Tag Archives: Winter 2021

Portraiture and Man’s Man, 2 poems by Arnie Yasinski

Two girls, covering each other's eyes

PORTRAITURE Our dinner ends with watching Portrait Artist of the Year. For Adele likeness is all, while I focus on the how of its attainment. Beginnings proliferate and lead on to ever more various results. Yellow ochre ground and raw ochre outline of head and face; detailed sketches in pencil; a renaissance grid filled in from a polite iPad closeup. After the basics, most build slowly. I admire the painterly souls who stand back for each stroke, loading the brush then contemplating placement for long moments before leaning in with deliberateness and intention not mine. … Continue reading Portraiture and Man’s Man, 2 poems by Arnie Yasinski

My Most Memorable Patient by Roselyn Elliott

Photo of red Accident and Emergency sign

Ten years after graduation, at seven a.m., Sunday morning, I round the corner to my office and nearly stumble into a distraught family in prayer. Six adults, seated with their heads bowed, listen as a Catholic priest, and a Baptist minister, beseech God to help them. A teenage boy leans against the doorjamb, listening, but obviously uncomfortable. In a second, I decide the clergymen have the situation under control and proceed directly to the ICU to learn what has happened. As I guessed from the looks of the people in my office, the news is … Continue reading My Most Memorable Patient by Roselyn Elliott

Escalation by Claire Scott

Photo of woman walking dog

I am so sick of walking past the cute little signs that say please clean up after your dog. really? do we want our ivy, our pachysandra, our Vinca covered in pee and poop? do we want our perfectly manicured lawns used as toilets? no possible way to clean up all the mess with a plastic bag what about Keep Your Canine Off My Grass You Dimwit or No Pooping on my Property Under Penalty of Perjury I yell at my frowsy neighbor, who insists her stupid, practically legless dog prefers my ground cover, won’t … Continue reading Escalation by Claire Scott

Collection Day Winton Place 1995 by Rachel Lippolis

Old photo of slide

Sylvia wished she saw anything but houses when she looked out her bedroom window. A field, a lake, or the foggy moors of Wuthering Heights. Or if there must be houses, let them be stately. Like Pemberley or Brideshead. Misselthwaite Manor, with its secret garden. Not the plain cape cod homes that filled her street. Only a narrow driveway separated the postage-stamp yards. These houses were like her own: two bedrooms, one bathroom, and low ceilings. Sylvia preferred reading books about faraway places, about people whose names were exotic like Helmer and Katrina. Of times … Continue reading Collection Day Winton Place 1995 by Rachel Lippolis

A Chisel and a Rock and Losing Control, 2 poems by Annie Breitenbucher

Close up photo of a statue

  A Chisel and a Rock They say He created heaven, earth, and mystery: The jungle lion’s guttural roar The celestial twinkling of stars Tell me Where is your soul? And does it move with you like the moon—quarter, half, full of grief and gratitude? Tell me Who created your Creator? And, does He see the tiny grain of your face? Tell me Did He tell you What purpose you serve? What fever you can cure? Or, did He leave you here with the riddle, a chisel, and a rock? Losing Control It was the … Continue reading A Chisel and a Rock and Losing Control, 2 poems by Annie Breitenbucher

Tender by Sara Dovre Wudali

curved pale green fern in sunllight

My friend looks like he stands tall and straight. But for fifty years, he’s lived in his brain. He can’t bear you to know he can’t bear his body. Hidden inside, a fiddlehead, curled to protect a tender secret it’s not in vogue to keep. After the death of one parent’s wits and another parent’s heart, he tries on the latest fashion. But bravery carries a price his sister makes him pay. And with half a century of silence, his fetal back is broken. Unfurling is nothing but pain. Sara Dovre Wudali is a writer … Continue reading Tender by Sara Dovre Wudali

Bullfrogs and San Juan Island, 2 poems by Brooke Dwojak Lehmann

cloudy moonrise over deep blue swamp

Bullfrogs Always in discord, they are summer’s yellow-throated singers, so deep in distress, I cannot tell if the voice is mine or theirs cannot even tell if it is fright or sorrow, the pained thrum which gives to a humid night echoes in the eardrum, a reverb as haunting as an owl or one’s racing heart, which lingers when they sleep during the panting heat of day while the moon seeps silent under the bright horizon what remains is close to sweat and skin, a dizzy reminder of hidden pasts, sounds of the South and … Continue reading Bullfrogs and San Juan Island, 2 poems by Brooke Dwojak Lehmann

Snow Day by Ari McGuirk

Photo of drug paraphernalia

Marinara stains blotted my white hoodie’s waist hem like blood droplets. Posters of fighter jets lined the grey walls of the recruiter’s office. A Dodgers baseball cap squeezed straight brown hair over my ears and scraggly peach fuzz climbed my jawline. A tuft of jet-black hair topped the recruiter’s head, sides shaved to the scalp. Fluorescent light reflected off his desk’s glass surface. Next to his U.S. Air Force insignia, a name tape read “Daigle.” I’d been studying rank insignias, and four chevrons on his uniform’s sleeves meant Staff Sergeant. Families bundled in winter coats … Continue reading Snow Day by Ari McGuirk

Eden by Marty Carlock

old picture of wolf on cliff

In truth there was never a snake or an apple; and they knew already about lust, had known forever what creature didn’t It was that they lived long saw the wolf and the tiger grow old and die saw the tree fern and gingko wither and fall saw even the snake become food for vultures It wasn’t sex they discovered it wasn’t the knowledge of good and evil they discovered death and, terrified, they invented God After spending almost twenty years chasing facts for The Boston Globe, Marty Carlock decided it was more fun to … Continue reading Eden by Marty Carlock

Regarding Your Time-Off Request by Sean-Taro Nishi

Silhouettes of people walking

To: Team Members From: Jill Valentine, MENTOR Re: Time-Off Requests Dear Team, First off, how lucky we are to still be thriving in this economy! Because not everyone’s so lucky. Some people are out there sleeping under bridges and rubbing sticks for warmth. Does this mean the world is rigged? Absolutely not. The world is fair, and if you Googled the word fair, you’d see that we’re the leading pioneer in fairness. And yet, some of us don’t realize how lucky we are! Now, we’ve always given you a lot of leeway because we’ve found … Continue reading Regarding Your Time-Off Request by Sean-Taro Nishi