Walking with Lona

by Annette Nevins Inching ahead one deliberate step at a time, Lona Lewis hunches over the frame of a black metal walker and shuffles down Walnut Street in Archer City, Texas. Bone-thin hands grip the handles for balance. With each stiff stride, elastic bands of knee-high stockings peek in and out from the hem of…

The Wind is Changing

by: Annette Nevins   Like lines on an old woman’s face, long deep crevices split the splotched wood that frames the tiny tan and white house, its two front windows watching over West Cherry Street as it has for more than half a century. Lace curtains that once fluttered in the Texas breeze are gone,…

Trails to the Sacred

by Brantley Hargrove Archer County, TX. – As my Explorer bounces along a gravel road that seems headed for nowhere, it kicks up a cloud of dust that swirls across the rocky mesas, dried out ravines and gangly mesquite thickets of this hardscrabble landscape. When the dust clears, I find myself at a crossroads bordering two locally famous…

Broken Brotherhood

by Paul Knight There’s a newspaper cartoon taped to the wall here—the American Legion bar in Archer City. It’s black-and-white, a drawing of a haggard man at a bar with an intravenous line from a beer tap plunged in his elbow. Scrawled under the cartoon in pencil: “C.S. Green.” The real C.S. Green sits at the corner of…

The Stoplight

by Matt Jones  It must have been a sign of progress once. After all, before Archer City, Texas, was a one-stoplight town, it was a no-stoplight town. There must have been some kind of ceremony about it — a crowd, a ribbon-cutting, a speech. The potential in the air must’ve been palpable. Most locals probably…

Windmills

by Kathy Floyd (2013 writer) Are they objects of beauty, the giant pinwheels that rise out of the mesquite andbrush? Their long blades turn with easy grace in the hot, dry Texas breeze, transforming that energy into the fuel that powers all our comforts and new-fangled gadgets. Or, are they soldiers of white steel and…

One Last Ride

by Michael Mooney Chris Aultman’s Dodge Ram fishtails out of the American Legion parking lot, slapping a white wave of rocks through the air. In the truck our knees jam together. Four across in the back. Three in the front. Within minutes we’re on the back roads. It’s a purple night. A soft trail of…

And the Dust Remains the Same

by Sarah Wyman  The noose hangs above the trap door, faded and frayed. This hank of looped rope was justice in the Old West for horse thievery or cattle rustling and a litany of other crimes neatly written up in the leather-bound charge book for this defunct jailhouse. I’m on the third floor of the…

The Rancher & the Writer

PART 1: The Rancher by George Getschow   IDIOT RIDGE – It looks like any other cattle gate in west Texas—crude and rough as the ranch behind it. A rusted stirrup, the ranch brand, is mounted on top, and its white paint is rigid and cracked like the ground beneath. But this is no ordinary gate. It’s…

Windmills

By Kathy Floyd   Are they objects of beauty, the giant pinwheels that rise out of the mesquite and brush? Their long blades turn with easy grace in the hot, dry Texas breeze, transforming that energy into the fuel that powers all our comforts and new-fangled gadgets. Or, are they soldiers of white steel and…