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Issue #18, Winter 2003
In this issue, as with every issue of Tin House, we're publishing stories that have come to us from every possible angle. Andrew Roe's story "Are you OK?" was plucked from the Tin House Summer Writers' Workshop. Alison Grillo's story "Phone Sex in Milwaukee" was excavated from the slush pile, the very same one that one-time Tin House reader Anthony Swofford, pre-mega-selling Jarhead, used to mine for buried gems. In this issue, Swofford returns to Tin House with a chilling story of marines in Iraq during Gulf War I. Sebastian Matthews, in an excerpt from his memoir about his father, the late poet William Matthews, captures his father's passion for the craft of poetry. Accompanying Sebastian's piece are two previously unpublished poems by William Matthews. There are also interviews with Paul Collins, intrepid rescuer of old texts, and with Jim Shepard, who has two new books out this year. Shepard talks with his old friend, novelist Ron Hansen, about why in the world we keep on doing what we do.
Julia Slavin, Anthony Swofford, Michael Redhill, Dale Peck, Kathryn Chetkovich, Sigizmund Krzhizhanovsky, Alison Grillo, Adam Levin, Natasha Rodojcic-Kane
SQUATTERS • Like most squatters, a repeat offender. Once you squat, you never stop. You move store to store. Like a roach.
WILL THEY KILL YOU IN IRAQ? • He is a pogue, in the rear with the gear. During peace, the pogue is the lowest life-form in the Marine Corps.
HUMAN ELEMENTS • Given that she was in a bikini catching frogs for the government, I felt free to say, 'I'm writing poems in a rented cabin to get over a breakup.'
SKY WRITING • She burst into laughter. 'Oh my God! Are folks on airplanes always this weird?'
THE HOUR OF EVERYTHING • 'What if there's something else like sex,' she said to him once, 'some big secret somebody will pull us aside to tell us about?'
THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA • And so they began to live and go about their lives together, the worm and the old man.
PHONE SEX IN MILWAUKEE • 'I'm not a transvestite or anything, but simply a crackerjack beat writing with a very feminine side.'
FRANKENWITTGENSTEIN • 'You're eighteen, now. It's about time you and your Dad had a talk about girls and technology.'
SHADES OF MANGO • Take the bad girl with you, the Aunts advise. Being under the same roof with a serious, respectable man will be constructive.
Stefi Weisburd, Inger Christensen, Monica Ferrell, Terrance Hayes, Ales Debeljak, William Matthews
STONE CUTTER'S MOTHER SPEAKS
STORY OF MASTER AND DISCIPLE
I LET A SONG GO OUT OF MY HEART
Andrew Roe, Rita Chin
ARE YOU OK? • Naked is not good. Naked is not sexy. Naked is not, suddenly, tragically, what you want to be.
Ron Hansen, Genesius Durica
JIM SHEPARD • 'Why ain't you famous, kid?' the author of Marriette in Ecstasy asks his old friend, who, with two new books coming out this year, may be on the verge.
PAUL COLLINS • An obsessive delver into old books, magazines, and newspapers believes that there isn't that muhc new under the sun.
Lost & Found:
Robert Gray, Cassandra Gleghorn, Paul Winner, Ales Debeljak
ON TOM PHILLIPS'S APPROPRIATION OF THE VICTORIAN NOVEL THE HUMAN DOCUMENT BY W.H. MALLOCK
ON CHARLES PORTIS'S TRUE GRIT
ON TOM DRURY'S THE END OF VANDALISM
OREGANO: THE BRAWNY SPICE
The Last Word:
RUINING THE NEW ROAD • Watching his father, the late poet William Matthews, teach.