Issue #12

(March 1996)

Floor Man - Cover 12

cover drawing by Vicky Perry

Table of Contents

full or partial text is availablefor highlighted items




(updated July 9,1996)

© Copyright 1995 EchoesMagazine

All stories, poems, and drawings are protected by copyright andmay not be reproduced, in whole or in part, in any form, by copyingor by any electronic or mechanical means, without written permissionfrom Echoes Magazine. Individual stories and poems are also copyrightby their authors; drawings are copyright by Echoes Magazine and bythe artists.

Little Blue Boy

by Laurie Champion


Following is a brief excerpt from thestory:

 . . . When I was little, Mom used to sing to me when I helped her with household chores. "Whose turn to wash dishes?" she'd look down at me and ask. "'Not I,' said the little red hen," she always answered, as she continued to wash the plates and hand them to me to dry. She used to call me "Little Boy Blue," "Little Blue Boy," or "Blue Little Boy," often singing the names.

"This is the way we wash the plate, wash the plate, wash the plate." She'd hold the dish way above the sink and move the sponge in perfect harmony with the tune. "So early, each and every morning." I knew it should go "So early in the morning," but I never said anything.

When I was seven, Mom had to go to the hospital. I thought it was because she always confused words. I even asked Dad if that was why she had to go to the hospital.

"Something like that," he answered. Then he told me I should know the truth about Mom sooner or later and that the day before she went to the hospital was as good a time as any . . .

Helping Mom
illustration by Erin Higgins


© Copyright 1995 Laurie Champion

Laurie Champion is thirty-six and is an assistant professor ofEnglish and creative writing at Sul Ross State University in Alpine,Texas. Her essays, short stories, and reviews have appeared inExplicator, American Literature, Southern Literary Journal, NorthTexas Review, and other journals and anthologies. Laurie beganwriting fiction six years ago, when she took some creative writingclasses in graduate school. "Little Boy Blue" is based, in part, on atrue story about a man who tried to rescue two drowning boys but wasable to save only one. (1/96)

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Sunday Warfare

by Laird Kopp

The dogs encircle in frenetic dance,
barking approval like quadruped Roman spectators
while the Sun turns her chariot home;
faded flannel presses my face to earth,
down to moistened leaves and bitter yellow grass
that scratches lower backs like whiskers
while boots dig for freedom;
ears bend under in deaf submission,
and tangled hair protests
with lungs bursting for air in giggles;
panic releases her grip at just the right time,
and little brethren warriors squirm,
sharing the burden of epic struggle
against the formidable demigod;
relinquished from meaty shackles,
but not given to hasty retreat,
we seek combat as undisciplined youths do
and bolt back in a blind fury of affection;
with burning rosy cheeks
we rally for the last advance
and finally wrestle

Sunday Warfare
illustration by Vicky Perry


© Copyright Laird D. Kopp

Laird D. Kopp is a twenty-one-year-old senior at HaverfordCollege, in Pennsylvania, where, in addition to reading and writing,he enjoys singing in an a cappella choir and playing intramuralbasketball. Laird grew up in Buxton, Maine, and as a child, he wantedto learn to write "like his mom." He feels that his most genuinepoems center around his family and home.(2/96)

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The Death of the White Freesias

by Antoinette S. Ellis


The day after you left, again,
the white freesias I had given you
drooped in their silver vase
onto the stems of golden yarrow.

Two days after, the petals had thinned to tissue,
folding like sails dropped,
aging like our own skin...

On the third day, they sank and curled
without a sound;
wounded petals at rest
on the bright yarrow.

I wish you had been here.

Their passing was more beautiful

white freesias
illustration by Vicky Perry


© Copyright 1995 Antoinette S.Ellis

Antoinette S. Ellis was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. Shegraduated from Bryn Mawr College in 1960 and has worked as apublisher, writer, and editor. Since returning to Oregon, she hasrealized a long- standing dream of living " in the grandeur of cedarforests on the hem of majestic Mount Hood." She writes poetry whileworking on a first novel. (2/96)

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by The Lone Driver

Following is a brief excerpt from thestory:

 . . . "With us today is Dr. Anita Wentworth, noted clinical psychologist and author of several self-help books. Please welcome Dr. Wentworth." Applause.

