Featured Selections | The Sun Magazine #3

Featured Selections

From the Archives

Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

A Thousand Elephants

This is The Sun’s thirty-third anniversary issue. How grateful I am that this improbable dream continues; that my ardor for the work is undiminished. I’m married to The Sun, I expect, till death do us part.

By Sy Safransky January 2007
Editor's Note

Last Words

I stood by the open door, watching my old Olympia sail past me. It hit the grassy strip near the parking lot, the carriage extended like a climber’s broken leg after a fall. . . . I remember the thud; the carriage bell ringing once, with the impact; then ringing again, as if in disbelief.

By Sy Safransky September 1987
Sy Safransky's Notebook

May 2002

As long as I’m still trying to curry favor — with my dead father, with my admiring readers — I’m not writing from the heart, not really. What a busy little gardener I’ve become, pruning these sentences with such care, clippers always at the ready, clip clip. But beyond the rose garden is the meadow and beyond the meadow is the forest and deep inside the forest is the river and the river runs to the sea. I can’t get to the sea by working on my roses, by making them picture perfect.

By Sy Safransky May 2002
Fundraising Appeal

A Friend Of The Sun

From half a lifetime away, I saw an idealistic young man, hair down to his shoulders, standing on the street with a stack of magazines under his arm. He, too, was struggling to overcome his shyness as he tried to describe his new magazine to passersby. The afternoon light was fading, but he wasn’t ready to quit just yet. I imagined reaching across the years to shake his hand, to thank him for not letting shyness get the best of him, to encourage him to keep on.

By Sy Safransky June 2004
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Fire All Around

Even though we all breathed the smoke from the destruction of the town of Paradise in 2018 — breathed in their burning cars, homes, animals, and bodies — it was still happening “over there” to “other people.”

By Alison Luterman December 2020

Jumping Jacks

Let it burn, Bunk says again, and the deadness in his voice scares you. His mesmerized stare at the flames licking, crackling, devouring — that scares you, too. You don’t understand the hypnotic allure of destruction.

By Doug Dorst September 2003
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

A Single Suitcase

We left before they told us to evacuate. I saw the smoke over the hills, knew the ferocity of the Santa Ana winds, and figured it wouldn’t be long before the fire would reach us. I packed a small suitcase.

By Parnaz Foroutan July 2019

They Leave You Here Alone In The Dark

When I was 4 years old they put me in the hospital / to remove my tonsils and adenoids. / The night after they operated / I could not sleep so I got up // and I wandered down the huge corridor, / nobody in sight, and I came to 2 big doors / so I went through them and that is when / I first heard the sound of real pain

By Red Hawk August 1998
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Not Suitable For Children

She looked as though she’d been jolted by electricity, her beautiful brown eyes alive with surging energy but puffy and gray underneath. At times her zest to complete tasks frightened my brothers and sisters and me, and I’d hide from her, even though I liked to help her cut out pictures for collages.

By Doug Crandell July 2011
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Sitting On My Mother

The scar in the turf in front of her headstone has long since healed. Her death date was blank at her funeral, reflecting our disbelief. It now reads, Sept. 11, 2010. Beside that is another blank for my father.

By Vincent Mowrey September 2020