by Mary O'Malley

“I’d twist it inside out, this coil that led me on and on, and brings me back To the red bud of his buttonhole, a shower of red confetti. Or to this scenario of her as Wolf, and me as … Continue reading


by Thomas Reiter

Dry October, the shallows move across briary ground so lightly, slowly, there are cloud flowers on the bedrock. On the stream bank, lichen the color of litmus leafs out on stones, and in that tough company here’s the pearly everlasting, … Continue reading

On Looking into Golding’s Ovid

by Steve Scafidi

It’s still the same – he turns, she turns – the end of a candle burns, maybe, in the eye socket of a severed head. It’s still the same wedding guests who fill these straw canoes, who float down river … Continue reading


by Gibbons Ruark

Early this morning when I idled around the house Behind the carpenters, they were in rhythm, As is only right, with the laws of square and shim And shore-up, all oblivious of the hours Of kneel and back-bend you had … Continue reading

They Dwell in the Blue Abiding Light

by Cathy Song

They dwell in the blue abiding light that surrounds them like a field. They have earned the right to rest here, getting what they didn’t get in life, deep and hushed respect. They float in the blue abiding light unworthy … Continue reading

Sparrow Eats Fried Chicken Wing

by Eleanor Ross Taylor

Roses snag bricks, hook hats. The caretaker does not smile. The hostess does not cook. We, overdressed, might layer down to Jefferson, to Berkeley even, jug shards of Jamestown. Only al fresco. Coifed boxwoods arch politely. Bird house admits wrens … Continue reading


by Margaret Gibson

Summer nights, I still smell the honeysuckle at the edge of her voice when she called me to listen to the bob-whites across the field, their call and response a way to measure the interval between dusk and white blaze … Continue reading

Singing Lessons

by Charles Wright

This is the executioner’s hour, deep noon, hard light, Everything edge and horizon-honed, Windless and hushed, as though a weight were about to fall, And shadows begin to slide from beneath things, released In their cheap suits and eager to … Continue reading

The Admirer

by Claudia Emerson

September, 1926, clear He had before come courting – with pecans or peaches, berries. She had those times been able to thank him with one of her pies and be done with him. For this, though, he would want supper, … Continue reading

Halloween Moon Over Huddle Knob Graveyard

by Fred Chappell

Skinny McCaudle is called forth on Huddle And in his bone hand his skedaddle fiddle That used to put cloggers to their sweaty mettle Cries out again While the moon swoops out of the wind And the wind swoons into … Continue reading