Artists have tremendous courage, a necessary quality when it comes to expressing personal dreams and emotions so all can see them.
Artists break down barriers of thought, time, custom, and expectation.
Artists make the intangible tangible.
Artists see the trees and the forest.
Artists challenge us to see and understand our world differently than we do now.
Artists are born with open hands and open hearts, courageously willing to accept whatever is given.
Imagine our world without artists, without their ability to see, dream, express, break down barriers, and challenge the rest of us to imagine our world differently.
Excerpted from Christine Brooks Cote, "Imagine Our World Without Artists," from Still Point Arts Quarterly, Summer 2017.
The Ralph Gustafson Prize for Best Poem
Dominique Bernier-Cormier's "Fabric"
Read an interview Bernier-Cormier here.
Poetry Honorable Mentions
Tammy Armstrong's "Blessing the Boats"
Kim Trainor's "Bluegrass"
Short Fiction Prize
Kate Finegan's "Blues Too Bright"
Read an interview with Finegan here.
Fiction Honorable Mentions
Steven Benstead's "Will There Be Clowns?"
Ann Cavlovic's "The Foundation"
Winning entries can be read on The Fiddlehead's website.
The editors reached out to friends and colleagues of Elliot for their remembrances. Twenty-two poets, fiction writers, and academics in various fields responded and their works are collected in this issue. Also featured are several interviews both with (previously published elsewhere) and by Elliott.
MAYDAY Magazine is published by New American Press and its full contents can be read online here.
Chen writes: "Gwendolyn Brooks’s literary archives, now in the Rare Book & Manuscript Library at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, reveal that she clustered and bundled papers as well as life experiences: she tucked notes inside pieces of paper folded into makeshift pockets, slid photographs behind other photographs in albums, and pasted clippings on top of each other in scrapbooks. She added further layers of meaning with her copious annotations, like the detailed notes she wrote on the backs of many of her photographs (given in quotation marks in the accompanying images) in order to preserve the knowledge of the people and events they captured."
Read Chen's full introduction to this feature as well as view a slideshow of the photographs and artifacts here.
In her essay, "Ngato! Ngato! Shoes!" Ugandan Poet Beverley Nambozo Nsengiyunva [pictured] writes, "It's often the most silent shoes that are the strongest. It's the shoes that allow thieves to stalk upon unsuspecting people and the shoes that enable a cheetah to pounce on its prey. The silent shoes do not desire unnecessary attention to detract them from their mission."
Read the full issue here.
Winner in Fiction
Selected by Patrick Ryan
"Papijack" by Carol LaHines [pictured]
Winner in Nonfiction
Selected by Jill Talbot
"First Visit" by Vince Granata
A full list of the finalists can be read here.
Gutkind likens this to our need to review our own practice, weed out bad habits we may have developed over the years, and get back in tune with the basics: "In yoga or writing—or in practicing any art or skill—it does not hurt to start over once in a while just to make sure you know what you think you know. In fact, it occurs to me this is also why teaching can be reinvigorating—I know many writers who make their primary living by teaching and who often find their inspiration in writing prompts given to their students. But maybe there’s also something about focusing on the basics that can inspire innovation and transformation."
Read the full editorial here.
Leckie writes, "No poet I can think of writes as much about dreams as Dubie, and no poet ought to be able to, as dreams are so often adduced as the moment of epiphany, as the encoded truth that underlies all the banality that consumes our daily lives. In Dubie’s work, however, dreams seem as one room in the mind’s library, in which there is also an astonishing array of books and the lives of their authors, and details of plot and character that are not there, but could be. There are landscapes both from memory and from imagination, scenes of history in the grotesquerie of its filth and muck, and assorted friends and family who demand attention, or simply stop by for a chat."
A look back to fall, this macro focus on the cover of Cimarron Review #198 is "Ornamental" by Kathleen Galvin. This beautiful image decieves the trecherous nature of these "Sweet Gum Balls" that blanket the ground beneath their trees in the fall.
"Leaving Home Finding Home" is the Spring/Summer 2017 theme of Nimrod International Journal published out of The University of Tulsa. The photograph is "After Loss, The Photographer Collects Small Homes in the Hope of Finding Love" by Ashley Inguanta.
Today, Shanti Arts announced changes coming to Still Point Arts Quarterly.
Art submissions in response to calls will be free. Everything else about the exhibitions stays the same: 30 artists will be featured online and in Still Point Arts Quarterly with five winners awarded. “The Art of Structure” is the current, open call.
The journal is transitioning from a print quarterly, to an interactive digital magazine. Paid subscriptions to the print journal will be honored until they expire.
Because of these changes, subscriptions and single copies of the digital magazine will be free for readers. Subscription sign-ups for the digital magazine are now being taken at the magazine’s website.
Check out what else founder and editor Christine Cote has to say about the changes at the Shanti Arts blog.
Tim L. Vasquez of Ziva-Gato Impressions contributed this gorgeous photo for the cover of Concho Review Review: Literature from Texas and Beyond, Spring/Summer 2017.
Recognizing "the exciting literary, artistic, and scholarly work that is currently produced along the Wasatch and beyond" is the focus of the Spring/Summer 2017 issue of Weber: The Contemporary West. Pam Bowman's "Becoming" is constructed of cotton rope and string, vinyl, steel, wood, paint, caulking cotton, and shown as installed in a 25' x 35' gallery space, 2013.
