Strange phenomena of Appalachia

Fog melting off in the morning sunshine. Photo credit: Johanna Haas

On spring mornings, I would awake to a dark, gray day with fog that sat loosely all over the ground. I would walk to the bus stop, peering through the fog at neighbors’ houses, which suddenly looked sinister. Of course, being a teenager, I refused to go to the bus stop nearest to my house. I had to walk across town to the bus stop that had the most friends at it. By the time I got there I would be cold and wet, with my hair plastered to my head. …


A memory of Audra as a high schooler in the 80's

“The Beach” at Audra State Park Picture from WV News

Those of us who lived in the northern part of Upshur County went out to Audra State Park all summer long. In the southern part of the county, they went to Holly River State Park. Audra had acres of forests and some nice hiking trails leading through them, but the genuine call was the Middle Fork River, which around Audra flowed through several rocks, large and small.

There was a public beach with a lifeguard where you had to pay $2 to swim a little more safely. They even trucked in a couple of dump trucks full of sand to…


A kids-eye view of semi-public space

Not an image of the Wesleyan trees — but they felt like this. Image by Evgeni Tcherkasski from Pixabay

I grew up in a family tied to the local college, West Virginia Wesleyan College. My grandfather had been admissions director there. My mother and 3 of her 4 siblings went there. My mother worked there as well. And from where I lived on Florida Street, it was the closest big green space for play.

Georgian brick buildings framed a large, mostly tree covered area. It made the ideal place to play the hide-and-seek games like Kick the Can or Beast. We limited ourselves to the front part of campus (most of the time). Still, we disagreed over what that…


I cut it my self and lost 1 foot of hair

  1. It’s Spring.
  2. Long hair gets really heavy.
  3. So I could hide better in thickets without my hair getting tangled.
  4. I was spending far too much money on hair products and accessories. I want to dye my hair and long hair takes two boxes of dye.
  5. So the fairies would stop making knots in my hair at night.
  6. Because I have bought piles of accessories for long hair and was dying to stop using them.
  7. I can put the tail in strange places and scare people.
  8. I can confuse people who have only known me with long hair.
  9. So it doesn’t catch between my back and the chair and pull.
  10. Less food gets caught in it.
  11. Just ‘cause.


Because I am required to have some words, an image alone is not ok


I was not social before, and likely will not be after

Ready to work at my computer.

Friday, I went to out local arena and received my second Covid shot. Three or four hours later, I was asleep. I woke briefly for food and then slept the whole night through. Today, I’m still exhausted, but at least awake.

I have a messed-up immune system combined with blaring depression and anxiety. In an ordinary year, this would mean I caught every cold and flu that barrelled through town, even though I was hiding under my bed to avoid them. This past year has not been ordinary. With the coronavirus, I have been on house arrest for a year…


Which may or may not be true

Image by Lisa Larsen from Pixabay
  1. In Ireland, wearing green is like wearing camouflage in the US. You think it makes you blend in with the landscape. However, in the world of people, it makes you stand out.
  2. Leprechauns earn their gold by fixing the shoes of faeries. As faeries spend much of their lives dancing, they wear out shoes quickly, making leprechauns rich.
  3. They haven’t worn “that hat” since 1850. Today they prefer Panama hats or toques when it is cold.
  4. On St. Patrick’s day, you are more likely to see a leprechauns as they are pulled toward…


A tale of Coronavirus-19 hope

Image by Pexels from>Pixabay

The one thing I have missed most during this Coronavirus-19 lock down is going shopping for my own fruits and vegetables. I miss picking the best apples or the onions that look freshest. It’s not much, and I could pass over a lot of other shopping or do it online. Veggies, though, and fruits are important to me.

Shopping in times of virus

In southern Illinois where I live, a lot of people are still shopping like regular. Wal-Mart is always full. For a while I was mad at these people, but then I thought about how many people in this area are poor and…


By Lorraine Rose

Magical owl man

arrives in her dreamlike state

heart shaped face casts spell

by Lorraine Rose


You can see who a person is by looking at their garden

Most of my grandparent’s yard was a garden, or an interlocking set of gardens. Grandaddy filled most of the center space with food crops, and Gramma got all the edges. She had beds down both sides of the veggie garden, a bed in front of the veggie garden, a bed by the side of the house, two beds in front of the house, and a rose bed along the other side. She filled these beds with flowers. …

Johanna Haas

Freelance writer. Reader, learner, living with a disability, occasional surrealist, Ph.D., J.D. (Ohio State).

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