Try to remember your earliest memory. The further back I think, the more fragmented and shattered my memories become. Sometimes, they’re memories that have been cultivated by my family, and I suspect their careful tending to each early image in my mind has shaped the events, changed it to match our shared stories more closely than the actual events that occurred. Human memory is strange like that: What seems real may be based more firmly in fantasy than anything else. The earth’s memory, however, is much more reliable.

As those of us in the northern hemisphere ease into autumn, the earth begins a familiar routine. Loons, hatched this spring, race across the surface of great northern lakes and take flight, heading to Florida for the winter without being told that the cold weather is about to come. Their instinct is their memory, and they need not be told. Wild rice ripens and falls, in a more bountiful version of the leaves of maples, oaks, birches, the trees of Frost and Thoreau. All around us are signs that the summer is ending, yet in this ending is a glorious, shining beginning: the start of fall, the season of the harvest, the reaping of the seeds that have been coming to fruit all summer.

This month, InTheFray explores stories of beginnings. In Floating through space and time , Francis Estrada looks at Filipino culture in the United States and various representations thereof. During Ramadan, the end of the day signifies the beginning of a meal for Muslims. Kyle Boelte tells the story of a family from Darfur living in Maine in his piece Ramadan dinner. David Xia explores the connections between endings and beginnings and his only family history in Un/certain trajectories. Finally, Ellen G. Wernecke reviews The Snakehead: An Epic Tale of the Chinatown Underworld and the American Dream.

We hope that you enjoy the change of the season and this time of beginnings and endings. Thanks for reading InTheFray!

I am a writer/editor turned web developer. I’ve served as both Editor-in-chief and Technical Developer of In The Fray Magazine over the past 5 years. I am gainfully employed, writing, editing and developing on the web for a small private college in Duluth, MN. I enjoy both silence and heavy metal, John Milton and Stephen King, sunrise and sunset. Like all of us, I contain multitudes.

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