Issue 301 | The Sun Magazine

January 2001

Readers Write

The Bathroom

Soaking in the tub, getting some privacy, having sex

By Our Readers


We have so many words for states of mind, and so few for the states of the body.

Jeanne Moreau

The Sun Interview

Next To Godliness

The Story Behind Dr. Bronner’s Soap — An Interview With Ralph Bronner

A few times a month, I’m asked whether we’re a New Age religion or a cult. Well, we’re not, or if we are, we have no members. Our family is running a soap business based on Dad’s teachings. All he did is what any religious person does: he read the great works — the Torah, the Bible, Thomas Paine — and picked what he liked. His theology was a sort of cosmic soup.

By Gail Grenier Sweet
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

The One Who Steals The Fat

At century’s end, we’re consumers, not gatherers or producers. We’re at the mercy of dimly understood industrial processes and long lines of supply. Being at such removes — practical, geographic, and technological — from our sustenance, most of us are ignorant of the source of our tap water and the provenance of our food.

By Stephanie Mills
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories


I like to look at people’s skin. The way others might notice a man’s eyes, or the curve of a woman’s hip, I notice complexion and skin tone. It’s not the face I’m drawn to but the skin on forearms or around the collarbone, the wrinkles on knuckles — that’s real skin.

By Julie Burke
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

She’ll Wrap Her Arms Around Us

The house wasn’t yellow when we moved in, but it needed a fresh coat of paint. I regretted the choice almost immediately. All that yellow made the ramshackle building too bright, too cheerful, too . . . yellow. It hardly looked like the home of a serious little magazine. But, for thirteen years, that’s what it was.

By Sy Safransky

My Life As A Mermaid

I get another letter from my sister Kay, who is in Honduras riding mules and skidding around the muddy mountain roads in a pickup truck. The roads have curves sharp enough to tempt death, she writes, sharp enough for you to see yourself leaving.

By Jennifer Grow

The Year In Geese

I reached again, beyond the orange bill, behind the round eyes, and slid my hand lightly down his delicate downy neck. He stood absolutely still. I could almost feel a sigh in him, and I passed my hand again and again down this fragile stem of life, then out onto the fan of feathers across his back, the narrow spiny ridges and silken expanse.

By Rita Townsend