Short Takes



From the series Winter in New York City, acrylic and pencil pastels, by Susan Pollet

 
 

What I Like/What I Dislike
Introduction: Susan Sontag’s List

In 1977, Susan Sontag published a list of her likes and dislikes:

 

Things I like: fires, Venice, tequila, sunsets, babies, silent films, heights, coarse salt, top hats, large longhaired dogs, ship models, cinnamon, goose down quilts, pocket watches, the smell of newly mown grass, linen, Bach, Louis XIII furniture, sushi, microscopes, large rooms, boots, drinking water, maple sugar candy.
 
Things I dislike: sleeping in an apartment alone, cold weather, couples, football games, swimming, anchovies, mustaches, cats, umbrellas, being photographed, the taste of licorice, washing my hair (or having it washed), wearing a wristwatch, giving a lecture, cigars, writing letters, taking showers, Robert Frost, German food.

 

We asked the members of the Persimmon Tree community to come up with their own versions. Would their lists be as sharp, witty, and unique as Sontag’s? The answer is: of course, yes!  Below you’ll find lists that are not only witty and wise, but mysterious and beautiful as well, weaving poetry out of the most ordinary objects. Reading them, I learned once again that Persimmon Tree readers are discerning and sharp but also generous: many of the “Things I like” lists are considerably longer than the compilations of “Things I dislike.”
 
I also learned that a mundane object or experience achieves a new clarity, a previously unperceived importance, when it is singled out to be liked or disliked. Suddenly, mashed potatoes are a force to be reckoned with, as are corduroy pants, treadmills, and toenails. From their reviews of the lists, our Chief Proofreader concluded that many of our readers share a love of popcorn, and our Editor-in-Chief noted that there seems to be considerable disagreement about the merits of coriander. These lists not only tell us who their makers are and what they care about; they also have much to teach us about both language and art.
 
We received so many fascinating, tantalizing, creative twists on the theme that it was impossible to pare the numbers down to our usual manageable set of entries. We aren’t publishing all we received, and they were all so good that we mourn for each one not included here. Still, we are including more than the usual number. We are doing this in a way that’s unique for us. We’re presenting them on a rotating basis—something that is made possible only because of the ingenuity of Laura Laytham, our talented and intrepid web manager.
 
We invite you to read those that you see here now. Contemplate them. Enjoy them. And then come back another time, and you’ll find that our new magic algorithm is presenting you with a whole new set.

 
 


From the series Winter in New York City, acrylic and pencil pastels, by Susan Pollet

 
 

 

Denise Beck-Clark

Things I Like: gemstones, especially teal-colored like London Blue Topaz, and pink like Pink Sapphire; paintings of land- and seascapes, stormy weather and winter scenes of snow; natal astrology, especially placements like Moon in Libra and Libra Rising; travel to places I’ve never been; ‘50s music (do-wop), ‘60s music including the Beatles and other British groups, and Motown; any music with a strong danceable beat; dancing to said music; Beethoven, especially the Ninth Symphony and Egmont Overture; old stone houses; Vermont; (other) “Blue” states; people who are innocent, kind, ingenuous; sweet foods, especially ice cream, chocolate, and pastries; printed books; money–for the beauty and freedom it affords; Asian food, especially Indian and Japanese; British mysteries and cop shows; some American game shows; the singing voices of Whitney Houston, Ben E. King, and Dion; cute little dogs; cats (though Siamese not so much); writing; drawing; gardens, woods, flowers (real or fake); anything tie-dyed; Solitaire; The New York Times, especially its Crossword, Wordle, Connections, and Spelling Bee; photography – both taking and viewing pictures; sarcasm; irony; my thirteen-year-old Lexus sedan.
 
Things I dislike: noise; lies; mashed potatoes; religion, belief in and reliance on “god”; Moon in Aries; people who are narrow-minded, vindictive, or spiteful; people who lack empathy; narcissism; dogs that are not cuddly, e.g. pitbulls; Mexican food; red meat; most American serial TV shows; British TV comedies; current pop music including too many songs that purport to have a beat but in my opinion are flat; the music of Elvis P; country music; opera; “Red” states, especially Texas; The New York Post; Fox News; bad drivers; driving in traffic; humidity; tight clothing; calling “sneakers” “tennis shoes.”

 

 

Alice Benson

Things I like: dry martinis, public schools, warm feet, voting, British mysteries, cardamom, dog shows, kale smoothies, GPS, grapes, sunshine, kindness, Lake Superior, sauteed mushrooms, facts, cotton tee shirts, complexity, libraries, teamwork, club soda, reading books, learning new things, brilliant fall colors in Wisconsin.
 
Things I dislike: icy sidewalks, leather, malicious lies, high cholesterol, frozen pipes, bullies, Bartleby the Scrivener, clogged drains, whining, flat tires, lefse, seeing myself on Zoom calls, crafting, long road trips, most sports, parties.

 

 

Annis Cassells

Things I like: poems, heated mattress pads, homemade sourdough bread, libraries, denim jackets, lapis lazuli, daffodils and dahlias, old brick buildings, motorcycles, travel to new places, live theater, clean sheets, sunrises and sunsets over the ocean, writing paper and notebooks, getting a pedicure, walking in crisp autumn leaves, tight hugs.
 
Things I dislike: rain-soaked shoes, sauerkraut, earwigs, rusted cars, thorns, the harsh sound of buzzers, circus clowns, 15-hour flights, cold feet, proselytizing, okra, waiting in line at the pharmacy, when the speakers of passing vehicles cause my car to vibrate, being pinched, nosy people, thievery, being interrupted when I’m speaking.

 

 

Sheree Stewart Combs

Things I like: Alaska, babies, porches, soft quilts, bluegrass music, sunsets, growing dahlias, mountains, Venice, the golden hour, strawberries, huckleberry ice cream, cinnamon, peach cobbler, deep woods, summertime, photography, pie, vintage photos, a soak in a tub, walks on a country road, autumn leaves, wading creeks, the garden’s harvest, Elvis, Argentine Tango, sitting beneath the stars, moon-flowers, larkspur, Red River Gorge, newly painted walls, sun-dried sheets, homemade biscuits, loose-limb puppies, basil, books, dogs, the euphoria from writing gone well, yoga, rain on a porch roof, the Amalfi Coast, old friends, Denali National Park, peanut butter, blueberry pancakes.
 
Things I dislike: A-fib, lack of energy, fast traffic, interstate highways, the taste of liver, unkindness, driving after dark, long waits to see a doctor, cancer, how fast we age, waking up early, crowds, chiggers, pulling weeds, summer’s end, the speed at which a day passes, arthritis, earwigs, powdery mildew, airport layovers, junk mail, the taste of licorice, PTSD, writer’s block, politics, hominy, the first frost, the sting of a wasp, the car crash.

