• Poetry

    by Leslie Harrison

    & the trees gleam wetly under the luminous clouds
    & through a water-ribboned window a child draws pictures
    & the child draws the man as a winter tree with the ...

New at Zócalo


How Jamestown Abandoned a Utopian Vision and Embraced Slavery

In 1619, Wealthy Investors Overthrew the Charter That Guaranteed Land for Everyone

by Paul Musselwhite

In the summer of 1619, some of England’s first American colonists were carving up land seized from the Powhatan empire along the James River in Virginia. While the first settlers had arrived back in 1607, they had only recently discovered that they could turn a profit growing tobacco. Tobacco production had increased 20-fold over the past two years, and agricultural land was suddenly at a premium.
  Yet the surveyors, instead of laying out private estates for upwardly mobile colonists, were mostly tracing the bounds of thousands of acres of common land. These vast tracts of public ...


Foster Youth Need More Than Education to Build a Stable Life

Schools Don’t Nurture Long-Term Relationships—and May Even Discourage Them

by Mike Stajura

For the last three years, I have been working on public policy related to foster youth. But at a recent monthly foster care policy meeting in Sacramento, where experts were discussing the needs of foster youth fortunate enough to go to college, I found myself thinking, “They’re missing the point.” Getting the degree doesn’t fix the real problem that foster youth have, which is forming relationships.
  I was fully aware of the implicit arrogance of my thought in this room full of well-intentioned, talented, and hardworking people. They’d been chipping away at a piece of marble for years—but I was claiming that I knew what the ...

In the Green Room

Connecting California Joe Mathews


  • by Chris Davidson

    I recalled for the therapist a rabbit skin I bought
    At summer camp, at ...

  • by Stephanie Adams-Santos

    On the one side
    there are hummingbirds
    plucking ...