Ryan McCarl

Reading, writing, learning, languages, law, politics, etc.

Empathy across neighborhood lines

My latest op-ed, “Love Thy Neighbor: In the wake of an attack on the Men’s Cross Country team, it’s time to rethink University-community relations,” appeared in the Chicago Weekly today. You can find the op-ed and add your comments here, and I’ve also pasted it below. Thanks, as always, for reading. —Love Thy Neighbor: In the wake of an attack on the Men’s Cross Country team, it’s time to rethink University-community relations Read more →

Excerpts from Czeslaw Milosz’s ‘Milosz’s ABC’s’

I made it, but I have always tried to remember that I owe it to my lucky star, not to myself, and that right next door are entire neighborhoods of unfortunates. I will say even more: the thought of their grueling labor and unfulfilled hope, of the gigantic prison system in which the unneeded are kept, taught me to look skeptically at (America’s) decorations - those well-kept houses amidst the suburbs’ greenery. Read more →

Excerpts from Amichai, Laxness, Mendelssohn, & Yoder

Watch how the cloud sings All you wanted to say or find. Yehuda Amichai –“Let the Coin Decide” And the migration of my parents Has not subsided in me. My blood goes on sloshing Between my ribs, long after the vessel has come to rest. And the migration of my parents has not subsided in me. Winds of long time over stones. Earth Forgets the steps of those who trod her. Read more →

Quotes from Randall Jarrell and Knut Hamsun

“I lie in my own bed,” He whispers, “dreaming”; and he thinks to wake. The old mistake. –From Randall Jarrell, “A Field Hospital” We read our mail and counted up our missions- In bombers named for girls, we burned The cities we had learned about in school- Till our lives wore out; our bodies lay among The people we had killed and never seen. When we lasted long enough they gave us medals; Read more →

Quotes from the week’s reading, part 1

From How It Should Be in Heaven How it should be in Heaven I know, for I was there. By its river. Listening to its birds. In its season: in summer, shortly after sunrise. … Peace eternal Could have no mornings and no evenings, Such a deficiency speaks against it. And that’s too hard a nut for a theologian to crack. –Czeslaw Milosz A business that makes nothing but money is a poor kind of business. Read more →