Dear Reader,

Welcome back. We missed you over the break. During our week off, we revamped our website, You can find this issue — including a travelogue of a train journey to California (2) and a review of the film “Russian Ark” (5) — and a complete archive of everything we’ve published this semester online.

Just before break, Lauren Cooper ’16 and a group of Reed community members explored the first building to house Reed (1). It was then replaced by this Crystal Springs Farm campus that was President Foster’s ‘First Love,’ — also the title of Charles Nunziato’s serial short story that starts this week (3).

Cheer up — there are only five weeks left! If you want to blow off some steam, write something for The Grail.

And, as always, we invite you to our weekly open meetings, Mondays at 8 in PAB 105.


Ben, Brendan, Clara, Jordan, Lauren, and Vikram

News & Features

News & Features
Sifting Through the Wreckage of Olde Reed

An unassuming three-story building blends into the skyline on the corner of SW 11th and Jefferson. The first floor corner room is mostly glass, scrawled over with writing in paint from Portland State University students. The room was used for several years as a classroom for the PSU field work program. The next two storeys are hardly more impressive: some brickwork covered in a drab beige. This building, unimpressive as it seems, is Olde Reed, in the most literal sense. 

No Train, No Gain

Over spring break, Isabel Meigs ’16, Mike Frazel ’17, Zoe Rosenfeld ’16, Vikram Chan-Herur ’17 and Stoddard Meigs (Isabel’s twin brother, a sophomore at Vassar College), all took the train from Portland to Emeryville, California. They brought with them a bag of provisions from Trader Joe’s and their school readings. Two among them, Mike and Isabel, had never been to California. The train notes we have offered here are a touching story of friendship and childlike discovery.


Fiction & Poetry

Toward the end of this most recent August I made a trip up to the house where I spent most of my summers as a boy. The journey was nearly rendered impossible by a disruptive late summer storm, Hurricane Lisa,which residents of the area should certainly recall as being particularly fickle and destructive. Yet I ended up arriving before the worst of things, the train pulling into Hartford Station (as to this day I do not drive) while gusts of rain clicked against the roof and windows of the train car, the fogged glass and roaring wind giving the oddest sensation of being removed from both space and time. 

Graceful Grousings

You must select a collection to display.

Film Review

Film Reviews

December 23, 2001 is the last chance for Russian director Alexander Sokurov. Holed up inside St. Petersburg’s State Hermitage Museum, an exhausted camera crew, two thousands actors in period costume, and three orchestras are waiting for the signal to start. This is the one fact that everyone who has heard of “Russian Ark” knows even before watching it: this movie was filmed entirely in one take. Using a Steadicam to stabilize the shot, the whole 96-minute movie was filmed and saved, uncompressed, onto a hard disk. No cuts, no transitions; this is the most realistic movie I’ve seen. 

De Sastre

De Sastre
Classy Leopard

Cheetah girls, cheetah sistahs? Since one half of De Sastre hails from New Jersey, there is nothing more appreciated than a subtle use of leopard print for a change. Melissa Boettner leans more towards runway than Raven Baxter dressed in her classy Zara leopard print geometric sweatshirt paired with an understated leather skirt. Go to dosdesastres. for the accents making this outfit! Until next time! — MUK & AA 

Miss Lonely Hearts

Miss Lonely Hearts

Dear Miss Lonely Hearts, 

I have serious conundrum. I would like Robert Knapp to be my grandfather. I know that he’s married and he’s never met my grandmother but I feel they’d hit it off ! She has a PhD in English and they could talk about Shakespeare and theatre to their hearts delight. After all, didn’t Romeo say, “How sweet is love itself possess’d / when but love’s shadows are so rich in joy”? 

I want Robert Knapp’s beard in my Christmas card, not just the beard, but also a Norman Rockwell-esque picture of us and their domestic bliss. How can I help the two of them start this whirlwind romance that will forever change their (and by extension my) lives. 


Wanting to be grandson 

Cultural Calendar

Cultural Calendar

LCD Soundsystem, Neutral Milk Hotel, Nicolas Cage, and more...