Poetry from Joan Beebe


The year flies by and all too soon,

we think of so many things we have to do.

The list is long so getting ready takes time,

The kids have their list and I have mine.

We think we will stop all the extras this year,

But suddenly find ourselves the same

As decorations appear.

We run to the mall several times a week

And walk the mall over for the items we seek.

We  promised ourselves to keep the spending lower

But we look at our checkbook and know the marketing power.

So,  sadly we try to sort  our mistakes

Balancing our checkbook, — have we got what it takes?

We promise again that next year we’ll do better

And I know what I’ll do, I’ll write myself a letter

As a reminder of the promise I’ve made

And then make my list before what I will need fades.

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Essay from Elizabeth Hughes

Holiday Gifts
At this time of year the signs, fliers and containers come out for gifts for the needy. After Christmas I see brand new books either in our recycle bin or outside the trash room due to the kids not wanting that particular book. If I may make a suggestion, for babies and toddlers, get the cloth or card board books. Something that tiny hands can hold easily and won’t tear. Not all parents will or can read to their children, so something like a cloth book with bright colors and cute pictures would be great for them.
For older and elementary school children, get a gift card to a book store, that way the child can pick out the book that will stir their imagination and get them excited about reading. It doesn’t even have to be a major book store. Used books stores probably have gift cards or certificates also. The older child will come closer to reading if they are able to find something that really interests them. It will also make them feel good about their gift and the experience of picking out one of many books that are out there. Please if you do get a gift card, pick one that they are able to buy something with and not just a $5 gift card. The child probably will not find what they want with a small amount. I am not saying it has to be a lot, but just the price of a book.

Poetry from Julian Raine


memory comes


as a scent in the air, maybe

or in the cracks on the sidewalk

or in the colors of my clothes


or in the rain

as it falls

from the grey


and it reminds me

of the way i felt

the way that i was, then

when i was a child


and all the moments

in between

sort of bind together


the child to the old woman

i am to become

they belong to each other

and all at once


they belong to life

just as they belong to death


the dream that dreams from life


as we are as much the earth as the earth itself

the old blood the rivers vein

the cacophony of the earth

and the quiet of the earth

or the flower

to all the things that need to be

the flowers sweet

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Poetry from Bruce Roberts

Hayward Public Library

Cold steel door handles

startle my senses


eyes scanning

people, shelves, books–

ever the books–

inching off their appointed spots,

creeping closer,

daring me to approach.

I slip past the librarian,

whose wire-rims notice nothing

but my overdues,

taking breath,

deep, tense,

boldly, I enter the stacks.

The hairy hand

around my ankle

springs from

The Rue Morgue

blue book, clear cover,

white-knuckle grip–

Poe me,

but I’m ready.

I kick out hard,

freeing my leg and leaping

20,000 leagues away,

finding Nemo

in brown leather binding,

and giant squid tentacles–

slithery, insistent,

suction cups on my eyes,

my eyes!

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