A man with the right scruffed-up beard and breadth of chest swaggered into the S and M dungeon that was my place of business, and twenty minutes and one grand later had my chin — still soft with the downy fluff of teen-girl skin — held steady in one paw while the other one flew at my face so hard and fast that I ceased to exist as the same collection of matter I had been the previous instant.
When Sarah’s mother, Penny, got sick four years into our marriage, we decided to move back to Mississippi, considering it penance for the sins of our youth. We signed a lease on a house, a white one-story on the historical register with a wraparound porch and angels, stars, and the moon painted on the transom above the front door.
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Andrew Boyd is a humorist, a longtime veteran of creative campaigns for social change, and the author of several books, including two that are forthcoming: Pilgrimage to Nowhere and I Want a Better Catastrophe. He lives in New York with his laptop and long-suffering girlfriend.
Lucie Britsch’s debut novel, Sad Janet, is forthcoming from Riverhead Books in 2020. She lives in England. You can follow her on Twitter: @LucieBritsch.
Shuly Xóchitl Cawood grew up writing stories on her father’s IBM Selectric typewriter. The author of four books, she is originally from Yellow Springs, Ohio, and now lives in Tennessee. Her poem in this issue will appear in her forthcoming poetry collection, Trouble Can Be So Beautiful at the Beginning (Mercer University Press, 2021).
Tracy Frisch is a journalist, homesteader, and community activist. She makes her home in rural Upstate New York.
Jeannette Gregori studied photography at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, and the School of Decorative Arts in Strasbourg, France, where she lives today. Since 2009 she has been documenting Romani families and the loss of their lifestyles. She took the photo on this month’s cover on a beach in Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, France, during a Romani pilgrimage in 2015.
Heather Lanier’s memoir Raising a Rare Girl is forthcoming in July from Penguin Press. After seven years in Vermont, she is adjusting to living and driving in New Jersey. She is an assistant professor of creative nonfiction at Rowan University. You can follow her on Twitter: @heatherklanier.
Michael Mark is a hospice volunteer who has walked the Camino de Santiago and hiked the Himalayas. He lives in San Diego, California, but his heart has never left Queens, New York.
Wayne Muller is a minister, therapist, and founder of Bread for the Journey, a community-based organization that serves families in need. His most recent publications include the nonfiction books A Life of Being, Having, and Doing Enough and Learning to Pray: How We Find Heaven on Earth. He lives with his family in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Kate Osterloh used to believe in a lot of things, like the infallibility of the Bible and the sanctity of government institutions. Now she spends her free time lying under the chestnut oak outside her office, certain of nothing and curious about everything. She is a U.S. diplomat stationed in Washington, D.C. You can follow her on Twitter: @KateOsterloh.
The Sun’s staff is working from home, and we’re not sure when we’ll be back in the office. In the meantime, we are dedicated to continuing to bring you the magazine each month, and we feel fortunate to be able to do that.
Nicholas Bell’s photography has been published in Black & White, Shutterbug, Photography Masterclass, and Adore Noir. He lives in Knoxville, Tennessee.
Brandy Dykhuizen is a freelance writer and photographer from Wilmington, North Carolina. Her primary objective in life is to spend as much time as possible on a beach by herself.
Gloria Baker Feinstein is enjoying her new hometown of Portland, Oregon. When she’s not making photographs, she’s training her Havanese puppy, Charlie, to become a therapy dog.
Michael Galinsky has been a contributor to The Sun for more than thirty years. He is a filmmaker, photographer, and musician who lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
Troyce Hoffman is a photographer based in Truckee, California. He spends most of his time in the mountains and deserts of the western United States and occasionally documents those places with a toy camera.
Jamie Kaminskas lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where she spends her days hiking and taking care of other people’s dogs.
Josué Rivas is a creative director, visual storyteller, and educator who lives in Portland, Oregon. He uses photography to build awareness about Native communities. His work has appeared in National Geographic, The Guardian, The New York Times, and elsewhere.
Claire Mae Whittaker’s hobbies include creating pottery and playing old-time Appalachian music. Originally from Pittsboro, North Carolina, she now lives in Eugene, Oregon, where she is working toward a degree in botany.
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