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The Sun Interview

The Second Half Of Life

An Interview With Mark Gerzon

Mark Gerzon’s first book, The Whole World Is Watching: A Young Man Looks at Youth and Dissent, was a bestseller in 1969, while the author was still a senior at Harvard. Gerzon went on to work as a journalist, activist, and workshop leader. Much of his work focused on bringing together adversaries, starting with the older and younger generations. He went on to build bridges between feminism and the men’s movement, and to found the Entertainment Summit, which joined the Soviet and American film industries in partnerships.

Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Omega Baseball

I had come to the Omega Institute, an adult summer learning center in the Hudson River Valley, on a lark, intrigued by a catalog description for a workshop that promised to integrate baseball with yoga, meditation, and martial arts:

Here is a chance to experience both the doing and the being of the great American myth. Participants in this workshop experience will recreate the national pastime as it might have been and might yet become. With bats, balls, and gloves we will explore baseball as a Way.

One instructor listed was Jeff McKay, a coach from Western Washington University. The other was Bill Lee.

This Prison Where I Live

The five works that appear here are excerpted from This Prison Where I Live: The PEN Anthology of Imprisoned Writers, to be published this month by Cassell. The book celebrates the seventy-fifth anniversary of PEN (Poets, Playwrights, Essayists, Editors, Novelists), an international association defending writers who face imprisonment, torture, and death.

Troika

The activity center at my parents’ Florida condo was a low, T-shaped building with sliding glass doors that opened onto room after well-lit room. Signs on these doors read, Bingo, Pottery, Woodworking. lnside sat white-haired men and red- or blond-haired women (in southeast Florida, women don’t get white or gray — it’s one of God’s miracles), their hands caressing cards, or vases, or pine boards. There were two nearby pools, the smaller one equipped with jets to create rushing water. Some of the altes, as my father would call them (short for alte kaker — Yiddish for “old shit”), swam or walked against the current for exercise.

Fiction

What We Came For

They had to wait a long time for the harvest to begin. Gerard talked to Kate of nothing else for weeks. He imagined the two of them working their way across Canada, then down the West Coast of the U.S., picking fruit and living like gypsies. But it had been a cold, rainy spring that year in Quebec, and when summer solstice arrived, there was still snow on the Laurentian Mountains. Now it was the end of June, and the strawberries were not yet ripe.

Readers Write

Triumphs

He called me his “lucky lady” when talking to the other customers at the doughnut shop where I worked; he told them how one day I’d sold him four winning lotto tickets. He was ruggedly handsome, owned a construction company, and could change the course of my blood just by walking through the door.

It was flattering to be called “lucky,” but it was the “lady” part that made me blush. I thought I really had him fooled, that he thought I was at least eighteen. He had to be around forty, I figured. Our age difference only made me want him more.

Personal Stories By Our Readers ▸
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