Issue 226 | The Sun Magazine

October 1994

Readers Write


A small, blue quarter-moon; a flying penis; “white power”

By Our Readers


Why do you go and build a monument to a man who sends electricity through a wire? Does not nature do that millions of times over? Is not everything already existing in nature? What is the value of your getting it? It is already there.


Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Leaving Walden Pond

Thoreau was not afraid to die for the same reason he was not afraid to leave Walden Pond after two years, two months, and two days. Why did he leave? He said he had several more lives to lead. To be born means to die, but Thoreau was one of those who saw also that to die means to be reborn.

By Jim Ralston
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories


How old is the habit of denial? We keep secrets from ourselves that all along we know. The public was told that old Dresden was bombed to destroy strategic railway lines. There were no railway lines in that part of the city. But it would be years before that story came to the surface.

By Susan Griffin
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Pine Boards & Strawberries

Finding Courage At A Cancer Workshop

As the end of my chemotherapy treatments approached, they became more and more difficult to endure. Freedom was so near, I could hardly bear to wait for it another second.

By Juliet Wittman
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Tattoo Envy

Motorcycle Jim used to go with Katie. That was before his biker lifestyle proved a tough, chalky mix with Katie’s desire for respectability and security. They broke up, and Motorcycle Jim did what a guy named Motorcycle does: loaded his bike, hitched up his jeans, and hit the road.

By Bill Holland
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

I Read The News Today

I’m wary of men and women whose speeches are impassioned but who rarely listen; who know how to save the world but not their own neglected marriages. Rather than face the dark side of their consciousness, they exhort us to march behind them in the lengthening shadows, to live (and die) for their truth (or re-election).

By Sy Safransky


You asked me to write to let you know how I’ve been doing. You suggested I might start, like we used to, with a dream. Well, it’s funny; ever since you asked me to write, I’ve been haunted by a really old dream — maybe twenty years old.

By P. J. Frieder

Anatomy Of A Lie

I can’t tell you this, but my mother has a dot on her lung. It’s a small dot, on the left lung. If her lung were a map of Texas, the dot would be roughly the size of the city of El Paso, which is large enough to be written in boldface type by Rand McNally.

By Diana Greene

Original Sin

I knew well enough that, without drastic cause, mothers like mine do not entrust their adolescent sons to aunts like Louise. Surely, Mother would have kept me among her own people if there had been any.

By William Luvaas