VoiceCatcher Journal Header Image

Summer 2013: Young Voices

A Young Night

It was 6:00 on a dark January Manhattan evening the first time I remember spending the night with Uncle Jim. I was four years old. I carefully walked up the icy steps to the lobby of his apartment from the cab that had dropped me off, my babysitter waiting expectantly within the warm taxi for me to pull the door open and be whisked up to Uncle Jim’s apartment.

Right as I pushed the button labeled D4, a deep hurried voice came through the intercom. “Ciao bella! I’ll be down in un minute,” he relayed to me in recently learned Italian-English. Soon he appeared, wearing his typical black leather jacket, Italian box toed shoes, black jeans, and a dark button down shirt. His iconic crazy gray hair was everywhere, pushed back with his reading glasses. I skipped up to him and hugged his legs as he stepped out of the elevator and patted my back. He had no doubt just been working on some new sketches for some recent project by the looks of the pencil tucked behind his ear.

I held his hand as he playfully skipped with me down the long hallway leading to his studio apartment. We walked in and, as usual, I almost knocked over the obscure “piece of modern art” which looked more like a bunch of scribbles to my untrained childish eyes. “You break it you buy it!” he joked.

Uncle Jim’s apartment was fit more for a museum than a playground – typical New York architect style. “So, darling, we’re going out tonight!” he mockingly said with a smile and the faint hint of a deeply-buried southern accent.

As we walked hand in hand down 5th Avenue, there was no denying that I was excited to be away from my parents. Instead of being led by what seemed like a couple of idiots through a myriad of streets, I was being led by a much cooler, sleeker, hipper family member. “Can we take a caaabb?” I moaned up to Uncle Jim.

“No, honey, this is what New Yorkers do. We walk from now on,” he replied to my dismay, as he swung his messenger bag across his body.

We finally arrived at our venue for the evening, a bar near the Empire State Building. “Uncle Jim, I’m not allowed to go up there,” I said looking up at him.

“Don’t worry, honey,” he reassured me, “just follow me.” He waltzed into the bar, me by his side, and he seemed to know everyone. I looked up at the tall, free-standing tables and peered around the deep, plush, dark looking booths. I saw the most glamorous people I thought I’d ever seen. Uncle Jim sauntered up to the bar and greeted the bartender, one of his many friends no doubt. The Maître-D looked over at me disapprovingly, but Uncle Jim turned his head, flashed smile and the man nodded and looked away. If you were Uncle Jim, you could get away with anything. Since we couldn't find two empty seats in the crowded bar, Uncle Jim picked me up and plopped me down on the bar itself. I sat there quietly, watching him sling his coat over the back of his chair as he ordered a “dry martini, up with gin.” The bartender slid the drink down the long counter, Uncle Jim plucked one of the olives up out of the tall glass and popped it into his mouth. Then he looked at me and asked me what I wanted. I ordered a Shirley Temple with extra cherries. My drink came and, as Uncle Jim popped another olive into his mouth, I did the same with my maraschino cherries.

Previous Button   Next Button

Poetry Thumbnail Art   Prose Thumbnail Art   Artwork Thumbnail Art   Young Voices Thumbnail Art   Contributors Thumbnail Art

Rich, strong, poignant, humorous and inspiring. We’ve caught twenty never-before-published poems by sixteen unique voices.


Seven talented women search for themselves in their bodies, their family, themselves.


Established dynamos and aspiring voices add colorful visions to our third issue.

Young Voices

Language leaps off the page in the poetry and prose of five young authors who delight in sensory detail.


Meet the authors and artists who make this Summer 2013 edition a rich, varied and engaging experience.

Table of Contents Button


        Abandoned Church by Tanya Jarvik

        Commencement by Kelly Running

        Depoe Bay by Wendy Thompson

        Directive by Cristina White

        Hawk Moth by Wendy Thompson

        How to Recycle Love Letters by Jennifer Dorner

        I Swapped a '74 Mustang for This by Jennifer Fulford

        Polaroid of My Mother by Cindy Stewart-Rinier

        Lover, Molester, and Maindens (Haibun) by Margaret Chula

        Savory by Pat Phillips West

        Seascape by Marjorie Power

        Suspended by Grace Kuhns

        The Hand-Off by Pattie Palmer-Baker

        The Ride by Linda Ferguson

        The Ticking Shirt by Tricia Knoll

        Three Facts about Sperm by Ursula Whitcher

        Three True Stories by Penelope Scambly Schott

        Today at the Library by Pat Phillips West

        Trapped Birds by Grace Kuhns

        You, who will be alive and reading after I'm gone by Penelope Scambly Schott


        After the World Ends by Kait Heacock

        Something Permanent by Ashley-Renée Cribbins

        Your Hand at Your Throat by Karen Guth

        Black Sharpie by Anne Gudger

        Diagnosis by Helen Sinoradzki

        For He's a Jolly Good Fellow by Laura Stanfill

        Breathing Underwater by Valerie Wagner


        Unity by Anne John

        Rearguard by Anne John

        Speculation by Anne John

        Wire by Jocelyn White

        Taitian Trio by Nani Chesire

        Catch Your Breath by Nani Chesire


        We Will Read to You by Rebecca Cleveland-Stout

        Strawberry Party by Natalie Lerner

        A Young Night by Clara Beaumont

        Beach Wanderer by Isabella Waldron

        Light and Dark by Colette Au