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Poetry’s Beautiful Answer To Climate Change

Let’s be real. With climate change, we keep hitting one emergency tripwire after another. An all-time high-temperature record here, a melting ice shelf there, followed by new dire warnings that are increasingly hard to ignore. It’s exhausting and scary. It is beginning to feel like that thought experiment where we’re told to imagine how many…

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Toni Morrison… Your Light Still Shines Bright

I crave pardon from the gods of language, for not reading more of her work. I will cure that condition in the coming months. It is Toni Morrison’s passing that prompts these thoughts and words. We’ve lost a great artist, writer and human being. It is fitting we take time to note her death and…

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This is America’s Story And This Museum Is For All Americans…

Like a great poem, a powerful museum can change how we see and experience the world. For me, I am particularly vulnerable to both great poems and powerful museums. I lose all my normal defenses. I become wonderfully reckless and irresponsible! These are the places where there are shocking insights and surprises lurking at every turn…

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Mule Advice: Who You Are Meant To Be (Without any effort)

How many of us spend far too much time, loaded down with what we did not want or plan to be doing in this life? Common, unglamorous things, we judge neither exciting, nor particularly heroic. Also, haven’t most of us concluded we aren’t as beautiful, talented, or as smart as we had hoped we might…

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Robots, Poetry, and the Future of Work

There is a great renaissance just ahead for poetry. Here’s why. A close friend of mine is a technology whiz. I mean more precisely, an MIT–educated engineering whiz. His past work in designing and creating software systems has been amazing. And yet, these days he is all about learning people and leadership skills. He has…

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Can Loss Make Us Larger?

Can loss make us larger? This was a surprising question that came up in a recent workshop I led on the “Poetry of Loss and Healing.” The first and most obvious answer to this question is… No! How can losing someone we love, or a career, a cause, or any precious thing for that matter, not disturb,…

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Poetry: What We Did Not Know We Knew…

Poetry is the art of hearing ourselves say things we did not know we knew. In this little piece from my 2014 poetry collection, I poke fun at our cultural obsession with self-improvement. Who is this “self” that can improve the “self” that needs improving? Perhaps it is better to simply discover and own our…

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