 

 

Lynn Connor

Things I like: getting up with the sun, cold pizza for breakfast, Peter Pan, penguins, kitchens, snow, wood burning fireplaces, thunderstorms, the sound of rain, sea gulls soaring in the wind and rain, mountains, waterfalls, rainbows, fireflies, New World Symphony, beer, Emily Dickinson, small horses, big dogs, the poem “Two Stones” by Po Chu-i, popcorn, chipmunks, the color brown, rocking chairs, libraries, independent book stores, hard-cover books, iPhone cameras, Japanese gardens, Chinese gardens, pearl jasmine tea, popcorn, candlelight, Christmas trees, home, sunflowers, gargoyles, and crows.
 
Things I dislike: oysters, miles and miles of flat land, making beds, washing windows, cluttered rooms, standing in line, gnats, mosquitoes, Edna St. Vincent Millay, commercials, spam phone calls, timed puzzles and games, constant communication.

 

 

Carla Manene Cooke

Things I like: behind the scenes at the opera, books and movies I get lost in, breathing fresh air, carpooling, cozy fleece in winter, finding free items just when I need them, going barefoot, horses, human ingenuity (like San Francisco’s gravity-powered trolley system), mango nectar, pristine sheets, roasted root vegetables (including rutabagas), rules of grammar, satisfactions of accomplishment, scents of lilac, new hay, and butterfly bush, skilled craftwork, splendid views from up high, sunlight through clean windows, sweet corn in season, synchronicity, warm croissants.
 
Things I dislike: anyone smoking anything anywhere near me anytime, anyways (not a word!), being cold and wet, corporations running the world—and destroying it, casual cursing, doing something because “everybody does it,” drivers who ignore stop signs and don’t signal, driving (especially alone), filling out forms, her and I, how we treat the planet, lay when it should be lie, loud music, multilayer packaging and single-use plastic, not knowing the time when I wake up at night, out-of-control pets, peppers and onions, screaming and being screamed at, swimming where I can’t see the bottom.

 

 

Marie Daniely

Things I like: brown skin, natural hair, waterfalls, blue, Frosted Flakes, candy apples, strawberry short cake, home, collard greens, bonsai trees, potato chips, puppies, smooth jazz, the smell of rain, sweet tea, Netflix, peach gelato, laughter, handwritten letters, fountain pens, bangle bracelets, meditation.
 
Things I dislike: spicy chicken, horror movies, nightmares, guns, potholes, Cream of Wheat, bad news, thorns, slippery floors, foggy mirrors, thunderstorms, rats, power failure, stagnant water, pesky bugs, dust, electric shock, flat tires, soap scum, rush hour traffic, floods, robocalls, steep steps, leg cramps, earthquakes.

 

 

Lynne Davis

Things I like: solitude, Prokofiev, nice eyebrows, little moments, anchovies, fountain pens, the radio, Billy Collins, cheese and crackers, musicals, Duolingo, hats, good bread, assistive devices, friends, having something to write, bird songs in the morning, sprouts, benches, any Kent Haruf novel, morning coffee, the sky when I walk, trees, coincidences, gentle men, Alicia Keys, sleep.
 
Things I dislike: loneliness, cilantro, passwords, infatuation, packing, “based off of,” “step foot,” Super Bowl Sunday, paper towels that don’t tear evenly, possums, night driving, racism, backed-up toilets, hyper TV hosts, waking up with an alarm, waiting while someone scrolls through their phone, constipation, the misuse of “misnomer,” dishes in the sink, paperbacks with yellowed pages, gun violence.

 
 

 

Rosanne Ehrlich

Things I like: chocolate, Mozart, driving fast, swimming, writing poetry, sushi, popcorn, lox, sleep, fresh sheets, salmon, streaming videos, cats, babies, umbrellas, naps, closed captioning on TV, snow, pandas, guinea pigs, the color blue, crossword puzzles, Road Scholar, Halloween, geraniums, sewing, ATMs, antique furniture, eye drops, fall sunshine, kale, iPads, corduroy pants, reading glasses.
 
Things I dislike: wearing a bra, being late, driving slow, leeks, hot spices, waiting for late people, rain, diets, weighing myself, losing my phone, cockroaches, mosquitos, leaf blowers, TV commercials, greasy food, icy sidewalks, high heels, my brother-in-law’s sister, fantasy and sci- fi, loud noises, raccoons, late newspaper delivery, lightning, egocentric people, flat tires, rashes, running out of salad dressing.

 

 

Irene Fick

Things I like: Brooklyn/Flatbush, rigatoni with red sauce, winter, gloomy weather, crime novels, The Handmaids Tale and its sequel (The Testaments), closets, songs from the 1960s and 1970s, airports, hotels, hospitals – places where disparate groups congregate, Seinfeld, good strong coffee, fresh air, long solitary walks, musicals, hot showers, endless pizza, the daily paper, driving through unfamiliar towns and imagining a life there, accessible poetry, observing others, eavesdropping on conversations, black-and-white photography, animal welfare, dogs, the blank page of possibilities.
 
Things I dislike: poetry that is obscure, not generous, making conversation in large groups, seafood, wedding or baby showers, shopping malls, pretentious people, holiday obligations, shopping in malls, shopping online, overheated rooms, over-air-conditioned rooms, humidity, too much technology, robocalls, writers block.

 

 

Anne Gruner

Things I like: evening crickets chirping, dog hugs, writing poetry, science, clean sheets, crimson sunsets, singing in choir, butterflies, sci-fi, Girl Scout cookies, ‘60s rock, Zumba, moving to Paris, Jeopardy, golden retrievers, the beach at dawn, feeding swans, fossil fuels, Mary Oliver, my convertible top down, ladybugs, children age 8, hiking anywhere, truth.
 
Things I dislike: robocalls, deforestation of the Amazon, dog counter-surfing, nuclear missiles, losing diamond from ring, loud mufflers, being late, writer’s block, ivy killing trees, forgetting names, incorrect autocorrect, Maryland drivers, pots boiling over, fossil fuels, stepping in dog poop, cigarettes, being coughed on, no “likes” on a FB post, lies.

 

 

Penny Hackett-Evans

Things I like: pomegranate seeds, pelicans diving, wildflowers whose name I don’t know, crinkles around happy eyes, the scent of bookstores, a new tube of lipstick, the mail arriving, my mattress, the smoke after the candle has been blown out, mourning doves “cooing,” finding a blue jay feather, heart-shaped stones, being warm, salt, long views, salted chocolate.
 
Things I dislike: being cold, wool, vitamins, thick books, pens that blot, dogs, cilantro, the color orange, flossing my teeth, sirens, the smell of marijuana, cold shoulders, exuberant sportscasters, endings, being late, falling asleep in front of the TV, hard chairs, heights, Shakespeare plays.

 

 

Melinda Halpert

Thing I like: lilacs, lipstick, pomegranates, integrity, blues musicians, otters, lemonade stands, the Berkshires, snow globes, old Twilight Zone episodes, kayaking, coffee, the smell of Coppertone, Terry Gross’s voice, cleverness, autumn, my aunt Anne’s mismatched teacups, berets, Yo-Yo Ma, late-night breakfasts, GPS.
 
