Photo by Edu Carvalho from Pexels

My father, from the age of 60-ish, often joked about how getting old was not for the faint of heart, referring to his own faint and failing one. My mom, widowed by her second husband at 60-something and anything but happy about her reflection in the bathroom mirror, dashed out…

Photo by Dibakar Roy on Unsplash

To some of us, time has a shape, often twisty and convoluted, with no beginning and no end. The years stretch backwards into a deep, black hole of memories, and forward into an impenetrable dense fog.

In “normal” years, I think of time as mostly linear, but, to my mind’s…

Evolutionary Biology-inspired Sciku

Photo by Andrea Lightfoot on Unsplash

the climate heats up
new virus — can we adapt?
herd immunity

Hello, I’m speaking to you from the year 2169, when your future people –– we call ourselves Fumans, sounds like “few mens” because we’re few and far between –– don’t look quite the same as you do. …

“It Was a Dark and Stormy Night”

Photo by Ed Pirnak on Unsplash

The following story began its life as a 75-word novel, one of dozens I scribbled for a Facebook group a couple years ago. We were having fun, loving words, telling stories, challenging each other to be funnier, pithier, juicier in our offerings.

Writing these extreme short forms is excellent practice…


Door latch, Balinese wood carving, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia, 2006. Photo by Author

I knew the day would come
when you
fully realized
that we are soulmates

The way we talk
walk together
fit together

We are lock and key
butter and popcorn
potatoes and gravy
scotch and rocks

You possess me
heart soul mind
There is no space
between us


Jumping spider, photo by Erik Karits on Unsplash

I never used to like spiders. I mean, they’re creepy, they have too many legs, some of them can bite, and every week I have to get the ladder and the long-handled duster out to deal with all the flying cobwebs festooning the ceiling.

When I was a little girl…


Photo by author taken at, Ashford, WA

He knew I wouldn’t be able to resist his (that’s you, Michael Burg, MD (AKA Medium Michael Burg)) disgusting prompt, below:

So, here goes. Please forgive me.

Aren’t you sick of writing bad limericks?
Just asking, are you wearing out your Bics?
Your poetry’s a crime
Not even worth a thin dime.
You’re still…

Climate Disaster Poetry

Leaves of Glass, photo by author

Fall colors thrill
as seasons pass
and winter chills
like leaves of glass

then spring rebounds
while spirits soar
when green surrounds
our icy core

flowers bloom
in summer’s heat
cool dark rooms
provide retreat

soon ducks return
and geese fly by
pond waters churn
I heave a sigh


Image property of Author

UPDATE: Please see excellent additional commentary at the end of this essay by John Griswold, who has lived through the same memorable shit as the rest of us Boomers. Thank you! -Author

Author’s note: I drafted this piece about a year ago, in outrage at being accused of ruining Planet…

Adelia Ritchie

A long time denizen of the Pacific Northwest, PhD science lover, educator, artist, farmer, chicken wrangler, contributing editor at

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