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

Only Skin Deep by Linda Nemec Foster

broken pearl necklace
 

If I could erase anything from my distant past (not the recent one), it would be that first half of fifth grade from September to December of 1960. The country was on the edge of its Camelot years with JFK and Jackie, perfectly coiffed, on his arm. I was on the edge of my first meltdown: pre-adolescent, pre-pubescent, pre-everything. Stuck in fifth grade, I viewed the universe from a basement classroom in the bowels of St. Wenceslas Elementary School in a boring suburb of Cleveland. Most of the teachers were nuns, relegated to black and … Continue reading Only Skin Deep by Linda Nemec Foster

Weather Proverbs, Explained by Ingrid Jendrzejewski

Path through frosted woods
 

Ingrid Jendrzejewski is the 1st place winner of Streetlight’s 2018 Flash Fiction Contest   Mare’s tails and mackerel scales Make tall ships take in their sails. She’s studied the weather and knows about clouds which is why her lips are thin and tight. She does not want to tell him about the promotion. Tonight, she will prepare a nice dinner, but chop the onions too quickly. Blood from her little finger will mingle with Bolognese. When the sky fills with altocumulus and cirrus clouds, a warm front is approaching. Although the day might be pleasant, … Continue reading Weather Proverbs, Explained by Ingrid Jendrzejewski

First Favor by Joan Mazza

Trees in the early morning
 

Of all the scenes I could replay to rewrite or undo, one I go back to one again and again. It’s the end of my therapy session and I sit up and slip into my shoes, pick up my purse, when Dr. Bob asks to speak with me a minute. I look up at him, unused to facing him. “Let’s sit in the waiting area,” he says, and slides the pocket door open. I follow him out to the blue family room with a bar. Sliding glass doors open on two sides, facing the Intracoastal … Continue reading First Favor by Joan Mazza

The Blue Room by Karen Kates

blue walled bedroom
 

Apparently, during the fifteen or so minutes while my husband and daughter waited in the car outside Whole Foods, some man had knifed his ex-wife. The injury doesn’t seem serious; she’s slouched in the rear of an open ambulance, where a paramedic presses a tiny bandage to her cheek. Still, I’m horrified: that blade could have reached her eye. I’m relieved to see my husband, Nathan, sitting up straight in the Volvo, and six-year-old Juliet, harnessed behind him, in that complicated plastic bucket of a seat. It’s bitter cold, sleeting. As I get into the … Continue reading The Blue Room by Karen Kates

The Rock of Lost Hope by Bill Gaythwaite

Boulder on the beach
 

My father seemed well enough when I saw him, though he did remind me of someone who’d been woken up too quickly from a deep sleep and was trying really hard not to bump into any walls. I’m not sure how reliable my opinion was though, since I was only there for the weekend and was coming down with the flu or something by the time I got to the house. I felt feverish and sort of submerged most of the time and only felt better when I headed back to the city Sunday night. … Continue reading The Rock of Lost Hope by Bill Gaythwaite

Thirty-Three; Now to Discover by Joan Mazza

vinyl record
 

Thirty-Three   The number of vertebrae in the human spine when coccyx bones are counted individually. The temperature at which water boils on the Newton scale. In Fahrenheit, just above freezing. It’s a not-so-secret symbol for the KKK, where each K is the 11th letter of the alphabet, times three. Who died at 33? Perhaps Alexander the Great. Yes, and Eva Braun, Hitler’s lover, was a suicide. Sam Cooke’s age, when he was murdered at the Hacienda Motel. John Belushi overdosed. Jesus the Christ was crucified at 33, after 33 miracles. Count them yourself, if … Continue reading Thirty-Three; Now to Discover by Joan Mazza

2 Poems by Tom Montag & Julia Travers

Ursa Major
 

The Bear’s Back   Last night I dreamt of a bear who carries us through the forest on his back. He goes through the mud, we cling to his fur, he wants to bury us in a storyteller’s throat. Julia Travers is a poet, author, artist and journalist. Her creative writing appears with OnBeing, The Mindfulness Bell and Heron Tree Poetry Journal, among other publications. She holds a BA in Literary and Cultural Studies from The College of William and Mary and a BFA in Art Education from Virginia Commonwealth University. She is on Twitter … Continue reading 2 Poems by Tom Montag & Julia Travers

Full Snow Moon by Joan Mazza

full moon in clouds
 

Full Snow Moon   Fat and slow, she climbs the eastern sky like an old woman climbs stairs, holding onto tree branches and stars to make her way to February’s zenith. She rises on time, a beacon fully seen. A passing comet with a green head tips his hat and is gone. Look. The Sea of Tranquility is next to the Sea of Crises. Wolves howl, but she persists. Joan Mazza has worked as a medical microbiologist, psychotherapist, seminar leader, and has been a Pushcart Prize nominee. Author of six books, including Dreaming Your Real … Continue reading Full Snow Moon by Joan Mazza

Two Poems by Diane DeCillis

house in hills with trees
 

Agnostic   In the bath a spider crawls along the ledge. It’s tiny enough that it doesn’t scare this arachnophobe. Isn’t that the way fear works, the smaller the threat the less a reason to run? Unlike the huge, or maybe average wolf spider that cornered me in the kitchen. In a panic I reached for Easy Off, sprayed the hirsute carapace into an igloo of chemical foam. Drenched, seemingly undaunted, the fizzy white dome skittered across the linoleum toward me, and I fled, as if from Godzilla. But here in my tub this little … Continue reading Two Poems by Diane DeCillis