Tuesday, December 25, 2012

However you celebrate—whether you do or do not celebrate—Episodic wants to wish you a wonderful holiday season. May your moments be memorable.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Submissions Close Today

Episodic will close for Holiday submissions at the end of Dec 19.

Thank you to all who have submitted to the Episodic blog.  We received some wonderful pieces, it has been very festive to read through them all!

Until next year, have a wonderful holiday season!  Episodic will return with digital magazine submissions soon after.  

Sunday, December 16, 2012

POETRY: Scene By Remembered Light

by Lois Beebe Hayna

On every childhood Christmas Eve
a full moon rose
over new-sculptured snowdrifts.
A moon so silver-pure it put to shame
the ornaments on the fragrant little spruce
in our living room.  We’d return to the tree
and its uncertain promises, but only after 
we’d braved those drifts and the season’s frost
to join in caroling and good cheer. In memory
that necessary moon hangs up there
essential as the new-piled snow
or the gripping cold. I close my mind
to warmer Christmases, preferring to return
to snow that sculptured itself into white barriers,
we scarred with our footsteps
as we floundered across and through them.
Regardless, I call them up again
picture-perfect, the whole scene white
and snapping cold. I stubbornly ignore reality
to hang a moon for silver accent
above the ice-glossed scene
lest you not believe in our improbable joy
in a holiday that only underscored
our scarcities.
I hang a moon at its most silvered
above each Christmas memory
because without its glow
the scene fades too dark to recall. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

POETRY: Better Weather

by Sara Walters

Fresno is December: Amber's
gold scarf, cold car door handles,
Christmas songs with swear words in them.

December is home: six hour flights
from LAX to MCO, red felt stockings
with my brothers' names in peeling gold paint,

handfuls of walnuts from our grandparents
that we carry in the bottoms of our
pockets and purses, useless and thick.

Home is music: warped cookie pans popping
in the oven, my mother's scratched Christmas CDs,
quiet breathing from my nephew soft on baby monitors.

Fallen plastic pine needles stick in the carpet
until March, and we don't mind them, prickling
the bottoms of our feet until April brings better weather.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

POETRY: Gift of the Wild

by Ellen Wade Beals

On Christmas a coyote came to our fence
and ever since my dog has been visited
by dreams of running with the pack,
almost able to catch up but never quite there,

lagging, and so her back legs push off
as she sleeps in her bed, her eyes squint
as if to see between the pickets,
beyond the slats shadowed on the ground.

She wants to stalk the ducks in the creek,
no leash tugging like a conscience, to tip over
garbage cans or to rustle among the leaves
for mice, to see the moon and call to it.

Cookies, I shake the box, her reward for coming in
but she skulks along the fence, desperate for any scent,
any sense that she could follow, could still catch up.

Friday, December 7, 2012

PROSE: Broken

by Elizabeth Stainton Walker         

            The first time I brought my boyfriend home for Christmas, my brother’s wife had just left him.  Drew and I were the first to arrive at my parents’ house. My mother and father looked back and forth at each other, unsure of how much to reveal. “She keeps telling him she’s broken,” my mom said. “What does that even mean?”
            Drew and I sat at the kitchen counter and shook our heads. I remembered Kip and Natalie’s wedding four years earlier. She had worn blue ostrich cowboy boots under her wedding gown.
            My mom told us Natalie was staying with a friend and probably would not be joining us for Christmas. “Kip said he would forgive her anything, but she just keeps saying she’s broken.” My mother held out her hands in front of her, palms up, in an effort to demonstrate: “‘Kip, I’m broken.’”
            “There are only so many times you can say a thing before you have to explain it,” said Drew.
            The rest of us nodded.
            “I hate to say this…” I ventured.
            My mom finished my thought. “You think she has someone else?”
            I remembered sitting with Natalie in her parents’ motor home while she braided her hair into two blond pigtails. It was the evening of the rehearsal dinner. I was nineteen and dating two guys while at college. “I was like you,” Natalie told me. “One man was never enough for me, until I met Kip.” The conversation had taken on new significance now.
            We heard Kip’s truck pull up in the driveway and the door slam. He did not talk to us until the next morning, when my mother tells him we are opening presents. My gift to Kip and Natalie was supposed to be a framed photo of their dog – really Natalie’s dog – Lena. Kip opened the shiny wrapping paper and cried.
            When it was time to say the prayer before Christmas dinner, my mother volunteered. She was grateful for the blessings of the year, for my meeting Drew, for my dad’s surviving bypass surgery. “But, God,” she prayed. “We sure do miss Natalie.” At that point, all of us were bawling, except Drew, who had never met Natalie. I worried what he would think of my messed-up family, unable to make it through one holiday without dissolving, and especially of my brother, who by this time had excused himself and headed down the hall to be alone.
            The remaining four of us ate shrimp and grits at the dining room table. Drew went to the kitchen to refill his drink. As my parents and I sat, picking at our food and suggesting possible divorce attorneys, I began to worry that Drew had become overwhelmed with our dysfunction and slipped out the back door. I walked into the kitchen and found Drew standing by the sink, his arms folded around Kip, who was weeping into my boyfriend’s collar. “I know,” Drew said to my sobbing brother. “I know.”

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Winter 2012 Blog Submissions

Congratulations again to the artists in the Winter 2012 Issue of Episodic.  While that portion of the year is behind us now, there is more to come—there are more ways to participate!

The Episodic blog is in dire need of some holiday cheer.  Help us deck the halls with stories and artwork from your own mantlepiece of life experiences.  Perhaps there are some unique family traditions worth sharing?  A favorite memory of this winter-fully wonderful season?  Send your holiday-related poetry, prose, photography, illustrations, or combinations to episodicmag@gmail.com.

Written submissions may be in the body of emails or attached as .pdf.  Please attach images as .jpg.  Also include a name (may be a blog name), age, and location.  Including a URL to your own blog is optional.

Submissions will be reviewed, and accepted pieces will be featured on the blog through the submission period.

Holiday Blog Submissions close Dec. 19th.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

It's Here!

The Winter 2012 Issue

Episodic Issue 1 has finally arrived!