Best Buddies

Some things we can let go of. Other things we can stash in the bottom drawer. But the best things can stay in your heart forever.

Sunday Fatback

As a child, she saw only the difference between the simple food in her home and the fancier fare on her friends’ tables. Years later, she would see more clearly.

My Mother the Crow

Inevitably, it comes time for the one who loves us best to leave. But maybe she’s always around, like that bird outside the window.

The Only Lie

Her father was a Pentecostal minister who never told a lie in his life. Until he did. And it was so big, it stayed with the family forever.

Myrtle’s Malapropisms

A writer remembers pickling beans with her grandmother, “the Appalachian Gothic version of Yogi Berra.”

Long Gone and Gone Far

The Great Recession forced more than a million Americans into nomad land, traveling in search of seasonal work. Bill Scott chose that life forty years ago.

The Happiness of Saying Goodbye

Long ago, a pair of larger-than-life families—two couples with seven kids between them—rang in the new year together every year. Some bonds never break.

One on One

The painful love of being a dad, as it plays out on the basketball court.

Diving With Ghosts

A Marine vet from the South searches for memories of a grandfather who fought in the Pacific during WWII—and for meaning in the wars he and millions of others have fought.

No Tears for Granny Vance

The last time she saw her Granny alive, she was only six and looking through a hospital window. But it wasn’t the last time she saw her. Not at all.

What Daddy Can’t Fix

The prospect of coming out to his parents scared him to death. But they were fine with it. Anyway, that’s what it seemed like at first.

Cordelia’s Giggle

She inherited only three things from the grandmother she never knew: her forehead, her laugh, and the stories told by her three sons.