Musings on Evanston

Evanston Lighthouse photo taken by Bruce Mitchell for Prairie MoonDr. Bruce Mitchell is a teacher, writer, coach, friend, and all around advocate for the Evanston community.

He has touched many lives in Evanston, including all of ours at Prairie Moon. We are honored to share some of his writings on this page.

Light House
by Bruce Mitchell

On moonless nights’ black horizons
Evanston offers a tiny island of light
That reaches to souls lost then found
Beyond the rending rocks of a shore
Welcoming humanity to be human.

Winter Thoughts
by Bruce Mitchell
It has been rumored that winter is coming, the time to hunker, to settle in for a sustained period of time. Not knowing our future, we are learning the hard part, the long-term maintenance of friendships, jobs, mental and physical health, humor, equanimity, homes, families, and communal SANITY! Like bears, we can sleep through it all, OR, build on our existing resources, amplify our islands of potential, get rested, and like the bear, come out in the spring…ready for what the new world has to offer.

Agents of Change
by Bruce Mitchell
Evanston still in the “betweens,”
jibes with good vibes melding,
Shunning the Sirens’ extremes
for paths of people converging.
Dark absorbs as white reflects
sun’s energy into color and line
On all surfaces except sub-texts
of spirits impossible to define.
Strengths are hidden in the seams
between hard-soft, same-strange
Emerge in the morn’s first beams
walking tall with agents of change.

Covid Marriage
Bruce Mitchell

We took a walk to the lake today seeking
Solace in the mind balm of open space,
No Covid on our horizon, just the peeking
Beyond borders with no virus’s cruel face

To truncate sleep or lessen morn’s verve,
Challenging us to give up on our spirits
That can defy plagues in history’s curve
Of black rats and fleas, long-dead culprits.

No, the lake’s waters, vast and cyan blue
Flow deep in our hearts hearty and bold
With power to accept the all mighty new,
A present of blessings not seen but old

With meanings forgotten but now revived
In this sun-sparkling moment of net worth
Measured in the lives and losses survived,
Hands still held in the beauty of this earth.

Prairie Moon
by Dr. Bruce Mitchell
Its soft light, gray, blue, and yellow, enriches shadows
in flowing fields of grain, moving to land tides of wind.
Deep in our pasts, the prairie moon soothed our spirits,
gave understanding to our labor, mystery to our imagination.
We still seek those nights, standing alone in ourselves
looking out over what we have accomplished, what we may,
Finding harmony in this moment before the tide moves on.

Nicola Sturgeon, Prime Minister of Scotland
Printed in “Le Monde,” Sept. 24, 2020

“We cannot wait that the tempest passes and should rather profit from this period to reimagine the world which surrounds us.”

From “All the King’s Men,” by Robert Penn Warren:

“After a great blow, or crisis, after the first shock and then after the nerves have stopped screaming and twitching, you settle down to the new condition of things and feel that all possibility of change has been used up. You adjust yourself, and are sure that the new equilibrium is for eternity…. But if anything is certain it is that no story is ever over, for the story which we think is over is only a chapter in a story which will not be over, and it isn’t the game that is over, it is just an inning and that game has a lot more than nine innings. When the game stops it will be called on account of darkness. But it is a long day.”