Pitman Creek ~ Jeff Muse

The popular view of Appalachia is a land where every man is willing, at the drop of a proverbial overall strap, to shoot, fight, or fuck anything on hind legs. We’re men who buy half-pints of boot-legged liquor and throw the lids away in order to finish the whiskey in one laughing, brawling night, not […]

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Passion, Once Removed ~ Jim Dameron

    I’ve never eaten a guava, I’ve never even seen one, though I’m pretty sure it’s a sexy fruit. I’m certainly attracted to the word guava anyway. You have to open your mouth, linger expectantly for a moment. Diphthongs will do that I guess—two similar sounds in close proximity, so comfortable, yet fresh, even […]

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At The Root of It ~ Heather Corrigan

    I can trace this tooth’s history back to Indonesia.  I was living there two years ago when I came down with a toothache in this, my largest remaining molar.  I’ve had poor teeth my whole life so I knew this was more than a simple cavity: the ache began quiet and slow, a […]

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Burying Fish ~ Melanie Hoffert

    One morning, late August, I carried my coffee down to the dock at a lake called Mille Lacs. I remember this particular morning well. The sun was already bright and high above the evergreens and oaks, and fish lay scattered on the beach in front of the cabin. Everywhere on the beach, in […]

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Visiting The Maharaja ~ Alvin Greenberg

    1.  Once Upon a time   I had not exactly been summoned to make an appearance before the Maharaja of Travancore, but it was put to me from several quarters that “it is expected” of visiting foreign dignitaries that they make such an appearance during their stay, which, being new on the job, […]

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Mother Tongue ~ Sheila Madary

Simply because I move about, leave my geographical location entirely, or change residence does not necessarily mitigate the impact of home, nor does it mean that I simply leave its geology behind. It remains in my daily customs of eating, in the types of foods I prefer, my measure of distances, in my language. Anthony […]

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Choice ~ Stephanie Bane

    I joined the Peace Corps in 1993.  Mostly I did it for the adventure, but people often mistook me for an idealist, and they still do.  They project their missionary fantasies – a disturbing mélange of things they learned about Africa in Sunday school, and Sally Struthers’ Save the Children ads – on to […]

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Fin ~ Caroline Sutton

                                                                I   At 11 AM on New Year’s Eve my dog stares at me, square in the eyes, from under a brow of black curls as if he wants to know.  He wears a translucent lampshade on his head to keep him from gnawing the stitches in his left leg where […]

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Life in the Balance ~ Jim Dameron

  “Show me something Joel.” My boss looked toward his boss’s office, then looked back at me. I had assumed a wrestling stance, feet side by side, arms bent but outstretched, hands up, palms toward him. To anyone crazy enough to think of us as wrestlers we might have appeared evenly matched since we were […]

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