One Young Soldier

by Jack Tompkins

sketch


What I Still Believe

by Nila Bartley

Poem


My Indelible Military Career

by Katherine Iwatiw

Prose


U.S. Meat Mart

by James William Miller

Poem


Flamingos in Miami

by Katherine Iwatiw

Photograph


Relapse? Reset!

by Jennifer Graf

Poem


Accidental Astronauts

By Lynn Norton, Air Force

Writing Type: Poem

By Lynn A. Norton

--Leawood, KS


After eons of mute obedience circling a celestial warden,

Earth began to speak, sing. Clever creatures emerged

from her womb, launched their voices

on waves of energy into mechanical ears.

 

Wispy cacophony at first, nascent voices grew stronger

with each dawn. Misbehaving waves escaped a prison of gravity,

lanced through her embryonic shell, spoke to nearby stars.

They listened politely. Did not respond.

 

Who’s on first? You throw the ball to first base. 

Then who gets it? Naturally. Naturally. Now you’ve got it. 

I throw the ball to Naturally. 

You don’t! You throw it to Who! Naturally.

 

Earth shouted into the void. Gibberish to all but her children.

Visions suddenly appeared, self-portraits.

Towering spires broadcast dancing beauty, ugliness,

mischief onto glassy screens.

 

Hi-ya kids, hi-ya hi-ya. Lucy, you’ve got some ‘splaining to do.

It’s Howdy Doody time. One of these days Alice—pow! 

Straight to the moon. You bet your life. 

Come on down, you could be queen for a day.

 

Pallor yields to rainbow hues.  Loquacious satellites

cast messages Into the cosmos, like notes in bottles

forever adrift on endless seas. Colorful renderings

of beings marooned on an island in the Orion arm.

 

The Minnow would be lost.

To boldly go where no man has gone before. 

I’m coming to join you, Elizabeth. Bazinga!

The truth Is out there. Oh my God, they killed Kenny. 

Who loves ya, baby? Winter is coming!

 

Ones and zeros, language of choice for Earth’s children,

stream into the universe from personal megaphones. 

Accidental astronauts, hurtling through space

until the end of time. Proof of life? Death? Immortality?

 

Stay tuned for previews of next week’s exciting episode.

Notes: Please put the italicized portions of this poem in italics.

One Young Soldier

by Jack Tompkins

sketch


Calculated Risks

by Neal Morrison Jr

Poem


Poppy array

by Penny Deere

Array


Casualties

by Daniel Allen

Poem


An Encounter at the VA Hospital

by John Swainston

Poem


Thy Will

by Daniel Hawk

Painting