Roy’s Sunday Letter for May 12, 2024

** White bison calves are rare, 1 in 10 million. Two white bison calves were recently birthed, one in Kansas and one in Texas. Lakota and other native tribes see the white bison as a sign of better times to come, of hope for improved relationships with Mother Earth for all of us, and the Great Spirit in the Sky. May this sign be one that inspires all of us.

  • Most of SL readers know of and remember Rosa Parks and her refusal to give up her seat on a Montgomery, AL. bus in 1955. I recently saw a CBS interview about Cladette Colvin. Nine months before Rosa Park’s brave decision, Cladette, at age 15, was on a Montgomery, AL bus. She was seated in the “Colored Section” and refused to leave her seat for a young white woman. She was arrested, handcuffed, and charged with delinquency. In 2021, at age 82(66 years later), the arrest and charges were expunged from her record by a local judge. Google and read of her courage and life.

** In a recent Fiction read, a coffee club of women gave each other the gift and challenge of writing 20 Wishes. So, number a pad and begin your own list of Wishes. Perhaps the trip never taken, the conversation still to be had or a wish for another. Wishes can be small or large, long delayed or fulfilled in 2024. For young children maybe a list of 3 and for teens perhaps 10 Wishes. Allow yourself time for the Wishes to come to you. The first will seem easier…as you go/ they become more interesting. My list of 20 continues to change and to mature. If you will, Share 1 Wish with us all.

An eye for an eye will leave the world blind, spoken by a news observer.

  • A long-time, dear friend of mine recently died. His Remembrance Service was zoomed from North Carolina. I listened to the pastor and family tell stories of his life. Zoom cannot convey the intimacy of memory, of the absence of someone important. So, I sat quietly, smiling at long ago events and conversations and feelings of gratitude for this good man in my then young life. Joe, you remain ever in my heart!

** David Brooks is a thoughtful and insightful writer. In a New York Times Opinion piece David wrote of the decline of those visiting museums or cultural events. Faith centers also report a decline in live attendances. He writes of our society becoming “over politicized, under moralized, under spiritualized, and under cultured.” In general, he says a “a lonely and angry society.” We rebalance ourselves beginning with the tiny circle of our own experience and gain more expansive ways of seeing and understanding our world through characters in books, poems, paintings, and music, weaving together both factual and emotional knowledge. Thus, we increase our capacity for empathy and compassion, and engage in conversation beyond our ear plugs and cell phones. And yes, our broader society can do this.

  • Video report this week on “Pocket Forests,” the planting of native trees in small urban areas. The report got me thinking of what may be other “pocket” areas of our lives. Pocket walks of awe and wonderment…Pocket retreats in your backyard or nearby park…Pocket joy, caring, and enjoyment with a friend…A new Pocket connection by volunteering at your food bank, hospital, or memory care unit. What would be your Pocket “right where we are” experience?

Roy, Sunday Letter is my Pocket connection with you


  1. Amy Tate-Almy on May 12, 2024 at 6:41 am

    Thank you. I will be doing some contemplating of pockets and wishes.

    • Roy Bowen on May 12, 2024 at 12:05 pm

      My book on climate change tells me Hope is an action verb.
      Is there a corner, a place on campus is your pocket place??
      Keep walking the campus…..”it” is there.

      I have a maturing idea in my weird mind for an alumni fundraiser.
      Outcome: Dollars from sports to arts to business
      A new way of attracting alumni
      But then, although totally legal and ethical, still a bit weird.
      I can “pitch it” as a one pager sometime this week to come if interested.
      You b special……..Roy

  2. Dave Steward on May 12, 2024 at 7:15 am

    Roy, et al, my pocket area is 20 acres nestled between farms that in some years are planted in corn and other years in soy bean. To my east is a marsh that ultimately leads to the Atlantic. I call this spot the Water’n Hole; a place where we can gather with friends, share some good wine, oysters, clams or whatever you wish to toss on the grill. Connection is important and doing so with nature makes it even better.

    • Roy Bowen on May 12, 2024 at 11:54 am

      Conmection of souls and hearts (eyes and ears too) is really all there is.
      You left Poly, went back land you know best, and land & waters that know you.
      And then this other lady wandered in….and life has been and always will be of goodness.

  3. Beth Kean on May 12, 2024 at 7:33 am

    Roy, my pocket space is our front garden. Everyday is an adventure! Caterpillars, birds, bees, ladybugs, butterflies and the colors of native plants reside in harmony. I am so grateful that this pocket of hope has given a home to these wonders of nature and we get to experience them everyday! One of my wishes would be that others would find their way to nurturing a plant indoors or out. ❤️

    • Roy Bowen on May 12, 2024 at 11:50 am

      And don’t forget our banana and butterflies.
      You have brought your vision and hard digging to our true pocket place, I am grateful indeed.

  4. Maurine on May 12, 2024 at 7:40 am

    My pocket of joy is the Closet where I can meet with wonderful volunteers at UCC and provide clothing for children to feel better about themselves. So much of our lives are centered around ourselves and our needs that caring about others goes by the wayside. Thank you Roy for reminded us that real pleasure comes from the small things.

