Backchannels No. 4 / 2020

“Hidden Cave” by Sandy Coomer (16×16 Clayboard)

Editor’s Note from Laura Johnson

Have you been wondering how to spend the extra time you have? Perhaps you’re getting really good at online meetings and collaboration. Maybe you’re navigating unemployment forms. Stressing out over the unknowable? Have you found yourself inexplicably sad or scared? Perhaps you are caring for sick loved ones.

We doubt there’s one person who isn’t experiencing some kind of new normal. And that new normal can mean so many things. No matter what it means to you, we want you to know that we are with you. 

With that in mind, we are happy to present our Spring 2020 Edition. Our fourth edition. We are proud of the poetry, art, and stories here. 

During this time, we want to sincerely encourage you to keep creating. It cannot be said too frequently that it is the arts that connect us despite our distance.

We hope this issue provides you some reading enjoyment, a moment to escape or relax, or connect with literary arts. Although this issue was prepared before the pandemic, it is our sincere hope you find something wonderful that speaks to you. 

Be well, 
Laura, Leslie & Mary

Jackie Ross Flaum – How We Became Methodists (fiction)

Melanie Faith – You Have Seen Their Faces (poem)

Ewa Mazierska – Love Cycle (fiction)

John Jeffire – What’s That Supposed to Mean? (poem)

Kyle Hemings (art)

Marie O’Shea – Picking up Stitches (essay)

Emmanuel Stephen Ogboh – Gospel (poem)

Doug Van Hooser – Untitled (poem)

Jennifer Frost – A Place to Get Away (fiction)

Denise O’Hagan – Be-mused (poem)

Brittany Wattenbarger – This is My America (poem)

S.R. Larin – Tongue Twister (fiction)

Kashaf Guhmann – Sorrow in My Genes (poem)

Drema Deòraich – Late December (fiction)

Howard Skrill (art)

Roberta Beach Jacobson – Two Haikus

Ronald J. Pelias – Three Poems

Robert Petyo – Everybody’s Funeral (fiction)

Leslie Dianne – Two Poems

Kathy Cantley Ackerman – Between Seasons (poem)

Tom Pennacchini – Shine On (poem)

Renee Ebert – Alberta (fiction)

Sharmon Gazaway – Hunger (poem)

Robert Joe Stout – With My Daughter on the Oregon Coast (poem)

Kassandra Montag – Doctoring (fiction)

Albert Katz – The Winds of Mars (poem)

Sarah Edmonds – Two Poems

Sara Fernandes – The Face That Carries (poem)

Christopher Woods (art)

Frank Dullaghan – A Child’s Soft Toy (fiction)

Lynne Goldsmith – Definitions: Beautiful (poem)

Diane Martin – Two Poems

Greg Janetka – The Last Citizen of Groves Grove (fiction)


Mary Bardsley, Editor
Leslie Caton Frey, Editor
Laura Johnson, Editor

Cover art by Sandy Coomer

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