Jul/Aug 2011

e c l e c t i c a   n o n f i c t i o n


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Their Graces
The Duchess's young daughter came on weekends, along with two or three of her school friends. Breakfast and tea were in the English manner, lunch and dinner in the French. I had been brought there by Victor, a producer friend of my husband's, for whom I was writing a screenplay. Russian by birth, a conman by trade, Victor was forever planning movies that might or might not be made but the accompanying publicity assured him invitations to one social event or another.
V.K. Reiter


The Death of Ronald Gray
Henceforth, we puffed our way through games, and as the evening progressed a thick pall of smoke hovered miasmically over the table. After a few months we added beer to the mixture, and eventually a typical evening involved smoking five cigars apiece and consuming a quart or two of whatever was on sale at the local grocery store. This did not detract from our quality of play, however; in fact, it improved it.
Henry F. Tonn


The Cucking-Stool Redux
Here we are, 350 years later, and The Scarlet Letter's strict standard of a long-forgotten Puritan rule of life has returned, invoked to be set into a code of conduct in an utterly different epoch, and in a most unlikely place: California.
Jascha Kessler


Europe Calling: Wandering in the Shadow of D. H. Lawrence
The Fulbright Awards, had been conceived as an ambitious post-War effort to put peoples at peace again with one another after the brutality and the destruction of the second World War. We as Americans were, in our turn, to act as emissaries of good will in such distant environments. And for us recipients, we would be introduced to new lands, immersed in their alien languages, exposed to foreign ways.
Julia Braun Kessler


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