Rushing Toward Midnight

It’s very rare that I know what I’m going to write about each night as I sit down. Once in a great while I have an inkling when I wake up in the morning but most days I find myself rushing toward midnight with little more than a word to keep as inspiration. Tonight that word will be compassion.

I waited a full 40 seconds for something to appear at the end of the last sentence. Flibbertigibbet presented itself, as did Farfergnugen (honestly) but I vetoed both and yielded to compassion the way I’d like my students to cultivate it as we launch into a study of literature written by immigrants this coming week. The reading list is as follows:

  1. Barakat’s Tasting the Sky
  2. Chin’s Other Side of Paradise
  3. Divakaruni’s Sister of My Heart
  4. Urrea’s Six Kinds of Sky
  5. Suarez & Van Cleave’s American Diaspora
  6. Lee’s Native Speaker
  7. Hemon’s Love & Obstacles and
  8. Abani’s the Virgin of Flames

Compassion is important because without it we will continue to lose our way and trample each other in the process. While it has taken me all this while to admit there is no single silver bullet powerful enough to turn the species around, frequent squints in the mirror through the lens of compassion ought to do a fair amount in the direction of creating a just world. And believe you me, I hear all those who argue, perhaps reflexively yet rather impressively I might add, that the very reason Christ Jesus came was because humanity had fallen so far from grace that no smaller intervention would redeem us. Still, I feel the need to believe that we needn’t sink any further into the mire to make His trip worthwhile.


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