He held my hand as we wove our way through the ancient city. Our footsteps fell where Caesar once walked and echoed near where Paul wore his chain. Gladiators’ ghosts whispered tales, and the church bells sang out a memory.
But my heart was faint because he held my hand.
Amanda is a wanderer. She wishes she could travel the world over, but is content as a wife and mother to four explorers who keep her on her toes and show her the world anew through their eyes. In her spare time, she writes.
A life of tangled legs in bed, like sleeping wrapped in spider webs.
First curled small against my mother,
Then later trapped beneath a lover.
Years of children’s legs cocooned, of cuddles, laughter, me and you.
Now as I lie in empty web, I dream of beds with spider legs.
Jo Withers wakes up in a tangle of kids and pets every morning and wouldn’t have it any other way. Once she’s freed herself she writes poetry, short stories and children’s sci-fi adventures. You can follow Jo on Twitter.
Lieutenant Harold Demarest stands on the bridge, watching a kamikaze roar towards him.
Below, Gunner Frank McClelland fires the 40mm cannon and hits the suicide plane.
It veers downward, exploding into the ship.
Demarest is alive, a flimsy clipboard shielding his head. Below, Frank McClelland and seventeen others are dead.
Frank McClelland was awarded the Silver Star Posthumously. Harry
Demarest wrote this story about his father, Harold Demarest, who attended
many reunions with his shipmates until his death at age 96.
Rose sat in the part of the park that light didn’t reach. Around the edges, people moved like ghosts. The odd sound of laughter crossed the air, where she received it like a lost language.
Beyond purgatory, buses went to places that didn’t exist anymore; cafes, bars, cinemas, and home.
Patrick Mc Loughlin is an English Language Teacher in Ireland and dabbles in writing. He also dabbles in painting and music and someday hopes to do more than dabble. He lives in the west of Ireland where it’s hard to concentrate.
The painter painted the world black. Black trees, black grass, black clouds, black tomatoes. Van Gogh-like brush-strokes, thick with sorrow, melted around us. Even little girls smiled with teeth black as watermelon seeds. Everything so biblical we ran to the river to wash away our sins in dark, inviting waters.
Jim Doss lives with his wife and three children in Sykesville, Maryland, and earns his living as a software engineer. He has previously published two books of poems: Learning to Talk Again, and What Remains. In partnership with Werner Schmitt, he also published a book of German translations entitled The Last Gold of Expired Stars: The Complete Poems of Georg Trakl 1908 – 1914. In his spare time, he is an editor for the Loch Raven Review.
The tide of approaching adulthood pulled them from my shore. Strolling slowly where I once set a brisk pace, picking up random shells, desperate for some word, all I get is static. Then a familiar voice, almost forgotten, asks why I expect they’ll return when I never did.
Lee DeAmali keeps the porch light on.
A stem. A swirl, a sniff, a sip, and a sigh. The luxurious liquid flooded down his throat. This was what he lived for, what he worked for. To travel and taste the things he’d enjoyed for decades in their place of origin.
It wasn’t new, but it was novel.
Daniel Thomas is a creative freelancer in the NYC ad industry. Beyond working and writing, he can be found reading, cooking, playing hockey, and wishing he had an apartment big enough for a dog. A big dog.
The morning after, I find myself putting chopped tomatoes in my omelette, the same way he did. He had them ready on our first visit and somehow it became our ritual.
I hate tomatoes. But I’m glad I never told him.
I’ll miss Grandpa’s stories. And his tomato omelettes, too.
Melissa Kelly is a poet and short story writer from Long Island, NY. You can see some of her work in WestWard Quarterly Magazine, Plum Tree Tavern, Soft Cartel, Amethyst Review, and Anti-Heroin Chic.
Knitting knitting knitting.
It grew. It grew. It shifted slightly just that way and became a caterpillar.
A fuzzy caterpillar.
It slept straight through the pain, the breaking, the making, the knitting into a new life.
It emerged, for beauty.
Quite by chance, Plum Kennard has been around quite a while and is happy to be in this world. Her work reflects her delight in the magical moments of life, but also the grief & loss a long life brings.
I’m 67. I’ve decided it’s time to grow up.
I’ll no longer use my imagination
Run out into a rainstorm
Go skinny dipping
Laugh and sing songs with my friends
Build sand castles, play in the creek, or write stories.
Hmm… Maybe I’m not ready. Perhaps when I turn 68.
Paul Hock is an author, illustrator, and storyteller. See more of his writing at paulhock.com.