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Joshua

By Torgny Lindgren Short Story

JOSHUA WAS THE MOST corpulent man of his people. He would eat anything and everything edible that he laid eyes on: grasshoppers, fruit, eggs, meat, whether raw or cooked, plants and roots and ants; he was always chewing something. He would even devour bones and seedpods, since his eating knew no bounds. His corpulence was not…

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A Freak of Nature

By Valerie Sayers Short Story

THE FIFTIES. I don’t remember much—I was a small child—but I do know that fear was always buzzing in the background, like static from a transistor radio: a jangly, jazzy fear, not altogether unhappy. The day I discover I’m a freak of nature, the thrill runs from my bellybutton to my throat. We’ve come to…

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A Second Coming at Providence Plantation

By Brendan Galvin Poetry

Roger Williams, 1678 As I was weeding in my squash patch, I heard the braying, as of an ass, down at the nether end of Towne Street, the first I have heard since England, and I do love those raggedy-faced beasts. A crowd down there was milling about some distraction, which parting revealed the poor,…

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The River Rises

By Brian Volck Book Review

Dark Water: Flood and Redemption in the City of Masterpieces Robert Clark Doubleday, 2008. AT THE END of Robert Clark’s nonfiction account of the 1966 Arno flood, an American expatriate artist offers what he calls “a puzzle, a labyrinth”: “The river’s flooding. And there’s a baby and a Leonardo painting floating down it. Which do I…

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Web Exclusive: A Conversation with Melissa Pritchard

By Mary Kenagy Mitchell Interview

The spring issue of Image includes Melissa Pritchard’s story of the peculiar and incendiary real-life historical figure Pelagia Ivanovna Serebrennikova, born in 1807 in Arzamass, Russia, one of the eastern churches’ Holy Fools, figures whose wild behavior embodied Saint Paul’s description of the early Christians: “we are made a spectacle unto the world…. We are…

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Pelagia, Holy Fool

By Melissa Pritchard Short Story

…we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to the angels, and to men. We are fools, for Christ’s sake. ————————————–—I Corinthians 4:9-10     Part the First: Spin, Beat, Spin LISTEN, wicked children! When une jeune slut-fille dirties her own halo, simple folk cast stones, and it takes the baroque and obstinate solemnity of…

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Cure

By Gina Ochsner Short Story

BECAUSE IT WAS a Monday, the day their father, Pastor Eino Hililla, spent eight and sometimes twelve hours preparing the Sunday morning sermon, Lowell led his younger brother Jonas through the parsonage yard, past the cemetery. Past the dark walnut trees, through a thicket of manzanita, down to the dark tongues of water where they…

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A Conversation with Gina Ochsner

By Mary Kenagy Mitchell Interview

Gina Ochsner is the author of the short story collections The Necessary Grace to Fall (Georgia) and People I Wanted to Be (Mariner), as well as a novel, The Russian Dreambook of Color and Flight (Portobello/Houghton-Mifflin-Harcourt). Her awards include the Flannery O’Connor Award, Oregon Book Award, Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award, and fellowships from the National…

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The Wages of Sin

By David McGlynn Book Review

Caleb’s Crossing by Geraldine Brooks (Viking Press, 2011) Faith by Jennifer Haigh (Harper, 2011) The Color of Night by Madison Smartt Bell (Vintage, 2011) The Sojourn by Andrew Krivak (Bellevue Literary Press, 2011) THE CHRISTIAN NOVELIST,” Flannery O’Connor writes, “is distinguished from his pagan colleagues by recognizing sin as sin. According to his heritage he…

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The Three Kings

By Sophia de Mello Breyner Andresen Short Story

Balthazar KING Balthazar loved the freshness of his gardens and smiled to see the reflection of his ebony face in the clear water of the tanks. And he loved the joyfulness, the commotion, and the abundance of banquets, and often his parties lasted till daybreak. However, late one night, after all the guests had withdrawn,…

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