Secret Admirer

You’ve fallen a little in love with your oncologist. The wisdom in the creased skin around his eyes, the sureness of the neat part in his silver hair. The way he holds the chart with steady hands, his intense look as he scans the results. How he turns to you, and only you, with his knowing smile. “Tell me how you feel,” he says in the private language you always share in this room. You love his soft French accent, how he rolls words of hope off his tongue, murmuring as if you’ll be together for a very long time.


Karen Zey


Karen Zey is a Canadian writer from Pointe-Claire, Quebec. Her stories and essays have appeared in Hippocampus Magazine, Prick of the Spindle, The Globe and Mail, and other places, Karen was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2015.

A Paper of Breathings

A boy of birdpoems

and monstrous stories


a painter of numbered rocks

frozen from their histories


a swinger of vines

a creek leaper


a loam digger

and salamander nabber


a boy of graveyards

and grave making


a boy of bramble wanders

scraping a new way


a boy of blush faces

and hidden dreads


and strange songs

etching his lobes


a boy who made me

in the shadow of his spots of time


buried in synapse gaps

of retold dreams


that I might still see the stars

shimmer an ancient sky


David Sam


Born in Pennsylvania, David Anthony Sam has written poetry for over 40 years. He lives in Virginia with his wife and life partner, Linda. Sam has three collections and was the featured poet in the Spring 2016 issue of The Hurricane Review and the inaugural issue of Light: A Journal of Photography & Poetry. His poetry has appeared in over 60 journals and publications. His chapbook Finite to Fail: Poems after Dickinson was the 2016 Grand Prize winner of GFT Press Chapbook Contest and his collection All Night over Bones received an Honorable Mention for the 2016 Homebound Poetry Prize.


Taylor Boughnou



To-day, I thought of you.  Who I’m kidding?  Not a day that memories of you, of us—how we were together, slips past.  How long it’s been now: a year, many years or was it in another time and place, an entirely different lifetime?  I try some times purposely, pretending not to remember those times or you.  But it only serves to row the senses, and brings the visions more clearly, more painfully.  What was I thinking?  That’s it, I remember—I wasn’t thinking at all.  I was such a fool!  And then you left, and the place—ah the place: our place, never felt so barren, and I was alone: then I began to think.  Ha…that’s funny now.  Some good it was then. . . thinking.  It was too late.  And now, well. . . it seems but a dream.  Well, at least that’s what’ll tell myself.  I was dreaming.




My intention was only to stop in the card-shop to say hello.  But then Gia started.  She inquired of things that weren’t her affairs, and being a past lover didn’t grant her an automatic reprieve into the subjects personal.  As it were, I had only known her briefly one spring, and that’d been two years ago now, and it was only to take revenge at another.  In the midst of her impertinent, adversarial inquiries, wherein, underneath, and perhaps understandable, lay a skosh of scorn—she made the mistake of introducing me to Helena, whose person seemed understanding and gentle; and I heard in her greeting: English spoken with the subtlety of German, and that was it.  Helena’s blue eyes commanded the rest.  The shop was soon to close, and Helena was the one leaving early that evening, and was all ready to go.  And we left together: Helena and I.


Taylor Boughnou


Taylor Boughnou was drawn to the writers and thinkers of the ninetieth and early twentieth centuries. After years of a dedicated reading and writing regimen and journal-keeping of his thoughts and observations of his daily routines and personal travels, he began to write. He lives in the greater Boston, Massachusetts area, where he works as a wellness specialist.