Things I dislike: Manhattan clam chowder, poinsettias, right turn on red, sore ankles, bad tippers, peas, performance evaluations, smugness, Raisinets, turbulence, people who say “I could care less,” treadmills, intolerance, herbal tea, reality TV, “thoughts and prayers,” colds, sleet, cilantro, gnats.

 
 

 

Elyse Hilton

Things I like: soft-shell crabs, peonies just starting to open, well-worn flannel, folding clean towels, poodles not cut like poodles, to-do lists with many checks, Fire Island, peanut butter in a tablespoon, dioramas, butter pecan ice cream, shadows of half-filled bottles, mowing the lawn, alphabetizing, crossword puzzles.
 
Things I dislike: turtlenecks, jalapenos, cross country skiing, airplane trips without movies, baseball games, emery boards, full-length mirrors, rocking chairs, dogs in Halloween costumes, underwire bras, all bras, Harry Potter, noisy radiators, weddings, cutting my toenails, bathroom scales, minty breath.

 

 

Beth Kanell

Things I like: hard rain on the roof, new snow, bonfires, fresh cinnamon, pillowcases, signed books, watercolors, chipmunks, Star Wars music, double rainbows, nickels, dark chocolate, globes, rowboats, comb honey, toast.
 
Things I dislike: an empty mailbox, stale mushrooms, herbicides, crumbs in bed, pigs, cheap cheesecake, splinters, garlic before breakfast, collapsed barns, diesel fumes, hammers, nylon petticoats, socks that slide down, malice.

 
 

 

I. D. Kapur

Things I like: old world bazaars, the shawl seller’s call, glass bangles, marble floors, soft flute music, swans, a puppy’s kiss, samosas, afternoon tea, dark chocolate, horses running free, a new book, funny friends, Freddie Mercury, Giant Sequoias, rain, gardenias, handwritten letters, Oscar Wilde quotes, a secret smile, fastening my seatbelt.
 
Things I dislike: guns, full beards, poi, Ferris wheels, patriarchy, leather furniture, public pajamas, trappers, raw fish, fluorescent lighting, AI, Norman Mailer, losing one earring, chronic lateness, brass bands, insomnia, excuses, year-round yard signs, tiny nervous dogs, dry red wine, risotto.

 

 

Tricia Knoll

Things I like: mysteries and police procedurals, hickory trees, fall’s sumac, bumblebees, playgrounds and trails, rakes and shovels, the smell of dirt, clogs and running shoes, ripe tomatoes, dogs, Northwest coast art, postcards, marbles, open-ended questions, ice cream, inherited mahogany furniture, sleeping on a cozy couch, blue towels, canoes, waterfalls, martinis, hot baths, homemade chicken soup, the University of Michigan marching band, documentaries about wild animals and climate change, weather forecasts, The Great British Baking Show, my electric leaf blower, mail – snail and e, blueberry pie,  the smell of cedars and redwoods, Darn Tough socks, maple syrup, golden roses, dreams, weight rooms, gyms, full moons, and the Kentucky Derby.
 
Things I dislike: war, F-35’s overhead, suicide bombers, cliffhangers left for next season, tongue and liver, early warming winters, cacophonies of storms, buckthorn and non-native honeysuckle, the sounds of neighbors playing Marco Polo in swimming pools, booming radios in open-window cars at stop signs, municipal properties with no trees on them, Fox News, dishonest politicians, unwanted catalogues, habanero peppers, time changes, cell phones that play different tunes for different callers, robocalls.

 

 

Susan Knox

Things I like: afternoon naps, toddlers’ giggles, Pilates, Chablis, Chopin’s nocturnes, city noises, butter, hugs, sateen sheets, down duvets, Seattle’s winter darkness, revising my writing, Roget’s Thesaurus, decorative boxes, shady side of the street, picture hats, film noir, rain, redheads, collecting art, affogatos, strawberries, interior design, reading in bed.
 
Things I dislike: daylight savings time, questions, hot weather, alarm clocks, writing first drafts, bright lights, asking for help, making phone calls, doctor appointments, smelly dogs, spicy food, lima beans, being in a crowd, a crowded schedule, messy closets, shopping, robocalls, being late, an unmade bed.

 

 

Margaret Koger

Things I like: apples, April, Barcelona, bread, babies, calves, cotton, Croatia, doubt, earth, figs, freedom, faeries, flower gardens, home, hallelujahs, holidays, Italy, jambalaya, Korčula, katydids, kites, leaves, lambs, mountain meadows, makin’ whoppee, narrows, oatmeal, orchids, ovaries, peace, quasars, rocks, rills, rain, roses, seashells, Silver Creek, sourdough, sums, tea, umbrellas, underwear, ungulates, Venus, water, weather, willows, wilderness, xylem, yams, yellow, zephyrs, the zenith.
 
Things I dislike: Aphids, angleworms, assassins, bloodsuckers, bruises, billionaires, cold, damp, dictators, dust, eczema, force of habit, ghettoes, gadzooks, gum, glaucoma, hitting, horror, insurrection, jumping spiders, Jack and Jill, KKK, lap dogs, leeches, malaria, martial law, numbers, oysters, pennies, portraiture, quadrangles, rubber duckies, spearmint, tarantulas, torture, ticks, ulster coats, uppercuts, varicose veins, weevils, yak butter, yield signs, weevils, xenophobia, zeroes, zooks, zombies, the zodiac.

 

 

Jacqueline Lapidus

Things I like: dark chocolate, cheeseburgers, crustaceans, fish, mollusks, salt-water swimming; babies, toddlers, cats; big, curly, shaggy and silky dogs; baroque and classical music, heavy blankets, strong coffee, manual skills, modern art, garlic and lemon, black olives, fresh greens, tree nuts, jasmine, lilacs, clothes with pockets, paper books and files.
 
Things I dislike: beards, bullies, bigots, liars; cold weather, snow; eggplant, grapefruit, licorice, maple flavor, oatmeal, okra, tea; crowds, competitions, screen time; gnats, mosquitoes, vermin, musk (man-rat-smell); hair and nail salons, hospitals, hot baths, hot tubs, massages, mornings; housework, wooded paths, playing games, pointy shoes, identity labels, statistics, systemic injustice.

 

 

Jane Manaster

Things I like: Bulgarian yoghurt, sandalwood incense, small plastic plants, wood floors, BBC, Portugal, coffee, Oliver Sacks, traditional African art, sunrises, Gilbert & Sullivan, TX cafe farewell, ‘Y’all come back real soon (not an invitation); chocolate-digestive biscuits, humorous Xmas cards, orange juice, fries, David Attenborough, china dishes, C&W music.
 
Things I dislike: white fingernail polish, TV medical ads, absent ‘Unsubscribe’ option, hot milk, tuna salad, modern ballet, baseball, pop music, narrow jeans, leather pants, hearing aids.

