Statement of Record

CategoryEssay

Pain and Coping

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by Christine Henneberg

Recently an old knee injury from my twenties flared up. The knee aches every time I walk down the few steps into the garage. In bed at night, I can feel it throbbing; it distracts me from the book I’m reading. I blame it on the fact that the pool is closed and I haven’t been swimming. Instead I’ve been walking a lot—almost exclusively with the double stroller. I...

White Fantasy: Laura Ingalls Wilder, Covid, and the Myth of Self-Sufficiency

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It’s pure fantasy of course, this American myth of self-reliance. It’s also, let’s face it, unapologetically white. Much has been made of the racism in Wilder’s books. In 2018 the American Library Association removed her name from a children’s literature award due in part to her crass portrayals of indigenous peoples and people of color. Laura’s mother’s insistence that “the only good Indian is a...

Uncertainty Ever After

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By Jon Roemer

Late February/early March felt like a horror movie, the fast, almost tidy way the pandemic was unfolding and the way cable news filled an expository role. It looked like a Soderbergh split-screen concoction, like Contagion on replay from a decade ago. Until the spectacle got repetitive, the numbers got close to home, and angry people started filling my streets.

Masks and Gloves

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By Rebecca Chace

Today a man died in front of our building, or maybe he didn’t. It’s spring 2020 in Brooklyn, New York. Yesterday, the death count was only forty-six, the day before it was sixty-one. Up and down have replaced north and south on the compass. I opened our front door, masked and gloved, inhaling Pine Sol from the spray bottle we use on the door knob we share with other...

Perpetuum Mobile

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Alexander Graeff

translated by Mark Kanak

I used to complain about my long-distance relationship. I wrote heartwarming letters full of longing and “what if” speculations—once I even wrote a story titled “Empty.” That’s how I often felt after our encounters, empty. Our professions prevented us from visiting each other every weekend. Worse still: the damned job was the reason...

Rooms and Clarinets

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Clifford Thompson

Malcolm X has been on my mind lately. I’ll get to that in a moment.

In my early and mid-teens, I played the clarinet, badly. I gave it up after that, and I don’t even know where my old clarinet is. But I have another one now, given to me by a friend who found it in her apartment, left behind by a previous tenant; my friend thought of me as she herself was...

After Ginger

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Alice Stephens

Isamu Noguchi found it was easier to get himself into an internment camp than it was to get out.

Confined at home these past months due to the Coronavirus, I think often of the Japanese and Japanese Americans who were interned during World War II. 

After five years of research and writing, I had recently completed a historical fiction novel based on...

Masks and Guns

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Aimee Parkison

Making Masks in America, Southwest Pandemic Panic, and Guns in an Open-Carry State

There are chords in the hearts of the most reckless which cannot be touched without emotion. Even with the utterly lost, to whom life and death are equally jests, there are matters of which no jest can be made.
Poe’s “The Masque of the Red...

Halted Time

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Christian von der Goltz

Behind the news, behind the curves and theories, behind the ongoing argument over who says what, behind all the noise of the internet, a ghostly silence has been spreading into every aspect of daily life. More than all the talk of numbers and statistics, it’s this silence that is changing people’s behavior. Social distancing isn’t the cause of this silence, but...

The Daisy Assassin: Incidents from a Time of Plague

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by David Winner

Most risks have immediate consequence.  If you get caught in a riptide, you drown.  Not that afternoon, not the following month, but then. But if I catch a dribble of Covid sputum on Lookout Hill, I may wake up one morning two weeks later not with one of the mild sore throats that have been scaring me but a deep exhaustion so I can barely make it to the bathroom to pee. A...

Corona Report

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Andrea Scrima

The invisible enemy hit Italy just as I was preparing to leave Florence; containment measures had begun a week prior to my departure. At first the “red zones” of Codogno and other municipalities in Lodi were subject to quarantine, then the whole of Lombardy together with provinces in Emilia-Romagna, Veneto, Piedmont, and Marche. And then, on...

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