We hike to a great height and camp. At daybreak, we find the summit overhead has risen steeply since we started.
Will this continue if we go on? we wonder.
However, the summit shines beside a sky deep and blue. Let it grow, we think, and set out towards it.
Norbert Kovacs lives and writes in Hartford, Connecticut. He has published stories in Westview, Thin Air, Headway, Corvus Review, and The Write Launch. See more at norbertkovacs.net.
Every morning, he sets out in his tiny fishing boat.
No particular destination… Just water, sun, freedom, and an occasional breeze.
One by one, the big, luxury boats leave him tossing in their wake.
He used to dream of owning a yacht. Now, he just prays for one more sunrise.
Susan Gale Wickes is from Indiana. She enjoys writing short stories and watching the sun rise.
I can’t tell where land falls into water, nor where the lake bleeds into the sky. Between gentle laps of waves, a black blemish appears – a boat drifting in still water. A lone man stares.
Hesitant, I call, “Hello?”
The fog shrouds him as though he’d never been.
When not indulging himself by reading or writing poetry and prose, B.S. Roberts makes a living as a museum curator and an administrative assistant at the University of Maine at Augusta. He lives in Maine with his fiancée, daughter, silver pheasants, turtle, and four cats.
Everyone else is a newcomer. He lived here before they built the road. Before the road gave rise to the houses. Before the houses necessitated the church and the pub. But now they need a school and an old tree can’t be allowed to stand in the way of progress.
Ben lives in Dallas where he is viewed with tolerant amusement by his wife and two small boys. He has just started writing micro fiction and hopes to get better at it.
Greetings from July 2020. I’m watching a stickleback build his nest: his hustling, bustling busyness, his lips tug-kissing at leaves, his eyes turned blue and throat bright red with love. I really hope that, by the time this finds you—whenever, wherever you are—you can still watch stickleback too.
Michelle Christophorou’s short fiction has won and been placed in competitions, including the latest Strands International Flash Fiction Competition, and the Retreat West Fire-themed flash competition, for which she received a ‘Best of the Net’ nomination 2019. In another life, Michelle practised law in the City of London. Tweets @MAChristophorou
“We get birds passing through,” my cousin said. “Some do sing.”
Standing in the vast wheat field he’d inherited, our eyes on the treeless plain, I said, “Mom told me grandma heard birds here, singing, ‘See how pretty I am.'”
We left mom’s ashes where those song birds still sing.
Janine writes from Portland, Oregon. This month she is thinking of her mom, and all of the aunts whose ashes have come home, back to the farm.
I confront curiosity’s curse daily. Shrubs rustle and I sense faraway beasts. At midnight, I hear the wolves’ distant howls. I wonder what it’s like to be—not live—with the wild. But I resist temptations to go and see. Nature knows I’ve settled here; its citizens acknowledge my space.
Cristina Marie Pagan is a Hispanic writer from North Carolina. Her poetry has appeared in Glimpse and the Mystic Blue Review. She’s also the former cover artist of Seshat Literary Magazine.
I rowed the boat whose motion made me feel like a god
seated on a water-throne.
I steered fate with a pair of rods,
in an animistic temple
where beauty is worshiped
and though we exchanged few words,
was between my eyes
Susie Gharib is a graduate of the University of Strathclyde with a Ph.D. on the work of D.H. Lawrence. Her poetry and fiction have appeared in multiple venues including Down in the Dirt, Three Drops from a Cauldron, Impspired Magazine, The Opiate, Mad Swirl, Leaves of Ink, The Poetry Village, A New Ulster, Adelaide Literary Magazine, The Ink Pantry, the Pennsylvania Literary Journal, the Penwood Review, and Crossways.
The first spring storm weeps my larger family
back to life.
My silent siblings smile
and stretch branches in the wind;
I hug every trunk hello.
Grandmother Sky pats my head
with loving, watery fingers.
All my raindrop cousins
want to play tag;
I am It
a thousand times over.
Maria is coping with the current crisis by planting sprouting vegetables, taking silly pictures of her cats, and binge-watching The Chosen.
Cardinals chirping, red-winged blackbirds trilling from the woods.
Percussionist woodpecker beats a syncopated rhythm from behind a leafless oak.
Cackling spring peepers, hidden in vernal ponds, improvise a backup chorus.
High above, hawk screeches a solo.
Self-isolating on my deck, I’m grateful for nature’s elusive musicians
creating a comforting concert.
Carol Anne Harvey finds comfort in music, writing, reading, and talking with family and friends during her solitary confinement in Massachusetts.