Sallie Tisdale | The Sun Magazine

Sallie Tisdale

Sallie Tisdale’s most recent book is Advice for Future Corpses (and Those Who Love Them): A Practical Perspective on Death and Dying. She lives in Portland, Oregon.

— From May 2019
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories


Someone has died. Someone I loved the way I love my own hands. And I am alive in the bright, fading day, flying above the earth and sea.

May 2019
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Mean Cuisine

According to surveys, about half of American households have at least one person on a diet at any given time. Dieting is normal — more normal than eating what you want to eat. How many of us now live on various versions of Lean Cuisine during the workweek and pay premium for a plate of swordfish and greens on Saturday night?

October 2000
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Harvest Moon

Portrait Of A Nursing Home

We all die, and most of us grow old, and for a certain inevitable number of us age brings its sisters: dependence, frailty, and a gut-wrenching perishability. Age is the last place and time most of us will inhabit, and the fact that age seems so foreign to most of us, as though cleft from the known world, is one of life’s sly tricks.

September 1987
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice

Inside The Modern Hospital

Every little odd ache, cramp, tension; each sore throat, swollen gland, headache; a sudden pain when you reach for something on a shelf, a morning lethargy, an unexpected reluctance: all these whisper cancer.

March 1986
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Why I Like Dead People

I like dead bodies: at no other time am I so aware of my own animation. This isn’t because I am lucky and this poor fool is not, but because here before me is the mute, incontrovertible evidence. Some force drives these shells, and it drives me still. I am a witness, an attestant, to a foresworn truth.

November 1985

Cold Steel

She could have been cast as a nun in an old Bing Crosby movie, the one who trailed the heroine and only came in on the chorus. Charlotte was a person who seemed to have no childhood, whom you could not imagine as younger than she was at the moment you met her.

August 1984
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