Tag Archives: Summer 2022

Pandemic Casserole by Catherine Pritchard Childress

Photo of casserole in white dish
 

Catherine Pritchard Childress is the 2nd place winner of Streetlight’s 2022 Essay/Memoir Contest Offering food as a form of comfort for those in mourning is as much a part of my Appalachian upbringing as Vacation Bible School and dinner on the grounds. Where there is death there will be cream soup casseroles and fried chicken, jugs of sweet tea and deli trays. Condolences unaccompanied by a Pyrex dish (name written on masking tape and secured to the bottom) or a lidded Rubbermaid container  (“Honey, I don’t need it back”) are lacking—or so we’ve been raised … Continue reading Pandemic Casserole by Catherine Pritchard Childress

Cottonmouth by Ron Stottlemyer

Photo of open-mouthed cottonmouth
 

Cottonmouth As the boat eased out on the pond, there was just enough light to see pale ribbons of sky rippling in the water. Dad paddled ahead with slow, heavy strokes, but the lives watching from trees, listening in the grass knew what had just arrived. As he rested the paddle on his knees, the boat glided on as if it knew where it was going, pulling a wide scarf of quiet behind it. Then the first deep croak sounded in duckweed near the far bank. When he dipped the paddle over the side to … Continue reading Cottonmouth by Ron Stottlemyer

Master of Fine Arts by Robert Detman

book suspended open
 

Like Portland or is it Austin I am also trying to keep weird. Nobody says keep Oakland weird. It’s got a gentrifying mix with floaters on top and busted bits settling on the bottom and curious pieces swirling suspended. According to Ferlinghetti simile and metaphor make poetry. Ferlinghetti whom I once saw at Brandy Ho’s getting lunch as was I at the counter after having just bought Carlos Fuente’s Terra Nostra as I needed a novel the size, shape and weight of a brick to give my MFA bildungsroman some DNA like Moby Dick, or … Continue reading Master of Fine Arts by Robert Detman

Serenity by the Sea by Virginia Watts

Photo of orange suitcase on beach
 

  Today is Nora Richard’s seventy-fifth birthday. She sighs, blows her nose, rests her head back against the scratchy, cheap couch that came with Apartment 205 inside Serenity by the Sea, an assisted living community she and her late husband moved into six years ago. Another long day stretches ahead of her like a superhighway to the moon. Mornings are the worst without Harvey brewing eight cups of Chock full o’nuts drip coffee instead of two cups because a full pot of brewed coffee really makes this place smell like home. Harvey’s baritone voice talking … Continue reading Serenity by the Sea by Virginia Watts

Listen and Blessing the Way, 2 poems by Cindy Buchanan

empty phone booth in rain
 

Listen When I first conceived of you I was inside a graffiti-covered phone booth near a rundown beach motel. I wept. The OB’s voice on the other end filled with static. You swam through the phone line anyway, lodged for years inside my heart before you sped away. I loved you as best I could, but leaving was what you got good at— lured by street meds, accelerating down tracks that imprisoned us both. Do you ever pass abandoned booths and wish you could make one call? Pick up the phone. Hear my blood pound … Continue reading Listen and Blessing the Way, 2 poems by Cindy Buchanan

What Killed the Video Star by Betty Wilkins

Photo of Blockbuster store
 

Betty Wilkins is the 1st place winner of Streetlight’s 2022 Essay/Memoir Contest Rewind. By September 2002, I had been out of college for nine months and the student loan officers were calling to collect my debt. I was only working thirty hours a week as a technical writer and editor of university computing documentation, which sounds more glamorous than it was and came with zero benefits. Calvin and I had moved out of a bad living situation with another roommate, so with only the two of us to share the rent and utilities money was … Continue reading What Killed the Video Star by Betty Wilkins

Ode to Wonder Woman by Akhim Yuseff Cabey

wonder woman crossing wrists
 

back then on that Bronx block few of us stood a chance against reruns of Lynda Carter’s Bracelets of Submission…..truth lasso or pale décolletage rendering erotic doses of televised justice on a daily basis. but we all know it wasn’t just her alone. so many of the finest neighborhood girls played defense with both their hearts and breasts—and rightfully so— because we’d wetted our tongues too often just to get a chance to one day lick the closest thing we could find to a cinematic Caucasian nipple. and into the Internet and collegiate suburbs we … Continue reading Ode to Wonder Woman by Akhim Yuseff Cabey

Journey by Billie Hinton

dark figure on a boat at night
 

…………Perhaps when the boy built the elaborate scaffolding between sand trays in his first therapy session he was building bridges from me to him. …………Perhaps the melting down of crayons in aluminum foil was alchemy, testing the boundaries of the place he would heal. …………Perhaps the Playmobil medical worker locked in a tiny building while opposing armies fought was for her safety, or for his own. …………Perhaps, in a much later sand tray, the same Playmobil medical worker holding a light at the prow of the boat in dangerous waters was lighting the darkness. …………Perhaps … Continue reading Journey by Billie Hinton

Conceptual Art by Peter Allen


 

  Having been interested in both visual art and writing/poetry since I was able to pick up a pencil or paint brush, it seemed natural to eventually want to combine the two somehow. In the 1980s, I began exhibiting work with a visual art piece and a companion poem together. Then in the 1990s I started stenciling words together with the visual elements. In the last twenty years or so I have endeavored to combine entire poems with a visual element, sometimes two or more poems are meant to work with a single image.   … Continue reading Conceptual Art by Peter Allen

How To Survive The Buffet by Jessica Mendoza

Photo of party guest's hand holding food
 

  You’re twenty. Fresh-faced. Everyone else in this writing cohort is watching you, rubbernecking, wide-eyed, pale. They can smell the blood in the water. They know you are going to say something, you must say something. Silence is not an option. The woman who submitted the piece is proud of it. Proud. Admittedly, her prose is clean, precise, purposeful. She has her MFA. She’s earned it. She uses it to write about people whose suffering she could never begin to comprehend. Her little scrap of prose chronicles the murder of a fictional anonymous boy in … Continue reading How To Survive The Buffet by Jessica Mendoza