Editor's Note Vol 5: Iss 1

This collection of work comes from a Group Health Writer’s Conference. Participants were asked to write for 10-15 minutes, creating a “Quick Write” piece to share with their group and with us. These short stories, told in a few minutes, tell stories deeply personal, heartfelt, and heartwarming; stories of becoming whole, finding self, finding home, and helping patients to become whole—emotionally if not physically. These are stories of loss and hope; stories of humanity. The images reflect that humanity: a flower from a loved one and a mother’s “worship flower,” a footstep in the sand, and more.

 We tell our stories and create images to express our human experience; we read stories and gaze upon art to share in that experience, to learn from the experience of others, and to revel in our own humanity. I hope you enjoy these brief revelries.

—Max McMillen, ELS

The Nile

Prose, Volume 5; Issue 1

Floating down the Nile, I could hear the waves hit the sides of the boat. The air was still, and warm, and calming. On the banks people working the fields would stop for a moment to look up and offer a friendly wave to us as we passed by. The fabric canopy over the lounge chairs shielded us from the sun, and yet drinking the hot tea was somehow refreshing. The stillness, the low din of the boat’s engines, and the gentle rock of the boat lulled me to sleep. It was such a welcomed event. Coming to Egypt with my friend Laurel was both the adventure of a lifetime and the opportunity to escape the heartache I’d been dealing with for months. It was a chance to get away from the grief that felt so consuming.

Upon waking, I felt a sense of relief, knowing that I could now let go.  The weight was slowly lifting, and it was freeing.  I was coming out of a dark hole into the sunshine again. In that moment, I started feeling alive and hopeful again as I watched the world pass by, my soul waking back up in the calm breeze, the sunshine upon my skin.

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