A Breath of Fresh Air

When I grabbed my sweatshirt and started running out of the house, there was no rational reason for it. I wasn't sure where I was going or why I was going there. I just needed somewhere to escape to. I felt so out of place in my house. What I was so sick and tired [...]

Big Dreams for Number Seven

When Alicia awoke she first thought she was in heaven. Indeed, everything around her was white: the sheets, the curtains, the furnishings. She sat up in bed and instantly felt a shot of pain course through her knee. She lay back down and stared at the ceiling. Then it came back to her: it had [...]

Badger Will Be Badger

Nobody knew why we kept him. To tell the truth, I didn't exactly know, either. We named him Badger for the brown-gold stripe that ran down his muzzle, and later on, we would say that it fit his personality too. He wasn't exactly an aggressive dog. He was, however, a jumpy, biting, rebellious dog. But [...]


It’s a hot, dry August evening on the Oklahoma panhandle. The sun is going down and the crickets have begun to sing. There's no breeze at all tonight, nothing to ease the blistering heat. I am twenty-three years old. I finished four years of college before I realized that a banker's life was not for [...]

Cedar Wood and Rose

"It’s too cold." "Aw, come on, Trinity, just jump!" I glowered at Will from the riverbank. "It's too cold." He considered me for a minute, then, holding his hands up in a sign of surrender, he walked out of the water, dripping, and sighed in resignation. I crossed my arms, feeling very proud of myself. [...]


It was a quaint little backyard, not much, but cozy, a haven for many strays. With pretty, plump azalea bushes to dash into, and a soft, ivy-covered ground to sleep on, a homeless kitty could spend a few comfortable nights there. Of course, it was never a permanent home of any stray, but there was [...]

A Light Shining Out of the Darkness

Orion padded along through the dense undergrowth, his leather-coated feet silent as death's cruel hand as they compressed the damp soil. His mother, Selena's, words, clear and simple as a raindrop, echoed through his head, "I need you to fill this basket with ashberries." Orion nodded, forgetting that his mother's words were only a reverie. [...]

Cape Cod Bay Tide

Our suspicion grows as the tide rises. The path is gone along with the beach, blocking our way. The marsh has disappeared, the sand a new brown, the sky a pale gray. Ice chunks linger in the ever flowing waters. The bird cries are far out on the bay where the ice banks end, where [...]

The Redwing Blackbird Sings

In the morning I wake up At six-fifteen Much too early Hair is combed Teeth are brushed Breakfast is had One day being like another But On my way to the bus stop A redwing blackbird sings Doo-Dee-oo! Time stops But my feet still move It is March The air has a fresh rainy smell [...]

There Was a Blizzard

Blizzard white snow twirling dancing like another kind of ballerina. I see a girl she is white— seeing something I can't see— a white hawk circling

Home, and Other Big Fat Lies

Home, and Other Big Fat Lies by Jill Wolfson; Henry Holt and Company: New York, 2006; $16.95 This story begins when the great and mighty "Termite" gets sent to her twelfth foster home. People call Whitney Termite because she is hyper and small for her age. Whitney has always lived in the city, but this [...]

An Unlikely Friendship

An Unlikely Friendship by Ann Rinaldi; Harcourt Children's Books: New York, 2007; $17 Imagine a lonely white girl, raised in a wealthy and prestigious family, who lived her dream of becoming First Lady in the White House. Now, imagine a black girl, born into slavery mistreated and overworked, who in the end was able to [...]