Baker's Dozen Volume #1, Issue #1

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Springtime in Paris

Not a degree above 40
It is raining
April in Paris is nothing like the movies make it out to be
It is better
I smile at the top of the Eiffel Tower
Cold, damp, and completely satisfied
Despite the temperamental disposition of a fickle Spring

Stephanie Kemp

City Tableau #7

Such a beautiful view of whirling colors,
blonde and black spotted butterflies dueling amongst
purple dust speckled air, uniting as in tangled silver-streaked
spider webs in a dark forgotten corner, further forgotten
from an abandoned widower's house.
The fortunate wings fluttered, finding formulaic
wonder in exciting the eyes of passersby; however,
if Plato were alive, he would shake his doubting
head, proclaiming more perfect forms of these
exact superb butterflies exist elsewhere,
drowning the moving moment in his philosophic
theory of ideas.

Felino Soriano


I See You and I Raise You

They walk about, they make sounds
like little apes, my children,
shining like dreamspace, like the real
live sound inside my spongy coconut.
My children, presences in this house
so easily given over to ghosts.
My children, therefore, small explosions
of consciousness, of aim, of certainty.
I bet on them, they raise the stakes.
I cannot fold; I am game now forever
for their animal, godly, absolute continuation.
Cory Mesler


Engaging a Memory

There was the smell of lily from the valley
planted along the side of the house
that rushed through the windows
on a spring breeze

Our careful whispers
late at night and early in the morning
to keep from waking your mother
when we promised more than we could keep

The hours spent entangled
most of the time, on your floor
running our hands over each other,
exploration that always led to
deeper touching

Meals you made only for me,
homemade lemon bars with extra powdered sugar
that passed over my tongue,
such simplicity brought me so many smiles
knowing you'd only cooked and baked for me

Your impossible hair
that changed color with each season
without the help of dye,
your eyes that held two colors
and saw me as more
than a plain blonde haired girl

It seems like a lifetime ago
that we couldn't keep it together,
everything is a jumble of moments now,
you are a name without meaning
which only burns me deeper.

Natalie Lorenzo



Mask-eyed, but no thug,
favorite of my farmgirl mother—
skittish shy scavenger
whose tracks wake disaster.

The salt lick left out
made the deer no kindlier
nor she who loved it less kind.
Torn tulips straggling churned dirt
bring back my sweet-faced mother.


Spring samples all the greens in the wheel—
forest for grass, lime for new leaves, moss
green slicked over trees. Tea- green rain
slants through a wet sky and clouds huddle
around hills colored fern, pine, shamrock.

A praying mantis, camouflage-green thighs
thrumming against a spear of hunter green.
Green-winged teal paddling in circles in the pond.

Cheryl Snell

"Flying Tiger"
Short Fiction by Jack Swenson
     He was tall, dark, and soft spoken. He had come to visit my dad, who had been a Boy Scout leader when Mickey was in one of the local troops. I remember that I was disappointed that he wasn't wearing his uniform. He was home visiting friends and family, but he was going back, he said.
     He didn't look like a fighter pilot. He looked like one of the big kids at our church. I finally worked up the courage to ask him if he'd shot down any Japanese airplanes, and he said, yes, one. I pictured it in my mind's eye, the Zeke trailing smoke with a P-40 on its tail. The rattle of the fifty caliber machine guns was music to the ears of a nine year old.
     He said he was flying unarmed twin-engine airplanes now. The Japanese had closed the Burma Road, so they had to ferry in supplies. He worked for the Chinese government. He told us about the time he had tea with Madame Chiang Kai-shek. He and a buddy had given her and some other ladies a ride into town. They had left the Generalissimo at the airstrip. At the time, they didn't know who he was. He could laugh about it now, he said, but it was pretty embarrassing at the time.
     My father's Boy Scout was killed the following year. He took off one day and never returned. A flyer in another C-47 said that he disappeared into a fog bank, and that was the last he saw of him.
     I was sad when this happened, and it still makes me sad when I think of it, but it seems to me now that there was a kind of symmetry or poetic justice in a war bird, an Eagle Scout, meeting his death on a mountain aerie. I wonder if at the last instant he knew that he was going home.


"The Decisive Point"
Short Fiction by Edward Rodosek

Rigid felt a poke in his ribs and blinked. “What do you want?”

“Just look at Coiner over there! Just look at him!” Scept growled in astonishment.

Rigid rubbed his eyes and yawned.

In the middle of the gravelly shoal squatted Coiner, watchfully gazing into the dancing wavelets. Now and then he turned some bigger stones around.

“So what?” mumbled Rigid sulkily. “The lad is looking for bullheads that hide under stones. Did you really have to wake me up for that?”

“I didn’t mean that!” Scept was getting excited. “You just missed it, damn you! You just keep on watching him and you’ll understand what I mean.”

Now Linger joined them from behind. “What are you looking at?”

“Shut up. Just be quiet,” hissed Scept. “You’ll see it soon.”

A few more men soon collected behind them. Endur, the oldest among them, gasped uneasily. At a distance, a group of women were occupied with the last bites of a meal. Rigid wearily glanced at Coiner but he was still worked on searching for fish. It seemed that blockhead even preferred them over meat.

The tiny voices of his wife Ilala and her inseparable friend Berry wafted over to Rigid’s ears.

