Quote of the Week

Stephen Hawking

We are just an advanced breed of monkeys on a minor planet of a very average star. But we can understand the Universe. That makes us something very special.

{Stephen Hawking}

Jekanyika: Always Looking for a Home
The Back Road Web Links
Follow Me On
The Fragile Thread of Hope

{Click Hope or visit Books in the main menu}

Chickens Eat Pasta

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The Girl in the Silver Mask

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The Oystercatcher Girl

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The Woman in White Marble

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The Courage of a Samurai

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Complicity, A Thriller

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Notes from 39,000 Feet

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Dis-Ease: Living with Prostate Cancer

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The House With The Lilac Shutters

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From the Prairie to Passchendaele

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Freefall into Us

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Alien Love

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My Gentle War

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Absolute Sunset

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Greener on the Other Side

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Treasured Words

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The Catalyst

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Psalms Redux

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Plod On, Sleepless Giant

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Crawling Through Thorns

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Mountains of Light

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Sex Versus Survival

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            Welcome to The Back Road Café


Ruth's Cozy Corner, Treme, NOLAThe Back Road Café is for people who like to write and like to read. In cafés around the world individuals sit over coffee thinking, reading, writing and watching the day go by. Groups of people converse, debate, laugh and set the world to rights. The Back Road Café is a place where people can think, write and converse.

This virtual café is where I share some of my own thoughts and work. Café Talk is my personal blog. Books is where you can find descriptions of books I and others have published. In Nonfiction and Fiction I will include a wide range of my and other people's writing.

The Back Road Café is not, however, just for me. In The Back Road Journal you are invited to submit your own work to share with others. If you are interested click Guidelines in The Back Road Journal to your left. Or, if you have a blog you would like to link to this site let me know in Contact in the main menu. In Back Road Blogs there are pictures and descriptions of other bloggers and their links. The site also features regular postings you will find in the Left Sidebar.

On Tuesday of each week I will post new material so read What's New below to see what the week offers.

The Back Road Café is unapologetically liberal and progressive.

Dale Rominger  

                                 What's New


Dale Rominger

Stephen Hawking has died. Indeed sad news. The man in the wheel chair with the computer voice was well known for many years. For 55 years he lived under the care of the National Health Service in the United Kingdom until he died at the age of 76. His death has reminded me of a conversation I had in 2009 with some Americans on my way to Pompeii. It was during the US debate about Obamacare and they insistence that Hawking would have died if he had lived in Britain. That’s right. That’s what they believed. You’d better read this week’s Café Talk, The Offence of Keeping Stephen Hawking Alive.

{To go directly to Café Talk click here.}


Deborah Streeter

As Deborah Streeter continues with her exploration of ocean deities in I Must Go Down to the Sea Again we read: "These figures depict me, but I am a force mightier than any stone grave object.  I am holy female, the great mother.  Yes, there are a few Cycladic male figurines also, with a cute little penis between their legs.  But most of us are female, and my simple triangle tells you who I am." Have a look at Secrets I Have, you won't be disappointed. 

{To go directly to I Must Go Down to the Sea Again click here.}


Currently Chris Smedbakken is working, chapter by chapter, on a dark modern fantasy novel about the daughter of an ancient family of mages, who uncovers a  sinister conspiracy threatening to literally devour everything supernatural. The novel is entitled Into the Dark and this week Chris sends us Chapter V: The Game Is On.

To go directly to Into the Dark click here.

Chris also has audio stories on their website. Chris’s website is called …these grains of sand and you can access the site on However, I want to take you directly to her audio story section which you can access by clicking here. I love everything about these audio stories: the performance, the stories themselves, and the music. I really think you too will enjoy them and encourage you to visit the site and listen. The story I am featuring this week is entitled This is Ground Control. Give it a try.

And be sure to visit Chris’s website These Grains of Sand.

{To go directly to Into the Dark click here. To go directly to Chris's short stories click here.}


I’m very pleased welcome Pankaj Giri from India to The Back Road Café. Pankaj was born and brought up in Gangtok, Sikkim, picturesque hill station in India. He is currently working in the government sector in Sikkim. He likes to kill time by listening to progressive metal music and watching cricket.

Pankaj began his writing career with a book review blog and now, after several years of honing his writing skills he has written his first novel, The Fragile Thread of Hope. The book is a literary inspirational fiction dealing with love, loss, and family relationships.

To learn more about The Fragile Thread of Hope go to Books in the main menu or click here.


Our feature book this week is Chickens Eat Pasta, the love affair between Clare Pedrick and an old, Umbrian ruin she bought on a whim that started a new life in Central Italy. But the book is not just another romance, but a story of escapism, coincidences, friendship, luck. Clare Clare Pedrick is a British journalist who studied Italian at Cambridge University before becoming a reporter.  She went on to work as the Rome correspondent for the Washington Post and as European Editor of an international features agency. She still lives in Italy with her husband, whom she met in the village where she bought her house.

To learn more abouat Chickes Eat Pasta click here.


