May 5, 2017

Wally Berger’s Beautiful Wood Sculptures

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Wally Berger’s Beautiful Wood Sculptures

Editor’s Note: We are so excited to bring you the wood sculptures of Wally Berger. You won’t want to miss a single detail! Please click on any image to enlarge. Grab a hot cuppa to sip while you ponder the cosmic quandaries Wally poses with his art. We hope you enjoy our Featured Artist for May. * * * Wallace G. Berger, Ph.D., has been an active artist since 2005, creating his work in Melbourne, FL and Saratoga Springs, NY. His art addresses themes that are theoretical, spiritual, and cosmic and cannot be seen in the real world. These themes, never the less, affect our perception of the world. He creates 2 and 3-dimensional art, as well as kinetic sculptures. The work blends impressionist, and realist elements. The medium is exotic and native solid woods…

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April 30, 2017

The Merriest Month – May Submissions

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The Merriest Month – May Submissions

May was Shakespeare‘s merriest month, at least literarily. We have found similar joy in what we’re publishing for you this May as well. Here’s what we have for you to peruse while “sitting in a pleasant shade” this month.   May Submissions Fiction Feast on our May fiction. We’re pleased to publish an excerpt from Luke Bencie’s first novel, The Clandestine Consultant: Kings, Sheiks, Warlords, and Dictators,which was just published last month. It’s an exciting, fast-paced, true-to-life adventure of an “international consultant” who is in truth a spy, an assassin, and a dirty-deal maker of epic proportions. You won’t want to miss his story. We are also introducing a short story by Katinka Smit, an Australian author. A dark, absorbing fantasy, it’s entitled “Silver Moons.” Poetry Bonnie Amesquita returns to the Café with some new poetry. She’s…

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April 6, 2017

“Fractured” by Lorie Adair

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“Fractured” by Lorie Adair

FRACTURED   The snow maids among us are idle angels too terrified to plumb the icy depths of murderous woe. Their eyes are thick with wax, smiles startled artifice, words unintelligible skeletons. Lovers cannot repair the distance; they are but shadows on the lawn, roosters who savage along. I shall be well again a hollow phrase they repeat in therapy where they dream someday it will ring sapphire true. Until then they lie in bleached valleys of waste and shame, fractured mirrors, aborted stars. * * * Lorie Adair is the recipient of several Norman Mailer Scholarships and Arizona Commission on the Arts Creative Writing fellowships. Spider Woman’s Loom was a finalist for the Southwest Writers Award and a semi-finalist for the Dana Award. She has written for NPR affiliate, KJZZ, and her fiction and…

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April 4, 2017

“In Love With a Ghost” by Jenny Cokeley

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“In Love With a Ghost” by Jenny Cokeley

In Love with a Ghost It was a silent slipping away. They hadn’t just grown apart. That would make it seem like they could grow together if they had the motivation, but they had no compelling incentive to move together, or move on for that matter. They would rather be unhappy together than alone. It had been 15 years, after all. They became roommates who shared the same bed, mailing address, and monthly Sunday romp. She didn’t talk to her friends about her loveless marriage over coffee or her profound loneliness over lunch. Jesus, just finish already. I faked it ten minutes ago. I even finished my shopping list. Maybe you should lay off the pork rinds for a while. You shouldn’t have to work this hard. Do you have to pant and groan in…

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April 4, 2017

New and Old Friends – April Submissions

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New and Old Friends – April Submissions

My mom recently shared this quote with me about the importance of maintaining friendships. Here at the Fictional Café, we like to pass these lessons learned on to our readers. Whether you’re a literary community like ours or an individual in the creative arts, connecting with others opens so many doors and opportunities. Life is all about relationships, and we hope you will enjoy yours with us and encourage others to join us! This month, a good friend introduced us to a new community. We’d like to welcome our readers and members from GrubStreet, a Boston-based non-profit that provides resources to writers of all levels, including workshops, seminars and networking events. Please check them out. In the spirit of the quotation above, we will be featuring work from both new members and long-time members this month. Before…

