All Stories, General Fiction

Charlestown Calling Back by Tom Sheehan

These days, you’re the only Townie I would know on sight as you grace our Riverside Cemetery in your own hellos, tall as all get-out, robust, time marking your way past that mere issue, and a charmer from a distance on any day of the week. I wish, among other issues and dreams, that you’d recognize me, wrap those loving arms around me, greet the passing among all these stones, upright, neat in place, fighting off the centuries one by one.

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All Stories, General Fiction

The Long Way Home by Tom Sheehan

The sun warm, the air pleasant, but me like a beggar lost in thoughts, I stepped up to the back door of the old farmhouse on Route 182 in Franklin, Maine. Home at last from the army was topping off my day. Coming home from military service, I’ll swear forever, is better than birthdays, weddings, or vacations.

Or should be.

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All Stories, General Fiction, Historical

Flashing Mirrors at a House Built in 1742 by Tom Sheehan

I leaned against the largest maple tree, planted hungry years before upon a leech trench in my back yard, watching my going out of me at play and shining the souls of mirrors back, telling each other what we knew.

I loved him from the tree, later a window dark-squared above the wide grass, as I leaned toward his hands moving out of himself, making; and the corners of the house, the inners and outers hammered upwards from my hand in late repair.

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All Stories, General Fiction, Historical

What’s in My Wallet? By Tom Sheehan

For these past 70 years, since 1951 in Korea, I have carried a 1000 Won Korean Banknote in my wallet with the signatures of all my squad members on the face of that banknote, our unit being Headquarters section, First Battalion, 31st Infantry Regiment of the 7th Infantry Division, when we were deployed on the far side of Lake Hwachon, and when squad members put their signatures on that bank note, given to me by a Korean worker assigned to our unit, Lee Bong Ha. He was a chief figurehead in his own right when he made a replacement crystal for a comrade’s broken watch crystal out of a plastic spoon, which was carried in many military papers under the title of “Time to Spoon.” Lee Bong Ha had been paid off from his government contract with a basketful of such banknotes, and passed them out like the near-useless paper that they were (some of them used for the most unlikely reasons you might think of.)

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All Stories, Fantasy

Boxes by Shira Musicant

Lizzie’s dark curls held sparkling rain diamonds. Her eyes were bright. Julia! Lizzie often arrived unexpectedly, coming through the walls or the door.

I brought you a present. A box, Lizzie said. A little box, she added, her eyes laughing.

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All Stories, General Fiction

Hard-pressed My River Is by Tom Sheehan

Even with a personality of its own, my Saugus River is hard-pressed to be itself… so many things have happened to it, on it, with it, because of it. Did I dream all these scattered events, these small terrors? Perhaps. I was dreamy as a boy, romantic as a young man, possessed now. Possessed.

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All Stories, General Fiction

A Salutation to My Saugus, Embassy of the 2nd Muse by Tom Sheehan

He has come out of a dread silence and given himself a name; Saugus, he says.  He bleats like a tethered goat to come out of that coming, to be away, dense spiral to the core of self, to the mountain call, bird arc across such slopes of pale imaginings.

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All Stories, General Fiction

About 465 nm:  A Chronology by Martin Agee

Age 7

You can’t imagine how much I loved holidays. Especially Christmas. Getting out the Christmas records and playing them over and over on the stereo. There was a Bing Crosby one where he talked in soothing tones about Young Jethro unwrapping presents all done up with paper that looked like stained glass. Decorating the tree. I was a Christmas ornament. Miss Twitchell told us to bring our school photo and we cut it into a triangle and put popsicle sticks around the edge. She came around and put glue on them and we sprinkled dusty sparkles that looked like icicles all along the frame and it made us feel proud. We knew we’d be right there on the tree, front and center, and everyone would say “oooh” as the tinsel reflected off the sparkles that made our faces with smiles shine and our lips look like flower petals that would bloom in different colors in April. I’m still there, somewhere down inside a cardboard box under the stairs wrapped in newspaper that’s got 1950 and some other words on it. Once a year I come out and hang there smiling at everyone with sparkly popsicle frame.

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All Stories, General Fiction

A True Daily Double by Leila Allison

Gram and I used to watch Jeopardy together almost every weeknight. Our little “must see” TV date began at the dawn of my memory and ended with Gram’s death shortly after my twenty-second birthday; it’s already ten years gone by.

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