Robin Harper

I pleased to welcome Robin Harper to The Back Road Café. Robin lives on an island in Massachusetts with her husband and two daughters, and therefore views the rest of the world as “off-island.” Presently she is working on a collection of short stories and hopes to publish in the future. The story Robin offers us this week is entitled The Great Escalating

Tragedy, which begins:

“Authorities were called to a tense scene at Narrenleute Mall last Tuesday morning. An escalator in the mall’s west wing had come to an abrupt halt, leaving 20 people stranded.” Thus begins a tale those in the Resistance will enjoy.

To go directly to The Great Escalating Tragedy click here. And be sure to visit Robin's blog, Hey You, Shorty.


Elijah Richard

I also have the pleasure of welcoming Elijah Richard to The Back Road Café this week. Elijah—or Eli, he says the choice is yours—lives in Montesano, Washington, and is working on his first novel. He also writes short stories which you can find on his website by clicking here. Elijah has posted as story called She Be Brave. The story begins: “’A young woman, brave as can be, upon this path, I’ll make this decree." Said a white-haired Gnome, upon a dusty road alongside the ridge of trees. The woman walked the road, lonely, but; unafraid, clearly, she was brave.’” If you want escape for a few minutes, this is for you.

To go directly to She Be Brave click here.


This week The Back Road Café is featuring Black: The Name, a novel by D.B. Halbert. The book is a fantasy novel that centers around a young magically gifted girl, Elizabeth Blackswan, who is cast from her home in an hour of horror, and must find herself, and her purpose, in a troubling series of events that some may call adventures. Not all odds are stacked against her though, as she meets Pearl, Aldrin, and Auburn, and finds place enough in their company, that may very well keep her from breaking.

To learn more about Black: The Name and its author D.B. Habert click here.


Pete RobertsonPete Robertson is back with another poem, this entitled Mountains Meet the Sky. In an email Pete wrote: "You might notice that some “places” are really undefined physically.  So, in “Mountains Meet Sky”, again mountains do not actually meet the sky; such views are really illusions of our faulty perceptions."

To learn more about Pete and to go directly to Mountains Meet the Sky (and to read his other poems), click here


Gabrielle Barnby

Our good friend Gabrielle Barnby is back! We know Gabrielle from her short stories—Orkney ~ from  Spring to Summer, Gift, Listener, and Jeopardy. We’ve also feature her books The House with Lilac Shutters and The Oystercatcher Girl. But this week Gabrielle sends us seasonal gift in the form of a poem entitled The Maker. Do have a look.

{To go directly to Gabrielle's poem and her short stories click here. And be sure to visit her website by clicking here.}




                      Short Fiction at the Café

  {All Short Fiction can be found in Fiction in the main Menu.}


Kata MlekOrdinary Life by Kata Mlek
What does it mean to always want an ordinary life?



Lionel NtasanoRecipe for an Escape by Lionel Ntasano


The death of a father leads a young man on a journey of identity and the discovery of a new home.



Gabrielle BarnbyJeopardy by Gabrielle Barnby.

Two couples meet at the train station on a hot Australian day. Liza and Delia board a train for Sydney and through conversations and memories things change forever.





E.J. WillisA Short Tale from Falyncia: Refugees by E.J. Willis 


A story of fantasy, sword fights, kingdoms to conquer, a strong heroine, and protagonists you can love and antagonists to hate.


M.P McVeyThe Dark, Troubled Ground by M.P McVey.


There certainly is a strange sort of magic in Tucker, Ohio. It seeps out of the grass and flowers, traveling through the trees and the two rivers that trap this small town; a supernatural air of mystery. 


 TDale Romingerhe Poetry of Being Human by Dale Rominger

Love, political strife, and the power of language in a story of two people meeting and falling in love in a the hothouse that was Central America in the mid 1980’s.

 Martha Goes to Paris by Dale Rominger

 A satirical look at George W. Bush’s America. Over dinner Martha tells George she wants to visit Paris with her friend Peggy. Things will never be the same for either of them.    


                                        In the Archives



Roberta RomingerWhatever Next? by Roberta Rominger's. Roberta shares book reviews and thoughts concerning contemporary church life in the U.S. and beyond.

The link to Whatever Next? is located in the left sidebar or to go directly to the page click here.


James Lawer

Writings by James Lawer includes Jim's poetry and essays. 

All the links to James' writing are located in the left sidebar. Or to go directly to his poetry click here, his essays click here. 

Also, click here to visit James' website Earth-Centered Healing and Spirituality in New York City.


Kevin Brown 


A Dialogue with Dietrich: In Search of Church by Kevin Brown.

All links to A Dialogue are located in the left sidebar, or to go directly to Kevin's essay click here.


Gayle Madison

Soul Desire by Gayle Madison is a collection of reflections on love and the sacred nature of ordinary experience.


All links to Soul Desire are in the left sidebar, but to access the reflections directly click here.


Phil Nevard

Little Things Please Little Minds by Phil Nevard. A motorcycle pilgrimage through Northern Ireland with a helmet cam, a camera and a notebook.

All links to Little Things Please Little Minds  are in the left sidebar, but to go directly Phil's blog and photos click here.





Ruth's Cozy Corner, Treme, NOLA