Issue #207: Safety
by Lydia Fitzpatrick

cover_207One of my favorite school memories involves a giant parachute. Once a month, our gym teacher would unroll the colorful fabric. My class would stretch across the floor and play games, raising it up and down, catching the air. There was something magical about that moment, when we were all under the parachute together, and I remembered it vividly when I first read our new issue, “Safety” by Lydia Fitzpatrick. This finely-wrought tale explores a difficult subject: school shootings. The material might seem a bit daunting to some readers, but I will say now that if you do not open this story, you will be missing out on an astonishing accomplishment of suspense and point of view, that somehow turns a deplorable situation into a moment of courage, faith, hope and connection. Check out Lydia’s Q&A with us about how she explored her own fears while writing this compelling story. And when you’ve finished, you might find yourself thinking of your old gym teacher who always made you run extra laps, and the thrill of lifting a parachute over your head with the rest of your class. All those tiny hands making something enormous happen, with material strong enough to save lives, and still thin enough to let the light shine through.

3 thoughts on “Issue #207: Safety
by Lydia Fitzpatrick

  1. I read this story last night. It hit me viscerally from the first page and kept right on building. It was so very well-written, and I especially appreciated the way compassion existed alongside the suspenseful horror of the moment-by-moment unfolding, never letting that horror take over completely. I need to read “Safety” again before I have the words to say more. Thank you, Lydia Fitzpatrick, for such a powerful and beautifully written piece.

  2. This was one of the best short stories I have read this year. It sucks the reader in from the opening all the way through to the end during such a horrible event, but puts a real, human face to it. Wow.

  3. Lydia Fitzpatrick’s, “Safety”, reached the Top Three of all the many, many One Story collected issues (now numbered over 30) on my library shelf. Much about the text (the story/plot alone astounding) delighted me: the non-linear POV; the omni-directional verb tense; the close third (I huddled with those children, also); the perfect unsaid that said so much.

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