New Stories for November, 2021

If you’re like us and still reeling from all the amazing literary events last month, you’re probably also ready for a quiet minute to read in your own time. Get your coffee, bubble tea, craft cocktail, hot lemon water, or other comfort beverage of choice, and find a comfortable place to land for a minute (preferably one where you can watch the leaves gusting past a window). Now breathe in… and out… and enjoy a few minutes of poetry and South Sound local memoirs. 



by Heather Pilder Olson

Earth tilts on its axis.
Disease takes away life.
We’re still here, we are trying
to rebound after strife.

Pandemic post-mortem:
What’s the latest report?
How’s the weather today?
Are we coming up short?

After pandemic, we’ll fix it in post.
I just want to tell you: I love you the most.

[…] Read the rest here. 

The Bay Ate My Brother… Almost

by Ken Malich

In the winter of 1950, I lobbed a rubber ball off the kitchen wall. The aroma of spaghetti sauce filled the room and nook. I slid across the linoleum floor and chased my seven-up ball. I never could reach more than ‘foursies.’

Mom, housebound by Gig Harbor’s record blizzard, tired, 24 inches of snow or not, frozen bay or not, decided to get outside. Didi, my grandpa, sat at the metal-legged kitchen table in the nook and sipped a small glass of red wine. An overhead schoolhouse light lit his Croatian newspaper, which sprawled flat as he clasped his glass. Dad was down at Pete’s tavern. No relief for mom.

She herded my brother, then me, and checked newborn Theresa napping on the other side of the breakfast nook table. Mom layered me with a shirt, sweater, wool coat and mittens. A red wool cap stretched over my tender ears as I stretched to reach the porch light switch. “I want to do it!” But Markey snuck from behind and flipped the light switch. He slammed the door and trounced across the lapstrake-boarded porch, thumping down the steps. The tongue and groove boards covered with salt needed new paint and nails. He skipped the four-boarded staircase and launched into the snow-covered sidewalk, landing on his feet, and rushing to the car.

Mom commanded, “Watch Theresa.” My fourteen-year-old sister JoAnn whined. She wanted to go. “Stir the spaghetti sauce.”

Didi mumbled, “Yes” beneath his breath, taking a sip. 

[…] Read the rest here.

From the Earth to the Moon

by Richard Wilkinson