by Charles Hayes

Plying the warm waters of a shadowed Sea, speckled with spits of froth and reflected starlight, we ride the ferry for the lost and found. Our crowded cots, tiered across an open deck, pitch and roll, lifting our smell as one, from stem to stern. Legs akimbo with slippered feet, grow across the tiny aisles, bodies hidden by the sacks that haul our life.

Edmonds Ferry at Sunset

Michael Matti via Creative Commons

On the move, going from crumb to crumb, visions of better fare, or to only home somewhere, our nods of passage show, as the knocking screw calls the tune. Sometimes we wander to the rail and stare beyond. If a light of life be seen, suspicions of how its table fairs, or what its bed beholds, float among our spray. Looking along the rail, another’s eye to see, table or bed is quick to know.

With dawn and a port that calls, we rise like Jack’s stalk, among the humps of baggage, mount our loads, as if super ants we be, and string along the plank, to melt into the life we know. Crumb by crumb, visions of a knocking lullaby safely tucked away.


Charles Hayes, a Pushcart Prize Nominee, is an American who lives part time in the Philippines and part time in Seattle with his wife. A product of the Appalachian Mountains, his writing has appeared in Ky Story’s Anthology Collection, Wilderness House Literary Review, The Fable Online, Unbroken Journal, CC&D Magazine, Random Sample Review, The Zodiac Review, eFiction Magazine, Saturday Night Reader, Cha: An Asian Literary Journal, and others.

by Nicholas Antoniak

The night decided it had grown tired of the moon and wandered over to the outer edge of the atmosphere dejectedly. The moon didn’t mind. It was used to the turbulent nature of the night. Characterised by random sparks of dying light. Beautiful in its transience.

Night

Jonas Grimsgaard via Creative Commons

Sometimes the moon would try to cheer it up. Beaming right at it. So bright and loud it would be impossible not to hear. But other times, it would slip behind a darkened shroud. Hiding from dejection. So the night may not see its starstruck tears, flying through the dark with a burning, raging passion, before fading into black.

They always, however, seemed beautiful, to the funny people down below. They visited once or twice, but never stayed long. Those of them far enough away from their vitriolic light could bare witness to the moon and the night’s tragic waltz. Sometimes the moon would notice, and point this out to the night, and they would smile, if only for a moment in time. If only for just a moment.


Nicholas Antoniak is an 18 year old emerging Australian writer. He writes both creative fiction, creative non-fiction and poetry. In July he will commence a bachelor of arts majoring in philosophy and sociology and hopes one day to become an author/poet/philosopher.

by m.nicole.r.wildhood

Balloons

Matthew Peoples via Creative Commons

The first week, my classmates brought their parents in to tell us about their jobs themselves. One girl’s mom is a cop who catches moms like mine wandering the streets in teetering heels and jewelry around their wrists and necks that clatters like teeth in cold. Ms. Shaeffer decorated with balloons and streamer paper that tasted like stale salt.

The second week was for the kids whose parents couldn’t come. Like me. We had to tell our peers about what are parents did to keep us fed. The red and blue and green streamers are still up, though they’re drooping like frowns, and the balloons are heavy looking. Ms. Shaeffer doesn’t understand why I don’t want to share and moves a bouquet of tired green and purple balloons next to me at the front of the room, smiling like my grandma before she forces a spoon of cod liver oil into my mouth every morning at breakfast.

In front of the class, I gag just like that, but as silently as I can. We have to talk for seven minutes. The only thing I can think to say is how my dad splits stones and digs ditches by the roads and how my mom loves any man who needs it.


m.nicole.r.wildhoodm.nicole.r.wildhood is a Colorado native who has been living in Seattle—and missing the sun—since 2006. She has been a saxophone player and registered scuba diver for over half her life.  In addition to blogging at http://megan.thewildhoods.com, she writes poetry, fiction and short nonfiction, which have appeared in The Atlantic, xoJane, The Atticus ReviewFive and elsewhere. She currently writes for Seattle’s street newspaper Real Change and is at work on a novel, two chapbooks (one in Spanish) and two full-length poetry volumes.