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Posts Tagged ‘childhood’

Poetry Friday: “Rusted Chain”

By ImageNovember 30, 2018

Each element in Haven’s poem returns to the visual of childhood games, like hopscotch or tic-tac-toe. The image of boxes containing “Xs and Os” haunts the poem, creating a pattern that compartmentalizes our speaker’s reckoning with the past. This reckoning is “a tally where no one / should ever win.” The poem speaks to a…

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The Summer I Wasn’t Attacked By a Shark

By Cathy WarnerJune 27, 2018

Jaws is released the summer I turn fourteen, and my friends and I spend every afternoon bodysurfing and reenacting the young woman’s death scene at the beginning of the movie. We yell, kick, jerk, wave, scream, pretending a great white has hold, dragging us down for the kill. We sputter, shriek, and wait for a…

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Poetry Friday: “Shortnin’ Bread”

By Dick AllenMay 4, 2018

We sang it, too. In 1961, Mr. D taught our fourth grade music class folk songs belonging to our American musical heritage. I still know all the tunes and most lyrics to “Shenandoah,” “Ol’ Dan Tucker,” “Erie Canal,” “Sweet Betsy from Pike,” “Barbara Allen,” “Red River Valley.” And the minstrel song, “Shortnin’ Bread.” Complete with…

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I Promise My Kid’s Not Racist

By Brad FruhauffFebruary 28, 2018

The waiting room was filled with the kinds of people one sees in my town: an African-American mother on her iPad, an Asian-American father scrolling on his phone, a white mother finishing some work on her laptop, a grandfatherly man wearing a yarmulke reading a book. I was sitting with my kindergarten son while the…

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Poetry Friday: “Relic”

By Matthew ThorburnFebruary 9, 2018

They say the flu circulating this season begins with the sensation of having swallowed a tiny sword. For the relief of such ailments, some Catholics seek the Blessing of the Throats in February on the Feast of St. Blaise, patron saint of sufferers of throat diseases. The narrator of  Matthew Thorburn’s “Relic” describes his schoolboy…

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Poetry Friday: “The Field”

By Jennifer GrotzJuly 7, 2017

I find solace in the natural world, in those precious moments alone, outside, away from the clutter and din of my material life. In “The Field” by poet, teacher and translator Jennifer Grotz we are invited to an open field “past the convenience store and the train tracks.” She tells us that as a girl,…

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My Own Desert (Tortoise) Father

By Tania RunyanJune 29, 2017

This post originally appeared on “Good Letters” on July 21, 2014. I didn’t spend enough time with Oscar this summer. For forty years I’ve believed time will never run out. Visiting California, I took my annual walk through my childhood backyard of bougainvillea, crepe myrtle, and fruit. I picked some strawberries, paid homage to my…

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Practicing Presence, Part 1

By Gregory WolfeJune 26, 2017

The following two-part post was originally delivered as the 2017 commencement address for Trinity Academy in Portland, Oregon. Thank you for the high honor of inviting me to speak on this special occasion. My heartfelt congratulations to you graduating seniors for having reached this important milestone in your lives. Given the deep and demanding curriculum…

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Poetry Friday: “Love’s Last”

By Christian WimanMarch 24, 2017

The spring equinox was on Monday. I am slowly seeing a flush of new life around me, like plum tree blossoms and nettles, while winter’s dank decay is still lamentably present. Christian Wiman’s haunting and tender poem “Love’s Last” from his collection Once in the West (originally published in Image issue 81) echoes loudly for…

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Poetry Friday: “Bewilder”

By Katharine ColesFebruary 3, 2017

This is a poem about scale, about the awesome power of the Creator, who in turn gave humanity the power to create. And it’s about the power of a created being, and its potential to do good or evil. Here we have a whale sighting, her powerful fluke useable for constructive or destructive acts—“so many…

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