Frequent Drum contributor Steven Brykman strikes a serious tone in his essay "The Box" about a childhood visit to his older brother's residence in a home for people with autism. Brykman tells a dramatic story of his long-ago encounter with a frightening element of his brother's life, and muses on the nature of shared experience, isolation, and love.
In Colette Sartor's "Daredevil," a little girl becomes the catalyst for unsettling and then tragic events in the lives of a young mother, Grace, and her son Aidan. The story explores issues of faith, risk-taking, and the limits of sympathy, and looks at the many ways in which a home can be threatened.
The Grief of Othersdownload
The New York Times Book Review called Leah Hager Cohen "one of our foremost chroniclers of the mundane complexities, nuanced tragedies and unexpected tendernesses of human connection." Her reading of the prologue from The Grief of Others clearly demonstrates why she deserves the label. In this brief opening scene, Cohen describes with microscopic and eloquent detail the features of a newborn and the love his mother feels for him. Cohen raises moving questions about the fragility of life and about the limits of our ability to name the events and emotions of our experience.
excerpt from The Good Doctordownload
Michael Kula's novel The Good Doctor opens at the 1917 Wisconsin State Fair where a young veterinarian learns that tragedy has come into his life. With precise and powerful detail, Kula evokes the physicality of the world of David Roberts--both the strength of the body and its vulnerability that becomes all too apparent as the novel begins.