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Friendship

Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Gift Shops of the American Wild

The Paradise Inn sits at 5,400 feet on the south slope of Mount Rainier, the highest peak in Washington State. Up here the air is thin and crisp, the colors are saturated, and every breeze carries an aroma of pine and the trill of birdsong. Even immersed in such concentrated beauty, my heart aches. For the hundredth time today I think of Jack, a fellow writer in the graduate program I recently completed. We bonded over our love of books and our homesickness for the Midwest.

By Becky Mandelbaum May 2024
Fundraising Appeal

Become a Friend of The Sun

The Sun is not immune to the relentless business pressures and tectonic shifts in the media landscape over the last two decades. And while I am grateful these changes have underscored what is vital and unique about The Sun, it seems that every week I read about a worthy publication having to close its doors. We are committed to bringing our readers the best writing and photography, free from the distraction of advertising. With this choice comes the reality that the price of a subscription doesn’t come close to what it costs to print and distribute the magazine and curate the website. As we have throughout our history, we are asking you again, with great humility, to be our partner on this journey and formally become a Friend of The Sun.

By Rob Bowers May 2024
Fiction

Why Are These the Things We Worry About?

Teo and Jeff were driving through rainy Pine Bluff, Arkansas, on their way from Wisconsin to Texas, when Jeff got even more feverish. They stopped at a hospital called Reid Memorial, where the examining doctor thought Jeff might have spinal meningitis. The hospital admitted Jeff, then set Teo up in a separate room.

By John Tait April 2024
Readers Write

Fantasy

Calling a 1-900 number, moving to the tropics, writing fan fiction

By Our Readers February 2024
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Stranger Kin

I don’t recall now if he barked, if he made a sound. How did it happen, that the rest came? They must have been summoned somehow. But it so happened that another dog appeared, lumbering toward us, followed by another, and a third and fourth, until there were five dogs gathered on the rocks. Five huge Istanbul dogs.

By Wiam El-Tamami December 2023
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Abandon All Expectations

The fish is now thrashing at the surface. Unlike every other captain I have seen, Cuervo uses a net, not a gaff, to bring it aboard. He has enough experience to know that, by the time a full-grown yellowtail is brought to the boat, it has essentially fought itself to death. Rich lets the captain take over, and Cuervo handles the marvelous creature with a tenderness that has been missing from most of my charter-fishing experiences.

By Dave Zoby December 2023
The Dog-Eared Page

20, 40, 60, 80

Middle-aged people shrink, crease, fade, and, if they’re lucky, slowly lose the desire to be noticed, the way we once lost our childhood taste for Necco Wafers or Pez. My desire to be seen is gradually being replaced by the desire to see: the faces of those I love, the cardinal in the bush, the socks of the woman with multiple sclerosis who swims at the Y.

By Genie Zeiger November 2023
Photography

A Thousand Words

A Thousand Words features photography so rich with narrative that it tells a story all on its own.

Photograph By William Carter November 2023
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

The Salmonella Special

In twelve months I hadn’t set foot in a supermarket, hadn’t compared the prices of two brands of bread, hadn’t stood in a checkout line to buy anything, not even a pack of Tic Tacs. Everything I ate had been thrown away. Everything I ate, I’d found first.

By Anders Carlson-Wee October 2023
Fiction

Animal Moments

At the hospital two nurses, a doctor, and Dave all stand and watch as I transform into animal. My body expels fluids, feces, and finally a human baby. I grip the bed, howl, grunt, and writhe. Outside the window the trees are sunlit, and the leaves stutter in the breeze. I try to forget that I took a shit in front of Dave.

By Bethany Marcel October 2023