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The Drum

genre: essay genre: essay

ALYSIA ABBOTT Letting Him Go

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Alysia Abbott's essay tells the story of romantic risk--the risk of letting someone go in the hope and belief not only that it's the right thing to do, but also that it may be the only way to hold on. A Cat Power song, a striped shirt, and a Ukrainian restaurant all play a role in this tale of love.

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CHRISTI CRAIG In Texas

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In her essay "In Texas," Christi Craig recalls her teenaged self facing a dilemma of faith and family. Should she admit to her grandmother that she cannot speak in tongues, or should she pretend she can so as not to reveal her distance from the religion that has always bound them together? Looking back, Craig examines the connections that have endured.

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CUMI IKEDA If I Could Try It On, For Size

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Cumi Ikeda's essay explores identity and race through the lyrical rhythms of poetry. The essay asks us to contemplate how we see one another and how we see ourselves--how we exist through and beyond categories.

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MARK VANHOENACKER Skyfaring (excerpts)

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Mark Vanhoenacker reads excerpts from his recent book SKYFARING. In a seamless fusion of history, politics, geography, meteorology, family, and physics, the book asks us to reimagine what we--as pilots and as passengers--are actually doing when we enter the world between departure and discovery. www.skyfaring.com

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CATHERINE ELCIK What The Doctor Taught Me

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When family crises buffeted author Catherine Elcik with grief and stress, she found solace in the unlikeliest of places: Doctor Who. Or perhaps not so unlikely. For from this television program about time-shifting and agelessness and loss and endurance, Elcik learned powerful lessons about coping with the thieveries of illness and death. In this beautiful essay, Elcik offers wisdom to all of us--Whovians or not.

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MELANIE SENN The Art of Drumming Badly

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To hear Melanie Senn tell it, she is not a good drummer. But what matters more than her musical and percussive talent is her skill in telling the story of how she took to the drums--at first as a way to connect to her musician husband, and then as a way to experience delight. In "The Art of Drumming Badly," Senn shares her joy in learning something new and in learning not to care about inhibitions and expectations.

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