Category Archives: Blog

Nesting by Stefanie Newman


I had long been convinced that destiny had intended me to be born and bred in Italy. Instead, I grew up in suburban Chicago. In September 2008 I set out to rectify fate’s error. Together with my husband Bill and our ten-year-old son Asher we would rent an apartment in Bologna, Italy for three months. It was a city whose streets were practically paved in tortellini and prosciutto and then, for good measure, covered over with miles of graceful porticoes. My husband and I were artists who had spent our youth among the angst-ridden expressionists … Continue reading Nesting by Stefanie Newman

Donald Trump Saved My Marriage by Ruth Ewers

Two cookbooks

Okay, maybe not exactly saved it, but at least shored it up. Let me tell you how. My husband and I married in the late 70’s, back when our generation was all about living simply, off the land and off the grid. We moved into a house with no indoor plumbing, used wood to heat, grew our veggies, and collected water from a nearby spring. Bob was a self-employed carpenter and I worked at a natural foods store. I made our bread from a dog-eared, oil and flour stained Tassajara Bread Book, and prepared meals … Continue reading Donald Trump Saved My Marriage by Ruth Ewers

Music & Memory by David Roach

Box of records

Soundtrack 3 (1964) It’s a cold February day. My parents and I are visiting Saint James School to decide if I will go there in the fall. I am in the ninth grade at Sligo Junior High School; I am lost there between the “hoods” and the “nerds,” not fitting into either group. I want to be a “hood,” of course, because they’re the tough, cool guys. I’m a bit scared of the idea of going off to boarding school, living with 120 strangers. I’m also anxious because tonight The Beatles are to make their … Continue reading Music & Memory by David Roach

We Have Winners

Balloons and Confetti

Congratulations to the winners of Streetlight’s 2018 Essay/Memoir contest! But first, a little whining. Judging a contest is a lot of hard work (whine, whine). I hasten to say I don’t mean the reading of the entries. That’s really fun. It’s the making of decisions. I had good help, but we had some very tough contenders. Everyone (perhaps with not quite as much whining as myself) agreed it was hard to make these decisions. We saw excellent writing, acute observation, heartfelt disclosure. Only three winners could prevail. I’m hoping that those who didn’t win will … Continue reading We Have Winners

Group Effort by Spriggan Radfae

the word gold written on paper

I like games. I like cooperative, team-building games in particular. Here is a game called Midnight Adventure that I played in competition with several teams: A group of five people (my team) worked together to carry a heavy railroad tie through midnight darkness and complete one circuit around a large building. Along the way, we listened in the dark for audible cues from non-participants and took instructions from them. Those people awarded us tokens, and my team required a certain number of tokens to finish the game. Also, team members were not allowed to talk … Continue reading Group Effort by Spriggan Radfae

Imaginings by Kateryna Bortsova

painting of busy street

  Images come in my imagination, either imposed by impressions from the movies, music or theater or by simple communication with another person. Some think my works are based on literature, but this is not so. The image of a potential picture will not leave my imagination until it is depicted on canvas or paper, an oil or acrylic painting. First, I inwardly develop all the details. Sometimes I start a small sketch, but the more detailed image is developed in my mind, the less time and effort I need for its implementation.                The … Continue reading Imaginings by Kateryna Bortsova

The Semicolon, Another Grammar Guidepost by Erika Raskin

Shadow of person on bicycle

A while ago I went with one of my nieces to get matching semicolon tattoos. This was remarkable for a variety of reasons: 1. I was 56. 2. Years before, when my eldest daughter came home from college sporting her first permanent ink, I may not have reacted well. 3. Trends in general have always bugged me. A lot. Our landfills are filled with them. So are our photo albums. 4. In terms of the grammar symbol itself, I never really got semicolons. Half comma, half period—what is that about? (Kurt Vonnegut rudely referred to … Continue reading The Semicolon, Another Grammar Guidepost by Erika Raskin

A Grammar Rule to Live By by Erika Raskin

Plane trail in the sky

“Period. New Paragraph,” the mother of a good friend of mine used to announce when changing subjects—sometimes mid-sentence. It’s a good rule for life in general, though. I believe in changing your mind. When I was in sixth grade I agreed to participate in an Outward Bound type field trip that involved rappelling down a cliff. I took one look at the ground below and sat on the grass. Period. New Paragraph I spent freshman year of college in a state so cold that by November when I went outside with wet hair, it froze … Continue reading A Grammar Rule to Live By by Erika Raskin

Beauty is in the Eye of the Boulder by Emily Littlewood

Yard with stone pathways and around trees

I’ve lived way out in the country for a little over a year and, with the exception of an inability to have food delivered, I have no complaints. There is something weird about the house though: the rocks. The previous owner used them to mark the driveway to separate it from the yard. But he didn’t stop there. He went on to create a path outlining the entire acre. He also used them to encircle the trees in the yard. Every. Single. Tree. We live in the George Washington National Forest. This is something that … Continue reading Beauty is in the Eye of the Boulder by Emily Littlewood

Maida’s Little Books by Susan Shafarzek

Drawing of a house made from neon wires

Maida Westabrook was a brave little girl who had a “floating mass of hair, pale gold and tendrilly” and also a serious chronic illness, which had at one time confined her to a wheelchair, but that was in the past. She could now walk, albeit with difficulty, and had many friends. She also had a devoted—and, happily, wealthy—father, a widower who cherished the life of this his only progeny and thus was devoted to making her life satisfying, stimulating, and worthwhile. To that end, as can happen only in fiction, he provided her (in a … Continue reading Maida’s Little Books by Susan Shafarzek