Damn My Peaceful Spirit!

By Scott Keith


To the Readers of the Jagged Word:

You may have noticed that I have, as of late, been off of my game. I have been too at peace lately and my writing is suffering because of it. Where is my fire? Where is my spark? All I seem to have left is namby-pamby tales of being nice and sharing simple pleasures. I need some fire and vitriol. Hell, I’m not even cantankerous anymore.  My friends are even telling me lately that I’m “nice,” and “helpful,” and God forbid, “caring.”

Maybe I am peaceful because things are coming together. I received word that I will be defending my Ph.D. Dissertation in March, bringing to a hopefully successful end some five years of work and anticipation. I am making substantial progress on a book project that I have dreamed of writing for almost twenty years. Things are going well at the university and Joy and I are as happy as ever. The kids are great, and my oldest son, The Junior Critic, is even back at the university following in his Old Man’s footsteps. Again, this all leads up to me being more peaceful than a critic ought to be.


So here is the deal, I’m going to take a sabbatical from Jagged Word. I need to finish some work on the aforementioned book and I need to breeze up on my Melanchthon details prior to my defense in March. As it turns out though, I have surrounded myself with a circle of men who are just dying to tell you what makes them cantankerous, at least occasionally. I have the line-up all set. In the coming weeks, you will hear from the Junior Critic, several of the students from the university who are in my Men’s Group, another young man who is a good friend and recent graduate who is in my Men’s Group, as well as from a couple of professors who usually write for the 1517 Legacy Project. I will miss you all, and in the mean time, please pray that I find the inspiration to get good and worked up about something. Please know that I am, at least in part, just kidding. Writing for the Jagged Word is one of the things that keeps me peaceful and has brought me the clarity of thought needed to write and finish long overdue projects. Thank you for your patience, enjoy the guest critics, and I’ll see you in April!

Most Kindly,

Scott Keith, The Cantankerous Critic