Oct 21
Kittykatruff's picture

By The Fire

(Editor's Note: This is one of the winning submissions for Winter Tales and will be performed by Vermont Stage on Dec. 12. Find out more here!)

Winter is my favorite season.
I stay warm by the fire
With a cup of cocoa, and watch
The snowflakes fall gracefully, dancing
With the flames. 

Sometimes Nature holds her breath
And all is still; when I step outside, the silence
Is only broken by the crunch of snow 
Under my feet.

Other times, the winds howls as a lonely wolf
Lamenting the forlorn expression of the moon,
Tearing at braches, scouring houses with sharp 
Icy crystals, whipping across my face, 
Stinging my eyes, slashing ears and fingertips, 
As I hurry home to safety from the storm.

The best time of all is when 
The world pauses for a moment, though not
In anticipation, simply to ponder 
Its own existence.

Oct 19

Snow Dawn

Waking up
To the silent sound 
Of snowflakes twirling 
To the ground.
It's barely dawn
With the sun rising 
from its chambers 
beneath the mountains,
The stars unwilling to dim 
their short-lived light.
Yet the snowflakes mirror them,
Drifting to fill the valleys
In a cold, crisp carpet.
Walking out
To the half-darkness of winter,
The beauty within the ice,
The sword within the stone.
Sensing the danger in the snow,
Yet unable to pull away
From trees that seem to glow.
No one has ever been able to resist Winter.
It's the right time for wonder.
If you're going to take a plunge into mystery,
Then waking up to snowflakes
Falling outside your window
Is, perhaps, the best way to do it. 
Oct 18
joseph.deffner's picture

A Quiet Winter Day

The snow crunches softly beneath my boots as I trudge up the hill. Small delicate snowflakes land on my fuzzy hat. I tilt my head back to catch them in my mouth. Out of the corner of my eye, a male cardinal dashes from tree to tree, his red feathers bright against the white snow. When I get to the top of the hill, I pause to look around at the snow covered trees, and listen to how peaceful it is. Dropping my sled on the wet snow, I climb on and slide down the hill, going down easily on top of the smooth and icy snow. The cool wind blowing in my face, smiling to myself. Winter makes me feel serene and content.
Jan 10
thelightb49's picture

Paper Airplanes

All of it folds together like a paper airplane,

You live your life unfolding new pieces of paper,

Except the paper is a new light

Guiding you through life.

You have to take the bad things and fold them into place,

You have to accept the intolerable things that you have done

You must fold them away,

Saying farewell.

You have to fold every year that passes

And unfold a new year

Saying goodbye to the past,

And saying hello to the present.

Every fold you make is a part of your life forever

Except the fold is a decision or memory.

You will remember every fold you make,

Thinking about how it made an impact on your life.

You will teach others how to fold their paper airplanes,

Having them learn from your mistakes.

And when we start to live our final days.
Jan 10
laurenwwright's picture

A Voice in the Night

I lie, half asleep on the chocolate brown couch,
Hearing nothing but the small breaths escaping from
the pink crib across the room.
I let my eyes fall heavy and drift off into sleep.

Shortly after, I find my body jerk up right on the couch,
my ears searching for a sound, like a dog.
I peek through the windows, scanning the property.
I hear faint cries between the rings,
and dart towards the crib to find nothing but a folded pink blanket.

I search for my phone,
but can’t seem to remember where I had placed it.
I follow the faint cries, leading upstairs,
when I turn the corner I see her face,
with her eyes squeezed tight and her mouth wide.
Within a second she’s gone.
The walls are gone, the stairs are gone,
the noise is gone, everything is gone.
I wake in the crisp of the morning sun,
on the chocolate brown couch.
I look across the room and see a small face
Jan 08
JbauerH's picture


Jack Hastings

She was beautiful,
but in a different sort of way.
She was like a musical.
A melody that never goes away.

That picture in your head,
you could never replace.
The words you never said,
which made her go away.

She was like a match that spread,
an illuminus light.
That went out in the end.
Still the future's bright.

One day you will transcend,
and move on from the night.
Then you will see,
when you find your light.

