Ordinary Time Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary The Edge of Elfland Concord, NH Dearest Readers, I cried today. Tears and I have a complicated relationship. I will often well up at a sentimental movie or even advertisement, at moving scenes in books, but in real life, tears are often absent. I don’t know why this is, why I am so willing to weep at things more remote than those closer to home. And this is not… Read more

Ordinary Time 10 August 2018 The Edge of Elfland Concord, NH Dearest Readers, As I have mentioned in my letters before, I often find it necessary to get out and walk in nature. I do not particularly care for mountain hiking, though I do love the views at the top, but I often find in myself a need to be out amongst the trees, to get as far away as I can from the road, and listen to and breathe… Read more

Ordinary Time 31 July 2018 The Edge of Elfland Concord, New Hampshire Dearest Readers, When I first started writing these letters, long before becoming Catholic was even on the horizon, I saw that Church universal, at least in the UK (where I was then living and this was called Letters from Nottingham) and the US had a geography problem. With the rise of the car and the interstate highway (or motorways in the UK) people no longer needed to attend… Read more

Ordinary Time 18 July 2018 The Edge of Elfland Concord, New Hampshire Dearest Readers, The other day I came across a facebook post by the inimitable Malcolm Guite. I can’t recall the exact circumstances of it, but in it he briefly mentioned the beginning of Wendell Berry’s “How to Be a Poet (to remind myself),” “Make a place to sit down.” I have to admit that as much as I am told I will love Wendell Berry, I have read… Read more

Ordinary Time 15 July 2018 The Edge of Elfland Concord, New Hampshire Dearest Readers, First, let me apologize for the radio silence over the last month. I’ve been spending a lot of good quality time with my family and that means less time for writing. But there are other things that have been distracting me from these letters that I thought I would let you know about. First of all, while writing for the blog has dropped off, that doesn’t… Read more

Ordinary Time 6 June 2018 The Edge of Elfland Concord, New Hampshire Dearest Readers, As I continue to think about the green man this week, it dawned me that there is something unusual about his inclusion in churches: he is never green. The green men are always carved out of stone. This got me to thinking about Tolkien’s ents. Let me explain what I mean. In The Two Towers as Treebeard, the ents, and Merry and Pippin begin their march… Read more

Ordinary Time 5 June 2018 The Edge of Elfland Concord, New Hampshire Dearest Readers, Recently, I have been slowly re-watching Guillermo del Toro’s Hellboy II: The Golden Army. And first, let me just say what a travesty it is that del Toro will never get to film the third and final chapter of his planned Hellboy films. One of the things I love about Hellboy II is how much closer to home del Toro bring Faërie. The Troll Market, for… Read more

Ordinary Time 4 June 2018 The Edge of Elfland Concord, New Hampshire Dearest Readers, A few years ago in the church of St. Eustace in Paris, France a stag was filmed walking around inside. This has been bouncing around my newsfeed again, lately, so I thought I would look into it. I am a little disappointed to say that it turns out the stag was not wild, but a trained deer named Chambord and he was being filmed for an… Read more

Ordinary Time 30 May 2018 The Edge of Elfland Manchester, New Hampshire Dearest Readers, Not long ago I was made aware of the excellent Facebook page Ronan Kelly’s Ireland. Kelly travels around Ireland interviewing people, showing his audience Ireland. Kelly goes out of his way to show us the non-touristy Ireland. I’ve watched videos with an older woman shopkeeper, an old cobbler and his mate, a savant piano player with schizophrenia. But my favorite by far has been the video… Read more

Ordinary Time 29 May 2018 The Edge of Elfland Manchester, New Hampshire Dearest Readers, Four years ago, on 8 May, I was sitting in the hospital with my wife, my mother-in-law, and our 8 day old children. While at first we thought it would be Theodore keeping us in the hospital––since had been born 4lbs 1oz and was having trouble feeding by any method––it was Edwyn who kept us there. He was jaundiced and very little seemed to have any… Read more

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