A pond mermaid, a trip to Cuba, pumpkin pies for the homeless
The First And Last Freedom
Obviously what causes war is the desire for power, position, prestige, money; also the disease called nationalism, the worship of a flag; and the disease of organized religion, the worship of a dogma.
I woke up this morning on the third planet from the sun. In the twenty-first century. In the United States of America. Outside, the sky was still dark, but at the flip of a switch the room was flooded with light. Amazing!
We are, perhaps uniquely among the earth’s creatures, the worrying animal. We worry away our lives, fearing the future, discontent with the present, unable to take in the idea of dying, unable to sit still.
Side Effects May Include
Christopher Lane On What’s Wrong With Modern Psychiatry
There are more than a hundred more mental disorders in the DSM today than we had in 1968, including incredible new ones such as “sibling-relational problem” and even “partner-relational problem.”
Tick Tick Boom
Every few days or so, when his loneliness becomes impossible to bear, Rodrigo leaves his Manhattan high school and goes to Central Park. He wanders off the paved roads and makes his way to the secluded, wooded trails, just a few blocks from the housing project in Harlem where he grew up. There he drifts and waits. He might lean against a tree or roam along a trail. Eventually a man will show up.
My friend Tommy Crotty, who was a terrific basketball player in New York and went on to play college ball and be a cheerful husband and excellent dad before the idiot who just died in Abbottabad murdered him and thousands of people on September Eleventh, used to call every big guy he ever played with Meat.
A Castle In Outer Space
There was a flutter in my rib cage, a somersault of uneasiness. I hadn’t witnessed such concentrated weirdness up close since my parents were alive: my father’s conspiracy theories and colon-cleansing elixirs; my mother’s ground-up lithium in a locket around her neck.
Underneath The Armor
Four months into their seven-month tour, the mostly nineteen- and twenty-year-old marines at Patrol Base Fires in Sangin, Afghanistan, had seen enough violence to permanently line their boyish faces. Two of their platoon’s men had been killed by improvised explosive devices [IEDs], one of them blown literally in two.
White Lady Of Once A Week
The child lolls half-asleep in the front seat. / “Why do it start and then stop?” The rain, she means. / “The clouds are banging into each other,” I tell her, / which is what someone told me when I was her age, seven.
After the e-mail saying you forgave me
It was about the time the first / poplar leaves turn yellow. / The cottonmouth, thick as a muscular arm, / slid into the water at my feet.