Home » Author Archives: Rachel McGuinness

Author Archives: Rachel McGuinness

Vietnam Across the Street

The reinforced steel mountain rose imposingly next to the front door of the house across the street from Grandmas. Every day at noon I sat in the rose-colored rocking chair staring through the picture window screen at the miniature lady with the gigantic hat tending to her front-yard garden softly singing, a Vietnamese lullaby coaxing her flowers into bloom. My ...

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I Met My Grandmother Through a Photograph


She is holding me right after I was born, shortly before she died. Everything I know about her is from pictures, and there’s not many of those because my grandfather took after Napoleon in many ways and burned all evidence of my grandmother’s existence after her unwilling exit from his life. She was beautiful, and sometimes I think I miss ...

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Street Corner Symphony


There’s something about the concrete angel on Michigan Avenue that draws street performers to its outstretched wings. The man in the slick yellow raincoat— matching clarinet in hand— seduces holiday shoppers with reedy Christmas tunes. The young men from the projects caress the angel’s wings with their drumsticks tapping out a beat picked up by the disabled veteran shaking a ...

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