IT WAS A MELLOW MORNING. My husband and I sat eating breakfast by the window, watching hungry birds peck away at the seed in the feeder. Clouds scudded across the sky, and in a few moments dawn emerged. Soon the horizon became layered with color—soft pearl gray to pale orange, turning to amber. A train whistled from far off, and the promise of a peaceful day lay ahead.
Then the newspaper arrived. Front-page headlines sent sharp pricks through the serenity of our morning. Fighting continued in Iraq. More details about the tragedy of genocide in Darfur. Dangerous storms in our own country. And predictions of a new strain of flu on the way. Even in our quiet neighborhood, a warning of gang activity.
The gentle atmosphere we had reveled in just moments before now felt invaded, challenged by severe world, national, and local problems in great need of solutions.