Natural Bridge - 2005
- Issue Number: Number 14
- Published Date: Fall 2005
- Publication Cycle: Biannual
- Review by: Laura van den Berg
This issue of Natural Bridge, a beautiful journal produced by the University of Missouri-St. Louis, is guest edited by Ruth Ellen Kocher and explores the theme “fragment and sequence.” The roster of contributors includes both established writers like Denise Duhamel and Timothy Liu and lesser known authors. The locales are exotic and varied—Iraq, Bombay, Mexico, Romania—and much of the fiction involves domestic life. Melinda Misuraca’s gritty “The Basket” and Trevor Dodge’s cheeky “Dear That Lane Bryant Girl” offer a welcome rest from familial concerns, while Allyson Stack flips the domestic story in “Cinderella,” a narrative that consists of four short parts, told with serious grace and bite. Standouts in poetry include Jason Stumpf’s “Gift Drawings” and Sarah Vap’s “Originally, The Earth Was Loving-Water”: “Of a loving couple, the one whose love / is deeper dies first. Fire-ants stitch the wound / They bite the two edges of the skin—the heal holds / and the bodies are pinched off. Another reason / we’re forgiven too quickly.” The work is this edition of Natural Bridge tells the stories of fractured families, nations, relationships, and identities—a rich and rewarding read. [www.umsl.edu/~natural]Return to List.