She stamped her high-heel shoe on the tile floor and said, "I told him not to call them 'self-help books.' It makes them sound cheap." She listened for a moment fingering the skin under her chin, "TV makes me look pudgy. I hate that."

The cashier leaned out her window to have a look at the TV. "Oh, so you're the lady that comes in after all the yelling and screaming and makes them hug and kiss so they can go home happy."

"Yes," she said without taking her eyes off the set, "I like to think I bring people to some kind of understanding, some kind of reasonable grounds where they can begin to work out their differences."

The cashier smiled at me. "Wow, you must be some kind of genius to get these people to forgive and forget and live happily ever after."

"Please. Do you mind? I'm trying to watch this." She adjusted the shoulder strap on her purse and continued to stare at the set. . . .

© Copyright 1995 The Lone Driver

The Lone Driver's stories are a regular feature of Echoes. Someyears ago he gave up his home in suburban New Jersey and took to theroad in a pickup camper, in a continuing search for adventure andknowledge.

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by Gene Moser


Following is a brief excerpt from thestory:

 . . . Phil smiled when he saw the "1LT, ANC, USAR" after El's signature, her little dig at military formality. His eyes moved from the letter to the snapshot that had come with it: El in her jungle fatigues and boonie hat standing in front of the flimsy, temporary buildings of her Evacuation Hospital, with her stethoscope draped around her neck and the blue waves of the South China Sea in the background. He carefully lifted the glass desk cover and slid the picture underneath, joining the others that were already there. There was a skinny girl with freckles and a pony tail; then the same girl five years later, next to him in his cadet officer's dress parade uniform. Her formal high-school graduation picture touched one of her sitting on a Triumph motorcycle, with hair flowing down her back and guitar in hand. There was a snapshot of El's capping ceremony and two wedding portraits, one with just her and the other with both of them.

His memories were interrupted by the insistent ring of the field phone on his desk. Phil took it and answered it mechanically. It was Lieutenant Greg Rickman, the adjutant.

"Phil, this is Greg. The colonel wants to see you in his office, ASAP." . . .

a new picture from El
illustration by Vicky Perry

© Copyright 1995 Gene Moser

Gene Moser grew up as an "army brat" in Texas, Oklahoma,Wisconsin, Japan, Massachusetts, and Virginia. He graduated fromFishburne Military School and the College of William and Mary. Genespent twenty-seven years as a field artillery officer, including atour in Korea. Since 1968, Gene has taught in the Hampton CitySchools. He and his wife have two adult children "and animals toonumerous to mention." Gene has been published in the William andMary Review and writes for Military Brats of America.(3/96)

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Sour Balls and Wiesbaden

by Carole Bellacera


Following is a brief excerpt from the story:

. . . On Christmas Eve, after the scene in the darkened little room, we'd finally gone out to dinner, even though we weren't really hungry. I think we both craved the gaiety of a German tavern. The music was loud and boisterous, the beer dark and bitter, icy cold. We stared at each other across a grained wooden table, our fingers touching, trying to find that connection we'd somehow lost.

"We can make it work, Jon," I said, in a low urgent voice. "If it's the distance, we can work around it. You can come down to Greece, and I can always fly back up here."

"Yeah," he said, but I saw his hand tremble on the handle of his beer stein, and a sharp thrill of fear went through me. The sound of a lively polka filled the room. I hated the military for tearing us apart...again. Twice before it had happened, but this time I sensed it would be the last. . . .


© Copyright 1995 Carole Bellacera

Carole Bellacera served as a medical technician in the Air Forceand is now a full-time writer. She met her husband (who retired aftertwenty-one years of service) while she was in the service, and theirtravels with the Air Force have contributed ideas and settings to herwriting. Carole has been published in numerous magazines and hasseveral writing prizes to her credit, including the 1994 novelcontest sponsored by the National Writers Association. Her screenplay"Border Crossings" won the Great American Script Search competition.(1/96)

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