Joy

Joy

Listening to Nicolas Simion’s jazz in Cologne, I felt an unexpectedly rush of joy.

Yesterday, walking with Blue through meadows thick with the yellow flowers of arrowleaf balsamroot, I plucked a couple of juicy three-toothed leaves of sage, pressed them between my fingers and brought them to my nose. The scent was a sharp as the yellow of the flowers. Standing there in the morning quiet, I heard the liquid call of a black-headed grosbeak, and then the sound of water burbling up out of a pipe or spring. As I listened, the sound came again, and then again. I looked up and found two black birds above me on a branch. One of them gurgled, just like water, and I was filled with joy again.

About Scott Abbott

I received my Ph.D. in German Literature from Princeton University in 1979. Then I taught at Vanderbilt University, BYU, and Utah Valley State College. At Utah Valley University, I directed the Program in Integrated Studies for its initial 13 years and was also Chair of the Department of Humanities and Philosophy for three years. My publications include a book on Freemasonry and the German Novel, two co-authored books with Zarko Radakovic (REPETITIONS and VAMPIRES & A REASONABLE DICTIONARY, published in Serbo-Croatian in Belgrade and in English with Punctum Books), a book with Sam Rushforth (WILD RIDES AND WILDFLOWERS, Torrey House Press), a "fraternal meditation" called IMMORTAL FOR QUITE SOME TIME (University of Utah Press), and translations of three books by Austrian author Peter Handke, of an exhibition catalogue called "The German Army and Genocide," and, with Dan Fairbanks, of Gregor Mendel's important paper on hybridity in peas. More famously, my children are in the process of creating good lives for themselves: as a model and dance/yoga studio manager, as a teacher of Chinese language, as an ecologist and science writer, as a jazz musician, as a parole officer, as a contractor, as a seasonal worker (Alaska and Park City, Utah), and as parents. I share my life with UVU historian Lyn Bennett, with whom I have written a cultural history of barbed wire -- THE PERFECT FENCE (Texas A&M University Press). Some publications at http://works.bepress.com/scott_abbott/
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