Archives of Inspiration

from the editor: movement, Summer 2022

I used to think I had to do everything I wanted to do in my life before I turned 30. Now, as I leave behind my 20s and move into a new decade, instead of feeling like a closing, life feels like it is opening up. And I’m pretty delighted by the surprise of that. […]

Pet Peeves: What ticks you off?

When we came across a list of pet peeves by Cher, it gave us great insight into who she is as a person, and it also gave us a beautiful realization: The things we don’t like tell us just as much about ourselves as the things we do.  So in these pages, we get to […]

meet along the way: Mildred Wilson

By Kristin Thomas This story was first published in the March 2021 issue of “The Best Years (TBY).” Mildred Wilson of Sikeston, Mo., has always enjoyed physical challenges and competitions. Throughout the past three years, she has competed in a Tough Mudder and a Conquer the Gauntlet race. She knows what it takes to train, […]

Spring 2022, “femininity:” from the editor

A four-year-old girl was running in circles, and her younger brother was following her. She was laughing, delighted, having so much fun; he was having fun, too, but kept falling down. “Slow down, you’re making your brother fall,” a nearby adult said to the girl. It’s an event I witnessed a few months ago. The […]

from the editor Winter 2021: space

There is a place in Perry County called Ball Mill Resurgence my sister knows about because she knows about good things, and she took me there. You can walk right up to it, the space in the woods where the earth falls away from a limestone wall, and look up. When it rains, the stones […]

tour the constellations: let’s trek through outer space

By Nicolette Baker   You watch the stars with some abstract fascination, but have you ever explored them? In Denver, there’s a certain place where the ground feels so intimately close with the sky, it’s as if you’ll be swallowed by the huge expanse of blue. That’s where I imagine you’ll be, head tilted so […]

Fall 2021: from the editor

A few years ago at the end of my semester of student teaching, I wrote a manifesto for my high school students, encouragement for how I hoped they would live their lives. I made it into a sign for them to hang in their classroom. I also made myself one, and it has become my […]

Saying “I Do:” Quiansha + Joseph Pierce

You’ve found the person with whom you want to spend your time as you live through this life, and you’ve made it official: You’re getting married. Congratulations! Now, it’s time for planning your wedding.  Here, five couples with ties to Southeast Missouri share the unique details of their journey of saying yes to each other […]

Saying “I Do:” KK + Tanner Beussink

You’ve found the person with whom you want to spend your time as you live through this life, and you’ve made it official: You’re getting married. Congratulations! Now, it’s time for planning your wedding.  Here, five couples with ties to Southeast Missouri share the unique details of their journey of saying yes to each other […]

Saying “I Do:” Anna + Chazz Upton

You’ve found the person with whom you want to spend your time as you live through this life, and you’ve made it official: You’re getting married. Congratulations! Now, it’s time for planning your wedding.  Here, five couples with ties to Southeast Missouri share the unique details of their journey of saying yes to each other […]