 

 

Carolyn Martin

Things I like: a mizzling dawn, irises, paint-by-numbers kits, Apple TV, dark chocolate, revising poems, snorkeling, photographing anything, blue jeans, feral cats, power tools, Louise Penny mysteries, roller bags, polar fleece, crape myrtle trees, college football, two-hour naps, popcorn, Costco, a gas stove, Emma Thompson, New Yorker podcasts, koans, doing nothing and resting afterwards.
 
Things I dislike: cataracts, itchy sheets, advice columnists, bathtubs, dresses, high heels, airport lines, eating out alone, my mossy lawn, muddy shoes, humidity, plucking chin hair, buying wrinkle cream, body-shaming bullies, birthday parties, folding laundry, texting, cold toast, Big Pharma ads, reality shows.

 

 

Charlene Neely

Things I like: peanut butter fudge, poetry, my three hundred and seven dolls, postcards (sending & receiving), anything pumpkin, learning my ancestors’ stories, reading poetry, the moon, long walks at night, writing poetry, books, cinnamon, sharing poetry with children, big fluffy dumplings, a cup of hot tea, antique Christmas ornaments, an orange-colored sky, lambs at play, James Whitcomb Riley, sidewalk roller skating.
 
Things I dislike: snowballs, falling (otherwise known as sidewalk inspection), mathematics, mushrooms, housework, dogs, coffee, tinsel in January, chewing gum, orange pop, black appliances, too-loud commercials, anything to do with numbers, ice skating (see falling), windows that don’t open, spider webs, junk mail, robot phone calls, sirens rushing to a turning point in someone’s life.

 

 

Hope Nisly

Things I like: clothes drying on the line, maps of fictional worlds, cemeteries, blueberries, long winter nights, making lists, train rides, street art, small poodles, the disorientation of travel, libraries, cardamom, dioramas, Amish noodles, rain, curtains blowing in the breeze, lengthy silences, #2 pencils, archaic words and phrases.
 
Things I dislike: calling girls “princess,” water, plane trips, sand, the term “ladies,” flossing, sun, ideologues, gardening, big-screen televisions, manicured lawns, leaf blowers, baby showers, weddings, smoothies, fad diets, roses, bicycling.

 

 

Margaret C. Pearson

Things I like: flaneurs, afternoon tea, scones with lemon curd, firm handshakes, Istanbul, auctions, Mom’s brownies, my chocolate cake, stone cairns, close baseball games, hickory trees in autumn, Fox Terriers, foxes, Barber’s Adagio, peonies, driving home the long way, Orion’s Belt, the first snow, Hotel California, old maps, Archibald MacLeish, high tide, black turtlenecks, hoping for the best.
 
Things I dislike: a week of rainy days, strong perfume, white sauces, alibis, preparing for the worst, first drafts, hidden agendas, horror movies, three-inch heels, tech lingo, motion sickness, itchy sweaters, roller coasters, lost causes, sugary cereals, mayonnaise (except in tuna salad), spiders, networking, anything beige on me.

 

 

Roberta Peets

Things I like: naps, Desiderata, being a septuagenarian, Yo-Yo Ma, catching snowflakes on my tongue, shadows, chiropractic, swamps, quilting, Orion in the sky, bacon, “Hey Jude,” my cats purring, drive-through carwashes, purple, campfires, Kakuro, tulips, onomatopoeia, collecting sharks’ teeth, snow geese, writing memoir stories, chocolate crackle ice cream, babies’ toes, Louise Penny, bubbles.
 
Things I dislike:  insomnia, Hawaiian pizza, dirty windows, fanaticism, freezing rain, noise, monuments, farce, psoriasis, chihuahuas, having my blood pressure taken, turnip, defensiveness, diesel fumes, call waiting, crowds, an aborted sneeze, gherkins, Covid, horror movies, shrinkflation, clear-cutting, vertigo, baseball, interactive voice response systems, childproof containers.

 

 

Melanie Perish

Things I like: summer, slant rhyme, smile lines, Art Nouveau jewelry, turquoise, air-popped popcorn, straight-backed chairs, hiking, clinker coals, walking, peonies, crows, black and white photos, tiny houses, water without ice, podcasts, rivers, stones, fishing, flour sack dishtowels, Santa Fe, New Mexico, rent control, engineers, mountains, roasted vegetables, profanity, three-tined forks, chant, piano solos, stained-glass windows, white lampshades, shutters.
 
Things I dislike: people who don’t tip, burning saucepans, bullies, loud music, ceiling lights with ceiling fans, paper cuts, the middle seat, political advertising, hospital smell, ice, steep stairs, oversized sofas, tight waists, cold showers, beets, cheat grass, wet socks, mud, bickering, port-a-potties, ATVs, Trump, auto-correct, reality TV.

 

 

Crystal Pillifant

Things I like: sunrises, forests, wildflowers, lighthouses, birds, campfires and home fires, the smell of morning coffee, the aroma of incense in a church, rocking chairs, digging in the dirt, teaching children, stargazing, baking, chocolate, Mexico, Ireland, road trips, mountains, music that makes me want to dance, children giggling, kittens, coffee with a friend, going for breakfast, mimosas and margaritas, a good joke.
Things I dislike: arguments, walking in the wind, cold feet, sushi, waiting in line, being put on hold, cigarette smoke, pushy salesmen, divorce, beer, cheap wine, overcast days, lukewarm showers, lukewarm coffee, licorice, soap operas, lies, bullies, rude people, yellow jackets, weeds, punk rock.

 

 

Rosetta Radtke

Things I like: hat boxes buttons tracks in the snow opening the curtains on hummingbirds, writing about sun and clouds dawn stars words that turn into rain apple orchards resurrection fern singing in the trees the long deep notes of ships coming into port music that soars the ocean rolling over and over my sleep morning glories words that aren’t afraid of the light words that aren’t afraid of the dark live oaks live oaks live oaks passageways tangerines going from here to there people holding hands purple orchids rooftops open gates learning new things March cherry trees Georgia O’Keefe turning the lamps on at dusk colors of the marsh in fall green and gold and black giraffes violets camellias in full bloom a pink rose left on a white bench the ocean opening a million sparkling eyes to look at me coming over the hill of dunes arriving.
 
Things I dislike: leaving losing friends to grief funnel clouds dreaming of bulls and bears nightmares chained dogs words you can’t take back gunshots in the night sirens meanness heels a hawk sitting in our tree poison ivy bullies heights carnival rides things that aren’t done well birds flying into windows misunderstandings overripe fruit not calling back the circus practical jokes lumpy pillows being taken for granted pretense ticks ironing beets losing guilt ants.

 

 

Ellen K. Reichman

Things I like: roaring fire in fireplace, standard poodles, milk chocolate, laughter, clean sheets, cozy slippers, books (real books), hot cocoa with marshmallows, sending/receiving cards in the mail, walking my dog, wearing a new sweater, falling leaves, sun’s rays warming my bones/soul, pristine snow, flowers blossoming, pretzels, friends, Happy Hour, philodendrons, geraniums.
 
