Featured Essays

Shadow Boxing

The original Rocky was released in 1976; I was born the same year. In a weirdly literal sense, we’ve grown up together. We recently turned thirty, and neither of our prospects look good. Rocky has to contend with the films Stallone has made since; I have bad knees,...

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Basic Composition

Introduction The second and third blasts lit up my hotel room in a pink-orange hue. Three more blasts, unmistakable, echoed and cracked. Counterattack? For the previous hour, in a fourth-floor room at the Treasure Island Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, I graded...

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Songs of My Father

At age twelve I was fond of telling stories about my father’s service in Vietnam, even though he, my father, never talked about it. The briefest windows I got into this past were when he’d glaze over and mouth the words to Billy Joel’s “Goodnight Saigon” while driving...

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