Coming Tomorrow from “Tell It Slant”: Fighting for a Future

Wednesday June 12, I’ll post the first in a series of excerpts from Tell It Slant, the new biography of Chuck Fager by Emma Lapsansky-Werner.

It’s a story of life in “interesting times,” and begins with two of its main motifs — religion and war — shaping lives and events.

Watch  for  it  on this page.

(An initial post from June 10 is here.)

“CHUCK: It had been several years. When I arrived, my grandfather Fager was sitting in a simple rocking chair, on the small lawn in front of their tiny post-farm retirement cottage, in St. Paul, Kansas.

Lanky and taciturn, he wore much-faded overalls and a white straw fedora pushed back from his forehead. He rose to greet me, and said, “Hello Charles. Haven’t seen you in a day or two.”

Then he sat back down, began to rock slowly, and pulled out a pocketknife.

Unfolding the blade, he plucked a small dark stick from beside the chair and began to whittle it into curled fragments that skittered across his overalls down into the green grass. Sereta bustled back and forth from the house, and often made comments, but usually referred my queries to him.

It was not a productive conversation. To almost every question, his answer was the same, like a mantra, and this is it in full . . . .”

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