The highly acclaimed and beloved poet Mary Oliver reads her four-part poem, "The Fourth Sign of the Zodiac," — a poem in which she explores death, purpose, and the call to live after being diagnosed with lung cancer several years ago.
We rarely know the pain and suffering that envelops the people closest to us. In this loving tribute, the poetic structure of an Auden poem serves as a frame to remember a neighbor who loved dogs but couldn't hang onto life.
A brother contemplates the loss of his sister to cancer, the place where she searched for home, and the stories that rise up within him.
Our executive editor's weekly post on all things curious and aspiring — on topics from leading a less busy life to seeking rootedness and a cancer patient's call to her senses.
A daughter reflects on her ailing father and her right to petition God to deliver a World Series victory for their team.
After being diagnosed with cancer, Becky Sennett tells an unlikely story of gratitude — for a reprimanding encounter with a pulmonologist who takes her to task, a compassionate gesture for which she'll be forever grateful.
You will not believe how a cancer doctor uses the venom from a scorpion's sting to paint the malignant tumors in children's brains and lymphatic systems. And, in the process, tap the human spirit.
A recap of our favorite bits of curiosity from this week, including epistolary correspondence, Krista re-entering the Twitter fray, and a revival post. And a whole lot more!
When one's pen goes silent for three years, what's the first line to come out. Christian Wiman tell us. Listen to his beautiful reading of "Every Riven Thing" too.
A sacred space doesn't have to be a cathedral or a mosque or a synagogue. For our guest essayist, it's a city square she shared with a friend with cancer. Read this lovely essay and then tell us what is your sacred space?
Recently I spoke to a class of college students — by way of Skype — in southern Minnesota. We talked about how religion is portrayed through news media. As often in my experience, this was a critical discussion about the narrow and often inflammatory way religion comes up, and usually in the context of politics.
I asked them if they felt at all represented in media portrayals, or how they might. One young man in the back of the classroom said, “I don’t think there is any real expression of what it means to be religious now. It’s different.”
He’s right. I think about this all the time. There has been a dramatic break with ways of being spiritual and religious that held, in the West, for many generations.
The poet Christian Wiman was on our list for many moons, but his interview with Bill Moyers prompted us to schedule him for this show. A must-watch.
We received this remarkable video from a brother to his sister. A tribute on art, cancer, and vulnerability that touched us deeply.
A Christmas tree stands a month after Christmas last year. Ashley, who had recently overcame thyroid cancer, kisses her son Trey, who was undergoing treatment for tuberculosis.
(photo: Fred Erlenbusch/Flickr)
This TEDtalk by branding guru Stacey Kramer is three minutes long and inspirational in its brevity and its punch.
Some gems from our live-tweeting of our ISDN interview.