All posts by Sharon Ackerman

Nightcap by Barry Roth

bourbon, pipe, glass, pocket watch
 

The struggle with what they call the mind opens new fronts. Migration, which should drop new birds into my garden, has not yet started, and the residents have made themselves scarce this year. I’m close to giving up my resistance to deity, and to the admission that solitude in age is not the greatest refuge after all. Hanging the hummingbird feeder is a variant of my nightly trek to the corner for the comfort of a sundowner. Barry Roth is a writer, editor, and biologist living in San Francisco, California; his biology practice focuses on … Continue reading Nightcap by Barry Roth

Van Gogh by Elizabeth Dingmann Schneider

old color wheel with large purple center
 

         “The rose is red because it rejects red.” —John O’Donohue, Beauty: An Invisible Embrace Van Gogh’s White Roses were meant to be pink, the faded madder red sold to him by a charlatan peddling adulterated pigments. This false red abandoned his roses, leaving only a chemical trace accessible to the scientists who now analyze what lies within. Undoubtedly, today the roses are white, the pigment rejecting not only the red vibrations but all wavelengths of light, sending them bouncing back at the human eye, as pure white as the light driven through Newton’s second … Continue reading Van Gogh by Elizabeth Dingmann Schneider

After Sunset by Ronald Stottlemyer

Sunset at Joshua Tree National Park
 

Eventually I find the shovel upright in the blackened pile of compost behind the garage. It’s hard to see in this light, but everything looks much as I left it last fall–shriveled ears of orange peel, a few egg shell fingernails, corncobs sticking up like bones in an ancient grave. As I turn the mound over a couple of turns for good measure, the moon breaks out of a heavy cloud and brightens momentarily with a grisly smile. The dark goes on rising up around me, turning everything under like the swell you never hear … Continue reading After Sunset by Ronald Stottlemyer