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HazMat Review - Summer 2003

I wasn’t sure what kind of experience to anticipate from a journal named HazMat, but I was pleasantly surprised by most of what I found between the perfect-bound covers. Not every piece is a hit, but the ones that don’t make it fail for lack of craft rather than heart. And there are enough ambitious and smart pieces to keep you reading all the way to the end. A couple of my favorites are clustered towards the front of the journal, including the very first poem, “Soup,” by Molly Scott and “Permission,” by Tami Landers. Here’s a few of the energetic lines from “Permission”: “Back then, I wouldn’t even have a female pet – / girls were wimps; everyone knew that. / I can remember the fat guy in Boyd’s pet shop / trying to find me a boy box turtle; / he said I was cute. / May I please (have what is mine)?” Interspersed with the poems are pieces of short-short fiction, or “flash” fiction, which feel fresh and fun. Pieces with political/activist bent combine with more whimsical work to provide a nice cross-section of young-feeling, contemporary literary work in this issue. [HazMat Review, PO Box 30507, Rochester, New York 14603. E-mail: . Single issue $10.00.] – JHG

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Review Posted on September 30, 2003

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