Things I dislike: chickens, birds of all kinds, people texting while driving, darkness at 4 in the afternoon, cancer, feeling left out, grumps, milk, cilantro, flying, worn scratchy towels, gardening, the word “gals,” squirrels, glasses that don’t fit properly, tiny dogs being carried in tote bags, mosquitoes, “ism’s” (racism, anti-Semitism, ageism).

 

 

Kerfe Roig

Things I like: libraries, cranberries, the first cup of coffee in the morning, embroidery, magnetic poetry, salty greasy French fries, sparrows, minor keys, talking furbys, Van Gogh’s wheatfields, conch shells, listening to baseball on the radio, popcorn, postcards, pine forests, a capella singing, Anne Ryan’s collages, the sound of the ocean, the moon outside my window, the Egyptian goddess Nut, the Appalachian dulcimer, crows.
 
Things I dislike: people who look perfect, diets, Daylight Savings Time, cooked carrots, cold wet feet, Tom Cruise, crowds, sidewalks with scaffolding, rooms with no windows, AI-generated art, leather pants, barking dogs, broken elevators, cleaning the bathroom, tall glass buildings, the suburbs, cars, waiting on line, the end of a book series, being put on hold.

 

 

S. Rose

Things I like: the sound of squeaky shoes on a basketball court, skates cutting ice, feet crunching through autumn leaves, children playing in the distance, the call of a sparrow, people sitting together in silence, an orchestra tuning up, water in a fountain, toast popping out of a toaster, the words “I’m home.”
 
Things I dislike: the sound of my own blood in my ears, voices raised in anger, gas leaf-blowers, the rush of freeway traffic, cars crashing into each other, snoring, someone clipping their nails, dogs barking, someone crying, glass falling on the floor, contests.

 

 

Jane Seskin

Things I like: friends who show up, heartfelt laughter, amaryllis stalks, hotel upgrades, “Flawless” hair remover, books in libraries and stores, my jean jacket, young people who share ideas, watching toddlers walk, poetry I can understand, Keith Jarrett playing jazz, ice cream sandwiches, lined notebooks, pocket pedometer, two-foot snake plant, sitting by the river, many moments of quiet, bamboo candles, “Hallelujah” sung by Leonard Cohen, Café du Monde, train travel, reading menus, gold bedroom slippers, books by Louise Penny, clip-on earrings, lemon ginger scones, pasta with shrimp and broccoli rabe, red ribbon for strength, playing roulette, kindness from the unexpected, grab bar in the shower, navy blue heating pad, snail mail, Edgartown, MA., the knowledge I’ve been loved.
 
Things I dislike: three-inch height reduction, arthritic fingers, crepe upper arms, rudeness, bullying behavior, beets, beer, cashews, fried food, makeup, memory loss, mammogram vise, being ignored, waiting at the airport, Gothic novels, a root canal, fast walkers, losing my gloves, other people’s lateness, too many passwords, Pilates, the hospital emergency room, TV commercials, air-brushed photos, my cold hands, cocktail parties, couples kissing on the street, overcrowded elevators, electric bikes, need for bathroom locations, waking up at 3:15, rain without an umbrella, people who fudge their age, doctors running late who don’t apologize, knowing there’s more time behind than ahead.

 

 

Ursula Shepherd

Things I like: emeralds and sapphires, sunlight glinting through glass, Nina Simone, lists, lipstick in peach, long, languid mornings, liberty, laughter, listening to lovers, hats of all kinds, crystal that glimmers, gossip that’s kind, a roving, meticulous mind.
 
Things I dislike: synonyms, spackle, smoke, spam and spumoni, sports drinks, lima beans, loafers on men, loud mouths, lenders, large egos, traitors, tempests, waiting in line, vodka, football, furballs and slime, finicky eaters, fences, finishing schools, and not being on time.

 

 

Marcella Peralta Simon

Things I like: moon rising over palm fronds, alligator eyes peeking above the water, sugar roses on a wedding cake, fountain pens filled with green ink, flowering cacti, empty lined notebooks with embossed covers, the taste of seawater, crocheted baby socks, the smell of café con leche in the morning, thin slices of pickled ginger, strains of salsa and laughter coming from the house next door, bronze goblets of red wine, wooded silence at dusk interrupted only by owl hoots and cicada chirps.
 
Things I dislike: the smell of chlorine, making small talk at parties, golf carts festooned with American flags, hunks of charred meat, self-satisfied smirks, things that scuttle away when you turn on the light, the forced jolly patter of news anchors, furry false eyelashes, tiny nervous dogs, maraschino cherries speared on plastic swords, rusty needles strewn on white sand, mayonnaise goop, selfie sticks.

 

 

Vicki Vogt

Things I like: German Shepherds, vanilla Coke, The Phantom of the Opera musical, queen-sized soft beds, Elizabeth Acevedo (especially her book Poet X), tattoos, sushi, Willie Nelson, the color purple, comical T-shirts, folk music, haiku, reading late, late into the night, bobbleheads, dessert (especially chocolate-peanut butter pie), snakes, fairies and unicorns, meditation, bacon (on anything), calendars, hugs, swimming, dinosaurs, tall sexy boots, book clubs, silence after a long day at work, Uruguay, starfish, Food Network TV, the blues, fireflies, comets, rocks, dragonflies, pens, thunderstorms (when I’m inside), watching my dog jump into a pile of fall leaves, paranormal romance novels, NPR radio, men with long, glossy hair, shoes that light up when you walk, attending plays, talking toys, pina coladas, birthday cards, driving around town searching for Christmas lights, stained-glass sun catchers, sunsets melting into the ocean.
 
Things I dislike: nightmares, pepper, Indian food, the smell of roses, jazz, morning, arguments, winter (especially when it’s icy), showers, tinnitus (that high whistling sound goes on and on), chandeliers, football, hearing aids, the color orange, Zoom conferences, conspiracy theories, blushing, steampunk, smiley faces, quizzes, vinegar, lipstick, foggy mirrors, bathtub rings, pranks, Brussel sprouts (even with bacon), space heaters, irons, driving at night, jogging, grapefruit, dusting the furniture (so boring), rude people, coffee, TV commercials, diamonds, boorish drivers, Thanksgiving dinner (turkey dinners are so monotonous), whiskey, bubble tea (fear of choking on the bubbles), heat rash, static on the radio, smiling dolls that seem to follow you with their eyes, swimming when you can’t see the bottom, steep hills, sarcasm, vampires (who can be very sarcastic), clothes that don’t fit.

 

 

Sabine Vorkoeper-Orchard

Things I like: snails, melons, terpenes, pewter, ravens, kayaking, ferns, gnarly roots, lists, dandelions, wild mushrooms, cilantro, anything green, licorice, spiders, crying, the Olympics, moss, reading out loud, black-eyed Susans, wolves, Iceland, Rumi, tenderness, the sound of a tent zipper, sea glass, moon shadows, marzipan, mother-of-pearl buttons.
 
