A recent report that the London’s Design Museum 2020 prize for best design went to the groups who turned a section of the border wall between the US and Mexico into a temporary base for see-saws with the wall itself as the fulcrum made me laugh out loud. The idea of children using what was intended to be a barrier as a basis for play is a wonderful example of the power of art to redefine the world we live in. One of the definitions of the word fulcrum is an agent that causes change, and in this sense as well the installation of the see-saws may bear unexpected fruit among the people using them. You can’t play on a see-saw without cooperating with the person on the other end (or in this case, the person on the other side of the wall).

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A career working with teenagers on the fringes of society has made me both sensitive to and appreciative of the complexities of character and the struggles, inner and outer, that we all wrestle with in one form or another. My writing emphasizes character development over action, and, as a lifelong Southerner, the rhythms and cadence of the Southeastern United States influence both my spoken and written voice.

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