• old hiking partners by Bill Fay

    Author's Note: in tribute to a fellow hiker of the Pacific Northwest. "oh shaman of the meadows, seer of the bear-grass, to light and dark the craggy crevasse, wizard of the wild-weary smile..."

  • Cantankerous Old Man by Chad Lester

    "My dad had a way with words. There’s only a single frayed wire that runs from his brain to his mouth. Much of my life has been spent keeping him on his best behavior."

  • When Trying to Find Yourself by Claire Haindfield

    When you find that you’ve gone missing, Grab your favorite sweater of loose threads and Long-gone snaps. [...] Observe footprints and fingerprints with care-- Pick around for every loose hair-- This is a crime scene now.

  • “Cerebral Leper” by Sterling Warner

    Cerebral Leper A sad-eyed towhead, photographer favorite, epileptic outsider, my Catholic baptism & religious training did little to mitigate ostensible demonic possession amid minds trained to discern right from wrong, pain from pleasure, evil from good; they branded me a shaking peer pariah—best kept at a distance; while schoolmates branded me the class spaz,   teachers treated me an outcast, labeled my affliction a mere electronic brainstorm, cruelly & calculatedly triggered by an irascible child desiring attention, planting lifetime seeds of self-deprecation— sharing painful humor just to survive. An author, poet, educator, and Pushcart nominee, Sterling Warner’s poems have appeared in many journals and anthologies, including The Flatbush Review, Literary…

  • “After Seneca Falls” by Bill Fay

    Author’s Note:  The final quote is from Susan B Anthony as she was sentenced for violating the voting laws of New York-1873. the “weaker vessels” drank-up the Potomac potion wearing bloomers hounded by misery, history, trickery by men angered without whiskey the emancipation proclamation in hibernation bounded by chiaroscuro the never bending color line wound-up in blouses with bars in lavender scented tombs heavier than Alice Paul’s three squares in the Pen. the “better halves” carved-up Washington’s monument bearing chisels showered by pillory, injury, quackery by men angered without masculinity the franchise fricasseed sautéed then flambéed hemmed by church picnic Madonna’s the never breaking bible line prayed in parades with…

  • “‘Is Bigfoot a Christian?’ and Other Questions About Life” by Paul Barach

    Frozen in mid-stride, the Bigfoot gazed at us with wide curious eyes. Dan and I weren’t at all afraid. Despite its towering height and gorilla-thick bulk, there was an intelligence in its expression, a human softness beneath the ridges of its ape-like forehead. Coarse brown hair covered the rest of its body; a reminder that however much we wish to see of ourselves in an animal’s eyes, we lost that fur and that wildness long ago. We both knew it wouldn’t be wise to get much closer. Plus, we couldn’t. The doors of what until recently was Denver’s Premier (and only) Bigfoot Museum and Gift Shop were chained shut, decorated…

  • “Stop, Drop and Roll” by Mercury-Marvin Sunderland

    “Tobias. I hope you understand.” Tobias looked up shyly. He was sitting on the kitchen floor, defenseless. His backpack was lying beside him. He was already getting picked on at school. Having to leave the classroom while everyone else got to learn something he didn’t was going to make him even more of a target, for sure. Though he was young, he knew that missing this knowledge was going to affect him negatively, even if he didn’t really understand why. “Mom,” he protested, “I really don’t think it’s the Devil’s work. I just want to learn.” “Honey, there are many things that you don’t understand,” Mary remarked. “But I can’t…

  • “Ode to Orion” by Sandra K. King

    Sunbeam footprints shimmer along the gravel road; stardust shards of quartz are as twinkly-eyed as were the gentleman’s whose resting place  I’d hope to visit, located just past the alfalfa fields and beyond the farmer’s fence where they lie cradled by the roots of the tall tree  into which shared soil he has been interred. Hands and feet once dedicated to good works– faithfully, but not flawlessly executed– are perceived by many to be now stilled yet believed by others to have transcended  beyond our spectrum’s perspective. As the aspen before me quakes and the earth below its branches is quiet, an arrow from the gentleman’s quiver is heard to…

  • “The Names We Give” by Tyrean Martinson

    A friend of mine mentioned to me that she doesn’t know the names of many of her neighbors, despite having lived by them for years. Instead, she and her husband have given the neighbor’s names: Bluetooth Guy, Weed Guy, Yoko and Whatshisname, Mick Jagger, Johnny Carson Girl. She said she doesn’t want to know the names her neighbors may have given her.

  • “For Creation” by Elizabeth Beck

    Though all we’ve got is grit and spit we can still build good things— still weave nets to catch each other nests to welcome and warm strengthen ties like flexing muscle,  tougher each time. Though all we’ve got is pluck and muck we can still grow good things— still plant seeds of justice nurture hothouse passions prune our dying branches, to make way for spring. Though all we’ve got is earth and breath and blood and sweat— That is all that we need. Elizabeth Beck is an island writer who likes to share scratched-out and blacked-over words. A deep love for the South Sound Region is only exceeded by her…