Things I dislike: okra, paisley, humidity, chalk, extreme sports, waiting, spiders, dust, participating in team sports, reality TV, telling jokes, losing at chess, slipcovers, interruptions, steep stairs, cigar smoke, plastic.

 

 

Kresha Richman Warnock

Things I like: tall Douglas firs, toast with butter, weddings, funerals, dulcimers, setting an elegant table, warm socks, picture books, old photo albums, sunsets, the Oregon Coast, Mt. Tahoma, walking in the woods, my first cup of morning coffee, cellos, singing, Paris, Renoir, Robert Plant.
 
Things I dislike: Skittles, Coca-Cola, knee surgery, rejection, K-pop, Thomas Kincaid paintings, “classic” rock, blizzards, losing an earring, Hamas, rodents, cockroaches, Kafka, splinters, jargon, doing crafts, plastic flowers, vanilla-scented lotion, driving on freeways.

 

 

Margie Wildblood

Things I like: national parks, learning new things, snow that sticks to everything – trees, wires, and mailboxes, coconut almond fudge ice cream, singing harmony, autumn colors, stroking a sleeping dog’s cheeks and ears, science fiction, helping people find their calling, buttered homemade biscuits with homegrown tomatoes, falling in love, being in love, being loved, loving people, college basketball, Mary Stewart novels, counted cross stitch, purring cats, concerts, photography, Crosby Stills Nash (sometimes Young), romantic novels, spy novels, mystery novels, wildlife, folk music, spring flowers, hugs, movies, movies, movies.
 
Things I dislike: petty people, the glass half empty, loud voices, pity parties, arrogance, setting alarm for p.m. instead of a.m. and vice versa, math, extreme heat, runny noses, dying young, people who ignore me when I’m talking, aggressive drivers, emotional neglect, technology that doesn’t work, all abusers, extreme cold, people who think they are better than others, insincerity, insomnia, worthless meetings, jazz, things too complicated for me to figure out, screaming children, bird poop, racists, liars, cheaters, washing dishes by hand, poor acting, setting goals I never reach, mean people.

 

 

windflower

Things I like: dark chocolate, the net at tennis, hot showers, almost all poetry, elephants, Louise Penny, afterglow of sunsets, walking oceans’ tides, riding on the coast in a convertible, all things purple, sunrise in South Africa, swimming, swimming, swimming, herding dogs, vegan brie, fall in New England,  red crowned cranes, Intimate Apparel, tarot cards, my hair blowing in the wind, laundry, warm cushy socks, boat rides, dotted horses cave art, writing in my journal, Tina Turner, imagining myself moving through the air like Judith Jamison.
 
Things I dislike: messes, highway travel, Ethan Hawke, cigarette smoke, know-it-alls, heights, driving in snow and ice, contact/collision sports, hot spicy foods, making mistakes, smell of hard boiled eggs, figuring out what’s for dinner, tight shoes, reality TV, cilantro, small talk (except for the weather), wearing bras, getting ready for bed, brushing my dogs’ teeth, dusting, passwords, wrinkled linen, up at 3 a.m. worrying about the catastrophes of the world.

 

 


From the series Winter in New York City, acrylic and pencil pastels, by Susan Pollet

 

 

Thirty Years Hence, A Novel
by Denise Beck-Clark
  This debut novel provides a wonderful sense of the New York City of the 1970’s. Washington Square Park, Greenwich Village, squalid six floor walk-ups and posh co-ops, streets crowded with hustlers and cabbies, all come to life. The bars Michelle frequents have characters right out of central casting. The reader becomes submerged in the sights, sounds, and smells of NYC. Beck-Clark does a great job of tackling weighty topics in a way that inspires introspection without detracting from the narrative flow. Given the exploration of trauma, it might not always be a comfortable read, but it is an important one. - Erin Britton, San Francisco Book Review 
 The novel’s plotlines are excellently weaved throughout, and the novel’s narrative moves ever forward, with several twists and turns maintaining the interest of the reader. The characters are fully developed as the reader gains a large measure of intimacy with them and identifies with their struggles and motivations. At the end of the day, Beck-Clark succeeds in spinning a true to life tale of Holocaust memory, trauma, and recovery, that is both sad and inspiring. - David Keenan, Manhattan Book Review Available at Amazon.com, B&N, Apple and most booksellers online and in bookstores. For more information: www.denisebeck-clark.com
What the Country Wrought
by Annis Cassells
What the Country Wrought explores and connects the meanings, nuances, and feel of “country.” In this compelling collection you will discover poems of rural roots, legacies, and the mainstays of home, family, and personal identity. Poems that address societal issues and truths America as a whole has wrought. Poems that revel in the ideals and spirit of building a country: perseverance, independence, audacity, and sisterhood. From motorcycling adventures to women’s suffrage, from the thunder of injustice to compassion and peace, Annis Cassells writes with an eye for description, an ear for musicality, and a heart for us all.
“Ranging from lyric to prose, haibun to ekphrastic, the poems shimmer with life. As we give ourselves over to the language and images of this luminous book, we may find that for us, too, ‘grief slides over,’ and that whatever else it is, ‘the world is wondrous.’” Catherine Abbey Hodges, author of In a Rind of Light   “With a mastery of storytelling through relatable poetry, Annis Cassells’s poems exude strength and self-compassion as she learns ‘to extend grace…even to myself’.” Ronald Montgomery, author of When Hearts Surrender   “Annis Cassells honors family roots, and tackles racial and gender injustices in this shimmering, honest poetry collection.” Kathleen Cassen Mickelson, co-founder, Gyroscope Review; author of How We Learned to Shut Our Own Mouths
Annis Cassells is a poet, teacher, and coach. What the Country Wrought is her second full-length collection. She longingly recalls her adventures traversing the USA on Big Red, her trusty motorcycle. To compensate, she is often over-scheduled for writing and poetry workshops in far-away places over Zoom. Available from Amazon and wherever books are sold.
A Year Without Men
Stories of Experience and Imagination.
by I.D. Kapur
It’s 2054 A.D., and the world needs a rest from men. Women have developed a novel solution, and the men can’t wait to leave. When my taxi driver tells me he has bullet wounds from the Russian police, speaks five languages, and is teaching at Harvard, I start taking notes. After the funeral, a widow loses all her married friends. Then karma sends flowers. “Indra Kapur writes with clear insight and an acute sense of humor. The stories in A Year Without Men are varied, clever, and often delightfully surprising! Cue me rubbing my hands together with glee.” — Katherine Longshore, author of the Gilt series. “The stories in A Year Without Men create a powerful sense of place with rich sensory and emotional detail. Characters are appealing in their humor and the compassion they inspire. I want to meet these people and be there with them! Some endings surprise us, and others give us a satisfying sense of the inevitable playing out. The stories have a depth of reality that makes them unforgettable.” — Ann Saxton Reh, author of the David Markam Mysteries “Mickee Voodoo is a very entertaining parody of a “hardboiled” detective story in the mode of Chandler, Hammett, and, more recently, Robert B. Parker…witty banter ensues with the detective cracking wise in a colorful idiom both in dialogue and narrative…delights in wordplay…very clever, and is quite funny…Kapur is a talented and skillful fiction writer.” — John DeChancie, author of The Skyway Trilogy and The Castle Perilous series. Available from Amazon or on order from your independent bookstore.
In Any Given Room
Stories on the Indian Experience
by I. D. Kapur
  “Indra Kapur’s writing is illuminating, entertaining, and perceptive, gracing each topic with beauty and wit that leaves you both completely satisfied and wanting more.” Katherine Longshore, author of the Gilt series “Indra Kapur’s courage in embracing and committing her life to another culture is clear. Her stories delight, break our hearts, and show us an India most of us have never seen before.” Ann Saxton Reh, author of the David Markam mysteries. “These stories deftly capture the nuances and contradictions of their well-drawn characters, many from India, in a range of intriguing and dramatic situations.” Jack Adler, author of The Tides of Faith and other novels. Available on Amazon and from you independent book store.
Toko Shinoda’s life (March 28, 1913 - March 1, 2021) is a story of determination and daring to be different. When Toko grew up in Japan a century ago, girls were expected to marry and take care of the home. Instead, Toko made art her life. She rebelled against the strict rules of the traditional Japanese calligraphy her father insisted she study. Using the traditional brush and black ink she learned to write with as a child, she created images from her heart. An Amazon review: This may have been written for children but it is a fascinating introduction to an Oriental art form. The story of Toko is charmingly interwoven with calligraphy and art pieces, each accompanied by a spare and elegant explanation. A delightful and informative book. Available from Amazon.

