“when my father went crazy” by Sasha at her kitchen table

Friday December 22, 2017
5 minutes
The Monsters Inside
Eric Sherman

We didn’t see it coming. The tantrums. The scabs. The howling. The hiding in closets, under the bed, in the subway station. He was always the breadwinner, the Dad with a capital “D”. He was quiet and stern and warm only on birthdays or Christmas or graduation. My Mum says that when they first started dating, when he was twenty-six and she was twenty-nine, that he said something about struggling with depression, but when she asked more he didn’t want to talk about it. “Let sleeping dogs, lie, hey?” That’s what he said. Mum is in Nurse Mode, meaning, she is calm and smiley on the outside. On the inside? Who knows.

She is giant and bossy and funny as hell.” By Julia on her couch

Saturday October 14, 2017


5 minutes

a text

Kitty tells me to say that that I’m the baby and she’s the mum. I say, I’m the baby and you’re the mum. Then she tells me to say I’m addicted to raisins! I say, do I know what addicted means already? And she tells me to just say it already. I say I’m the baby and you’re the and mum and I’m addicted to raisins. She tells me, okay now say you’re trapped in a lemon peel. And I say oh no I’m the baby and you’re the mum and I’m addicted to raisins and I’m trapped in a lemon peel. Then kitty bursts out laughing. She is laughing so hard she gives herself hiccups. She tries to give direction between giant gulps of air. I tell her to take a second and catch her breath and she tells me to hurry up and be funny. I tell her she’s being a bit bossy and she shrieks at the top of the lungs, THAT’S BECAUSE I’M THE MUM.

“Was she already dead” by Sasha at the Dundas/Jane Toronto Public Library

Saturday April 19, 2014
5 minutes
Her Room
Anja Garbarek

I live on Virtue St. I have a solarium filled with plants, and sometimes cats. Two of them. I have a collection of china dolls in the hutch in the dining room and a fifteen road signs stolen from a wide assortment of places that decorate the walls. My favourite sign says “MOOSE CROSSING” and Herb sound it in Jasper when he was working the Western Parks. He brought it all the way back for me, even though he hitchhiked most of the way. Herb lives in Espanola now and doesn’t come around much, but when he does, he usually brings cheese from the dairy farm close to him. That’s a real treat. Cheese that’s not purchased at a supermarket is one of life’s greatest delights. I live on Virtue St. I took over the house when Mum died. She bequeathed it to Bethany but Bethany didn’t want it so she signed it over to me without even a blink of the eye. She doesn’t come around much, either. Vancouver is far away.

“Mom forbade me to go” by Sasha at The Good Neighbour

Sunday, June 23, 2013 at The Good Neighbour
5 minutes
Reader’s Write
Sun Magazine, July 2013

I told my Mum I was going to be a professional ballet dancer and she laughed in my face. I said, “I’m moving to New York, Mum! Get real!” And she just kept laughing. And then she stopped. Her face fell. “Yer not joking, are ya?” She said, looking at me with those brown eyes of hers. “I’m not. I’m doing this.” She laughed again. Pop came in and stuffed his pipe, and sipped his beer. “Get a load a this, Digger,” Mum said. Pop only moved his eyes to look at her, he didn’t even more his neck or his head. “Kit says he’s goin to the city to be a… a… ballerina!” Pop spit beer out of his lips. “Why the eff you doin’ that, Kit?” Pop sat down on the floor, all dramatic, and picked at his baby toenail. “It’s something I’ve wanted for a long time and I’m tired of wasting my life at the bank, being a frikken teller, counting other people’s stupid ass money and not following my dream. If I die tomorrow, if I get hit by lightning, or by a truck, or if a stray police bullet happens to find me, of all people, I need to know that I’m working towards my life’s purpose… you know?” Pop and Mum don’t know, but they nod anyway.