November & Persephone

A golden shredding of light, slow unfolding, the airy geometry of trees revealed in a day by day transfiguration of tough vegetable matter into clearer and clearer frames of radiance, until you scarcely know… More

The Holy Ghost’s Life of Writing

The Holy Ghost's Life of WritingI think the Holy Ghost has writtennot only the Bible but all books.—George Bernard ShawNo staring out the windows, no sharpening pencils,no torn-up pages,… More

WiPC Case List: January to June 2004

The Writers in Prison Committee (WiPC) of International PEN was set up in 1960 as a result of mounting concern about attempts to silence critical voices around the world… More

Sube a Nacer Conmigo

Buenas noches. Thirty years ago, when Pablo Neruda was buried in Santiago’s Cementerio General, I was living just a few miles away from where his body was being lowered… More

Multiple Rebirths

This talk was presented, in slightly different form, at a PEN Tribute to Gabriel García Márquez. It is often remarked that Gabriel García Márquez’s writings are read by people… More

Blood Feather

As Marcia does the dishes, she hears her daughter call from upstairs. “Mom, Mo-o-o-m . . . ” She races up but Ruthie isn’t in her room or even… More

The Torturer General

It seems surreal: The president's nominee for the highest legal position in the land is a proponent of torture. In his notorious Jan. 25, 2002, memorandum to Bush, Alberto… More