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Praying for a Hurricane on an Ordinary Wednesday Afternoon

By A.G. HarmonApril 24, 2017

  “It is easier to survive a category five hurricane than it is to get through an ordinary Wednesday afternoon.” That paraphrase of Walker Percy (from his essay, “Diagnosing the Modern Malaise”) was suggested to me by my friend Caroline Langston Jarboe. I was wondering out loud why I would give anything to have back…

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Poetry Friday: “Sewing Box”

By Murray BodoApril 21, 2017

We don’t think enough—or at least I don’t—about how objects can contain memory. But Murray Bodo’s poem “Sewing Box” shows us how: in this box in which memory is literally contained. Each of the four stanzas takes us deeper into the box. At first it’s just “the busy / sewing box I’d organize on visits…

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The Eye Behind the Camera: Kirsten Johnson’s Cameraperson

By Nick OlsonApril 20, 2017

When we first see the close-up of the dead bird on the ground, we wonder why. It’s only a few scenes later that we return to the site of the bird to see two young children, twin brother and sister, asking their mother and grandfather if they can go outside to bury the dead bird.…

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Always Becoming

By Scott CairnsApril 19, 2017

The following is adapted from an address given at the Seattle Pacific University MFA in Creative Writing commencement ceremony last month. For centuries, wise men and women of various traditions have troubled the terms being and becoming, without arriving at anything like conclusion. We affirm the beauty and joy of being—being writers, being Christians, being…

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Finding My Sister in Young Adult Novels

By Natalie VestinApril 18, 2017

Lately all I want to read are young adult novels about sisters. Young adult (YA) lit has a simplicity that creeps up on you. It’s about falling in love and obligations to the world outside of our daily concerns. And it’s usually disturbing as hell, reflective of how, though we say we lose innocence, as…

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Praying the Art of Sean Scully: The Match of Prose and Visual Art

By Peggy RosenthalApril 17, 2017

When I finished reading Paul Anel’s article on the chapel art of Sean Scully, in the current issue of Image (#91), I was moved to close my eyes in prayer. It wasn’t verbal prayer. It was a sitting within a sense of the sacred. Both Scully’s art and Anel’s graced account of it had drawn me…

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Palm Fronds

By Bryan BlissApril 13, 2017

My daughter held the palm frond as if she’d never seen such a thing. I gave mine a perfunctory wave. We were both visitors, standing in the foyer of an elementary school turned church. The pastor was a friend, but in the ten minutes before a worship service—especially during Holy Week—I wasn’t going to latch…

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God is a Wild Old Dog

By Christiana N. PetersonApril 12, 2017

God is a wild old dog / Someone left out on the highway —Patty Griffin “Wild Old Dog” It is the first week of spring and I sit in the small cemetery on our community property. The bench underneath me is green and mossy from the confusion of a mild winter that left us with…

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Take, Eat

By Sneha AbrahamApril 11, 2017

I clutch the edge of the cracked leather seat and close my eyes as the van rattles out of the city towards the slum settlement. The three-hour church service in Ludhiana, Punjab, India, left me hoarse and sticky: hoarse from leading the worship; sticky from sitting on a plastic chair in a packed second-story room…

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Dancing with Words During National Poetry Month

By Richard ChessApril 10, 2017

Here’s your assignment. Choose a poem you’ve written (it could be any piece of writing, really, an email message, a shopping list, a complaint to a cable service provider, a toast for a wedding—you get the idea. If it’s a poem, chose only a few lines. If it’s another piece of writing, choose a portion…

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