R.H. Benson: Not to be Sneezed At
LONDON, ONTARIO – In a spirit of defiance I rise to my feet and proclaim that for the last couple of months I have been poring through a half dozen samples of the prodigious literary remains of Monsignor Robert Hugh Benson (1871–1914) and ... I’m afraid there’s no other way to put this ... I've been having a wonderful time. This wasn't supposed to be possible. If you're aware of him at all, perhaps you too have heard the discouraging reports spoken against this priestly powerhouse of an author who in the final ten years of his life following his Catholic ordination (and having published nothing in the thirty-two preceding years) produced a total of thirty-seven books including ten works of apologetics, sermons and religious biography, three devotional works, one volume of verse, two children’s books and twenty-one novels.
My Life Behind the Wheel (Not)
LONDON, ONTARIO – Shortly after my sixteenth birthday, I did the expected thing and applied for a learner’s driving permit. As part of that process, I attended one lecture/slide show at the old London Police Station at the western foot of King Street, and then passed a short, written exam in which I successfully identified road signs and answered some perfunctory questions about road safety. So far, so good. I was on my way. Trans-Canada Hell Drivers, here I come.
The Night He Came to Call
LONDON, ONTARIO – Here’s a lightly tweaked feature article that originally appeared in The London Free Press forty years ago this winter. It’s an up-close account of a hostage-taking incident that took place four years before that; a horrific home invasion which fatally blighted the young marriage of an old high school friend. In 1990, I added a whole lot of invention to the situation that is laid out in this story, to construct my third play, The Anniversary. In both this feature and that play, I find it fascinating to watch this crime play out in a way that would be quite impossible today with the ubiquity of cell phones and computer technology.
LONDON, ONTARIO – Early this year I was commissioned by the good folks at Centred.ca – an invaluable local resource which bills itself as, “A place where thoughtful (sometimes provocative) art meets thoughtful (sometimes provoking) art reviews in the London Ontario (Canada) area” – to contribute the following essay on the legacy of London’s oldest private gallery. You can visit the Centred website here: https://centred.ca/
The Ground on Which You Stand
LONDON, ONTARIO – “It is I find in zoology as it is in botany; all nature is so full, that that district produces the greatest variety which is the most examined . . . Men that undertake only one district are much more likely to advance natural knowledge than those that grasp at more than they can possibly be acquainted with; every kingdom, every province, should have its own monographer.” – Gilbert White in "The Natural History of Selborne" (1789)
If you would like to contribute to the ongoing operations of Hermaneutics, there are now a few options available.
THE AQUINAS LECTURE
G.K. CHESTERTON AND THE GIFT OF GRATITUDE
ALL LIFE IS A GIFT :
THE IMPORTANCE OF TRADITION :