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A Request

By Brian Doyle Poetry

Please give me the watches, Mother. Engraved 11-6-46. A gold Gruen and bracelet Bulova retired to a worn reliquary, a remote shelf, hall closet ripe: serial cakes of soap, tissue boxes, toothpaste on sale in case of another Depression. I’m surprised there are no smokes in there though Dad dragged on his last too late…

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Orpheus in the Garden

By Andrew Hudgins Poetry

In the garden of the Hesperides, where the golden apples grew, Orpheus caressed strings that out-sang the sirens, charmed hell, and softened the heart of Death. The hills crept close to listen, and marvelous trees, full of dumbstruck birds, bent toward him. —————The great crowd too bent forward, tense. Keepers stabbed torches into the starved…

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Where Do You Stand? Anselm Kiefer’s Visual and Verbal Artifacts

By Daniel A. Siedell Essay

I think it is beautiful to be justified (historically). ———Anselm Kiefer Forgiveness is the only way to reverse the irreversible flow of history. ———Hannah Arendt   ANSELM KIEFER is one of the few artists working today who have transcended the vicissitudes and fashions of the contemporary art world. His stature among artists working after World…

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Cotton Mather Examines Four Children Afflicted by Witchcraft

By Graham Hillard Poetry

Boston, 1688 Four years before Salem would lose itself to hysteria, Mather knew already the subtle workings of the devil, how an oak might shrivel overnight, its leaves as brown and parched as hostler’s leather; or a widow’s fields surrender to drought, her sons unable to save them, while a neighbor’s thrived. Only by confession…

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Name and Nature

By John F. Deane Poetry

Your name, Jesus, is childhood in the body, at times a single malt upon the tongue, Vivaldi to the ears; your name, Christ, forgiveness to the heart, acceptance to the flesh, a troubled joy across the soul; at ever my very best I will plead to you, closest to me, for kindness. Perhaps the silence…

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Further Notes on the Martyrs

By Jeff Gundy Poetry

Our speaker has a tongue screw with him, though it is a replica. He speaks of spectacle, witness, dying well. One group’s criminals…. Stories are not preserved by accident. Heroes are made necessary by the nature of memory. Life is stronger than death, and that is why we must praise. I think. Identity depends on…

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Cross of Nails

By Bruce Bond Poetry

The morning after the blitzkrieg that toppled the vaults of Saint Michael’s Cathedral and set the rest on fire, a stonemason found among the embers one roof beam laid across another, a kind of crucifix created by the forces of accident and violence and then by grace of eyes that saw in them an order.…

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The Spif

By Mary Burns Short Story

SINCE ACCIDENTALLY BEING LOCKED inside Carmody’s Used Books, I’ve slept badly. In the mornings I manage a bright if groggy farewell as my husband gives his suit pockets a preflight pat and the kids shrug into school backpacks. Alone, I pour myself more coffee and read—the newspaper, catalogues, reviews in the alternative weekly, passages of…

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