Objects as offerings, so many squirrels, persistence of pebbles...

Welcome back to Memoir Monday—a weekly newsletter and a quarterly reading series, brought to you by NarrativelyThe RumpusCatapultGrantaGuernica, and Literary Hub. Each personal essay in this newsletter has been selected by the editors at the above publications as the best of the week, delivered to you all in one place. 

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Accidental Altars

by Indu Subaiya (Rumpus original art by Sumayya Ansari)

"By the time the religious identity pinball works its way through the maze to land in my particular Christian bucket, it traces an unusual path. Am I a Christian is less a matter of faith than the set up to a more primary question: was I forced to be one?

Read more at The Rumpus

When the Squirrels Are Over

by T Kira Mahealani Madden (Photograph by Andrey Svistunov/Unsplash)

"I can't find a metaphor for the squirrels. Each time they scratch and chatter above the bedroom ceiling, or nibble through the insulation of our attic leaving a confetti of toxins on the kitchen counter, each time they screech and scream their mating calls and fuck and tumble and find a new way into our house, I think, This should mean something. This should carry allegorical or metaphorical properties; that might make it feel better. But there is no meaning. I haven't found one yet."

Read more at Catapult

Pebbles

by Max Porter (Image © Tony Alter)

"I was pent up anyway. This was in the trying-to-quit-smoking sleep-deprived early days and I had been screaming at the twins. Go to sleep. Fucking go to sleep. I was driving round town again and again, so they’d fall asleep. I was bored. Karen and I hadn’t had sex in weeks. Work was shite. It was the pre-internet days, small sad amounts of money, sad meetings in sad towns, then back to sad Karen and the screaming twins. I was frustrated and angry. It was really a tiny pebble, but I’d seen one of those adverts about windscreens cracking, about wearing driving gloves so you can punch out a windscreen, so before I’d really thought about it I pulled a U-turn in the layby and drove back."

Read more at Granta


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