Apartment 2B

By Dianne Moritz

Mosaic tiled bath,
Oak mantle carved
With twining vines,
The warm fire,
And my fear. Always
My cloud of fear, dark
And full of doubting.
We wavered like children
Wading near ocean shores.
We shied from leases,
From license.

Now, I wonder
Who couples
In our fire-lit room,
Unafraid, sure, committed?


“I write to capture indelible moments in time.” – the writer

Change

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By Robin D. Anderson

When I was young, I jolted down this narrow canyon in my hot jalopy, windows open, inferno winds in my hair. The river below green and cool as it raced me to the sea. On the beach, I ran, jumped in the frigid ocean and shouted for no reason. I drank cheap beer, ate greasy food and slept in the sand.

Today, the canyon is a crucible but I glide along in refrigerated comfort. The river creeps, sluggish and yellow. The wind has died. I drink fine wine but avoid the crowded beach. Have I changed? Or has the world?

         
“I write to create quiet and to hear myself think.” – the writer

Barkeep

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By Mary Ellen Gambutti

Focus of our new basement rec-room, a stylish red mid-century mural depicts dog caricatures in a saloon tended by an aproned shaggy dog. Dad’s laid the red and white checkerboard tile. Mom’s painted turquoise and red stairs and trim. Behind the fully-stocked redwood bar, in a color print dated June, 1955, Dad looks merry wearing a white apron. Broad smiles on Pat, Rose and Myra, Dad’s siblings, they raise highball glasses. The photographer is Mom, and she’s also captured us cousins squished cheek-by-jowl on the grey convertible couch, the mural above us. Were there future rec-room gatherings, I don’t recall.

      
Mary Ellen’s stories appear or are forthcoming in Gravel Magazine, Wildflower Muse, The Remembered Arts Journal, The Vignette Review, Modern Creative Life, A Thousand and One Stories, and more.