Bios

WRITERS

Denise Beck-Clark is a creative: she writes poetry, fiction and non-fiction, and loves to draw and take pictures. Now retired, she earned her living as a social worker and psychotherapist. She still spends time as a mother to her adult son who has a cognitive disability.

Alice Benson lives in Wisconsin with her wife and their dog. She recently retired from a job in a human services field. Her shorter published works have appeared in a variety of publications. Alice’s novels, Her Life is Showing and A Year in Her Life, tackle many difficult social issues.

Writer, poet, and teacher Annis Cassells published her second full-length poetry collection, What the Country Wrought, in 2023. She greatly missed traveling in the US and abroad during the pandemic years. To compensate, she was often over-scheduled for writing workshops and poetry readings in far-away places over Zoom. 

Sheree Stewart Combs is a photographer and writer who resides on a farm in central Kentucky with her husband. She enjoys growing dahlias, the Argentine Tango, and trips ‘home’ to southeastern Kentucky. Sheree's photographs have been published in Beyond Words International Literary Magazine and Minnow Literary Review.

With degrees in Asian history, Lynn B. Connor planned to be an academic. That was short-lived. She realized that sharing stories that explore other times and places is what she enjoyed. Her stories and poems have appeared in many literary journals over the last fifty years. A few years ago she remembered the title of a book, Painting with Light, which she’d read as a teenager. The title was all she remembered, but that made her see differently when taking a photo.

Since 2012, Carla Manene Cooke has facilitated writing groups in and from her home in Northampton, Massachusetts.  Her poetry has appeared in the literary journals SilkwormPersimmon TreeMeat for TeaNaugatuck River Review, Starry Starry Kite, and Wordpeace.  She is a copy editor, wordsmith, and 2022 Pushcart nominee.

Marie Daniely is an active retiree who, when not traveling, spends her time cooking, reading, writing, submitting to magazines, entering contests, and attending writing forums. She has transitioned from corporate to creative writing and gravitates towards short and flash essays to tell her stories.

Inspired by Julia Cameron and Anaïs Nin, Lynne Davis has been writing three pages in a journal every morning with very few exceptions since 1994, when she turned fifty.  Although she has published articles in print and online, and a few poems, she really wishes she could write fiction.

Rosanne Ehrlich's work has appeared in Chicken Soup for the Soul, Vine Leaves Press, Viewless Wings Poetry Podcast, Fiftywordstories, Quillkeeper's Press' "Rearing in the Rearview", Ballantine Books, Glitter Literary Journal, Panoplazine, True Grit Anthology,and Antirrhinum among others.

Irene Fick of Lewes (DE) is the author of The Wild Side of the Window (Main Street Rag) and The Stories We Tell (Broadkill Press), each awarded first place honors from the National Federation of Press Women.  Irene’s poetry has been published in such journals as Poet Lore, The Broadkill Review, Gargoyle, Willawaw Journal and Blue Mountain Review.

Anne Gruner is a Pushcart-nominated writer whose poems are in a dozen print and on-line publications, and whose fiction and creative non-fiction are found in Persimmon Tree, Third Flatiron Review, Hippocampus Magazine, Silver Blade Magazine, and others. She lives in McLean, Virginia with her husband and two golden retrievers. https://www.annegruner.com/

Penny Hackett-Evans is in her late seventies and has lots of distinct preferences! She writes daily in order have a conversation with herself and to engage in a conversation with life.  

Melinda Halpert writes creative nonfiction and personal essays in Washington, DC. Her recent work has appeared in Months to Years, NBC.com’s Know Your Value, and L’Chaim Magazine. She is a founding member of the Luscious Literati, a group of opinionated women who are determined to publish before they perish.

Elyse Hilton is a retired lawyer who writes poetry, flash fiction and short stories. After retiring, she received an MFA from Pacific University's low residency writing program. She was longlisted for the Reflex flash fiction competition.

Beth Kanell lives in northeastern Vermont and writes profiles, novels, and poetry. Her novels include This Ardent Flame and The Long Shadow (SPUR Award); her short fiction shows up in Lilith and elsewhere. Find her memoirs on Medium, reviews at New York Journal of Books, poems in small well-lit places.

Indra Kapur is a speechwriter, prize-winning poet, and short story author whose works appear in the anthologies Ink Spots and One Universe to The Left. Her debut book, In Any Given Room, was published in 2022. Her newest book, A Year Without Men, is available on Amazon.

Tricia Knoll is a Vermont poet whose work appears widely in journals, anthologies, and seven collections. Her part feminist, autobiographical, fantasy fiction poetry collection The Unknown Daughter is available now on discounted pre-sale from Kelsay Books at https://triciaknoll.com/the-unknown-daughter/ . Publication date: March 1, 2024.

Susan Knox’s stories and essays have appeared in Barely South Review, CALYX, Cleaver, The MacGuffin, Matador Review, Sequestrum, Still Point Arts, Zone 3, and elsewhere. She and her husband live in Seattle, near Pike Place Market where she shops most days for the evening meal.

Margaret Koger is from Idaho, lives in Boise, and writes full-time after retiring from teaching English. She is grateful to many editors for curating her work, especially Karen Kelsy for What These Hands Remember (Kelsay Books, 2022) and Eric Muhr for If Seasons Were Kingdoms (Fernwood Press, forthcoming in 2024).

