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Bystander

By William Coleman Poetry

I watched him fall and rise upon that hill, heard his call as he released his ghost. I never dreamed civility would damn me. I was like others, a man of honor with a wife who wanted peace of mind by nightfall, children who needed discipline, routine. I could not be a revolutionary, abandon what…

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The Sparrow

By Ron Hansen Short Story

SHE’D BEEN Flying a Cessna, shooting practice take-offs and landings with a flight instructor at an Omaha airstrip that was just a windsock and one lane of unnumbered concrete runway veined with tar repairs. Richard Nixon was president, the month was September, the temperature was sixty degrees, and she was Karen Manion, mother of two.…

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Scordatura

By Anita Sullivan Essay

Upon Listening to Biber’s Rosary Sonatas Scordatura: Abnormal tuning of a stringed instrument in order to obtain unusual chords, facilitate difficult passages, or change the tone color. —Harvard Dictionary of Music, second edition ALTHOUGH I AM a piano tuner who used to play a violin, I would not dream of referring to the violin as…

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A Conversation with Gregory Orr

By Aaron Baker Interview

Gregory Orr is the author of ten books of poetry, most recently Concerning the Book that Is the Body of the Beloved and How Beautiful the Beloved (both from Copper Canyon). Long known for his condensed and crafted style, in his recent work, Orr demonstrates a shift toward the personal lyric at its most stripped-down,…

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His Purgations  

By Thomas Lynch Poetry

Argyle shat himself and, truth be told, but for the mess of it, the purging was no bad thing for the body corporal. Would that the soul were so thoroughly cleansed, by squatting and grunting supplications. Would that purgatories and damnations could be so quickly doused and recompensed, null and voided in the name of…

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Père David Speaks of the Panda

By Molly Patterson Short Story

AND SO I CAME to Muping and discovered the panda. Yes, I discovered him! I had traveled far and wide through China by then, from the plains to the mountains, from the desert to the sea. I had discovered hundreds of new species of flora and fauna: the butterfly bush and blue corydalis, the small snow finch,…

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Ars Poetica: Baptismal Story

By Stephen Haven Poetry

My father thought the Anglican liturgy pure poetry, once, Three hundred people chanting in the multi-colors of the chancel, Saying on cue We do! Though they might have answered Otherwise in their own living rooms, together They committed to many things, the dignity Of every human being, the baby lifted high above My father’s head,…

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