1. I finished watching "Letters from Iwo Jima". It's a singularly powerful and unsettling movie. It does far more than simply put the experience of the Japanese soldiers at Iwo Jima in a human perspective. It digs deeply into the futile nature of war itself and the immeasurable disconnection between the conduct of war and the principles of freedom it purports to be in defense of.
2. I have hesitated for months to post my Sunshine Mine Fire poem, "Free". I suppose, in part, I've hesitated because it is a fiction and I have been concerned that such a powerful historical disaster might seem diminished by fictional treatment. But, today, I posted it, here. My hope is that the death of Carl Nash and the grief of his wife and the kindness of Billy will ring true, even if these events of the poem didn't really happen. I think, however, in the larger world of grief and kindness they did happen. I just don't know the particular people who suffered like Mrs. Nash or extended kindness like Billy. That's why I think fiction is our most reliable and practical means of knowing truth. It doesn't let the strict facts of history get in the way.
3. A few questions I posed to blogger Momma's Gone Mad resulted in the start of a wonderful email exchange between us today, an exchange rooted in our mutual love of North Idaho, the Oregon Coast, and a shared faith in Christianity.