Mish used that 1992 date as the start point for the works she collected for this feature, "to avoid creating categories and to reaffirm the impact of Returning the Gift, I solicited submissions from United States Native writers whose first book was published after the 1992 festival. Despite the simple, temporal structure of this approach, I believe the aesthetics and thematics Native scholars and writers have identified are clearly present in the work." A full list of contributors can be found here.
Twenty-five years later, Returning the Gift Literary Festival returns to Oklahoma University campus (October 8-11, 2017). For more information about the festival, visit here.
“Instructions to the Living from the Condition of the Dead” by Jason Brown of Eugene, OR
Karen Skolfield [pictured] of Amherst, MA
“Swarf” by Tyler Keevil of Abergavenny, UK
A full list of finalists and runners-up can be found here.
Whatever you can do to help, readers. The publication DOES accept simultaneous submissions, Douglass assures - though the website may not yet reflect this change in policy. Writers can expect a reasonable report time, and, according to Douglass, a review by "a tougher poetry editor than we've ever had before. . . but that only makes the magazine better." MSR takes submissions via Submittable; there is a reading fee which is waived for subscribers.
This work by Jody Hewgill on the cover of Kenyon Review draws readers in to the featured poetry theme for this May/June 2017 issue, "Nature's Nature."
The dramatic "Suffering" by Virginia Vilchis is the cover art for the Summer 2017 of Into the Void Arts and Literature from Dublin, Ireland - available in print and digital copy.
Jelly Bucket, the literary magazine produced by students of the Eastern Kentucky University Bluegrass Writers Studio, has announced their 2017 contest winners:
Grand Prize Winner:
Marianne Peel, “Huckleberries and Homebrewed Boilo”
Emma Choi, “What Happened?”
JC Lee, “Abbatoir Blues”
Marianne Peel, “Huckleberries and Homebrewed Boilo”
Elizabeth Burton, “Blood Moon”
Lynn Casteel Harper, “The Meaning of Sovereignty”
Amanda Chiado, “Plummet”
Learn more about the winners and judges at the Jelly Bucket website.
Daniel Paul, “The Last Sun of Kansas”
Lisa Lanser Rose, “Christmas in the Bitch’s Dollhouse”
Jude Nutter, “Ianua: 19 September, 2016”
[Cover art: Michael Crowley, “The Stacks in Long Hall, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland”]
Matthew Hollett, “Kiki, Out of Focus”
Rebecca Morris, “Foreign Bodies”
Genevieve Lehr, “two tarantulas appear in the doorway during a thunderstorm”
Click the writers’ names above to check out interviews with each on The Malahat Review’s website.
[Cover art: Walter Scott, “Private Eyes”]
Three Percent Podcast is now expanding from their weekly(ish) episodes to include weekly Two Month Review mini-episodes. Each season of the new mini-episode series will highlight a different Open Letter book, reading it over the course of eight to nine episodes. Rotating guests will join host Chad W. Post, using the reading selection as a springboard for further discussion on literature, pop culture, reading approaches, and more.
Two Month Review gives the feeling of a book club—weekly readings and discussions—but with an accessibility that doesn’t require listeners to read along. For listeners that do want to read along, Open Letter has set up a Goodreads group and is currently offering 20% off two titles (with code 2MONTH at checkout) that will be discussed: The Invented Part by Rodrigo Fresán and Tómas Jónsson, Bestseller by Guðbergur Bergsson.
Les Figues Press held their NOS Book Contest every year from 2011-2015, awarding $1,000 and publication to a writer of a poetry or prose manuscript, which includes lyric essays, hybrids, translations, and more.
The 2015 contest was judged by author and performance artist lê thi diem thúy, who chose Irradiated Cities by Mariko Nagai. She says of her selection:
This book, a sifting and circling, a calm and masterful layering of voices and vantage points, a slowly emerging portrait of four different Japanese cities and their inhabitants, resists any effort at arrivals or conclusions. By doing so, it shows us that while we may have an accumulation of facts for what happened on a particular day in a particular place, perhaps even the names and words and pictures of the people to whom catastrophe struck, and would not let go, it is within the dark sedimentation and the feather-light drift of history that we might glean what yet remains, and gives off light, to summon and trouble us still.Nagai explores the aftermath of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings and the nuclear meltdown at Fukushima. With lyrical fragments and black-and-white photographs, Nagai guides us through loss, silence, echo, devestation, and memory, creating a haunting piece of work.
Read through advance praise of the collection and order a copy for yourself at the Les Figues Press website.
At the end of April, Arte Publico Press released a two-volume collection from Rolando Hinojosa. From Klail City to Korea with Love contains Rites and Witnesses and Korean Love Songs from the Klail City Death Trip Series.
In Rites and Witnesses, the author “captures the complex relationships and unsettling power struggles in both civilian and military life.”
Korean Love Songs has long been out of print, first published in 1978. In this section, Hinojosa presents his only poetry book, capturing the horror of war through Klail City native Corporal Rafe Buenrostro’s recollections.
Rolando Hinojosa is the recipient of numerous awards, including the National Book Critics Circle Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Casa de las Américas prize in 1976, the most prestigious prize in Latin America. Now readers can bring home two of his books in one collection, continuing the examination of life along the border.
Learn more about From Klail City to Korea with Love at the publisher’s website.