Beanery Online Literary Magazine

January 2, 2013

Barrel Molasses and Shotgun Shells

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

BARREL MOLASSES AND SHOTGUN SHELLS

Joe F. Stierheim

     Many years ago I made regular trips to northern Pennsylvania. Along my route was a small store that had a sign along the highway that advertised: “Barrel Molasses and Shotgun Shells.” That sign always fascinated me. The store appeared to be a “Mom and Pop” sort of place, catering to members of the local populace and stocking what was needed and wanted by them. I have not traveled that section of what was then a two-lane road for quite some time. I am pretty sure that the country there has changed, the highway no longer a two-lane road and no longer lined by farmland, villages, and the occasional business. The store with its unique sign is probably no longer there, long ago having been replaced or at least forced out of business by a supermarket or other chain retail establishment. The local people, I am sure, buy their shotgun shells at (more…)

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December 30, 2011

Feeling Safe

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

FEELING SAFE

Joe F. Stierheim

     Everybody—everything—in the universe wants to feel safe.

     It is a very simple matter, one that should be surprising to no one. Yet it is a concept that is often overlooked, misunderstood or misused. Often we find it amusing to not feel safe. For instance, we spend a great deal of time, effort and money in stories, movies or games that scare us. We call this entertainment. Volcanoes, tidal waves, civil unrest, wars, crime, hurricanes and chainsaws are all part of the scenarios. When the entertainment becomes real, we don’t like it and so we spend a great deal of time, effort and money to see that such things don’t happen or in hopes of escaping them.

     It is a fact that in our present society, very few of us feel safe. Endeavors to compensate for that take many forms. One of those is (more…)

July 16, 2011

The Writer’s Dilemma

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

THE WRITER’S DILEMMA

Joe F. Stierheim

Number of words; number of pages;

how much is a novel worth?

What value the symbols on the page?

What is the measure:

the likes of the market’

the current style?

Too long for some, too (more…)

May 29, 2011

Memorial Day 2011

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

MEMORIAL DAY 2011

Joe F. Stierheim

     The last Monday in May is the day set aside to remember those who died in the wars in which this nation has taken part. It is also for honoring the many others who survived those wars but gave of themselves to one degree or another when it was required of them.

I remember when I was young being introduced to relics and souvenirs of past wars. There were campaign ribbons and medals from the Civil War and photos of my relatives that had taken part in that struggle. World War I contributed (more…)

December 12, 2010

Wintry Mix

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

WINTRY MIX

Joe F. Stierheim

     I survived the “Wintry Mix”—the disagreeable mixture of snow, sleet, rain and ice that came through as weather during the first week in December, 2010—weather you wish you didn’t have to acknowledge. At least I think it came through. I didn’t really see it. I heard there was ice on the mountain but I’m really not sure of the extent of that. I didn’t travel there to find out. In fact, I didn’t go anywhere, didn’t even venture outside. I stayed home. I can do that, being the noncontributing member of society that I am.

     I stayed home and read a book, a book entitled Lost Mountain by Erik Reece. It deals with mountain top removal mining in Appalachia. It’s about a lot of other non-contributing members of society who live in Kentucky, West Virginia and other Appalachian states. They are noncontributing because many of them (more…)

February 22, 2010

Truth

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

TRUTH

Joe F. Stierheim

     During the week I found a plastic grocery bag hanging on the front door of the Unitarian Universalist Church. I looked in the bag and saw that it contained two videotapes and, thinking it was a delivery that someone in the congregation had requested, I took it into the church and out of the weather.

     On Sunday I found out that no one knew anything about the tapes. On closer inspection it was found that the tapes were a two-part copy of “The Greatest Story Ever Told”. It is assumed that they were left at the church as an act of (more…)

December 21, 2009

The Christmas Stocking Legacy

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

THE CHRISTMAS STOCKING LEGACY

Joe F. Stierheim

      This is a story about my son’s wife, Yvonne, and her Christmas stockings.

     So that you might understand her and the story a little better, I must tell you some things about Yvonne. She is of Klamath and Cheyenne Indian descent, although she doesn’t look it. Celtic genes undoubtedly (more…)

December 5, 2009

Ligonier (PA)

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

LIGONIER

Words and music by Joe F. Stierheim

Joe is a writer of many genres. Below is a song he wrote about Ligonier, PA, his town of residence. He brought the piece to the Beanery Writers Group and Ligonier’s Mello Mike night. At each event people joined in singing the lilt of the chorus. At the end are some Christmas verses.

Ligonier, Ligonier, whether I’m far or near
I’m so happy to say my home is Ligonier.

I love to see the mountains in the morning sun.
I love to see them once again when the day is done.
No matter where I wander (more…)

November 2, 2009

Apologize to a Vet

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

APOLOGIZE TO A VET
Joe F. Stierheim

     Last year I attended a meeting on Veterans’ Day. Before the meeting started, one of the attendees came up to me, hand extended in friendship. “Thank you,” she said.
     “For what?” I asked, genuinely confused.
     “You’re a veteran, aren’t you? Veterans are supposed to be thanked on Veterans’ Day.”
     It wasn’t until after the end of the meeting—after I had had a chance to get my thoughts in order—that I talked to my friend a second time.
     “I appreciate you doing what you thought you should,” I said, “but next Veterans’ Day, don’t thank me or any other veteran. Instead, (more…)

August 25, 2009

Why Neckties?

BEANERY ONLINE LITERARY MAGAZINE

WHY NECKTIES?

Joe F. Stierheim

     Men often comment on the willingness of women to follow the vagaries of fashion in their pursuit of approval by society. Men fail to recognize that they are guilty of the same thing in their meek and unthinking acceptance of an article of attire that is one of the (more…)

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