Category Archives: Blog

The Strangeness of Being Here at All: Franz Wright’s Redemption Story By Alex Joyner

Blurry photo of group of people
 

There are days I wake up in sluggish wonder, newly aware, as a last dream image drifts away, of the marvel of my beloved still beside me in the bed, the fan beating time through the air, and the persistence of this body and mind. Or as the poet Franz Wright would put it in a prayer: You gave me in secret one thing to perceive, the tall blue starry strangeness of being here at all. —The Only Animal “It is strange to be here. The Mystery never leaves you alone.” The Irish priest-poet John … Continue reading The Strangeness of Being Here at All: Franz Wright’s Redemption Story By Alex Joyner

A Craft Talk by Katherine Smith

Sun shining though hole in red leaf
 

ALLOWING THE LEAF For an ultrasound exam, I ran on a treadmill and then was hooked up to a machine that showed my heart pumping blood. It was an incredible thing to see my heart keeping perfect time, beating with a precision, grace, and power I never knew I possessed. It’s almost embarrassing just to mention the word “heart” in a poem, and yet my heart, indifferent to its embarrassing lack of originality, keeps me alive. Heart Monitor was inspired by my echocardiogram. The heart monitor helped me see what’s always there. At around the … Continue reading A Craft Talk by Katherine Smith

Comings and Goings by Roselyn Elliott

Colors in calligraphy message
 

These past two years and three months, since May 2017, have been a special period in my life that I hadn’t expected to experience. During my tenure as poetry editor, it has been my honor to share this labor of love with a group of editors who go way beyond the expectations readers may have of a group of volunteers. Yes, Streetlight Magazine, like so many literary magazines, is produced by a 100% volunteer staff who are dedicated to not only publishing a good looking, accessible lit mag, but to growing the website and its … Continue reading Comings and Goings by Roselyn Elliott

How to Fight the Self-Doubt that Comes with Writing Your First Book by Lauren Sapala

Photo of paper with messy writing on it
 

Writing my first novel was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. It took me two full years to get through the first draft, and I felt like I was slogging my way through the entire time. I would write sections of the book and read over what I had written and cringe. Sure, I also had days where I felt like I had actually written something good, but most of the time I was full of self-doubt. I had never written a book before, so I had no idea what I was doing. I tried … Continue reading How to Fight the Self-Doubt that Comes with Writing Your First Book by Lauren Sapala

Neglecting the Work by Ann E. Michael

Photo of white, rusty old Dodge
 

It seemed to me to have been a long time since I devoted serious focus to my creative work—I mean in terms of organizing, keeping track, revising, submitting to journals, compiling a draft manuscript of newer work…the so-called business of poetry. I resolved therefore to spend a weekend at the task. Alas. The weekend revealed to me the extent of my benign neglect: ten years of not-really-being-on-the-ball. I do not consider myself a particularly prolific poet, but I found myself faced with well over a ream of poetry pages, many poems only in their second … Continue reading Neglecting the Work by Ann E. Michael

Postcards and Authors by Anita Martin

Collage of different postcards
 

You are quirky in a very classy way. Postcards and trinkets and such. You make it all so interesting. Unathi to Anita Dear Debbie, Is your spirit smiling as I work on my third act? It’s been over ten years since the ovarian cancer took you away, and much longer since we brainstormed Mail Just for Me. Do you remember? It was before websites and social media and we were going to create a correspondence for kids. The plan was to learn about the girls and boys, individualize the notes that we sent. I loved … Continue reading Postcards and Authors by Anita Martin

Background! by Miles Fowler

Photo of eight men
 

In 1982, when I lived in the San Francisco Bay Area, I became what most movie-goers would call an extra, or what the movie business objectifies as “background.” I was in at least four movies, three of them big releases. A friend of mine, John-Michael, told me he was an extra on the The Right Stuff and said if I wanted to be one, too, I should go to Northern California Casting in San Francisco. There I was told to get a haircut, put on a conservative suit, and show up at the Cow Palace … Continue reading Background! by Miles Fowler

Jenny Rossi: Many Shades of New England

Color photo closeup of leaf with water droplets
 

  New England is fertile ground for any photographer, and I enjoy drawing from this environment. I’ve long had a love of taking pictures. There’s the heft of a camera, the frustrating magic of lens, light, and alchemy of movement—the frozen awkward smile, or the contemplative stare unknowingly observed and crystalized in time. I took a photography course in high school and I’ll never forget the awe of first seeing Ansel Adams’s landscape photography. The expansive views, the richness. Until then, I didn’t know black and white photography could actually be that expressive. Unlike Adams, I don’t do … Continue reading Jenny Rossi: Many Shades of New England

Writers and Artists—It’s Time for You to Stop Trying to Fit into Society’s Conventional Box by Lauren Sapala

Black & white photo of woman holding small box
 

All my life I’ve gotten into random conversations with people where the subject of our life trajectories comes up, and I always end up feeling kind of weird. This past weekend I hung out with a friend who told me he decided on his career path in high school, diligently researched colleges, applied himself strenuously to his field of study, threw himself at the best internships available, and then went on multiple rounds of job interviews with companies he had also heavily researched, and that’s how he ended up in his current job. He made … Continue reading Writers and Artists—It’s Time for You to Stop Trying to Fit into Society’s Conventional Box by Lauren Sapala

Time To Write by Laura Marello

Little sign that says Write
 

So delicious—this light, this air, this time, my time, because I have constructed a solitary life in order to free up time to write. Ice chatters in cool, stevia-sugared lime juice; I look out through the window and see the avocado tree needs watering. But I do not get up because this is writing time, not plant-tending time, not cat-tending time, not house-repair time, nor house-cleaning time, not errands time, or social time, or work-for money-to-keep-me-alive time. It is not even job-application time. This is writing time. Even if what I write is shallow, or … Continue reading Time To Write by Laura Marello