Quiet Space

Come Inside

Come Inside   They called me by name First the grey stone lying face down by the sea then the sage bush whistling in the wind then the turtle neck thrust upwards toward the sky. “Come, come inside,” hushed the tiny yellow buds, on tippy-toe high in the dunes. Then the mussels in their shells … Continue reading »

At Home

Breaking Open

Spring has arrived . . sort of. This is Spring in Quebec where the snow melts like a glacier, and the small talk in the corner dépanneur is drumming a tired refrain. “The winter is too long here. I can’t wait for the warmer weather and the snow to disappear.” Coffee shop owners dust off … Continue reading »

Our Planet


In my morning emails today a friend wished me a “luminous day.” I wondered for a bit about how that would express itself, what would it look like to have a luminous day? Or was it a simply a way of wishing me well? Upon reflection, it is true that we are luminous beings, is … Continue reading »

Our Planet

Late Winter Walks

1. Down the hill past the bridge over the river, I take my silent pause by the cemetery of forest trees drowning in a swamp from the overflow of the nearby lake. In summer, it is a beaver’s paradise, worn out branches plunging into the shallow stagnant waters. Now under the winter cover, all is … Continue reading »

On the Road

Waking up in Niamey

When the first call to prayer wrestled me out of a deep sleep, it was still pitch black in the room. Nothing stirred, not a rooster could be heard, and even the guards kept their silence. This was license for me to drift back into a luscious sleep while the echoes of the muezzin faded … Continue reading »

At Home

Christmas Present

We have crossed over the winter solstice. The light will grow longer with every day and we will slowly start to move out of hibernation, leaving the bears to dictate when winter is truly over. And we are in the midst of the yule season and many people today are celebrating with family and friends. … Continue reading »

Quiet Space


Free-floating, drifting flakes No reason, direction, or purpose I am their mirror Seeing through eyes through glass No reason, direction, or purpose Just here, where I happen to be.   Give me time and in time, I will act and interact For now, leave me outside of time Where nothing matters And the frosty-white painted … Continue reading »

Our Planet

The Nerve Endings of Nature

Not unlike the subconscious layer of the mind that drives most of our behavior and interaction with other fellow beings, plants also have an underground system for sending out signals in affinity with other kin or other species. There is a lot going on underneath the surface to which we humans are not privy. But … Continue reading »

On the Road

The Silver Necklace

It wasn’t just any crafts store, selling cheap souvenirs to tourists. Tourism had long ended in Niger and the only foreigners passing through were by and large in the aid sector. Many of the visitors on UN Missions or working for NGOs like myself found an oasis in the Grand Hotel du Niger since it … Continue reading »

At Work

Empowerment from the Inside Out

Development organizations for which I work like to see themselves as empowering women, youth, girls, and marginalized groups. Empowering in most instances refers to facilitating the means for these groups to lead the social change process, make their voices heard, and gain access to their rights individually and collectively. However, I would argue that the … Continue reading »