a literary journal published by the Black Earth Institute dedicated to re-forging the links between art and spirit, earth and society

Primal Paradox

Volume III, Issue III
May 2015

Editor: John Briggs

Cover Image: John Amoroso

Managing Editor: Michael McDermott

Layout Editor: Sarah C. Fritz

Assistant Editor: Genette Nowak Merin

Assistant Editor: Angela C. Trudell Vasquez

Site Design: Barbara Flaherty

Publisher: Black Earth Institute, Black Earth, Wisconsin. 2015


Miche Depran, 72, began life in one of the most impoverished districts of the city; he studied hard, worked in his uncle’s grocery store and rose to become a successful and much respected advertizing executive. When he retired at 68, Miche and his wife went on world cruise and Miche imagined he would devote his last active years to golfing and travel. But one day he felt something nagging him. “I realized I needed to give back,” he said. Instead of golf he chose to volunteer long hours and considerable energies to helping others by running soup kitchens, counseling services, and other community projects.

When Estela Somer, 62, reached senior citizen status, she had the opposite response. She had spent all of her adult life raising her family and working to support them. Now she wanted to “do something entirely for myself,” as she put it. She enrolled in college to pursue the degree in South American literature she had once dreamed about.

In very different ways, Estela and Miche (not their real names) were acting out their primal paradox.

continue to read the entire introduction…


Section 1: What Am I?
Section 2. I Am (not) You
Section 3. I Am (not) the Community, Society, Culture
Section 4: I am (not) nature
Section 5: I am (not) the Cosmos

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