• Thinking Makes It So: The poetry 500 and the poet hunter

    On Poemhunter.com, a resource I frequently use to find specific poems, Pablo Neruda ranks above William Shakespeare.

  • Thinking Makes It So: One more holiday letter to write

    Every New Year’s Eve, I write a letter to myself. “Dear Kelly,” I begin. Then I try to think of something that one year in the future, will be meaningful. I describe my life as I see it. Am I kind? Do I make good decisions? I aim for objectivity, almost to the point of harshness: Do I waste my days? Will anyone be happy to see me die?I write goals: Do a nice triple pirouette or publish a poem, maybe, although I hope I didn’t propose those last year.

  • Guest Opinion: Tax credits needed to improve schools

    The failures of public education both here in New Mexico and in the United States as a whole are well-documented.

  • A crock of talk

    So what was all that drivel about making a big investment in science this year?In fact, for two years now, the U.S.

  • Ornaments add festive air to events

    A special joy at Christmastime is to bring out the family’s old ornaments and enjoy each one again. We pick out ones that add a certain design to the tree.For the season, I choose three classics from my boxes full of air pollution affairs and hang them on this year’s evergreen. The glow fills the crannies amongst nobler glories.The plan sprang to life when a friend, call him Dave, stopped to chat from his truck as I walked along an idle street. Dave is a master of plopping quips on your plate.

  • Thinking Makes It So: Neruda's nitrogen base composition

    A couple of weeks ago I wrote a column about Pablo Neruda, the greatest poet who ever lived, according to Gabriel Garca Mrquez, not according to me. Mrquez has more authority on the matter, what with a canon of extremely popular published books to his name, and me with my long-ish list of Monitor page 4s. So we’ll just assume he’s right, while silently TP-ing Neruda’s soul in our minds.Anyhow, in that particular “Thinking Makes It So,” I spoke at some length of a treasure I found, of all places, in a book of Neruda’s love sonnets.

  • Guest Opinion: Inevitability of death penalty repeal

    What do police officers, crime victim advocates, prosecutors and both Democratic and Republican state legislators have in common?Recently all of these groups came together in New Jersey to support legislation to repeal that state’s death penalty. Once the bill is signed by Gov. Jon Corzine, New Jersey will become the first state to legislatively repeal the death penalty since Iowa and West Virginia did so back in 1965.The death penalty discussion is very familiar to New Mexicans.

  • Being a columnist at Christmas ...

    Classic Cantwell – this column first appeared December 2005

  • Off and On: Changes will not all be for the good

    When Sen. Pete Domenici formally announced he was retiring, the dominoes began to really fall. And the final result will not be good for the lab, let alone New Mexico.Soon after his announcement, First District Congresswoman Heather Wilson announced she would be seeking the Republican nomination for Domenici’s seat. That leaves her House seat open.Then Rep. Steve Pearce announced he was going to make a run primary for the Senate seat. That leaves his Second District House seat open.Finally, Rep.

  • Thinking Makes It So: The sweatpants do not make the man

    Today is Christmas Lights Day. As readers of my “classic” – that is, outdated –columns know, Christmas Lights Day can also be called, although only silently, my dad’s birthday.My dad looks like a string of lights without the lights. I like to watch him untangle the long strands, skinny legs in green sweatpants lost among the loops.