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March 26, 2017

Guest Blogger Clark Zlotchew – “Havana, 1959”

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Guest Blogger Clark Zlotchew – “Havana, 1959”

Editor’s Note: You may recall Clark Zlotchew’s poetry in our December Submissions. I had a chance to talk with Clark about his experience in Cuba and his writing. Did this trip inspire the poem and photo you shared with us? Yes, my several trips to Cuba did inspire the poem “Dancing in the Tropics” but with a little help from what I witnessed in Haiti as well. These events took place in the last years of Fulgencio Batista’s regime, while Castro was in the mountains at the other end of the Island.  I was there in 1957 and 1958.  Those guns and pup tents on the roof of the Presidential Palace were protecting Batista.  The occasional bomb blast in Havana was set by Castro’s agents.  Castro took over the whole Island in 1959. Was it scary seeing…

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March 20, 2017

“Journaling Abroad” by Rachael Allen

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“Journaling Abroad” by Rachael Allen

I’ve been studying in Italy for over two months, and have become a journaler. I’ve become a dedicated one too, sitting down to write for almost an hour each day in these flexible canvas-covered, orange-detailed notebooks I purchase from a bookstore off Bologna’s main street. In these journals, I recap my day. I write about the food I ate. I spiral into analyzing my emotions, then pick myself up with a second-person pep talk, occasionally feeling strongly enough to address myself by name. I am glad my Italian roommates don’t understand English well nor know the spot in the second drawer of my bedside table where I stack the journals, beside a jar of Skippy peanut butter from home and my monthly food allowance. What are these journals worth, really? Are they worth all the…

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March 9, 2017

Roger Leege’s Amazing Photoart

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Roger Leege’s Amazing Photoart

Editor’s Note: Roger Leege’s Photoart combines analog photography with digital artist’s tools, resulting in a blending of reality and fantasy. The images below are from a series of “portraits”, both animate and not quite, that he’s been working on during the past couple of years. Click any image to enlarge.                 * * * About Roger Leege: I am a former painter, printmaker, and analog photographer (BA and MA, Visual Arts, Goddard College) who, as an early adopter of small computer technology, has become an advocate and evangelist for digital art and artists’ tools.  I’ve been fortunate to have print, gallery, and online publication credits in the US, Canada, the UK, and Germany.  I keep a portfolio site at rogerleege.net and use roger-leege.pixels.com for custom printing and online…

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March 7, 2017

“Thinking About Macaws” by Courtney Justus

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“Thinking About Macaws” by Courtney Justus

Thinking About Macaws The first time I rode in John’s brown minivan was on an afternoon in late August during our freshman year of college. There was a coffee-flavored e-cigarette in the cup holder between the driver’s seat and shotgun. I hardly noticed it at first, since I was too intent on listening to The Smiths, our favorite band. As soon as I got in the car, I took John’s CD case out of his glove compartment and started flipping through it. “Put in Louder Than Bombs,” John said. “It’s their best album.” I did. After “Is It Really So Strange?” started playing, I noticed the e-cigarette for the first time and asked John what it was. He explained, then offered me some. When I refused, John picked it up and began inhaling deeply. My…

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March 6, 2017

“The Spot” by Dan Coleman

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“The Spot” by Dan Coleman

THE SPOT This is my spot. It’s been mine since I was a boy. The water’s choppy and the current’s swift, but I love it. This is where I come when I want to be alone or to think—or to fish, just for the fun of it, or sometimes just to drink my whiskey in peace. Of course, if I come out here and I find some joker’s got it, then I get upset, so I have to keep an eye on it. If someone gets too close when I’m out here, that’s just as bad. This is a mile offshore at Fort Monroe, Virginia, where the James River flows into the Chesapeake Bay and meets the Atlantic Ocean at Hampton Roads. It’s right on the edge of the channel, at the drop off, where…

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