American mythologies: Everybody in Khakis

Of course the truth is that despite the fact that advertising agencies are shaming us into looking alike on the outside and conservative politicians are trying to make sure we’re all the same race and religion, despite the fact that we haven’t always had the highest tolerance for difference, America has a splendid history of eccentrics, some celebrated, some obscure and forgotten.

Wormley Hughes

The man who dug Jefferson’s grave was named Wormley Hughes. He was the principal gardener at Monticello. The garden at Monticello is a true thing of wonder. Beautiful, useful, inspiring – a perfect spot to sit and ponder questions of liberty and independence. Wormley Hughes was informally (not legally) freed after Jefferson’s death (famously, on July 4th), and shortly thereafter, Hughes’ wife and 8 of his children were divided and sold away from each other.

Letter From the Editor July: Words and Silence

It seems more important now than ever to tell our stories and share our stories, and listen to the stories of others. To amplify the voices of anybody struggling to be heard, and to celebrate when the words or images or silences speak to us or bewilder us or transform us. To harness our anger or sadness or joy in a wild productive fury, resonating with the strange perfect words we make our own or the deafening silences we inhabit.

Fiction: Profile

“The suburban kids are the worst.” Joe Bird stands with his hands on his hips, disconcertingly unperturbed by the repeated crashing behind him. “Kids” aged roughly 12 to 18 years, of both sexes, throw themselves violently into a chain link fence.