Corinna’s Going a Maying | by P.J. Richards

     She loved her husband, in her own way. He was young and handsome and faithful – all she required. The only cruel thing he had ever done was to tell her that he hated her favourite dress, but upon seeing her expression, he’d immediately rued his harsh words and bought her a new one. It was green silk brocade with leaves of silver thread stitched over the bodice; a flouncy thing, trimmed with ribbons and fine French lace. She never wore it. Her favourite dress was of simple black linen. Too plain, everyone said, for a woman as comely as Corinna.

    Life was peaceful in their household, quiet with no children; and though the servants were discrete, she was aware that the village gossips had their own opinions on the subject. Her husband never mentioned it, not because he didn’t want a child, she knew, but that he didn’t want her to feel responsible.

    She was of course. Continue reading Corinna’s Going a Maying | by P.J. Richards”

Three Poems | by Linda M. Crate

forgotten song

some dreams
are not meant to be held
you were one of those,
but i dream of you still;
even if we are but a distant
reverie of lyric
that slips further into oceans
more and more distant with each
passing day—
you always struck me as otherworldly,
and i longed to be yours;
sweet faerie of the
roses
for you saw my scars and taught me
they were beautiful
not something to be shamed of as i had always
been taught—
you woke the dreaming in me
that i once thought to be
dead,
and turned even days of cold painful rain
into melodies of joy;
and i fell in love with you
the love still remains even if now we are only
just fragments of a distant, disjointed
forgotten song.

Continue reading Three Poems | by Linda M. Crate”

Brown Betty | by Robert Boucheron

     After the wedding of her sister Lily White to Rufty Tufty, a fête champêtre or country feast that took place in the woods between the two kingdoms, Brown Betty contracted a mysterious illness. She no longer wanted to eat and drink, not even a sliver of honey cake. She no longer had the strength to walk, not even to see and smell the flowers abundant at that time of year.

    Most alarming, the wit Brown Betty had from birth, the store of intelligence and sparkle which won universal admiration, this sense of humor left her in the lurch. She no longer read the latest books and offered her own amusing opinion. She heard important news from abroad and yawned with indifference.  Even to the latest gossip at court she seemed at a loss for what to say. All she could do was lie in bed and listen to the birds repeat their songs again and again, with slight variations.

    The royal physician examined Brown Betty and reported to the queen. Continue reading Brown Betty | by Robert Boucheron”

Black Betty | by Frederick Foote

     It is a hectic Friday afternoon, coming on the heels of a very dramatic week. I have secured our dinner of rotisserie roasted, whole chicken, and the double-egg potato salad. Leaving the deli, I’m a homeward bound hunter leaving the shopping cart jungle and the parking lot wilds with the fruit of my labor.

     Wow! There’s an enormous, tall black man near the rear of my new Benz. Shit! I casually check around me. Whew, the parking lot’s jammed. People everywhere. Witnesses on foot and in cars. He wouldn’t dare try anything. Where’s the parking lot security?

     Oh, shit! He’s looking, looking at me. Is he? He is. Oh, boy, I just need to be calm. Maybe he dented my car and, and…I’m here at the car, so fast, too quick. Continue reading Black Betty | by Frederick Foote”

Three Poems | by Richard King Perkins II

The Fiery Bird

The spaceship, the fuel, The Fiery Bird,
the vessel builder,
rubberized boots for my feet.

The woman in the leaden space gear
draining danger from the cusp of my tongue.

A great diffusion of emptiness
in a sudden outpouring of space.

The outer rim cemetery, bathed in star shadows,
a docking of red corpuscles and broken wine glasses

floating eyes of the traveler
closed to worlds of seeing. Continue reading Three Poems | by Richard King Perkins II”

The Song of Rosalynd Stiltskin | by Lora Rivera

     In the northern woods, where the hills grow tall and deep with green, a little hut stood by a thicket of colorful trees. The hut was gray and crumbled with age, and inside lived a fat, choleric little man with legs as pointed as spindle needles. He sat all day and spoke to no one; though much longer ago than our story begins, he had held council with kings and was called by many illustrious names. For he knew the true matter of every skilled craft and also the words of Changing, used to coax frogs into men and children into trees, and even (and this was his pride) straw into gold.

     But Time had forgotten him, and he soon found himself alone. Only the grove of trees brought him pleasure. They were of red leaves and gold, purple and ivory, carmine and the deepest cobalt. He sometimes stared at them for hours, letting the evening’s fire go cold until it was time for bed.
Continue reading The Song of Rosalynd Stiltskin | by Lora Rivera”