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Word by Word

From the March 2024 Print Edition

Before I formed you in the womb, my son,I knew you. Knew you long before that highspring day in the sixth year of the reignof FDR, when the full-leaved sycamores that frame the tired river that runs Eastsmiled on your mother—just sixteen—andyour father, twenty-one, when they cametogether . . . . Continue Reading »

First Light Last

From the November 2022 Print Edition

You arrive at enough certainty to be able to make your way, but it is making it in darkness. Don’t expect faith to clear things up for you. It is trust, not certainty. —Flannery O’Connor And did you really think there would ever come a timewhen things would go as you’d dreamed they . . . . Continue Reading »

The Wheel, The Wheel

From the June/July 2022 Print Edition

Sixteen and a half with a brand new driver’slicense in my wallet, driving my father’s’47 two-toned old clunky Pontiac, I turnedleft off Hempstead Turnpike when a car swimsshark-like in front of me and I’m twistingthe steering wheel left right when somehowthe wheel takes over, spinning this . . . . Continue Reading »


From the October 2019 Print Edition

A Saturday night, late February. Eileen and mein the back of the cramped car, Julie driving,Bruce riding shotgun. We’re heading downto Amherst for an evening of Borscht Belt vaudeville,Fifty Shades of Oy Vey at the local Jewish temple,and Julie’s taking all the back roads, so that, thoughI’ve . . . . Continue Reading »

A Distant Purple

From the October 2019 Print Edition

Mid-September, dear woman, and the monarchlights once more upon the purple panopliedbutterfly bush in the now-decaying garden,as it has for these past thirty Septembers. And once again, like the softest breeze, I feelyour gentle presence and lift my open handtoward it, toward you, hoping for a sign, . . . . Continue Reading »

What's in a Name?

From the January 2015 Print Edition

A paralyzing gelid vortex of a January morning. He lay under the covers as the beckoning New Year’s sun began to manifest itself through the curtains of his bedroom window, but unlike the busy old sun unwilling to rise up and begin the day. His better half, it must be said, was already dressed . . . . Continue Reading »