September 1994

Readers Write

The Prom

A perfect summer night, muddy shoes, half a pizza

By Our Readers
Quotations

Sunbeams

Whatever you say about God you should be able to say standing over a pit full of burning babies.

Elie Wiesel

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

When I Was Immortal

My mother wound a dish towel around her left wrist, pulled it tight, then unwound it. My father sat waiting for something, smiling slightly, looking across the kitchen table at me and my sister, Kim.

By Mark Phillips
Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

The Sentient Garden

The more I learn about my garden, the less objective I feel about it. Now that I can rattle off the Latin names and vital statistics of so many of my landscape plants, you might think I would regard them as botanical specimens, each possessed of a unique genetic recipe and species-specific traits. Call me sentimental: I think of them as friends.

By Jim Nollman
Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

A Primer On Forgiveness

It might be a lot easier to forgive someone if only he or she would show signs of changing. The paradox is that we are unlikely to see signs of change in others until we have forgiven them.

By D. Patrick Miller
Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Talking To My Mother, 1986–88

You call me at my new apartment. I wait for you to mention Grandma’s table one more time — it’s been in storage for a year since she died, waiting for a grandchild to claim it.

S. L. Wisenberg
Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Six Days

The investigator from the department of mental health, Mr. D., called yesterday to tell me that the woman who seduced me after my stay on the K-4 unit a dozen years ago has been suspended from work for six days.

By Michael Fontana
Fiction

The Other Side Of St. Francis

His father was rotting from the inside out, and much of their visits consisted of Silas sitting and waiting in the living room, trying not to listen to the sounds coming from the bathroom.

By Keith Eisner
Fiction

Because Of Jacob

When I swore I’d kill the bastards or die trying, he grabbed me by the shirt collar and commanded in a harsh voice I didn’t recognize: I never taught you to be stupid! At the bottom of hell all we can do is survive! Survive! His eyes burned like hot coals.

By Candace Perry
Fiction

Raised By Cats

I took a deep breath. Whenever the ground is expecting, I like to walk. I can feel it reach right up through my legs to meet the sky. The blood of everything rises to meet the tension of the coming clouds before a good rain.

By Christien Gholson