Becoming

Patricia R. Antolino

I remember meeting her. It was the beginning of September when the days are starting to gently shift into the Fall season. Mark had just broken my heart. He decided having a girlfriend our last year in college was just not doable and, well, sent me on my way. Five years, and he sends me a text saying we were done. As I look back, I know that was a gift, but right then … when it happened … my heart broke. I felt the shards ripping my insides apart. The text came when I was just about to walk through the park to meet him at the fountain … what we called ‘our fountain.’ Overly dramatic I may have been, but at that age, it definitely felt appropriate. The tears just came. Full on sobbing, nose running, tissues all balled up in my hands. I sat down on the nearest bench and was relieved that no one else was around to witness my breakdown. Just me and my broken heart and snotty tissues.

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Un-Natural Causes

Marilyn Myerson

This week we take another journey into the fanciful worlds imagined by Marilyn Myerson with a double bill of two somewhat unnatural tales. A sneak preview of each one is provided below. — Editor

 

 

I Go By Many Names
“I go by many names. I am the Boogeyman, the monster under your bed, I am the monster in your closet, the monster deep in your subconscious. You have never seen the real me: your imagination fails to capture my likeness. Still, in the marrow of your bones, you know me…you know I exist.”


Plants
“Once upon a time, the saga began, the world was unbelievably different from the one we now inhabit. In addition to we plant folks, there were sentient beings known as animals. Strange, lumbering smelly beasts, many of them. They were unable to make their own food supply – can you imagine?”

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The Moon

Patricia R. Antolino

The Temple to Luna, Goddess of the Full Moon, was built in the sixth century B.C. by Emperor Augustus on the Aventine Hill, overlooking the Tiber. There were tumbled tiled floors, double curved stairs, high archways, views of the river on all sides, groves of olives and lemons. On March 31st, upon the completion, a ceremony was held. It is said that the Emperor had commanded Homer to write a hymn invoking Luna, which was to be sung by 27 girls. And the story goes that, when the hymn was sung, Luna rode across the sky in Her silver chariot drawn by two horses, one white, the other black, pulling the Full Moon.

It became custom for a festival to be held each year on March 31st. This year was no different. The Temple had been busy all week …         Read more

Ride On — A Love Story

Al Carlson

I didn’t intend to write this story myself; I wanted you to do it. My plan for our Valentine’s Day issue was to share a song with you–a song I thought everyone knew–and ask you to tell the story behind its ambiguous lyrics. Like “American Pie” but on a much smaller scale. I hoped to publish at least two stories. One small problem emerged, though. Nobody I talked to had heard of the song. Nobody. Which led me to suspect I’d get very few responses to my challenge.

But we still needed something related to love for today’s issue.  So, I accepted my own challenge and wrote the story.  The song is “Ride On”, written by Jimmy MacCarthy and released on an album of the same name by Christy Moore. I’ll add a link to it at the end, but you’re welcome to use Google to have a listen before you read my story, if you wish.

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2022 – A Look Back

Theresa Sokol
Al Carlson

We like to end each year with an issue in which we look back at the stories, poems, articles, memoirs, and–well, whatever–that we’ve published during the past 51 weeks.  And we have a staggering variety this time around.

We’ll share them with you in a moment. We want to stress that these are not necessarily “the best” articles in their category–just the ones that stood out for us personally, sometimes for very subjective reasons. We hope that you have a list of your own favorites.

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The Crafting of Mjollnir

Al Carlson

We all know about Thor, the Norse God of Thunder. Big guy. Very strong.  Ruggedly handsome.  More than a little vain.  Not always the sharpest knife in the drawer.  But good hearted. We also know that he wields a powerful hammer called Mjollnir. But few know how he acquired Mjollnir nor what Loki, God of Mischief, had to do with its coming into his hands.

I thought the story deserved telling, but it needed its own voice.  Fortunately, I found Bragi Varrenson, skald for a short time to Harald Hardrada, High King of Norway. So, fill your horn with mead, grab a steaming chunk of beef from the firepit, sit back on your bench, and let Bragi tell you how Loki’s mischief brought Thor his hammer.    Read more

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