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Secret Mercies

By A.G. HarmonSeptember 21, 2017

Ours is a confessional age, a time in which telling all is not only customarily practiced but also routinely lauded. To do less than unbosom oneself in the most candid of ways is both to endanger one’s mental and emotional health (a distinction I’ve never been quite clear on) and to frustrate the kind of…

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Impounded by Poetry

By Cathy WarnerMay 25, 2016

After one glass of wine, one poetry reading, and two hours, my bill totaled $452.21, and I hadn’t even bought Paul Nelson’s book. At least the tow truck driver was apologetic. “I waited as long as I could before I hooked up your car. I just got here ten minutes before you.” I could tell…

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For the Newlyweds

By Richard ChessSeptember 4, 2015

May you have the courage to let go of everything you know about yourselves—everything you have learned about yourselves up to this moment—that you may discover and create, invent and define new selves, a new braided Self. Like Sabbath candles that, at the start of Shabbat, stand side by side, each its own brilliance, its own accomplishment, may you move toward each other until you become like the braided Havdalah candle, its individual wicks joined to create of several a single, strong flame that is lifted into the sky at the end of Sabbath.

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The Embarrassed Samaritan

By Bradford WintersSeptember 2, 2015

On this matter, I am forever grateful to Father Mychal Judge, the Franciscan friar and chaplain to the New York City Fire Department who died in the World Trade Center on 9/11. Commissioned to write a screenplay about the man who was every bit the legend in life that he was in death, one day in my research I listened to a friend of his describe the way Judge would give money to the homeless on the street in the most inconspicuous way. Without a break in his gait or conversation with the friend, Judge would habitually pass off bills left and right with the right hand hardly knowing what the left was doing.

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When It Comes to Love, We’re Beginners

By Jeffrey OverstreetJune 15, 2011

During a lecture last March, I spoke fondly of a friend whom I had recently lost to cancer. Halfway through the anecdote, I suddenly recognized his wife, the mother of his two young children, in the audience, listening in rapt attention. She was far from home, a surprise visitor. I almost choked. And I suddenly…

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