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Appetites

Issue #39, Spring 2009

Appetites drive us. Food, power, glory, destruction, for most of us in the Western world the Zen disposition of "not desiring" seems anathema. A voracious appetite for creativity and the need for new stimulus propels many artists, while for some, their unique physical appetites govern their lives and make for interesting art in and of themselves. In this issue we look at various appetites and desires, from the simple pleasures of a wild plum in Jane Hirshfield's spare, luminous poem to the extreme ingestion of food by competitive eaters in Tom Burke's profile, "The Long-Form Burrito Champion of the World." The fiction in this issue is permeated with the need for escape—physical and psychological—as well as the desire for sex, sexual knowledge, and belonging. Appetites can't help but lead to complications, even for the most liberated. Heather Hartley intereviews Catherine Millet, who, despite her international best-selling memoir, The Sexual Life of Catherine M., in which she bares the many, many sexual exploits of her libertine life, is still consumed by jealousy. As you delve into the issue, keep in mind Seneca's admonition, "A well-governed appetite is the greater part of liberty." Bon appétit.

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Nancy Reisman

ANTHONY IN WALTHAM • It stung her to hear, but it's true, he isn't Mary's father, and it's true that he doesn't want to be her father.

Stephen Marion

THE COLDEST NIGHT OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY • Once the lights were out Marcus reached into his clothes, where he had hidden the panties, and they were still there.

Pasha Malla

BIG CITY GIRLS • Althea had either been taken by someone or gotten lost, it wasn't clear. At one point her footprints just disappeared.

Ron Rash

THE ASCENT • Jared heard a helicopter hovering somewhere to the west, which meant after a week they still hadn't found the airplane.

Cary Holladay

THE DEER IN THE MIRROR • Conrad is the only man she ever wanted to marry, not from a feeling that she should, but from desire.

Ted Thompson

Fiction
MASCOTS • There was a cutter who had scars like tiny plastic slugs up and down her arm, and a guy who had torched his high school gym with a bucket of gasoline.

Kyle Booten

Poetry
THE BLACK PLAGUE

Charles Wright

THE ONLY THING I-CHING HEXAGRAMS ARE LACKING
WITH ALIGHIERI ON BASIN CREEK
TWILIGHT OF THE DOGS

John Estes

BODYWORLD(S)

Tracy K. Smith

THE UNIVERSE IS A HOUSE PARTY
WHAT IF YOU'D GONE ANYWAY?

Sean Hill

DISTANCE BETWEEN DESIRES
SUGARING REDUX

Catherine Millet

Tin House Paris Editor Heather Hartley talks with the author of The Sexual Life of Catherine M. about the intricacies of a libertine lifestyle and the creation of erotic literature.

Thomas Burke

THE LONG-FORM BURRITO CHAMPION OF THE WORLD • Who would've guessed that competing on the professional eating circuit is no picnic?

Kim Adrian

HOW TO BUY PEACHES • Breasts. Boobs. Tits. Hooters. Honkers. Headlights. Rack. Titties. Ta-tas. Knockers. Melons. Jugs. The Twins. Funbags.

Scott Korb

WHY WE HUNT • Two vegetarians set out to kill a deer. You'll never guess what happens next.

Eva Hagberg

ON MARILYN LEVY'S SUMMER SNOW AND ANONYMOUS' GO ASK ALICE In which we learn why there maybe aren't more YA books involving drug addiction.

Daniel O'Malley

ON DANIEL WOODRELL'S GIVE US A KISS

A.N. Devers

ON EDOGAWA RAMPO'S JAPANESE TALES OF MYSTERY AND IMAGINATION • Think Edgar Allen Poe with a twist and turn of the erotic.

Justin Taylor

ON STEPHEN KING'S NEEDFUL THINGS • Mr. Horror satirizes our darkest desires with visions that foresee the Wal-Mart massacre of Black Friday.

Sara Roahen

ON ROBERT FARRAR CAPON'S THE SUPPER OF THE LAMB: A CULINARY REFLECTION The Moby-Dick of cookbooks is as much about how to live as it is about how to cook.

Audrey Ference

COCKTAILIANS • These antiquarians of the drink stir up a new subculture.

Ann Hood

MY FATHER'S PARTY • The author makes a Proustian discovery in her father's Shake 'N Bake and Rice-A-Roni recipes.

Jeff Koehler

SARDINES! • One man's recollections of these salt-cured fish are packed in his mind like, well, you know what.

Kate Christensen

I CANNOT LIVE ON BREAD AT ALL • A culinary viking's scorched-earth adventures in gluten-free eating.