The kind you’re born with, the kind you choose, the kind that teach Catholic school
Subscribe and Save up to 55%
Sparrow lives in Phoenicia, New York, and has been mourning Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts by watching videos of his performances on YouTube. Sparrow’s next book is Civilization and Its Disc Contents. You can follow him on Twitter: @Sparrow14.
Some treat shiva purely as a party. Some have a mournful air. Some look deeply into your eyes, and you can see that they have suffered, too. This is the higher purpose of suffering: to inspire deep-eyed compassion. It’s one of those truisms that is actually true.
The virus is revealing new facts about the U.S. Who would have guessed that People Who Resent Science Because It’s Too Darn Complicated would become a major political force?
Meditation teaches that change is constant. You fool yourself into believing that you are a fixed entity, but you are not. You are a river of transforming whims.
A book’s characters always wait for us. No matter what happens to me during the day, Kerouac remains exactly where he was yesterday. He never moves without my permission. I reanimate him at my whim.
The word fascist has lost all meaning. We need a new term to describe people who build detention camps for infants at the Texas border.
It’s like the French Revolution. One by one, prominent men are wheeled out to the guillotine and dispatched. Of course, the present-day “deaths” are metaphorical. Garrison Keillor is still alive, just out of sight. But “Garrison Keillor,” the charming, folksy, self-deprecating Midwestern humorist, is dead.
We may survive Trump, as we did Ronald Reagan, or we may not. My first goal, now that the election is over, is to renew my expired passport under the lame-duck Obama presidency. If Trump really is Mussolini, I may finally fulfill my longtime dream of living in coastal Sri Lanka.
As you read this essay, you are aging. The older you get, the more you become an emissary from a vanished world — in my case, a world of black-and-white photographs taken by a Brownie camera, the sun bleaching the faces of the squinting subjects.
One day a woman on a subway platform called out to me, “Go, Jets!” while raising her fist. Puzzled, I looked behind me and saw no one. Then I remembered: I was wearing a Jets cap.
I am the only Presidential candidate to demand the release of the POWs from the War on Drugs.
In our culture, when you have a medical problem, you visit a doctor, who writes you a prescription; then you drive to a pharmacy and pay thirty-two dollars for a medication. There are few surprises or slip-ups. But if you decide to single-handedly reconnect with a lost ancient lineage of herbal wisdom, you may end up with a short spear of garlic bearing down on your eardrum.
This was no ordinary wind. It was distant and cold, smelling of glaciers and volcanoes. It felt like the first wind, the original wind. The entire landscape bristled attentively, as if listening. Does the wind ever get strong enough to lift you off the ground? Iceland might be a place where one could actually fly.