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The Sun Magazine

The Sun Interview

In Light Of Death

An Interview With Rick Fields On Living With Cancer

Rick Fields, poet, writer, and student of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche and other teachers of Tibetan Buddhism, was diagnosed with lung cancer in 1995. In May 1997, Tricycle editor-in-chief Helen Twarkov spoke with him about his strategy for living with the illness, and his attitude about death.

Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories


Here is a joke I like:  Q. What’s the difference between amnesia, ambivalence, and apathy? A. I can’t remember, either way it doesn’t matter, and I don’t care.

In Search of Zen Judaism

Like many American Jews raised to obey the rules of their religion but not taught its deepest insights, Rami M. Shapiro went looking elsewhere for spiritual meaning. At a young age, he discovered Buddhist meditation, but, rather than go on to embrace Buddhism totally, he took what he learned from its practices and applied this new understanding of the world to his own tradition.

The Date

A man I like is coming for dinner tonight. This means I don’t sleep very much, and I wake disoriented in the half light of dawn, wondering where I am. I look at my naked body stretched diagonally across the bed; I look at the untouched breasts, the white belly, and I wonder. I don’t know if this man will ever touch me, but I wonder.


Fast Turtles

We have to get out of here fast. It’s now or never, especially since we could run into Dag getting off work. It’s dangerous, but on the way out of town I stop by his cabin to drop off a goodbye letter. The kids print and scribble pictures in the margins. Maya picks up a crab apple, then writes, “Dag, you are like this little apple: sweet on the outside but sour on the inside. ’Bye. Maya.”

Two Rides

Just outside Bellingham the hitchhiker stood in the shadow of the mileage sign: Seattle 80, Tacoma 111. 111 — like bars. Jail. My wife.

Readers Write

Bouncing Back

My grandparents had been married for fifty-one years when Grandma died suddenly of a stroke. Soon afterward, my grandfather stood bowed over my mother’s kitchen table like a willow, staring at the gold speckles in the Formica as if looking into his blank future. Though his voice was unchanged — soft and vaguely professorial, a touch of Virginia accent mixed with Boston Brahmin — his sentences began to repeat themselves. I thought maybe Grandma had been the foundation that had held up Grandpa’s now-crumbling psyche.

Personal Stories By Our Readers ▸


Life is like playing a violin solo in public and learning the instrument as one goes on.

Samuel Butler

More Quotations ▸
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