Just a Scratch: Terror Beneath the Veneer

This week I read one of the most troubling books I have ever read. Its scenes troubled me as much if not more than scenes from the writings of Shirley Jackson and Edgar Allan Poe.

I do want to write about McEwan’s The Cement Garden but I need some time to settle (bad pun, given the plot of this narrative).

I am used to the depravity and violence in Cormac McCarthy’s books, but the level of grossness in The Cement Garden is, I truly hope, more imagined than real.

If there are families like this about, be vigilant. Be more than vigilant. Be suspicious.

*I left my thoughts on goodreads here:


Flying Into Mile High City

Spend a good bit of time in America’s airports.

Love flying into Denver. Plains and crops and snaking waters appear from above as circles, squares, and serpents.

And in the next glance, snowcapped mountains surround the city.

And the airport, unlike the one to which I am slated to return in Atlanta, is clean. And the amenities are markedly different.

I love to watch fellow outdoorsmen with their hiking boots, fleece jackets, cargo-pocketed shorts and pants, and water bottles attached via carabiners to their rucks.

When I land in Atlanta, the smell will not be of Rocky Mountain air.

It will all be thoroughly dark when I arrive. The rudeness will be there. And the employees will be of a very different caliber.

Lord, if you tarry, land me in the Rockies; folks here have realized life’s too short to abide the attitude of Atlanta’s clodpolls.

Ministry Among the Stomping Grounds of Buffalo Soldiers

Nothing like being in a crucible of military history and walking among statues and cemeteries and chapels and hills and along the Missouri River of Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

When a much younger man I was infatuated with all things cavalry-related and the life of cav scouts. Loved seeing the crossed sabers and mounts at Leavenworth.

The horses and stables and riding trails; the Missouri River; the hardwood trees strong amidst the harsh winds; the memorials to Buffalo Soldiers and soldiers of cavalry life; Memorial Chapel from 1878, still home to heralding the good news; and most of all the soldiers past, present, and future.

My thanks to the commander for the unit coin and golf ball today. Looking forward to ministering to the soldiers, civilians, and families of MTC-LVN.

Below are some scenes: