BY JANÉE J. BAUGHER, CAROLYN HOWARD-JOHNSON, ZYSKANDAR A. JAIMOT, DONALD LEVIN, CATI PORTER, JODIANN STEVENSON, AND LISA SWANSTROM.
In this literary line-up we've identified a wide array of poetical gems -- all for your reading pleasure. Many pieces are available free and on-line at the small-press sites listed below. We are especially grateful to our contributors, past and present, for sharing their picks with us. Do you have a favorite small-press journal? If so, Sunspinner wants to hear about it! If you have a 'zine in mind that we have neglected to mention, please let us know by writing to us at . We'll thank you for it and do our best to include it in our next issue.
Banyan Review is an online literary journal "dedicated to presenting the work of both established and emerging writers around the world." Published twice a year, Banyan features fine poetry, short fiction, occasional nonfiction, and book & site reviews. They also sponsor an annual Poetry Competition. We recommend the short story "The Numbers Game" by Carol Carpenter. Details and guidelines at http://www.banyanreview.com. (Review by Cati Porter)
CCM A new acronym for us all to memorize, CCM stands for Coffee Cramp Magazine, and I'm holding Issue I, Volume I, April 2005, in my hands. Founder April May Rollins of Ore Mountain Publishing House fame is editor, and Lea Schizas -- publicist for StarPublish.com and an ApollosLyre.com editor -- is her senior editor. Those who purchase the first issue will be hooked on the first installment of Lea Schizas's serialized story, "The Old Italian Lady." And there is more to come! Submissions editor, Michael A. Kechula, is seeking quality submissions for their coming July issue. The magazine is expected to evolve and is currently publishing humor, reviews, interviews, fiction and illustrations. Details and guidelines at http://coffeecrampreviews.tripod.com/ccmcoffeecrampmagazine/id2.html. (Review by Carolyn Howard-Johnson)
Evansville Review Based out of Indiana's University of Evansville, the ER publishes excellent work by emerging talent. Among their many gems, we recommend W.D. Snodgrass' poem "Chasing Fireflies" and James Ragan's poem "A Scansion of Petrarchan Larks." Details and guidelines at http://evansvillereview.evansville.edu/CurrentIssue.htm. (Review by Lisa Swanstrom)
Gertrude: A Journal of Voice and Vision Published biannually out of Portland, OR, Gertrude features "the creative talents of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and straight supportive writers and artists." We recommend Cindi Harrison's poem "Outfits." Details and guidelines at http://www.gertrude-journal.com. (--L.S.)
Grain Magazine published quarterly by the Saskatchewan Writers Guild,Grain Magazine showcases top-notch fiction and poetry by writers around the world. We recommend Lee Henderson's short story "Sheep Dub," which appears in the Spring issue of 1999. " Details and guidelines at http://www.grainmagazine.ca/index.htm.
The HyperTexts' editor Michael R. Burch has published the work of three Pulitzer Prize nominees and recent winners of the T. S. Eliot, Richard Wilbur and Howard Nemerov awards. He has been twice nominated for the Pushcart Prize, and his work has appeared or is forthcoming in over ninety literary journals in the USA, UK, Canada, Australia, South Africa and India. His poetry is usually in the formalist vein, relying on a classical motif to accentuate his rare sonorous gifts. Details and guidelines at on-line at http://www.thehypertexts.com (Review by Zyskandar A. Jaimot)
Little Poem Press publishes quality poetry chapbooks in print and pdf format. The Art of the Dog, the newest chapbook from prolific poet Michael Ladanyi is a showcase for his remarkable linguistic gifts. In these intense, condensed, crackling pieces, Ladanyi sets his craft toward, as Kafka commanded, axing the frozen sea within us. These poems limn a world where our lungs battle for air that is suffocating with blue ash, our ears struggle to make sense of the "rattle-pops split-skirt letters" of our devalued language, and our eyes burn to pierce through the "vaseline stare" of a world that is both exhausted and endlessly twitching, like a frog attached to electrodes. Spoken in a voice that puts me in mind of Dylan Thomas on acid, these works chart the attempt to find a means with which to confront the unlimited miscommunications, loss, isolation, and death that are our lot. Details and guidelines at http://www.celaine.com/LittlePoemPress/. (Review by Donald Levin)
Main Channel Voices: A Dam Fine Literary Magazine This new zine based out of Minnesota features solid writing from writers "looking for a "Dam Fine" showcase for their work." We recommend Laura Stamps' poem "Crows" and Liz Dolan's poem "The Annunciation: Second Thoughts." Details and guidelines at http://www.mainchannelvoices.com. (--L.S.)
