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This month's theme is "Reflections," and each of our authors has responded to this prompt with stories that give readers something to think about: life and death, the source of creativity, philosophy, physics, and living together. We hope you enjoy them all.


Jackie Davis Martin

That week Johnnie Cochran died, then Terri Schiavo, and even Pope John Paul II, but not Bob. We flew to Maine because his cancer was pushing him rapidly toward death, a word we kept in abeyance where, ignored, it hovered and drifted like the snow. We watched him sleep in his leather La-Z-Boy, the stoves banked up above 80 degrees, the daytime TV hosts loudly exuding personalities to the empty room. Bob sagged into himself, thin legs draped in corduroy trousers that pleated at his skinny waist, his shoulder bones like clothespins beneath a moose-printed flannel shirt. As I mounted the stairs into the main living area I’d see his La-Z-Boy but did not know whether Bob was sitting in it until I was fully in the room and could look head on. . . .

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Jackie Davis Martin
has had stories and essays published in journals that include
 Flash, Flashquake, Fastforward, JAAM34th Parallel, and Sleet. Her most recent work is in Bluestem, Enhance, Counterexample PoeticsFractured West, and Dogzplot, as well as in a story collection just released called Modern Shorts. Her novella Extracurricular was a finalist in the Press 53 Awards of 2011. A memoir, Surviving Susan, was published in 2012.  Jackie teaches at City College of San Francisco.

The Guy in the Chair               

Julia Pimblett

Howard came to live in my chair. It wasn't like I had anywhere else to put him either. My brother Sonny lived on the floor in the living room. He ate on the floor. He slept on the floor. He read on the floor. Now I’m wondering what kind of chair lept into your mind just now? Did you think of an old overstuffed chintz-covered chair that enveloped the body like a ball in a catcher’s mitt? That’s the one. . . .

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Julia Pimblett
is an academic, an international consultant, and a writer. She published extensively in her first lifetime as an academic and has just begun her foray into the world of creative writing. With her husband, Stan, she has lived in the USA, England, Spain and Mexico. They are anticipating their next adventure.

The  Wings of Creativity              

Sara Etgen-Baker

In 2010 my mother-in-law gave me her rather simple but graceful, antique secretarial desk. I was delighted to have it; and for four years now, I’ve cherished this nostalgic piece, for it both served and inspired me as I began my writing journey. 

The antique desk was comfortable, and I felt so cozy when I began each writing session. Although I quickly outgrew the desk, I was unwilling to give it up and acquire a larger desk. Despite the desk’s comfort and coziness, its limited storage capacity meant that I often scattered file folders and books on the floor around me. But I also crave organization and closure. . . .

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Sara Etgen-Baker
’s love for words began when, as a young girl, her mother read the dictionary to her every night. A teacher’s unexpected whisper, “You’ve got writing talent,” ignited her writing desire. Her manuscripts have won several contests and have been published in numerous anthologies including Wisdom Has A Voice, Times They Were A Changing: Women Remember the 60s & 70s. Others have appeared in SCN’s True Words Anthology, Looking Back Magazine, Guideposts, Chicken Soup for the Soul, Halcyon Magazine, Page & Spine, Perspectives Magazine, and The Storyteller. Sara enjoys her participation with the Story Circle Network, the National Association of Memoir Writers, and the National League of American Pen Women—Dallas Branch. She’s currently working on her first novel, Secrets at Dillehay Crossing, and hopes to finish in 2015.