We have here an issue of city experience explored in prose, poetry, and visual images. David Bergen treats us to a sneak preview from his new novel Leaving Tomorrow, set in Paris, and Patrick Friesen remembers his trip from Steinbach to Winnipeg, which is, to paraphrase poetry editor Di Brandt, “40 miles and 400 years away.”
Sarah Klassen, The Wittenbergs (Winnipeg: Turnstone Press, 2013). Paperback, 404 pages, $21.00.
“The stories people tell have a way of taking care of them,” writes Barry Lopez. “If stories come to you, care for them. And learn to give them away where they are needed. Sometimes a person needs a story more than food to stay alive.” Stories, retold from the past and lived consciously in the present, are the Wittenbergs’ salvation.
Who are you, my Lord, and who am I? The words famously uttered by St. Francis of Assisi filtered across my mind when I am hiking in the desert a short drive from my and my husband’s apartment in El Paso. Maybe I thought of them because I saw what I imagined the caves of Assisi looking like in the rock walls of the Franklin Mountains, or maybe I thought of them because in the desert we have our share of contemplatives, mystics, pilgrims and hermits living alongside exiles and immigrants.