April 1981

Readers Write

My Neighborhood

Out front there are two white pickup trucks, the kind that in Georgia have gun racks in the back. There is also a green TR-7 and a tan Trans-Am. Out back , next to the dumpster these last two years, is a Cadillac up on jacks. Some of the windows are gone and it’s draped in plastic sheets. Momma Cat had her litter underneath the back end one rainy night last fall. There is also a faded van with the bumpersticker: Honey lovers stick together. On weekends a pickup comes slowly honking, with an old fat black man on the tailgate selling greens and turnips. This is Georgia’s richest county’s finest housing project.

By Our Readers


The void is the creatrix, the matrix. It is not mere hollowness and anarchy. But in women it has been identified with lovelessness, barrenness, sterility. We have been urged to fill our “emptiness” with children. We are not supposed to go down into the darkness of the core.

Adrienne Rich

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

New Age Politics: Healing Self And Society

This book is based on a simple premise. It’s that we don’t have a usable politics any more — and that the politics we need, in America today, will not and cannot come from our old political “isms.” Not from capitalism, not from socialism, and certainly not from just “muddling through.” Muddling along, we won’t get through.

By Mark Satin
Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories


“You’re not much of a kid anymore,” I say to Jeremy. He really straightens up while I cut his hair. “That’s great,” he says when I finish, looking in the mirror. David, thirteen, just home from soccer practice, looks disgruntled when I say, “You soak in the bath, David. You’ve been working hard.” I suddenly correct myself, and say, “You’ve been playing hard.” His face lights up. It is amazing how our viewpoints affect others’ perceptions of themselves. People easily become discouraged, but what they really want is a happy thought. To imagine oneself playing is much easier on the psyche. He then starts to share with me some soccer footnotes.

By Cheryl N. Schilling

English Lessons

“Today we must really get down to work,” I told myself as I led my two Vietnamese students down the high school corridor to class. “Present perfect, past perfect — we haven’t even touched them yet. Some teacher.” Disgusted, I turned the key in the lock and tugged on the door, which Tan leaned on to hold open for me. Her slender body swayed for a moment, balancing the weight along her back against the load of books in her arms. I shifted my briefcase to the other hand, swinging it out by the leather strap which now fits my grasp like a well-used catcher’s mitt. Reaching into the airless dark, I flipped on both light switches, and there before us, bathed in neon, lay our naked store room .

By Carol Hoppe

David Kemsmier: Scenes From Childhood

Many families possess tales of their occasional flirtations with opulence. Ours concerns Great Grandpa Kemsmier. Short of cash, he decided to sell his small matzoh business. The new management expanded into wines and other kosher delicacies-changing the company name to Manischewitz.

By Nyle Frank