Palm Trees Under a Storm.

[Genius Loci] April 2023

Friends, After some helpful comments from Reader 3 and Reader 4, I have finished Draft 15 of The Hill of the Skull (which I’ll refer to as THOTS herein). The story/essay/travelogue/memoir section now has around 7,100 words. The story feels like it is going in the right direction, though it is deeply personal and ends on a dark note. This all feels right — but I must say that I am also feeling a bit vulnerable, not just because of the personal nature of THOTS but also because of the public nature of the crowdfunding campaign....

31 March 2023 · 4 min · 758 words · Jeremy Bassetti

Photography Projects as Research Projects?

Dear Drifters, I met Rosa standing in front of the Templo de San Ildefonso in Quillacollo. She and a group of photographers — a syndicate of photographers, according to the logo on their matching vests — were taking tourist photographs of pilgrims who visited during the Festival of the Virgin of Urkupiña. After taking a photos of pilgrims standing in front of the church or its altar, the photographer would print it on the portable Epson printer they schlepped around with them....

14 March 2023 · 5 min · 922 words · Jeremy Bassetti
Cover Image for Genius Loci - March 2023

[Genius Loci] March 2023

Dear mediums who commune with the spirits of place, Each morning, before the sun comes up, I lace up my shoes and go for a long run. This morning was no different: I put in an earbud, clipped a can of pepper spray to my shorts in case Cujo was on the loose again, and I set off into the humid, fog-filled morning. Like walking, running is usually a creative time for me....

28 February 2023 · 5 min · 1024 words · Jeremy Bassetti

Some Thoughts about Hiking with Others

My wife and I recently joined a hiking group and, over the last few Sunday mornings, we have hiked some 30 miles through nature preserves and state parks here in Central Florida. We’ve walked along rivers and swamps, over scrubland, and through pine forests, whose floors have been taken over by dense clusters of palmettos. We’ve come upon the occasional shell, a reminder that where we are walking was once seabed not long ago....

14 February 2023 · 5 min · 855 words · Jeremy Bassetti
Cover Image for Genius Loci - February 2023

[Genius Loci] February 2023

Dear mediums who commune with the spirits of place, As I sit at my desk and revisit my notebooks and photos from the Hill of the Skull, the memories of that strange place rush back to me. They bewitch me into a kind of impassioned trance, a rapture. Florida’s lower altitude ensures a lower resting heart rate, and yet my heart fluters as my notes and photographs transport me back to that dusty mound in the foothills of the Andes....

31 January 2023 · 5 min · 970 words · Jeremy Bassetti