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The Sun Magazine

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Woman (wu•man), sb . . .1. An adult female human being. . . .

This month’s theme is Women. Which is a statement in itself. Once, referring to blacks and whites, in whatever context, seemed regrettable; the idea was to erase the distinction. Now, at least some blacks are proud of it, and so, twenty-one years after the Supreme Court desegregation ruling, there are blacks calling for all-black schools, all-black everything, and forget the white bread.

Women Writers: Out Of The Closet

I have been struggling, mostly alone, with issues which are in many ways feminist since I was four and my father gave me a choice: a toy eggbeater or a book about Raggedy Ann. I freely identified with my mother’s domestic side and wanted the eggbeater. I also wanted the story-book. It was a hard choice because I wanted both so much and I was impatient with my father for putting it to me. When I chose the book, I knew I also chose the companionship of my father, his lap, and hearing the stories which I liked read many times over.

Women: On Women

Last month, the Vatican named its first American saint — a woman, Elizabeth Ann Seton. It’s appropriate that this honor was bestowed upon a woman, for in America, it seems, one needs to be a saint to be a woman, to maintain a flow with God and a harmony with men.

Crossing The Boundary

Book Review

A man changes into a woman, and “she” is to be on TV. I am enticed, but my desire for the bizarre is disappointed. No freak this but rather a fortyish, tweed-and-collar, English gentlewoman. Jan Morris is well-spoken, calm and solid. Readers will not find “erections, sperm and orgasms” in her book, he says, but rather the story of the conundrum, or puzzle, of her prior life as a man, and its solution.

The Mystery Within The Mystery

What makes a woman, or a man? Either sex is inhabited by the opposite sex; biologically speaking, it is simply the addition of one x or y chromosome that tips the scales. Is sex merely a genetic difference, or is there something else?

Untitled ("Each person lives both male and female lives")

Each person lives both male and female lives. As a rule, conscious memory of these is not retained. To prevent an overidentification of the individual with his present sex, within the male there resides an inner personification of femaleness. This . . . is the true meaning of what Jung called the ‘anima.’ The anima in the male is, therefore, the psychic memory and identification of all the previous female existences in which the inner self has been involved . . . [It] is an important safeguard, preventing the male from over-identifying with whatever cultural male characteristics have been imposed upon him . . . Maleness and femaleness are obviously not opposites, but merging tendencies. The priestess, the mother, the young witch, the wife, and the old wise woman — these general types are archetypes, simply because they are ‘root elements’ representing, symbolically, the various kinds of so-called female qualities and the various kinds of female lives that have been lived by males.

Confessions Of A Male Chauvinist P-g

(after the pain, the pain)

Like many men, I’ve been changing. Making love has become preferable to fucking and sharing preferable to manipulating. I’m realizing that every time my penis gets hard it doesn’t need (nor does it have some instinctive right) to be inserted in a conveniently warm place. I take women more seriously and work with them quite well. At least I’ve learned how to keep my mouth shut at the right times, use the right lingo, go through the right motions.

Boredom, And Its Blessings

I am a creature bankrupt of desire, save one — LUST. And what am I to do now, while in the experimental “foregoing of fucking” stage? If I deny my prime desire, and if I have no others, how am I to act other than at random, which I also refuse to do? If I have no desires except to fuck and if I have vowed not to initiate conjunction for that purpose, how the living fuck am I supposed to begin the movement, I mean lift my body from its position slumped over the typewriter, irritate the locomotive function? I am speaking of that body as it has come to be lodged in a corpuscle of time, I am observing that body from the inner eye and recognizing that that body does not and never will move unless it has a hunger. And I am mulling over this question: how is it supposed to BEGIN to move from that fixed point, from THAT fixed point, from THAT fixed point, from even one of those fixed points, unless there is a desire, quick and sharp and pungent, to GO somewhere, to SEE someone?

The Last Free Lunch II

Wild Foods And Herbs In Chapel Hill

In this area of North Carolina, healthful foods and herbs grow wild throughout the year. The Fall is rich with its harvest of fruit, nuts, roots, and greens. Indians and the colonists feasted on acorns, black walnuts, hickories, beechnuts, and pecans; these nuts are a valuable and tasty source of protein and vitamins through cold weather. Several greens, including chickweed, have returned after retreating during the summer’s heat. This is the time of pleasant invigorating walks through our beautiful Fall, collecting plants that will serve you well into the winter. Persimmon, rosehips, and sassafras are three easy to find and easy to collect plants that are abundant.

Tabula Rasa

I have a question (many as a matter of fact). I find that asking questions is the first activity of the awakened other. This other — the awakened stranger, the child of Self — is helpless and vulnerable as an infant curled, before the cord’s cut, lying on the curve of the mother’s belly. Once the cord is cut, the first breath (in or out? the question is enormous) having been delivered, the other is seeded, like a grain of sand in an oysterling, waiting for the moment when the flesh becomes aware and begins to create the pearl of wisdom.

Another Appetite

The air has cooled and somehow smells different. The garden has calmed down and the sun is setting further south. The kitchen is no longer the furnace it was in August and people like me get the urge to create some hot and hearty concoction to nourish those who sit down at our table.

*NOTE: Original copies of this issue are no longer available. Unbound, laser-printed copies will be provided for print orders.

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