2017 Pushcart Nominations

fireworks over Sydney, Australia
 

2017 was an amazing year for Streetlight Magazine owing to the excellent content submitted by writers and poets from all over the world. Our editors chose six nominees for The Pushcart Prize (best of small presses) for excellent writing in non-fiction, poetry, and short fiction. We would like to publicly acknowledge these six authors for their incredible talent and wish them future success. Thank-you for allowing Streetlight Magazine to publish your work! Essay/Memoir nominees: Alex Joyner for Spirit Duplicator Anne Carle Carson for Sliding Poetry nominees: Linda Nemec Foster for Blue Brian Koester for Where … Continue reading 2017 Pushcart Nominations

Firedamp by Tonja Matney Reynolds

Photo looking up at birds in the sky
 

The canary was still. It was too late to run. Too late to escape. Too late to pray for God’s mercy.   Matt had been one of the lucky ones, one of sixteen coal miners chosen to work on a Saturday morning. His boy Luke brought the count to seventeen. Matt expected him to be excited for his first day of work, but Luke had been dawdling all morning. When they finally stepped inside the mine, the other men were already gathered a hundred feet ahead. Their carbide headlamps shone on the uneven, rough-cut earth … Continue reading Firedamp by Tonja Matney Reynolds

Mothers’ Day, 2016 by Joanna Lee

color photo of fallen bird's nest on asphalt
 

Joanna Lee is a finalist of Streetlight Magazine’s 2019 Poetry Contest.   We found two dead babies on the back granite slab that serves as a stoop, the same we salvaged from up home years ago, decaying in dad’s back yard. Birds. Their legs curled yellow and twisted, contracture of unbecoming; their angry mother with her shiny eye tearing the nails from the roof to get back to the nest we had so carefully sealed. Beside the bodies, the debris of a home: gaping …….hole in the gutters; pale fluffs of matted insulation; a casket-less … Continue reading Mothers’ Day, 2016 by Joanna Lee

And You, Do You Love Too? and Not Really a Game, Not Really, 2 poems by Claire Scott

Photo of child crossing sign ahead and narrow sidewalk
 

AND YOU, DO YOU LOVE TOO? I said I think I said I must have said don’t cross did I know should I have known did I email, call, text stay on the sidewalk he was far away was he ever far from me did I do nothing when I knew I must have known the driver sunblind was it today or Tuesday or last week I called out did I I must have after all he is my son   NOT REALLY A GAME, NOT REALLY DUCK DUCK DUCK DUCK chants Kathy running around … Continue reading And You, Do You Love Too? and Not Really a Game, Not Really, 2 poems by Claire Scott

Gemini by Charlotte Morgan

Photo of stars on sky avove a tree
 

When that technician pointed out two heartbeats and two precious teensy penises on the screen, I was over the moon. Buddy leaned over and kissed me and cried real quiet-like, like he wasn’t actually crying, but I knew he was. Right away the names Elvis and Jesse popped into my head—Mama raised me on Elvis—but I didn’t say that out loud. Buddy would’ve immediately made frying egg sounds and said in a high sissy voice, “This is your brain on baby.” I’d been a total ditz when I was pregnant with Kayla, but so far … Continue reading Gemini by Charlotte Morgan

Memento Mori by Melissa Knox

Photo of person by grave marked with rocks and teddy bear
 

To be no more; sad cure; for who would lose, Though full of pain, this intellectual being, Those thoughts that wander through Eternity, To perish rather, swallowed up and lost In the wide womb of uncreated night, Devoid of sense and motion? John Milton, Paradise Lost   In the middle of the night, my husband sat up; he’d been coughing too much and I’d been lying awake listening to his rasping breathing. His doctors understand as much as anyone about his little-known lung disease, but that’s not saying much. They’d ordered an oxygen tank which … Continue reading Memento Mori by Melissa Knox

First Responder by Joan Mazza

Back of brown envelope
 

Tired of bars and discos where I met men who drank and were in search of easy women, horrified by the scary men I met at church singles groups, I decided to be bold and placed a personal ad in the newspaper. “Are you out there?” the headline read. It was 1979, before the Internet, before Herpes and HIV were in the lexicon. I didn’t tell anyone but my shrink. I made my case: I could specify the kind of guy I wanted: smart, kind, solvent. He had to love books and dogs. Surely, I … Continue reading First Responder by Joan Mazza

CHECK UP OR CHECK OUT and PINE TALE by Charles Springer

Pine floor
 

CHECK UP OR CHECK OUT Friday is library day for Ray who picked Friday because it kinda rhymes with library and other days don’t so much and becoming well-read and new worldly is high up on the list in Ray’s lunch pail. Anyway Ray arrives and says hello to the girl at the desk and beelines over to periodicals where he selects an issue of People and in no time remembers having read this very issue last year, the issue about Brad and his sorrowful breakup and as Ray gets up to make another selection, … Continue reading CHECK UP OR CHECK OUT and PINE TALE by Charles Springer

Tips and Guidelines for Becoming a Shooting Star by Ashley Morrow Hermsmeier

Shooting star in dusky sky
 

Remain calm. You have purchased the crème de la crème of packages; don’t squander the experience with a panic attack. So bridges make you sweat. So you chew three Xanax every time you board a plane. So you refuse to open your eyes at the top of the Empire State Building, so so so…Think of the hospital beds and the tubes and the shots you will not have. Think of the chemo and the surgeries and the lopped off body parts you’re not trading for a few extra months. You’ve made your decision, so take … Continue reading Tips and Guidelines for Becoming a Shooting Star by Ashley Morrow Hermsmeier

Hot Toddies by Anne Carson

Person drinking from mug
 

***Anne Carson is the 2nd place winner of Streetlight’s 2018 Essay/Memoir Contest*** Before my older sister outgrew me, outgrew our entire family’s chaos, we shared a bedroom. For a few years there, we were good company for each other. We would stay up after bedtime and role-play storybook fantasies about our futures that seemed more like memories of a former life together centuries ago—as shopkeepers in some village. She on the twin bed beside the windows on the front of the house, me on the bed closer to the hallway. We sold fine goods, maybe … Continue reading Hot Toddies by Anne Carson