Talking and Walking the Silk Road

The photograph below shows from left to right, poet Christopher Merrill, fiction writer Chinelo Okperanta, yours truly, and novelist Ann Hood. It was taken in the ancient city of Samarkand where we spoke to young people at the local language institute and toured the glorious and historic centers of Muslim learning and worship. Walking the paving stones and navigating rough hewn stairs with the help of my friends I thought of how spiritual life, momentum, faith, and words frame our every step, how walking with the help of friends and a few clear well chosen words makes life possible.