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While we are currently at our maximum number of regular contributors, Mockingbird is happy to publish quality writing from guests. To submit something for consideration, simply email it to info@mbird.com. We can’t promise anything, but we will take a look. Naturally, the best way to get a sense of what we are looking for is to read the site.

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    1917 and the Ruin of Beautiful Things

    This one comes to us from Jeb Ralston. We do not seek peace in order to be at war, but we go to war that we may have peace. – Augustine 1917 is a brutal and beautiful film. The shots of falling cherry-blossoms complemented by the terrific lighting contrast scenes of corpses integrated seamlessly into the […]

    The Body and the Coffin

    This one comes to us from Kurt Armstrong. A few years ago I built a coffin for my father-in-law Walter. I made it with oak plywood, the oak a nice veneer, the plywood strong and stable so it wouldn’t warp or twist or cup. I built it, stained it, and varnished it, and I kept […]

    Because It Rains: Why Kobe Bryant’s Death Hit So Hard & Wide

    The following was written by Isabella Yosuico. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. (Matthew 5:45) Why has a death like that of Kobe Bryant—and his daughter and companions—hit so many so very hard? Even non-basketball fans have been […]

    Pissed-Off Prayers

    This one comes to us from Nathan Hoff. The god of my own imagining used to prefer edited prayers. Knee-deep in the psalter these days, I have greater appreciation for full-blown imprecation, even as a Christian. Imprecatory psalms—the ones that curse enemies—are that category that never gets read in public worship. They don’t fit with […]

    The Sisyphean Rhythm of “Strange Negotiations”

    This review was written by Kurt Armstrong. Let’s start at the end: David Bazan, the subject of Brandon Vedder’s film Strange Negotiations, loads guitars and amps into the back of his van, gets behind the wheel, and backs away from his house. Back on the road to play a new string of shows, leaving behind […]

    “Hello, 911?” Samantha Irby and the Dis-Ease of Daily Life

    Grateful for this post by the one and only Jenoa Saplin. Samantha Irby, author, comedian, and screenwriter, has a new collection of essays titled “Wow, No Thank You,” to be published in March. For those uninitiated with the work of this midwesterner blogger-turned-author, then oofta, are you in for a treat. On her site Bitches […]

    Somebody Pray for Me

    This one comes to us from Ryan Alvey. Like many people I was drawn to Kanye’s album Jesus Is King. Thanks to Spotify I had instant access, and was also tempted to have an instant take. But albums, good or bad, reveal their fruit over time. So I’ve been listening to it most days for […]

    Twenty-Five Picture Books for Grown-Ups

    Grateful to Mandy Smith for compiling this. “You must never illustrate exactly what is written. You must find a space in the text so that the pictures can do the work.” – Maurice Sendak It’s said that medieval churches had stained glass windows for the illiterate masses. But I’m starting to think that, even in […]

    Where Is the Gospel in Adoption?

    Grateful for this anonymous piece: I became an orphan 37 years ago, somewhere in South Korea. I can’t be more specific — I don’t know when I was left, who left me, or even where. My orphanage paperwork only says that sometime that summer, “By request of [the police], we intook the child to be […]

    One Thing You Can’t Say About Pope Pius XIII

    The following comes to us from Alan Jacobs. There are many things you could say about Pope Pius XIII, AKA Lenny Belardo. You could say that is he a saint. You could say that he is a con artist. You could say that he is a man of great humility, who wants to become “the […]

    Among the Other Gods: A Christian Air Force Chaplain’s Weird Work

    Thankful for this distinct perspective from Clifton Hanson. At the beginning of Advent, I found myself leading a tree lighting ceremony. I’ve been part of tree lighting ceremonies before—this was no ordinary one. Sure, we did the usual stuff: important people addressed the crowd, we read the Christmas story from St. Luke’s Gospel, and of […]

    I Am Not a Morning Person

    This one comes to us from Kate Campbell. It’s no secret to basically anyone who knows me that I am not a morning person. No matter how many different schemes or habits or alarm clocks I have tried, I have never successfully established a morning routine. I am 100% a night owl — that’s when […]

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