Jan 03
fiction 2 comments challenge: 70°
Jen L.'s picture

Seventy Degrees Fahrenheit

If 70 degrees fahrenheit was a person, it would be a pleasant person to hang around with. It would probably wear nice bright, but not neon, colors that are pleasant to the eyes and it would never speak in a tone of voice that would make someone mad or sad. They would make everyone happy. 70 degrees would say kind things to everyone, even if the person they are complementing is mean to them. That’s the thing though, nobody can stay mad at 70 degrees for very long. 70 degrees is always nice.
Jan 02
Samara Spelman's picture

They Weren't Normal Children

    The Kendalls were an interesting family to say the least. The parents were about as normal as they come, but there was just something different about their children. I had been their babysitter for about a year, but they only needed me about once or twice a month when Mr. and Mrs. Kendall went out for a date night. They paid me well, so I kept quiet about how awful their children were when they were out of the house.

    The two children had finally fallen asleep after an hour of me trying to wrestle them into their beds. They had so much energy and were not in the mood to fall asleep, but I started playing a podcast on my phone for them to listen to and they were able to lie down in their beds, listening intently to the story, and eventually, they both drifted off to a state resembling sleep.
Dec 21

Diving Board

Looking down with a horrified gulp, I realize how far up I am. The muffled sounds of the pool are blocked out by the sound of my thumping heartbeat. Why did I even agree to this? Shifting uneasily and picking at my one-piece bathingsuit, I bide my time. A long line stretches behind the diving board, and a group of teenagers are getting annoyed at the holdup. They jeer but I ignore their protests. The unnaturally blue water ripples beneath me while a few younger kids nearby do flips into the water. Their screams and screechs distract me for a while, but I soon have to return to the problem at hand. My friends are standing across the pool, arms crossed, their towels wound over their torsos. I wonder if they would care if I chickened out, but I promised I would be able to to this. A strong scent of chlorine wafts through the air, making me woozy and light-headed. An annoyed lifeguard tweets his whistle at me, "Get off the divingboard! You're holding up the line!".
Dec 21
tobin's picture


Winter. 10 degrees Fahrenheit. To most people it is too cold to do anything. To me it is the perfect temperature. A cold, clear day. The ski trail is perfectly groomed, not an alpine ski trail, a cross-country ski trail. It is 6:30 and the sun is just coming up, making the snow-covered trees look like they are hung with miniature Christmas lights.
I lay my skis on the trail and clip in. I could stay and just stand there in the woods taking in the beauty, but my muscles are ready to go and I am starting to get cold. I strap on my poles and push off. As I move down the trail it feels as though it is completely effortless.

The freezing cold air feels as though it is burning my lungs and the hairs in my nose feel like they are starting to freeze so I pull my buff up until it is right under my eyes. For the next couple of hours I just ski and let the corduroy pattern of the trail sliding under my skis mesmerize me.
Dec 20
m.fredella's picture


She tells herself every day that she’ll conquer her fear. When she gets a muffin at the small coffee shop on the corner and stares up while she takes a bite. Not at the sky, but at the tall glass building that blocks out the sun. It’s almost a tradition for her. Passerby stare at the strange girl that stops and stares at the skyscraper. And she takes a step, towards where the towering building was built from the solid earth, where it’s safe. She walks with determination to the double doors that grant access to her biggest fear. She only pauses to throw out her half eaten muffin in a small trash can. Large heavy doors are pushed open to reveal a vast room full of bustling strangers. She makes her way over to the elevator doors, and hits the up button. The shiny silver doors open quickly and after a slight hesitation she steps in. The top floor button lights up as her shaky fingers press it. The doors close and she’s alone. She closes her eyes. The elevator rises.
Dec 20

The City That's Alive

I stand at the backbone of the arching neon city, the whole world spread at the tips of my fingers. Cryptic buildings soar from the ground, sleek seamless spires of silver rooted in the ground like the gnarled ribs of a herculean beast. The trembling energy that weaves throughout this city like a plait of pure euphory charges through my blood, through my muscles, ever fiber and cell in my body united. The heartbeats thunder through my ears, echoing across every fragmented nuance of my mind. Tremors convulse inside the ceramic sculpture of my bones, hairline fractures spiraling downward, downward, downward, towards my curled toes pressing against my sneakers. Indeed, this city howls and growls, its humid, clammy breath pressing against my flushed skin. Cerulean swirls wisp through the thick air like heavy curtains flowing down from a tall, elegant glass window in a regal palace. The people, like the city, dance with a flowing, graceful energy that I can only wish to possess.
Dec 16
poem 0 comments challenge: Snow
Darth Nyan's picture

My Vermont

Pitch black but for the moon
Cold, silver light reflects on the field
That is now a white waste.

I exhale.
My breath becomes the only cloud in this
Otherwise clear night.

The big dipper glows brightly,
As if to say:
“Follow, and ye shall freeze.”

