Scapegoat Review claims to “gather pieces that actively engage with the audience— they may be challenging, surreal, or even absurd, but they always express an interest in communication. Rather than work that is dry or academic, we seek writing that resonates with sincere, if ironically observed, emotion.” While this is a similar goal of many magazines I come across, I found their aim to be reached. Each and every poem here was engaging, not “dry or academic” (not that academic can’t be engaging too . . .).
Nin Andrews contributes four prose poems in which she personifies the orgasm. In “If Orgasms Were Poodles,” she claims that “we could keep them on leashes or dress them up like the dogs one purchases at Pet World.” Playfully, she interjects, “One would have to take good care of them of course—perhaps line their cages with soft bedding, and bathe them regularly. (No one appreciates those unhygienic orgasms who carry diseases and the scent of low tide.)”
In James Fowler’s “Late Night Death,” he is haunted by the image of a doe he accidentally hit by his car. “The cop came, put his gun to her ear. / “Do you want the meat. It’s yours.” / No! No thank you, no. I think not.”
Lyn Lifshin’s poetry transported me—at least for a brief moment—out of my fur blanket and freezing house into the middle of a hot and sweaty summer, with ice clinking in wet glasses (instead of frosting over my windshield).
A silver apple moon. Bored
and still sweaty, my sister and I
wanted to sleep out on the lawn
and dragged out our uncle’s army
blankets and chairs for a tent. We
wanted the stars on our skin, the
small green apples to hang over
the blanket to protect us from bats.
Sean Edgely writes from his experiences working abroad in Asia and Europe, claiming that they inform his worldview. One of his contributing poems, “Hungarian Girls are Pretty,” he is supposed to be helping Fanni with her math at detention, but as he says, “Fanni and I / never liked math.” My favorite stanza reads:
When we talk,
every time she chooses
the wrong preposition
it hangs me
like a lovely dress
on a broken hanger.
Also featured in this issue are poets Coriel O’Shea Gaffney, Melanie Whithaus, and Kiely Sweatt.