Brooklyn-based Cannibal by the editorial duo Katy & Matthew Henriksen is a poetry journal in the manner of sharp sincerity – sharp in its well-rounded and striking poem selections and sincere in its physical construction. With a textural screen-printed cover in copper ink, copy-job striations and sewn binding, the journal has the look and feel of a gift hand made for you by your no-frills but talented friend. The journal’s seven signatures handbound to the spine capture in their physicality the overall theme of the work: poems in parts.
More than simply sampling several poems of any single contributor, Cannibal affords poets the opportunity to publish across pages, as in Carolyn Guinzio’s five-part “Stratus Opacus,” Samuel Amadon’s five-part “Each H,” and Landis Everson’s posthumously-included six-part “Symphony of Psalms.” Even Phil Cordelli’s verbally-compressed poem “from B 5 2” is spaciously presented across four pages: “Heaps of sand, they are shoveled // The night shift, / their scraping // As many beams / they meet each other.” Short sequences are also represented, as in Anne Heide’s seven-line “Mourn” and Mike Sikkema’s “The Swimmers are Central and Constant.”
Topping at 118 pages, Cannibal presents poetry by 41 contributors, varying from Elizabeth Robinson’s elegant “Telescope” to Joseph Bradshaw’s quiet and devastating “House.” The issue includes as its center signature a bound-in chapbook, Spring Psalter by Nate Pritts. Limited to an edition of 200, Cannibal #3 sets a high bar for the low-tech, handmade reading experience.