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The Drum

theme: relationships theme: relationships

AINE GREANEY The Man on the Train

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A train makes the perfect setting for this story about a woman in limbo--between jobs, between countries and cultures, between homes. Aine Greaney's "The Man on the Train" turns a conversation with a stranger into a study of belonging, as Lorna, Irish and recently arrived from her home in England, travels into Boston from her sister's suburban home. (22:07)

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CHARLIE WATTS Five Wishes

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"Five Wishes" unfolds in as many episodes, each one telling a linked variation on a tale of a boy, his mother and father, a stream, a shovel, and a piece of purple quartz. Taken together, these episodes are like facets on a stone, revealing new insights on this little family while at the same time allowing us to see the heart of the story. (16:15)

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DANIEL FOLEY HIGGINS Some Plastic City Beyond

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The accidental meeting of former lovers shapes Daniel Higgins' "Some Plastic City Beyond." Told mostly through dialogue, the story offers us the careful cadences of two people negotiating old wounds and new discoveries. (12:09)

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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. (11:17)

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JANE FLETT Monsters

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Sermonette and Tom meet at a concert. Tom is at the mic. Sermonette is watching. They go on to skirmish and flirt, resisting the monsters of Jane Flett's title even as those monsters grow within them. The narrative seethes with passion and inventive language as it takes us through this richly unconventional love story. (19:54)

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KATIE DEPASQUALE What The Spirit Rabbits Know

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An earthquake shakes the narrator's world just as she is shocked by news of a friend's death. But it's in the violence done to the natural order that she registers her loss. Tending for a rabbit, the narrator of Katie DePasquale's "What The Spirit Rabbits Know" comes to understand some part of what makes us mortal and alive, what gives us a fragile resilience. (7:22)

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