The women’s chattering suddenly stopped and Rigid’s gaze was attracted to them. They were staring, all of them, in surprise in the same direction--at the shoal. Ilala was covering her mouth as if suppressing a shriek. Rigid felt the convulsive grasp of Scept’s hand on his upper arm. From behind them, they heard Endur uttering a guttural groan. Linger also looked in shock toward the shoal, surprise dropping his lower jaw earthwards.

“Well? Do you see it now?” Scept’s voice was full of stifled triumph. “Have any of you, has anybody ever seen such a thing? Huh?”

“That’s awful,” agreed Linger. “That’s really awful.”

“I can’t believe my own eyes,” Array agreed and Silent tacitly and continually shook his head in denial of what he’d seen. The others found a stump for Endur to sit on. His weak joints had given out.

“This … this can’t be good,” growled Endur finally. “Oh, no--no good can come of this. I’m an old man and I’ve seen many things in my life. I’ve been all around, even up to the horizon ... but I’ve never even heard of anything like this.” His trembling voice slowly died away and finally faded into a weak whisper.

“Listen--shall we just watch all this calmly and quietly?” Scept’s voice was full of irritation. “We mustn’t allow such a shameless rascal--I don’t know how to put this--well, how can we let him mock us like this? How can we let him just insult us like this?”

“There, there,” Rigid soothingly dropped in to the exchange. “We know that young people are always up to something. And that Coiner is a particularly romping lad. The best we can do is to pretend we didn’t notice anything strange. He’ll cut it out on his own soon enough.”

“And what if he doesn’t?” asked Scept in rash opposition. “What if all the other youngsters start to imitate him? Can you imagine what would happen then?”

“I think Scept is right,” said Array. “What do you say, Silent?”

“Why are you asking that imbecile?” interrupted Scept. “You know he has no opinion about anything. And even if he does have one, you can never drag it out of him. Endur, you tell us what we could expect from that ... from that–” He shoved a scornful finger in Coiner’s direction.

“If that spreads,” mumbled the old man, “oh, if that plague extends, all our customs will be threatened.”

“Then you say,” said Linger eagerly, “what Coiner is doing is more than just another crazy idea? What do you think could happen?”

“The youth will start scoffing at the traditions of our ancestors until nothing more stays sacred.” Endur caught his breath and fought with the rasping cough. Then he waved his hand like it would be senseless to waste more words on the topic.

“I think you’re exaggerating a bit,” said Rigid. “What can be so evil about such an imp–” He cut himself off because he had noticed Ilala gazing at Coiner in astonishment. Her look was sheer admiration: eyes wide open, her mouth broadened into a smile, the half-eaten fruit dropped out of her hand.

“Hey!” Rigid’s warning woke Ilala out of her rapture. She lowered her gaze and docilely retreated behind Rigid’s back.

“Now you see where this leads?” asked Scept triumphantly. “It takes just one bad example like that to pollute all the innocent ones! I say we banish Coiner, get him far away from here--at once and forever!”

“Yeah!” grumbled Linger wrathfully.

Array agreed too, and Silent didn’t disagree; his gaze remained as obtuse as always.

“Damnation, damnation, damnation ...” repeated the gloomy Endur.

“Well, Rigid?” asked Scept, and poked him in the ribs again.

Rigid nodded to him in silence. Enough was enough. Who knew what would happen if everyone started behaving like this? He shuddered at the thought.

With all the others, Rigid morosely, but with a mild, curious envy, watched Coiner, who still hadn’t descended to all fours like he should have. Coiner pressed some of the bullheads he had caught with two paws into his chest, overgrown with dense brown fur.

Still tottering, but self-confident, he walked upright on his two posterior limbs.



Stephanie Kemp is a 32 year old poet originally from Seattle, Washington. She currently lives in Aurora, Colorado where she works for the city government. In her spare time she continues work on her first book of poetry. She has been published in Black Diaspora Magazine, Poetry Motel, The Armchair Aesthete, Foliate Oak, Flutter, Struggle, Remark and other publications. She has been writing poetry for about 10 years.

Felino Soriano lives in California where he is employed as a behavioral assistant; he is also currently studying philosophy. Through his occupation, he is able to counsel, care for and learn from developmentally disabled adults. Classic and avant-garde jazz are muses. His poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in several online journals including Blaze VOX, Ygdrasil, Bergen Street Review, Houston Literary Review, Persistent Mirage, among others.

Cory Mesler has been a book reviewer, fiction editor, university press sales rep, grant committee judge, father, and son. He and his wife own Burke’s Book Store, one of the country’s oldest (1875) and best independent bookstores. He has published prose and/or poetry in Turnrow, Adirondack Review, American Poetry Journal, Paumanok Review, Yankee Pot Roast, Monday Night, Elimae, H_NGM_N, The Journal of Experimental Fiction, Poet Lore, Forklift OH, Euphony, Rattle, Jabberwock Review, Dicey Brown, Cordite, Cellar Door, others. He can be found at

Jack Swenson is a California writer and teacher. His third book of stories Local Hero is available from the publisher at and at Many of his tales have appeared in online and print journals including ken*again, Pindeldyboz, The Smoking Poet, Flash Flooding, Underground Voices and Taj Mahal Review.

Natalie Lorenzo is a 25 year old poet from the East coast. She was recently published in the online journal Thick With Conviction. She mostly writes out of enjoyment and relaxation.Cheryl Snell’s books include Flower Half Blown, Epithalamion and Shiva’s Arms. She is a three-time Pushcart Prize nominee. She blogs at

Edward Rodosek is a writer from Slovenia in the European Union. His work has been published in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K.


Anita Lee