Jul/Aug 2004

e c l e c t i c a   n o n f i c t i o n


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Cloth Mother (Memoir)
At night I lie in the dark, afraid of the enemy beating within. I lie for long, guilty hours, limbs taut with fright, listening to my heart thud and whoosh like a slack-skinned drum. Perhaps I haven't prayed enough, my fingers twisting in the folds of my shirt, waiting for my heart to slow.  
Jane Webster


The Glorious Fourth
I run, and the thing is actually chasing me. It catches up and slices through my pantleg and right thigh. I am bleeding. I reverse field and so does it. Incredibly, the thing makes a full circle of the yard, approaches my bloody leg, and explodes, blowing burnt gunpowder into the open wound.  
Chuck West


Man With Gun: Photographing Violence
I imagine everyone knows this scene: a Vietcong prisoner was marched up to General Loan, hands bound behind his back, wary look on his face. He was wearing black shorts (at least in the still photo and on my black-and-white TV set) and an untucked plaid sports shirt. A skinny, ordinary looking man, he might have been 18. General Loan pulled out a snub-nosed revolver, placed it without hesitation against the prisoner's temple, and pulled the trigger.  
David Graham


A Home in a World
There were no adults in the quiet office, just four unnaturally silent boys sitting on a bench awaiting flogging. After stating my innocence and being warned to keep quiet by another of the boys, I suggested that we run away from school. Stunned silence, as if I'd just confessed to the murder of infants.  
Jim Gourley


The Heathen Next Door
For me, community these days manifests itself in the form of Todd, my Christian neighbor next door. For several reasons, Todd thinks I'm a heathen. And the problem is, I don't know if he's right.  
Susanna Dyer


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