    • Roy Bowen on May 12, 2024 at 11:48 am

      Yes, on the small words, deeds, and events.
      Yes, to a large one…..lunch, stories with you and Beth.
      Whatever we do and be we are at our best together.
      Very nice lunch with Tom C. at Rockfish, new place on Camp Bowie.

  5. Roger Gullickson on May 12, 2024 at 8:52 am

    David Brooks is an amazing commentator., and a keen observer of these challenging times . How we find our path to those concepts is one of the major challenges of our time!

    • Roy Bowen on May 12, 2024 at 11:44 am

      If Davis writes it, or speaks on Friday PBS I read and listen.
      Roger, how would say you are aging these days and times.
      For me, what I was good at all my life, now new/different challenges.
      I take more pauses rather than 8 issues at a time.
      FW is more “out there” than SFe…..cultural, parks/gardens, small eateries/menus.
      Iced tea next week with retired lawyer in NM Attorney General’s. 18 yrs. Lived and drove daily from AbQ.
      Tis like he and I lived in different states.
      You b special.
      And thanks for reading…..your comments support my continuing……

  6. Mike Davis. on May 12, 2024 at 10:04 am

    Great letter Roy. Today my pocket of happiness is sitting with Betty reading your letter outload, for contemplation and discussion. Couch lady brought communion to us today, we are celebrating Mother’s Day with great conversation and love We are blessed Happy Mother’s Day to all.

    • Roy Bowen on May 12, 2024 at 11:33 am

      Solid, dead on, you got it, more more
      Very satisfying to know I can somehow bring please and also reflection.
      Roy Pope’s Grocery was west FW mainstay 1940’s – 2021
      Covid, changing economy
      For decades the “colored maids” ordered meats and off the shelf foods.
      An innovative group purchased Pope’s and other similar to retro and reopen.
      You van still buy veggies and basics but cold/hot lunch board, wine on the patio now who they are.
      Basic order counter and nn-fancy tables and chairs in large open area.
      We and friend had 90 minute lunch last week.
      Easy times on a slower pace

  7. Linda M on May 12, 2024 at 12:34 pm

    My Pocket Place is in my courtyard where I go every morning with the pups and the very important cat to look out at the big Western sky, my gorgeous Pinon Pine, who gave shelter to the Pinon Jays this year, and where I listen to the birds, give thanks for the day, do the Meta Meditation that Beth taught me, and enjoy the change of seasons and reasons.

    Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful women who have given birth to children cherished, innovative ideas and blessed communities of many forms.

    Linda M

    • Roy Bowen on May 13, 2024 at 1:11 pm

      Yes on the courtyard. Being still with nature coming and going around you is a healthy image.
      100% of all comments were on “Pockets.”
      85% of everyone has one, the others now searching.
      You are my pocketgo to friend.
      Been there before

  8. Peter D. Kleven on May 12, 2024 at 1:13 pm

    Attempting to connect when there seems to be none, and then growth, a bud, and then a flower of friendship, with healing, forgiveness, and a spiritual connection.

  9. Mike Davis. on May 12, 2024 at 4:30 pm

    See you at Roy Pope’s !!

  10. Sharon A Strange on May 13, 2024 at 4:42 am

    Friend Roy,
    You wrote me one of your lovely letters some time back. I kept thinking that I would answer it, but never did. So, I decided to use this little box to do so. These comments are a way of catching you up and not a response to be shared.
    My world continues to grow smaller. Friends have gone on before me, or (like I) no longer drive. I miss them. Mostly, I leave home only for doctor visits…..not much fun.
    Having said that, I still find joy in watching the birds and squirrels right outside my window. It is almost as if they know they are there to entertain me and make me laugh at their antics. I’d swear they look back at me through the window to make sure I am watching.
    I still tutor the three little Vietnamese children. Keeps my brain working……or, at least somewhat working. Two are 5th graders, and the big brother (who I have had since 2nd grade) is now in 8th grade. He is a daily reminder of why I didn’t teach middle school. 🙂
    Well, that is a brief overview of my life these days. As I am sure you have heard me say, “My faith is still deep, and my sense of humor is intact.” For this I am grateful.
    I send love to you and Beth. I think of you both often. Sharon

    • Roy Bowen on May 13, 2024 at 7:35 am

      Tis good to share the worries, along with the good, bad, and the boring.
      Best for me to move your way in a note….will do so today, Monday

  11. Roger Gullickson on May 13, 2024 at 8:08 pm

    Aging ok with things just changing! Some things I can’t do and more I choose not to. Still engaged (and sometimes engaging I hope!) knowing the time of “relevancy” is slipping away. We are still a culture that celebrates youth, just is. Sometimes frustrating to know accumulated experience isn’t as highly regarded as fresh and new!

    • Roy Bowen on May 14, 2024 at 12:26 pm

      If you will send me slow mail address/zip. Will help broaden ongoing communications. I will do the same.
      Notes on aging: 16 yr old Black student will receive his Ph.D from TCU Saturday (physics).
      We are going to The Dock bookstore to be with 13 yr. old Black student. We met him at age 11. He has published his 1st book.
      Google The Dock bookstore for more. Two Black sisters are bookstore owners for 13 yrs.
      Saw video of 105 yr old running 100 yards on track. Her biggest problem is staying in her lane due to poor vision.
      And you and I find our way through the muck searing for angels. Roy

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