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Crab Creek Review - 2005

  • Issue Number: Volume 19
  • Published Date: 2005
  • Publication Cycle: Biannual

Crab Creek Review strikes me as a fun assemblage of the middlebrow to digest: just the right balance of poetry and fiction so that neither genre obscures the other; light in some places, darker in others, but never resorting to noise. Sometimes, you can’t find clear answers. Éireann Lorsung’s “Volans,” a poem ostensibly on flying fish and their winged predators, offers imagist, naturalist inquiries (“What is the fruit / of the ash?”) that elliptically give answer to one another. In Michelle Patton’s “Waiting for My Son at the AA Meeting,” a mother acknowledges her own dearth of answers as she attempts to affirm life and will: “I am told we all stand in the center of our lives / like small gods, wielding our powerful wills / like clubs, but I have my doubts.” On the fiction side, I can forgive Tommy Zurhellen enough for his cheesy 80s references to enjoy his humorous, rock-and-roll-band-at-fat-camp nostalgia, “Love Stinks.” But the most meaningful story may be “Traps” by Stefani Farris. For Rusty, a young New England lobsterman yearning to see the world, the symbolism is obvious, as when he throws a de-limbed crab back into the water: “No way of getting itself out of some place it didn’t want to be.” But as the story examines harbor-town relationships and the influences of family and tradition, it puts Rusty in a paradoxical bind: For all of its traps, the ocean in its own way is liberating. For some people, literature’s like that, too. []

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Review Posted on February 28, 2006

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