By Sandra Hosking

Cricket Serenade

Cricket sings his song
Wind carries it to Tiger
Her ear flicks then turns


Why call it dragon
If it does not breathe fire?
Heed its crushing jaw

Joe Wears a Cape

Joe wears a cape, superhero red
Muzzie wears suspenders
The two go together like cumin and coriander
Which may seem discordant
But make an interesting flavor.

Hero and sidekick poise on the parapet of Temple El Katif
Daring to splat on Main Street
Laughing at Danger, valiant
Even if in their minds.

A flight of pigeons ascends
Followed by flaming crimson
Our hero reaches for the sky, chin up
Like Icarus, who touched the sun and fell to earth.

History reprises itself.

Muzzie slightly smiles
Placing his hands behind his suspenders.

Not You

He isn’t you, but he looks like you.

Epic snow on I-84, eastbound
Multnomah Falls, exit left
Two blanketed cars in the lot
Me, Ugg boots, brown down jacket, hat forgone
Rebel over the shoulder

The path is obscured
Only deep footsteps to guide
Along a glacier green stream
With ice island drifts

In the summer this place teems with tourists–
Blended families, day-drive locals, cheerleading squads
They buy faux Native art, synthetic rocks, and I Heart OR tees
Selfies on Benson Bridge, hashtag see me

But on this New Year’s denouement
Stone lodge sleeps with a crown of white
And the snow-covered steps to the falls sit alone

I hold the railing as I ascend,
My feet searching for solid ground
I hear her before I see her, not the roar and spray I know
But a muffled rumble

On the viewing platform, a lone figure watches her
Through the lens of a TV camera on a stand
“Channel five, Vancouver”
A still on a tripod perches nearby

He is where I want to be
At the center, with a perfect view

I adjust the shoulder strap and approach the railing
Black metal encased in ice
Near him but not near

My lady falls
A shadow of her summer self
Yet she plunges on
Into a bubbling hole in the ice
Frozen sheets adorn her basalt face
While pine sentries watch with hoary wools

Feet shuffle
A camera shutters
We glance toward one another
I smile, close-lipped
He eyes my Canon, respect

He isn’t you, but he looks like you
Your profile
Your stance
Your wiry build
The wave in your hair

“Where you headed?” he asks, eyes away
Your trait
“Back to Twisp”
His hometown, funny
Not your name

We behold Multnomah

I snap a few
Different angles, different speeds
Compensating for flat light

Mist descends
Drawing a curtain
To shield her from our lenses

I turn
He is already gone
Carrying gear, tripods open
Trying to balance on uncertain ground

I was going to ask if he liked Liszt

I follow in his footsteps
Back to an empty parking lot.


About the Author:

Sandra Hosking is a professional writer and photographer based in Spokane, WA. Her work has appeared in 3 Elements Review, Joey, Edify Fiction, West Texas Review, Redactions, Glass International, The Spokesman-Review, Journal of Business, Inland NW Homes & Lifestyles, Down to Earth NW, Insight for Playwrights,and various anthologies. Hosking’s plays have been performed across the U.S. and internationally, including the Last Frontier Theatre Conference, Samuel French Off Off Broadway Short Play Festival, the American Globe’s 15-minute play festival in New York, and others. She holds an MFA in creative writing from Eastern Washington University and an MFA in theatre/playwriting from the University of Idaho.