Kirsten Alexander

The Violence Issue

We don’t need to be reminded about violence. If you want a “Violence Issue” you basically just need to wake up in the morning.

Still, we need to process it. And we all are, in our own ways, whether we want to or not. In our heads or in our hearts or on the page.

Here are four writers processing violence.

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Terra Firma

It was a bad idea to walk through the park on a moonless night, almost morning, alone. But to walk around it would take an hour or more, and I was sure to get lost. I had no money for a taxi. And my repeated trips up and down the soggy stairs of the Trade Union Club, pushing through heaving rooms, asking everyone I knew — in a shout — if they’d seen my companion Jo, had delivered me nothing.

I stood on the footpath, weighing my few options, knowing I would walk through the park despite my reservations, pushing down the shame of being abandoned, blaming Jo for my choice even as I scripted the nonchalant telling of my bravado.

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The AR Reading List

An ongoing assortment of books by contributors, staff, and books we've featured in reviews.