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The Sun Magazine

Body and Mind

Cancer

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Shelter

Wilbur hadn’t ended up at the shelter because he’d drunk himself there, or squandered his money, or been caught cheating on a disability claim. No, Wilbur had ended up at Bartlett House because he’d never married or had children, and kin was how a man like Wilbur made it through the final years of his life.

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Learning To Sleep

You’re not really exhausted until the hallucinations start: Droplets of mercury floated in my peripheral vision. A lemon levitated out of the fruit bowl. A streetlight at the corner of State and Garfield laid its long body down on the sidewalk. The cat looked up at me from the corner of my desk, twitched his muzzle, and said, “Libby, Libby, Libby.”

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Fog

Outside my bedroom window the trees are wrapped in fog. Silvery threads of rain coat the glass. It’s not yet dawn, and I don’t know why I’m awake. I rub my eyes, pulling the sheet closer around my shoulders as I sink back into bed. And then I remember: the 5 AM check. I push aside the covers, grab my glasses, and glance at the clock: 4:55. I’ve awakened before the alarm. Trained.

Fiction

How It Would Come

When the doorbell rang, Alice put down her pencil and took another drag on her cigarette. It was nearly noon; the entire morning had somehow gotten away from her. Peering out through the yellowed blinds, she saw a Pittsfield police cruiser parked at the curb.

Fiction

Mercy

Jimmy nods toward his tow truck, and Davis gets in the passenger seat. Sliding in beside him a minute later, Jimmy offers coffee and some kind of airy sweet, the exact right thing. This is how a moth must feel when it finally gets to the light: warm inside and out.