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"Gavin Highly" -- Janet Frame

Did it happen this way? The land lay like stone, and one night, all night long, rain pelted down on it the way people, they say, hammer hard on a stone to find blood.

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"Jon" -- George Saunders

Back in the time of which I am speaking, due to our Coördinators had mandated us, we had all seen that educational video of “It’s Yours to Do With What You Like!” in which teens like ourselfs speak on the healthy benefits of getting off by oneself and doing what one feels like in terms of self-touching, which what we learned from that video was, there is nothing wrong with self-touching, because love is a mystery but the mechanics of love need not be, so go off alone, see what is up, with you and your relation to your own gonads, and the main thing is, just have fun, feeling no shame!

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My First Time

At 21 I left my hometown of St. Louis to attend the MFA program in creative writing at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville. In my entire life I had never been away from St. 1,032 more words

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On the first morning, when the trucks roll in, the deer are jarred from sleep and scatter into the backyards of their closest human neighbors. This is something they’ve had cause to do before on occasion, over the years, when children with frisbees or teenagers with mini-bikes have taken over their territory for a few hours. 666 more words

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“The idiots you will always have with you,” I sometimes tell my children and my students, sort of quoting Jesus. It sounds like a depressing statement, but in fact I mean it to be comforting: the idiots are a constant; they move from generation to generation, being idiotic about whatever there is in that generation to be idiotic about. 1,061 more words

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The End of the Hall

(Note: Suprisingly, I wasn’t invited to give a speech at my son’s 5th grade graduation. But I wrote one anyway.)

THE END OF THE HALL… 681 more words

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The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America

When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bonds which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation. 1,246 more words