Featured Writing

An orange in front of a white background

Exponential Decay

By Maggie Kennedy “The orange tastes like a refrigerator,” my son says,spitting out his bite and pretending to gag,and though I have never tasted a refrigeratorI know what he means. The orange tastes like the plastic it was wrapped in.And though I have never eaten plastic,the conjured smell fills my…

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Memoir Posts

Two cars driving down a long road during a snow storm.

Breaking Down

By Loren Mayshark A blustery, white January day on Dutch Hollow Road in western New York. I was a benchwarmer freshman on the junior varsity basketball team in a school with about two hundred students. This meant the team was composed of both freshman and sophomore players, and I’d had…

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A home health care worker with a clipboard.

Flying Nuns

By Pamela Kaye (This piece first appeared in the online publication MixedMag.) My wife and I finally settled into a financially and physically secure retirement. Two years ago, we bought our forever home, unpacked boxes that had been in storage, and eased into the next chapter of life; for me,…

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A red-faced warbler on a branch, staring ahead

1001 Toad and Bird Calls

By Roberta Schine When I was a junior at Central High School, Mike Ventura invited me to Cornell University’s homecoming weekend. We had gone out a few times when he was still in Bridgeport. Once, he took me to Beardsley Park Zoo. Another time we sat in the Merritt Canteen…

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Tree in on hill in a field under the night sky

The Shot

by Nadja K. McGlinn The nurse in the cubicle where my husband and I got our second shots of the COVID-19 remarked that everyone she’d injected that day had the scar from a smallpox vaccination, meaning we were old—old enough to have still gotten them as children. She noted I…

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Woman standing under a cloudy sky

My Female Silent Hero

by Jessica Hensley Students at Southern New Hampshire University were invited to submit essays in celebration of women’s contributions to society, with a focus on a particular woman who inspired the writer to share her story. This essay was chosen to be published in The Penmen Review on International Women’s…

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An open notebook with blank pages

Rewiring During a Pandemic and Beyond

by Mark Howard In 2017, I left being a successful financial business owner to become a fifty-seven-year-old, first-year high school English teacher. I made that change because I wanted to. Now, countless thousands are being faced with a career change because of the pandemic. In my little town, there are…

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Fresh grass in the sunlight

That Spot in the Lawn

by Susan Spadafora My mother’s sister and family came to visit. Since my cousin Marie was only a year older than me, she was invited to stay a bit longer so we could play together. There was a family get-together planned for the next Sunday, with relatives from my father’s…

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Mother caring for her young child

A Mother’s Love

by Tara Conrad For International Women’s Day, we celebrated the daily impact women have on our lives. This essay honors a loving mother who kept her heart open for the world no matter the challenge. When I was young, we struggled financially, often not having money to pay the bills…

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The Story Keeper

by Lisa Harris Her early life was a fairy tale, and a journey into the land of Moses and the Israelites, and a daily closer walk with all things Jesus. It was a history lesson on the Methodists and John Wesley, a renegade Anglican with some good ideas. She heard story after…

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