The Drum

theme: family theme: family

JANISSE RAY Cheyenne

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Cattle auctions, pastures, and an old horse. These make up the world of Janisse Ray's essay "Cheyenne", about an old horse taken in by Ray's family. Ray's piece explores the nature of love, the connections between love and pity, and the discovery of grace. (15:59)

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essaymediumfamilycrisis

MAYA DETWILLER Toads

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Maya Detwiller's short story "Toads" explores the pains and rewards of adolescence through a child's habit of collecting toads. A giant supervising and creating miniature worlds, the story's narrator finds herself looking for a place--a place to fit, to belong, to grow in and away from. (10:35)

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short fictionsmallfamily

HEATHER CRIPPS Devil's Drop

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Three boys make an unpleasant discovery while playing in a local park. Through one boy's narration, Heather Cripps' "Devil's Drop" tells the story of the children's vulnerability and the poignant ways in which they search for reassurance. (15:51)

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mediumfamilyrelationshipscrisis

ALEC SOLOMITA Squirrel

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In 1970, the narrator and his several brothers drive off in a Duster to defend their mother's honor. The fact that most of them are high plays some role in the confusion that ensues. Alec Solomita's "Squirrel" is a tale of sibling allegiances and misunderstandings, told with tenderness and wit. (20:17)

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short fictionfamilycomedylarge

AMY LEE LILLARD Head Like a Hole

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The husband who narrates Amy Lee Lillard's story "Head Like a Hole" watches, puzzled, as a perfectly round hole grows in his backyard. The growing hole, and the wife's ongoing vigil, tell a poignant story of self, integrity, and, ultimately, connection. (20:50)

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short fictionmediumfamilyrelationshipscrisis

MARSHA MCDONALD s w i m

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What is held, what holds you, in water or in air? Marsha McDonald's story "s w i m" raises and explores these questions through the story of a girl taught to swim by her uncle. Learning much more than that about her body's resilience, the narrator connects her experience to the terrors and enticements of deep water. (11:18)

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short fictionmediumfamilyrelationships

VIRGINIA MARSHALL DISPATCH: When Hobos Come Home

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Every summer since 1900, the National Hobo Convention takes place in Britt, Iowa, a tiny town whose two train lines have made it the center of hobo memory for generations. Virginia Marshall's Dispatch from the Convention captures the voices of hobos gathered to name their king and queen, and speaks of the idea of freedom and the reality of borders as they define the hobo way of life. (14:43)

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essaymediumfamily

BRANDI REISSENWEBER Where We Found the Girls

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The anger and frustration of girls is at the core of Brandi Reissenweber's short story "Where We Found the Girls". As, one by one, four girls in a community are discovered in strange and mysterious circumstances, the townspeople must confront what they themselves have failed to see and understand. (28:01)

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short fictionlargecrisisfamily

CINDY HOUSE Dear Deer

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A woman, her two sons, her ex, and a deer. Add to this the knife the ex is using to gut the animal and you have a family crisis of compelling drama. Cindy House's "Dear Deer" doesn't skimp on the suspense but finds humor too in this confrontation over much more than one hunted animal. (18:45)

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short fictionmediumfamilycrisis

LISA PIAZZA Fairyland

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A young couple, a little girl, and a seaside carnival come together in this short piece by Lisa Piazza. They come together and they come apart, while the mother who narrates the piece ponders the funhouse-mirror quality of the new land she finds herself in after divorce. (5:51)

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smallshort fictionfamilyrelationshipscrisis

GrubStreet STORIES FROM GRUB STREET'S WRITE IN

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On May 19, 2017, GrubStreet hosted Boston's first Write-In. The Drum was on the scene to record some of the many stories told by recent immigrants and refugees. Here are stories by Yanley Francois, Zach Ben-Amots, U-Melgn ‘Mhlaba-Apebo, Dana Lopes, Carolyn De Jesus, Christelle Narcisse, and Aseret Laparra. Write-In audio was recorded by Ilya Methot and Jordan Fischer. (8:39)

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essaysmallfamilycrisis

PATRICIA BAKER Raking the Lizards

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There is a woman raking lizards down from a tree. There is a family to care for. There are errands to run. Our narrator wages war against the lizards who return each day, undefeated, but she fights other things, too, in a much more complicated battle. (5:57)

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short fictionsmallfamilycrisis


theme: comedy

theme: crisis

theme: relationships

theme: family

genre: essay

novel excerpt

short fiction

poetry

under 10 min

under 20 min

under 30 min

under 40 min
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