Featured Selections | The Sun Magazine #4

Featured Selections

From the Archives

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
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories


I am a woman ruled by the moon — the dark side no less than the light. A lover of monochromatic landscapes and subtle gradations, I am haunted by the shadows at the edge of the dark. Yet I cannot verify that I’ve ever encountered a ghost.

By Mary Maruca July 1994

Spam From The Dead

And two months after the cancer finally ate through / the last tissues that separated him from death, / I get a message from his e-mail address, / urging me to click on a link I know I shouldn’t

By James Davis May April 2021
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Homage To A Sorcerer

Carlos Castaneda has died. There aren’t many to bear witness to or for him, because he didn’t allow many witnesses. One met him by invitation, usually, and even that was more fluke than not. Those invited were of all sorts. I happened to be one, for reasons that weren’t clear to me and probably aren’t important. Perhaps I was called to be a witness?

By Michael Ventura March 1999

Foxglove Canyon

It rained last night, and this morning there’s a heavy mist hanging low over the Blue Ridge Mountains, like a Sunday dress over a grandmother’s sagging breasts. This is the last place I’ll work, the end of the trail, my final stop: Shady Rest Nursing Home.

By Jeanne Bryner February 1998
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Losing Gretchen

Had I known she was so large and that her leaving would create this cavernous emptiness, I would have fallen to my knees each morning and worshiped her. I would have strewn flowers at her feet, and I would have cherished every smile, every glance from her eyes, every word from her lips.

By Tom Crider June 1996

Warm Regards

Three-year-old Jersey Lem leaned forward and rested his chin on his tan, plump forearms, which bridged the handlebars of his tricycle. There was an invisible force field that ran between the last square of concrete sidewalk and the driveway of the house next door.

By Naomi Jeffery Petersen April 1996