Category: Memoir

Our archive of past pieces that are part of a larger work of creative nonfiction.

Playing Poohsticks by Anika Fajardo

girl holding two twigs over bridge

The Colombian night air dances as the pool at the far end of the Termales de Coconuco slowly fills with tepid, sulfuric water. This is my first return visit to my birthplace, my first introduction to my father, a man who has been absent nearly all my life.

Nothing Left by John M. Wills

wooden in crosses in field with a note that says you are not forgotten on one

The autumn season had yet to morph the colors of the summer leaves. A beautiful contrast of gold and green made for a serene scene on this Pennsylvania hillside… Were it not for the scar on the complexion of this vista, it would have been the quintessential postcard.

Searching by Angela Fan

I am amused by the chattering of my new classmates. The way they speak seems so precise, so different and so harsh. American English, I think, is weird. Chinese is so much better.

Parting by Rachel Cann

He ordered a scotch and then broke the news that his appeal for a new trial had been denied. We were in the lounge of the Thunderbird Hotel in Miami, the baby upstairs in the room, asleep. “Twelve years. The judge threw the book at me. I did my best to charm him, but it didn’t do any good.” They’d used everything they could against him, including the time during the Depression when, at the age of five, he’d rapped another kid in the mouth with his shoe-shining kit for taking over his corner.

Big Brother by Noriko Nakada

airport directional sign for arrivals

She shows us a photo of a boy and tells us he is from Korea and will be our new brother. He’s standing on a wooden swing, clinging to a rope. He’s looking right into the camera, but the person taking the picture forgot to tell him to smile.

A Father

young girl looking out window

I say, “He was nice,” and watch the fair-skinned, jolly man slip into his car and drive away. From the kitchen, Mom says, “That was your dad.”

Support Group

Depressed man at tables with pills

I tried pills first, and when I woke up the next morning, I decided to jump off a bridge. The bridge swayed under my feet that night as I stood beside my car, hazard lights still on. I walked a few feet. I thought about my son asleep next to Holly, my wife, who will soon be my ex-wife. I thought about my daughter growing inside of my wife, who will soon be my ex-wife. I thought about the man, with whom I had had the affair…

Trivial Pursuits

Kim Dalferes

My challenge is—and always has been—that I’m not particularly good at any one thing. I’m not much of an athlete (OK. I have zero hand-to-eye coordination; it’s a good day if I get the pantyhose on straight), I can’t sing, and trust me you don’t ever want to see me try to dance. I could say I excel at making lasagna, but even my success here is attributed to Aunt Mary Ann’s recipe.