Issue 474 | The Sun Magazine

June 2015

Readers Write


A fire drill, an ancient site, a magical opening

By Our Readers
The Dog-Eared Page

Castles And Banquets

When sent to the “box,” I would try to smuggle in a fragment of pencil lead, usually by hiding it in my cheek. Then I could spend my time drawing castles — on scraps of newspaper or directly on the floor and walls.

By Vladimir Bukovsky


The county jail looked like a tall, forbidding elementary school. Seven stories of dirty-brown brick, one hundred years old and now operating at 330 percent of capacity.

Richard Price

The Sun Interview

Criminal Injustice

Maya Schenwar On The Failure Of Mass Incarceration

Prison deepened my sister’s addiction, crushed her self-esteem, narrowed her options for jobs and education, and diminished her hope for a good life. She was in a much worse situation each time she came out.

By Tracy Frisch
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

While We Waited

My mother became a missing person in the summer of 1994, when I was fourteen. The day she disappeared, she told my father and me she was going to the Piggly Wiggly in Lineville, about ten miles from our home in Delta, Alabama. She didn’t come back.

By D.T. Lumpkin
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Twenty-Seven And A Half Years

November 15, 1975, 3 AM on a Saturday morning, two months after my twentieth birthday. When the police came knocking on my door, I was sleeping. I’ve heard that’s how evil comes, in the dark of night. It don’t want to be seen.

By Gregory Bright with Lara Naughton
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

The Laughter Club

It’s not surprising that trauma is the number-one killer of people under forty, but it had never been so obvious to me before I worked at a hospital.

By Peter Mountford

Close To Home

For the last eight years, Michael Dvorak has photographed people in his home state of Minnesota. Taken at county fairs, parades, and on the streets in and around Minneapolis, the images are part of a series he calls “Close to Home.”

By Michael Dvorak

The Pearls

An engagement present from my husband’s parents, / they seemed like something from a yearbook photograph. / I’d have preferred a wrought-iron pendant, costume / beads that caught the sunlight.

By Lyn Lifshin

On His Ninety-Fifth Birthday, I Find My Dead Father On The Internet

I can still picture the room where he set up his ham radio. / Homemade furniture. Threadbare rug. A small space heater.

By Catherine Freeling