Let me ask you: Have you ever tasted a perfect pear? If you had, you would feel as tormented as I do – like Adam cast out of an Eden that haunts him in dreams and rumbles his stomach when he looks over the shoulder of the angel guarding the gate with a fiery sword, keeping him from the most perfect of places, the most delicious of fruits.Read More
The older I get, the more I talk to myself. So I said, “Why not use one of these exchanges to conduct a formal interview about my forthcoming poetry collection, Accomplices?” What a good idea!Read More
Writing fiction has come much harder to me than writing news articles and personal essays, but as I've sketched out characters, imagined their backstories, and steered them through conflicts, I've begun to realize the vast worlds that can be created with ink on the fibers of a blank white page.Read More
A poem and illustration by Charlie Shifflett.Read More
No storyteller has brought me closer to North Korea than the remarkable, collaborative work of the photographers who contribute to the @EverydayDPRK Instagram account. The account was started by David Guttenfelder, a prize-winning National Geographic Photographer who used to work for the Associated Press in North Korea.
In the photos posted to this account, we see glimpses into the lives of ordinary North Koreans. Spending time absorbing their details has helped me -- more than ever before -- see the humanity of a nation often portrayed through an impersonal, political lens.Read More