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Knee Walk

By Grace TalusanJune 21, 2016

We stumbled onto the bus in Lisbon, sleepy after the overnight flight from New York. The pilgrimage tour guide handed out rosaries while the priest told the bus driver to play a recording of the rosary prayers on the sound system. I fingered the pink beads, following along with the Hail Marys and Our Fathers.…

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Pieces of Resistance

By Natalie VestinJune 16, 2016

We’ve beat records for rain this year in central Minnesota. The sidewalks are pillowed with lilacs, and Saint Paul’s hundred-year-old storm sewers bring up syringes and squirrel tails and fish dropped by eagles over the Mississippi’s shore. The rain stains the sides of old high-rises; I love to walk in it and look at the…

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Fifty Shores of Grief

By Tania RunyanJune 14, 2016

I write this the evening of June 12, 2016, the day forty-nine people died in the worst mass public shooting in recent US history. A few hours before hundreds of people faced unspeakable terror, my husband and I finished the first season of Justified, a series about Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant), a U.S. Marshal who returns…

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Eden at the Indy 500

By Elizabeth DuffyJune 13, 2016

I managed to live in Indiana for forty years before visiting the Indianapolis 500. A friend offered my husband and me tickets on our anniversary weekend, which also happened to be the 100th anniversary of the race itself, an event that was expected to draw half a million people. “Oh, why do you want to…

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The Best Conditions for Work

By Richard ChessJune 9, 2016

For William Carlos Williams I work best alone. In an empty house. When I’m ready to work, I take down the sun-faded poster of the Miro museum from my Barcelona honeymoon twenty-six years ago. I pull the pilled sweaters down from the shelf in the closet—the sweater Nana Sarah knitted for me decades ago, the…

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The Strength of God’s Gaze

By Laura BramonJune 8, 2016

The first time I saw her, I made up a story about her, and it was all wrong. This was in the autumn several years ago, when, in my third-time’s-a-charm attempt at entering the Catholic Church, I stumbled into Adoration each evening at my Capitol Hill parish. Here, in the cool of the day, God’s…

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A Letter To My Sister

By Christiana N. PetersonJune 7, 2016

Eve, my sister The one who took the fall Eve, my sister Mother of us all Lift up your head Don’t hide your blushing face The promised One Is finally on His way —Mary Consoles Eve, “Rain for Roots” You have been my first companion in a lifetime of laughter, quarrels, and confidences. Without you,…

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Who’s Your Daddy?

By Tania RunyanJune 6, 2016

Adoptive parents develop radar for insensitive language and story lines pretty quickly.  Wes Anderson’s simplistic treatment of adoption in The Royal Tenenbaums (We’re not biological siblings? Let’s make out!) stuns me. Arrested Development, usually brilliant, employs a similar incestuous twist between adoptive siblings at the end of the series, implying that adoption just doesn’t “count”…

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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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Purple Light in Sarajevo

By Natalie VestinMay 24, 2016

My fellowship liaison, Sevko, drove, and his gaze flicked across teenagers spilling over the sidewalks. The center of town spread within the cradle of the mountains, lit by the pink and blue haze of underground clubs. Gray office and apartment buildings faced the street, many of them gashed open, levels of exposed brick and wood…

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