by  Amanda Skjeveland Propped against the willow tree, she wanted you long before you came; her dirty summer hands raised the plastic version of you to her still-awkward chest to offer her essence before it was time. For years she must have known you were coming as she planted footprints for you to fill and danced, brave and irresistible, like the willow’s branches. She would not have believed her heart would fail her, the umbilical cord having made its transfer but not yet fallen from you, its strong core barely shriveled. § Author bio: Amanda Skjeveland’s work is currently in, … Continue reading Jenni

Secret Chord

by  Amanda Skjeveland My friend leans close, eyes sparkling and tidy fingers, slightly puffed with age and weight, melting the cloudy chill on her wine glass.  When you make love, she says, Do you ever pretend you’re someone else? About to say no, I remember last week, how I slipped away from our master bedroom to that old apartment of yours with stairs to the roof, the one that kept the moon captive for us as we sat on camping chairs and I held your guitar, my fingertips on strings still warm from you, You leaned in, smiling, to place … Continue reading Secret Chord

The Beatles on Ed Sullivan

by Amanda Skjeveland For Mom, and her world A half century ago, she sits book-endedbetween an older and younger brotheron a carpet devoid of dirt or other byproducts of life.Legs curled demurely to one side, she waits, fingers toying with her skirt and white socks.In the winged back chair sits her father,the Air Force Colonel who told mennot to die and expected compliance;on the only other chair, her mother,who on hands and knees steel-wooledthe hardwood floors so well the Colonelinstalled wall-to-wall to keep them pure. And now they are on, these pretty boysin their slim trim bodies of flawless black,their … Continue reading The Beatles on Ed Sullivan