Blue Lyra Review is a new online venture that publishes poetry, nonfiction, translations, and artistic imagery three times a year, with a print issue at the end of December (beginning in 2013). “Our aim,” says M. E. Silverman, poetry and art editor, “is to bring together the voices of writers and artists from a diverse array of backgrounds, paying special homage to Jewish writers and other communities that are historically underrepresented in literary magazines.”
Silverman tells the story of the origin of the magazine’s name: “One of the most difficult decisions was coming up with a name that was not already taken, and had a free domain available! So after inquiring with some acquaintances and colleagues, I finally stumbled onto an idea while watching my daughter play Rocket Girl. I have always loved blues and jazz and the color blue. I loved the echo of sound in ‘review’ and ‘blue’, but I also liked the color for the connection to Israel. But Blue Review? Then I remembered the story of Lyra. The Greeks believed after Orpheus died, Zeus sent an eagle to get his lyre and then Zeus placed both in the sky. Now it is one of the 88 constellations (according to International Astronomical Union) with the second brightest star in the northern hemisphere. One can only hope to strive for so much, and I wish all of our acceptances soar so high!”
Silverman—along with Adrienne Ross Scanlan, nonfiction editor; Nancy Naomi Carlson, translation editor; B. Kari Moore, fiction editor; Lenore Weiss, copy editor; and Laura Hong, web editor—will present “a beautiful array of diverse voices” within the publication.
The first issue includes poetry from Marge Piercy, Lyn Lifshin, John Wood, Jeff Friedman, Gene Doty, Peter Serchuk, Jeannie Hall Gailey, and others; essays from Terry Persun, Neil Mathison, Sarah Corbett Morgan, Sue Eisenfeld, and Louis Bourgeois; and artistic work by Robin Grotke and Ginn Conn.
Blue Lyra Review accepts submissions through Submittable but is not looking for horror, westerns, anything offensive, or mixed media art. Currently, they are considering book reviews of Jewish poets; should you be interested, contact the editors through the website.