught up with the movie version of ‘The Martian’, about the NASA astronaut who gets left on Mars alone, presumed dead. After his initial shock and panic, Mark Watney decides to “science the shit out of” the disaster of being left alone on an uninhabitable terrain with practically no life resources. The most important thing he has to do is figure out how to sustain himself for some-50 days before contact with NASA can be possible. So, as a botanist, he cultivates a potato garden with ingenuity, hard work, and patience. Continue reading On Cultivating One’s Own Garden

the element of lavishness

Booknotes: The Element of Lavishness

“The personal correspondence of writers feeds on left-over energy. There is also the element of lavishness, of enjoying the fact that they are throwing away one of their better efforts, for the chances of any given letter’s surviving is fifty-fifty, at most. And there is the element of confidence — of the relaxed backhand stroke that can place the ball anywhere that it pleases the writer have it go.” Continue reading Booknotes: The Element of Lavishness

5 short stories

Top Five Short Story Reads from August 2016

William Trevor, the British writer, described short stories as being explosions of truth:… One of the stories in this past month’s selection is from William Trevor. Additionally, we have stories by Haris A Durrani, Premchand, Kelly Link, and Nina McConigley. None of these are newly-published, but the truths they embody will stand strong for a long time yet. Continue reading Top Five Short Story Reads from August 2016