Springiness Delayed

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Watch me spring forward and fall back, sleepy and dazed, assaulted by the time change.

I wish to stay in bed an extra hour. I can’t. The dogs can and do. The delay in daybreak confuses them. I understand because I’m confused as well.

It has been two weeks of gradual adjustment, falling asleep early, doing yoga in the dark. But the light keeps changing, the spring keeps springing, every day is longer than the last.

I am almost persuaded that the sun will shine bright and clear on the world’s dark doings. If not, give me back that hour.

Tucker Comes Out for News-Peak

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The interviewer asked the obvious.

“You got that totally wrong. Hate is… well, I understand Trump. Same thing, isn’t it?” Tuck tucked a digit into the collar of his tight white shirt. Under the kleig lights, he became uncomfortably aware of his conscience. He recovered.

Hate is love. Was it Ayn Rand, one of her essays? A review of some book that Kevin Baby recommended? 1984, that was it.

Whatever. The ratings are waiting. “Now what I really hate, wokeness. Banking libs take their eyes off the ball…”

The interviewer asked the obvious.

“Not libertarians. Those guys are cool.”

Habitats for Butterflies

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Before we go to the zoo, I memorize butterfly names from the books in my grandfather’s library. Tiger swallowtails, yellow and black, their wings majestic as they take flight from an aspen tree. Migrating monarchs drink from lupines.

Xerces blues exist only on paper, their permanent home on page 27,  “Insects of San Francisco .”  I slip the book back on the shelf and wish that someone had rescued the blues. 

My grandfather is ready to cycle with me to the tram. He wears a kerchief over his nose to block the dust. “Used to be they lived in my fields.”

Is It Me or Them?

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A week after my mom was buried, my friend, Agnes, started to resemble her. At first, it was just the nose. Then the eyes, including a dramatic change from brown to blue. Agnes grew wrinkled and unreasonable. She started arguments. I ghosted her and mourned the loss of my best friend.

One day, I picked up Agnes’s photo and did a double take. She pixelated into my mother. Then the pixels reverted to the original. Mesmerized, I watched the picture magic from one to the other until I couldn’t tell them apart. I wish I could let my mother go.

WW&Co Spells and Meals

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Dear Ms. WW:

A formerly satisfied customer, your instant meals have saved my bacon when work emergencies and toddler meltdowns prevented me from putting a nutritious dinner on the toadstool. Unfortunately, last night’s Cricket Stroganoff seems more potion than stew. This morning I woke up with a warlock.

Lest you think my husband left me, I would submit that the warlock has warts. The pattern fits my husband’s down to the T on his back. Our favorite. In addition to a refund, please send an antidote to restore the love of my life to himself and me.


Tabitha Toad

The Ragnarök

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Líf and Lífþrasir lived in a tiny hovel on the side of a wild fjord north of the settled lands. Rippling through infinity, Thor came to them. He carried the couple to Hoddmimis holt. “From you, generations will spring.”

The gods went insane; a war of destruction, an ecological nightmare. Three winters arrived with no summers. Yggdirsil, the world tree, nurtured the couple. All the while, morning dew was their manna from heaven. Wandering, nestled in the warmth of moss, sheltered by the forest, emerging with the sun, nurtured by salt water, they rebuilt after the Ragnarök. They repopulated Earth.

Have You Heard This One?

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Two wolves walk into a bar. The first says, “What a day.”

The second buys the drinks.

First one gets to talking. “I install air conditioners. My first job, the place is straw. When I test the unit, the whole place falls down. The pig’s suing me.

“The second house is twigs. I say I’m not doing it. Too dangerous. So he yells, ‘Breach of contract.’

“At the brick house, the guy’s a lawyer. Rants at me about how his brothers are taking me to court. So I eat him. Now I’ve got indigestion.”

The second says, “Have an antacid.”


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Eostre surveys the protestors at the Vernal Equinox Picnic. Signs read, “Change the name.” But there’s no consensus. Norwuz, Passover, Holi, Easter, Zhonghe…

Eostre gathers morning light and scatters its rays. It dawns on the participants that there’s better things to do. They discover Eostre’s hares laying eggs. Ashanti boils the eggs and Saraswati prepares dyes to color them. The feathered serpent, Kulkulkan, paints designs across the shells. Soon everyone wants a chance.

Eostre finds the old goddesses, Cybele, Wang Mu Niang Niang, Beorc, and Ishtar. Together, they lead the Rebirth Parade around the world, stopping to toast new beginnings.


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“Hey, Granny,” Red Riding Hood pushed open the rough-hewn door. “Sorry, I’m late.”

She stopped in mid-explanation when she saw something half-resembling her grandmother standing in the kitchen. It clawed to open it’s blouse.

“Oh my,” said the old were-lady, whose cracking voice resembled a teenager.

Without thinking, Red said, “What hairy arms…”

“Not that again,” it said, “The last time, I barely escaped with the hair on my chinny… oh, never mind.”

Red stood with her mouth wide open, cradling a basket of jam and scones.

“Darling, put all that in the icebox. And help me with these buttons.”


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My wife swore the UFOs had landed because green men were digging in the garden in the rain. But she’s a little daft and not Irish. It was leprechauns, for sure, wearing black boots, work clothes and trademark top hats. The rainbows bring them and the blarney keeps you from catching them green handed with the goods.

So when the rains came again, I made a trap baited with shiny things and kept an eye on the potato field. And I was there to see a big crow fly away, the gold chain I set out dangling from its beak.