"I can’t think about my mother, who is dying slowly and furiously. My grief is an unpacked box of sharp pieces stacked in a dark storeroom; I lug around a catalog of unfinished business."
Winner: Best Essay Prize, "Marriage"
One simple equation compels the author to take a fifth trip down the aisle
If you're wracked with joint pain, you don't need a weather man to know which way the wind blows
"When I was nine years old I began taking piano lessons. When I was nine years old I got my own library card. When I was nine years old I was diagnosed with lupus. When I was nine years old ..."
Winner: Best Essay Prize, "Mistakes"
Two young women pregnant at the same time by the same man.
Insomnia in Lorca's Madrid
I am prey to the nocturnal creaks in my mind and weak to the city creatures that stir at night. I am lonely but not alone. No one is asleep in this city. No one. No one.
The scratching & hammering & tapping of writing
One of the things that we do not talk about when we talk about writing is the sound and scent and sensuality of it, the scratching and hammering and tapping, the pitter of pencils and the scribble and scrawl of pens, the quiet mumble of the electric...
Or how to play strip spin-the-bottle
"To be out of that room and away from your drunk, laughing, happy, naked friends. To leave behind what could have happened, how your life might have shifted, to have escaped unchanged."
"A reader can still count on finding everything at a library, and there is still something emotionally secure about that."
"When you watch a man on the tracks before an oncoming train, that’s exactly what you do: watch."