One I’d heard of before. Three I hadn’t. Some were free at AWP; some were not. In each one, I found something that made me glad I’d lugged it home–either connecting with the words of writers I didn’t know or finding new poems and stories by writers I did. Two of these journals have stunning covers that will make me incapable of putting them in the recycling bin even after I need the space for new ones. So two I will send to a friend. Two I will take to the local high school library. Here are some highlights from the four literary journals I brought home from Washington a few weeks ago:
Rock & Sling–a journal of witness. Published twice a year by Whitworth University in Spokane, Washington. Volume Six. Issue One. Winter 2011.
I was in the 10th grade when it first registered: I will be someone else some day…Two decades later, I fail to remember that I will be someone else, not just some day, but next year, next week, next day, next anything.
Clams hiss through pin holes a few feet down.
Poetry. A publication of the Poetry Foundation. Volume 197. Number 3. December 2010. The Q & A issue. Cover art by Sam Martine. “Faces (detail), 1997.
Charles Baxter on his poem “Some Instances” is asked if poetry is an escape from narration: “My answer is a respectful “No”…Like many fiction writers, I began my writing life as a poet, and what I sometimes miss in my own fiction is the high-velocity association of ideas and events and imagery that poetry makes possible.”
Jane Hirshfield on her poem “Sentencings” is asked about the image of “putting arms into woolen coat sleeves”: “I might, I suppose, have written a different poem, about my late sister’s coats. They are lovely. But I wrote this.”
Arroyo. Department of English, California State University, East Bay. Hayward, California. Volume 2. Spring 2010. Cover art by Jonathan Viner.
Dorothy Allison interviewed by Jacqueline Doyle. 15 pages.
Life goes so fast and we lose so much. We can barely even hang on to memory. But if you’ve got a story, a stunned moment story, that moment lives forever.
Ecotone–reimagining place. Department of Creative Writing and The Publishing Laboratory at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. 10. The sex and death issue.”Ecotone and the University of North Carolina Wilmington are proud to print this entire issue on 100 percent postconsumer fiber paper certified by the Forest Stewardship Council.”
Benjamin Percy on James Salter’s “Akhnilo”:
Suspense is the engine that drags a story forward…They [my students] misunderstand suspense, believing that it hinges exclusively on plot points, rather than on human urgency.
This story is a case study on the mystery outside the character and the urgency within…the true pull of the story comes from the desire the man feels, the desire we feel alongside him…
I support literary journals. Support art–any way you can.Crossposted at The Contrary Blog