Dear Mary,

I met you years ago while I was at the Fine Arts Work Center. I'd written a story on which I wanted feedback and which I thought you might find interesting. You invited me to your home and brewed coffee so strong it could have awakened the dead. This was '86, and I no longer remember what we talked about, though the story was eventually published and the collection of which it was a part was a NY Times Notable. But I remember your graciousness, your openness, and the loveliness of your strong hands as they poured the coffee. I have carried the beauty of that moment with me for over 25 years, and still it touches me. I felt blessed.

Thank you,

Richard Spilman