But I do not heed its warning
And I follow it across the field
To a cabin with an orange glow
And firewood piled high

This is my home
My womb and my tomb
This is my Vermont
Dec 15

Kindred Soul

golden light slipping, dancing through your fingers
a halo of sunlight
the soft padding of feet early in the morning
slouch your back
into the warm dependable shoulder
that's never more than an arm's length away
laughter bubbling out of the fountain of joy
that is seemingly endless
tears sometimes fall, but what of it?
i know they will fade quickly and without a trace
flushed cheeks and a red nose
an anchor, teasing eyes and peeling plaster
a kindred soul in a meaningless world

Dec 14
fiction 0 comments challenge: Power
m.fredella's picture

The Good Old Days

7.6 billion people granted a superpower, but none can be the same. If I were given this opportunity, I don't know what I would choose. All the good ones like mind reading, invisibility, happiness, power, smartness, success, ect. would be taken. I mean I would love to be super smart and never have to worry about not succeeding in life, but I wouldn't be able to choose those things. I guess If I was granted one superpower that had to be different from everybody else's, I would choose the ability to know when I'm in the good old days before I am no longer in them. I am afraid my life is going to pass me by, and I won't take advantage of what I was given. I wish that I could know which moments were going to change my life, so I can pay more attention. Now that would be a superpower.
Dec 10
poem 1 comment challenge: Snow
Emma Colby's picture

Snow on the Mountain

The old chairlift creaked and swayed gently
as the crisp morning flurries nipped at the rosy, red cheeks of the young girl.
Her grandmother sat to the left and her grandfather to the right.
Both of them had their arms wrapped tightly around her, attempting to keep her warm.
They sat in silence and watched the mountain grow in front of them.
The bright sun illuminated every aspect: the smooth coating of ice that clung to the trees,
and the conformity of every neatly groomed trail.
The previous snow had left a fresh layer of powder
that wordlessly begged them to disrupt its purity.
At the peak, they looked down and out over
the mountain, the town, and the valley that seemed to stretch on forever.  
The sky taunted them, dangling just out of reach,
and the overwhelming panorama reminded them how small they were
—even at the highest points.  
Dec 09
poem 0 comments challenge: Power


As a young girl
I read
I read so-
Many wonderful books.
And the stories
which they told were more-
More wonderful
Than anything this
World could
Ever hold.

I longed to be
In these
Where sirens sing
And dragons fly
And journeys loom behind

Then one day
I was.
A storm cloud
A storm wind
And a lightning bolt
It flew towards

It shattered in the sky
Breaking in all directions
Like a ray of light,
Striking a prism.

No one was left untouched.
We were all in-
In the story now.

Into our heads came a voice
Into our souls.
Into everyone’s souls.

“I grant a wish, a wish so sweet
To feel that speciality
That feeling of uniquity
Dec 07
fiction 0 comments challenge: Power

Time and Space

Posters of stars and planets seemed to orbit around this girl's bedroom as she lay sprawled out on her bed. As she stared at her roughly copied glow in the dark star constellations, she pondered what she wanted most in the world. She knew everyone else in the world was ready to present their superpowers and gain what they thought would make them incredible. This girl didn't want to be incredible though, she wanted to keep her life but perhaps add a little more ease. She had thought about the basics: flying, invisibility, and super speed, but none of them clicked with her. She needed to choose something no one would think of. 
Dec 06
poem 1 comment challenge: 70°
kaitlynmacphee's picture


Have you ever meet Sev
He's the perfect amount of sass and kindness. 
He knows when not to push it, and when to ask for more,
he's everybody's friend, and everybody knows not to mess with him 
He's the definition of perfection, and he knows it. 
When you talk to him it's like talking to a best friend and a teacher at the same time.
Nobody knows how he got the way he is, becuase his parents are total messes.
The only logical explaination for him is that he's an angel sent from heaven,
but even angels have there hellish side.
Everbody loves him, but when it comes to Sev there is a thin line between love and hate,
and nobody knows which feeling s they have towards him.
Dec 05
fiction 0 comments challenge: Trees
m.fredella's picture

Dancing Trees

Limb to limb

Arm to arm

The secret whispering of leaves between two old friends

The whistle of wind blowing through splayed branches

Branches that sway in time to inaudible music

Clawed wooden hands reaching up to the ever changing sky

Roaming roots ripping from the damp soil

A strange rhythm of the woods

Oh, what a strange sight

Dancing trees, moving to a silent beat

Oh, what a strange sound

Singing trees, chanting a silent melody

Oh, what a strange experience

A tree party