Jacqueline Lapidus, poet, essayist and reviewer, co-edited The Widows’ Handbook: Poetic Reflections on Grief and Survival (KSUP). Retired from editing, teaching, translating. Details about her early years in New York, teaching in Greece, resistance and international feminist activity in France, and various romantic involvements will remain archived until well after her death.

Originally from the north of England, Jane Manaster is now a longtime Texan. In addition to creating short stories, she wrote newspaper columns for children and later for grandparents. Also a geographer, she has published three short natural history books. At present, she reviews nonfiction books.

Blissfully retired in Clackamas, Oregon, Carolyn Martin is a lover of gardening and snorkeling, feral cats and backyard birds, writing and photography. Her poems have appeared in more than 175 journals throughout North America, Australia, and the UK. For more: www.carolynmartinpoet.com.

Charlene Neely lives in Lincoln, Nebraska. Her recent books include The Lights of Lincoln and The Corn Fairy’s Wigs & Other Poems. She co-edited The Guide to More Nebraska Authors with Gerry Cox.  Three microchaps—Soup Dreams, Lessons Learned, and My Life in a Zip--are available for download at https://www.origamipoems.com/poets/200-charlene-neely

Hope Nisly is a retired librarian living in Reedley, California. Her writing has appeared in Fredericksburg Literary and Arts Review, Persimmon Tree, and Dead Housekeeping, among others. She had a flash essay published in a Woodhall Press anthology, Flash Nonfiction: Food. You can find her on Instagram @hopefulnicely.

Margaret C. Pearson decided in 5th grade that she wanted to be a writer, but she became a U.S. diplomat instead.  During those 27 years, she had to write in a specific State Department style. Now — retired after assignments in Asia and Europe — she is enjoying the freedom to write it her way. She notes that, among her many accomplishments, she at one time spoke Mandarin pretty well. 

Roberta Peets discovered the joy of writing memoir stories during Covid, following her career in adult education in the high-tech field. Her stories have been published in StoryQuilt and The Scribblers Anthology: Memories and Musings. She lives in the beautiful heritage town of Perth, Ontario, Canada.

Melanie Perish’s work appeared in Sequestrum, Sinister Wisdom, The Meadow, Third Street Review, and Calyx. Her books include Passions & Gratitudes (Black Rock Press, 2011); The Fishing Poems (Chapbook, Meridian Press, 2017) and Foreign Voices, Native Tongues (Blurb, 2021).  Her poems are better because of generous editors and other poets. 

Crystal Pillifant is a retired Bilingual teacher with a master’s degree in education. Since retiring she’s begun writing memoirs and working on an autobiographical novel about experiences in her bilingual classroom.  She lives with her husband in Port Townsend, Washington on the Olympic Peninsula.

Rosetta Radtke loves living in Savannah, Georgia with her two big sweet kittens, Henry and Beezus.  Besides writing poetry, her interests include design of any kind, mosaics, plants, and feeding and watching the birds in their yard.

Ellen K. Reichman, M.Ed., is a former teacher and counselor with a focus on high profile youth. A native New Yorker, she and her polar opposite love of her life husband of 54 years, live with their standard poodle in Kirkland.  Reichman is a children’s book writer, a lover of children, nature, exercise, and connecting with others, and is the proud parent and grandparent of two children and two grandchildren. She is a former contributing columnist for her local newspaper and Cure magazine. Her essays have been featured in Passager, Cure/Heal Persimmon Tree, Cirque and Common Ground Review.  Follow her on www.ellenreichman.com.

A resident of New York City, Kerfe Roig enjoys transforming words and images into something new. Follow her explorations on her blogs, https://methodtwomadness.wordpress.com/ (which she does with her friend Nina), and https://kblog.blog/.

S. Rose was a translator in marketing and academics before retiring two years ago. She has had pieces published in Creative Nonfiction, Geneva Writers Group Offshoots, the Bern Writers anthologies, Sparks blog, and The Sitting Room Anthology with hopefully more to come.

Jane Seskin is a social worker and author of poems and essays. For 20 years she worked with survivors of violent crimes.  Her work was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2022. Her latest book is the poetry collection OLDER, WISER, SHORTER: An Emotional Road Trip to Membership in the Senior Class, soon to be published by a California press. 

Ursula Shepherd now lives in Ashland, Oregon, after moving from the Southwest four years ago. She spent her professional life as a professor of ecology and biogeography at the University of New Mexico. She is the author of a book, Nature Notes: A Notebook Companion for the Seasons (Fulcrum Press), as well as essays and non-fiction pieces and has recently returned to writing poetry. Her poetry has appeared in, among others, Unbroken, Minnow, Grim and Gilded, Ekphrastic Review, Passionfruit, and The Orchards.

Marcella Peralta Simon is a retired Latinx grandmother, splitting her time between Cambridge, UK, and Kissimmee, Florida. She has been a diplomat, university professor, and instructional designer. She writes poetry and short fiction. Her artwork has been featured in Smoky Blue Literary and Arts MagazineBeyond Words Literary MagazineTofu Ink Arts PressPersimmon Tree, and The Acentos Review.

Vicki Vogt is a librarian at the Perkins Braille and Talking Book Library in Watertown, MA. She won First Place in the 2021 Rockport, MA, Haiku contest, and in 2018 self-published a book of haiku titled glimpses: a glance into haiku. Her hobbies include reading, musicals, and loving her roommate’s seeing-eye dog.

Sabine Vorkoeper-Orchard is a German-American naturalist who can often be seen walking around and literally stopping to smell the flowers. When she’s not calling on the natural world, she calls on her inner world for poetic inspiration. Her lifelong love of words and language has only recently found its expression through poetry.

Kresha Richman Warnock lives in the Pacific Northwest, where she retired with her husband right before the pandemic struck.   She is currently writing a memoir. She looks at themes of belonging and aging. A complete list of her writings can be found at her website: https://kresharwarnock.com/

Margie Wildblood is a first-generation college graduate raised in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. After a career in counseling and higher education, she writes poetry, personal essays, short fiction, and nonfiction.

windflower lives with her wife on the Mendocino Coast in Northern California, on unceded ancestral land of the Pomo people. Her poetry has been published in numerous journals and anthologies, including international publications.  Her chapbook, Age Brings Them Home to Me, will be published in 2024 by Finishing Line Press. windflower is also a photographer celebrating the poetry in nature.

ILLUSTRATOR

Susan Pollet is a visual artist whose works have appeared in multiple art shows. She studied at the New York Art Student’s League and lives in New York City. She has also published author in multiple genres (11 books and 70 articles) including three children’s books which she both wrote and illustrated. She creates all of her book covers as well. A former public interest lawyer who worked primarily in family court, and a past and current leader in bar associations, she brings that background to her artwork and writing. She writes, “I've seen the darker sides of humanity, but always search for the light.”

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