Beasts at Bedtime — A review

by Evan Edwards When my partner and I were expecting our first child, I remained obstinately distant from all parenting books. I had adapted, and taken to heart, Rainer Rilke’s advice to Franz Kappus about avoiding introductions to great works of art, and reckoning that, in the poet’s words, “such things are either partisan views,…

On Awareness, pt. 1

by Evan Edwards There’s a zen koan about master Nan-in and a younger monk, Tenno, who had been studying with his teacher for ten years. Tradition went that a student had to study this long before they were qualified to begin teaching, and Nan-in had invited Tenno over for tea to celebrate his pupilship coming…

The Pollinators of Technology

by Evan Edwards On the night of Monday, April 3rd, a man stood in the middle of the intersection at Franklin and Columbia in Chapel Hill, NC. Within minutes, thousands of people poured out of bars, houses, apartments, fraternity and sorority homes, and who knows where else, barrelling down the largest streets in the town…

Rebecca Solnit, Henry Thoreau, and Huckleberries

by Evan Edwards In her article, “The Thoreau Problem,” Rebecca Solnit begins by drawing our attention to the mythical place that huckleberries play in Thoreau’s writing. In his two most famous texts — Walden and “Civil Disobedience” — Thoreau recounts the story of being taken by the authorities for not paying a tax that would…

Trudging

by Evan Edwards Part of the reason I enjoy walking so much is because of the opportunities it affords to immerse me entirely in my senses. I have thought for a while now that I feel most like those who say they experience the divine when I feel most immersed in my senses, when I…

The Electoral College Can and Must Stop Donald Trump

by Evan Edwards Before getting to the argument for why the electoral college should reject Donald Trump on December 19th, let me begin with that which now seems to be more and more dangerous to risk: a bit of reasoning. What I want to establish, right off the bat, is why it is right to…

Whitman and Vegetarianism

by Evan Edwards Sometime in November 1944, the U.K. based Vegetarian Society splintered slightly when several members—calling themselves “Vegans”—came to believe that simply abstaining from eating animal flesh did not go far enough in alleviating the suffering of animals. Vegans, if you don’t already know, argue that if one of the pillars of the vegetarian…

Ambling

by Evan Edwards The following is part of a project I'm working on that traces out the history of various words for human locomotion. My hope is that by understanding the uniqueness of each of these words, I can gain a deeper appreciation for walking. The entry (and following entries as well) begins with passages…

Perambulating

by Evan Edwards In September of 1851, a word enters the journal of Henry David Thoreau: perambulation. An inveterate enthusiast of walking, as well as a voracious collector of words, such a sudden introduction of this peculiar peripatetic term, which is an antiquated relative of the more familiar ‘ambulation,' or ‘to amble,' (from the Latin…