Maison Neuve Described as "New Yorker for a younger generation, or as Harper's meets Vice, or as Vanity Fair without the vanity," Maison Neuve showcases intelligent features and excellent prose. We recommend Pasha Malla's short fiction "The Film We Made About Dads." Details and guidelines at http://maisonneuve.org/index.php. (--L.S.)
Margin: Exploring Modern Magical Realism Published quarterly on-line, Margin features excellent prose and poetry in the magically real vein. We highly recommend Marjorie Maddox's poem "21 Cows Struck by Lightning"; Ruth Knafo Setton's poem "Gypsy Moth"; and Mary Overton's short story: "Mother, Machine." Details and guidelines at http://www.magical-realism.com. (--L.S.)
Pebble Lake Review publishes five times a year, in print and online, including an awards issue that publishes the results of their annual contest. A recent addition to the website, The Audio Project, conceived of by editor Amanda Auchter, allows readers to hear selections from each issue read aloud by the author. We recommend Judy Kronenfeld's "Aloft, in a City Again," one of the many works available with this audio function. Details and guidelines at http://www.pebblelakereview.com. (--C.P.)
Poetry Midwest The brainchild of Matthew Schmeer, Poetry Midwest is one of the few freely distributable, printable, literary journal currently in operation on the web. They publish electronically three times per year. We recommend "Vocabulary" by Philip Dacey, and "They Say This is How Death Came Into the World" by Paul Dickey. Both can be found in the Fall 2004 issue. Details and guidelines at http://www.poetrymidwest.org.
Rattle Dedicated to poetry, Rattle is published twice per year in print and is edited by Alan C. Fox and Stellasue Lee. They feature a wide range of contemporary voices, a Poet of Note section, interviews with stellar poets like Naomi Shihab Nye and Li Young Li, translations, and book reviews. We recommend "Olive Oil" by Paul Suntup and "Reflections on a Poetry Journal's Subject Matter in the Millennium Decade" by Anne Wilson, both found in the Summer 2004 issue. Details and guidelines at http://www.rattle.com. (--C.P.)
Spillway is "...an international journal of poetry, essays, criticism, and translations dedicated to celebrating poetry's diversity and power to affect our lives." They are published by Tebot Bach, a nonprofit organization that conducts workshops and publishes anthologies of California poetry. We recommend "Nocturne" by Kevin Berland and "The Poet's Standardized Test" by E.C. Archibeque. Details and guidelines available at http://www.tebotbach.org/spillway_submissions.htm. (--C.P.)
South Loop Review Published out of Chicago's Columbia College, the SLR features fine work from up-and-coming talent. We recommend Nathalie Vidlak's short story "Sunday Morning." Details and guidelines at: http://www.colum.edu/undergraduate/english/pubs/slr/submissions.htm. (--L.S.)
Spitfire Press publishes attractive and elegantly designed fiction chapbooks in pdf format. We recommend Trevor Dodge's "Striving to Be." Details and guidelines at http://www.spitfirepress.com. (--L.S.)
Since 1995, global poetry journal Switched-on Gutenberg, which was spearheaded by writer Jana Harris and her UW Extension students in Seattle, has boasted stellar work by unknowns and well-knows alike. This modest little annual cyberspace journal (with recent themes such as Famous/Infamous, Wish You Were Here Travel Poems, Flora and Fauna, and Not in Your Right Mind) goes live each summer. Details and guidelines at http://www.switched-ongutenberg.com. (Review by Janée J. Baugher)
32 Poems features an appealing range of poetry by emerging and established writers. We recommend Jeffrey Thomson's poem "Fabulous Ones." Details and guidelines at http://www.32poems.com/. (--L.S.)
Triplopia Published quarterly in conjunction with Poem Online (http://poet.hypermart.net/poetry/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.pl), Tripoplia features excellent work by excellent writers. We highly recommend Mary Wallach's pushcart-nominated poem "A Reprimand from Shiva." Details and guidelines at http://www.triplopia.org/. (--L.S.)
27 Rue de Fleures, a new literary journal from Binge Press and Productions will feature experimental writing and hypermedia art by women and will make its debut in July, 2005. Binge's first book, Bite Marks Visible by Nicole Gervace, is a stunning series of poems created out of domestic violence police reports. This will be the first book of an annual series dedicated to fresh perspectives on various women's issues. Details and guidelines for both the journal and the press are available at http://www.bingepressandproductions.com. (Review by JodiAnn Stevenson)
West Branch This biannual publication based out of Bucknell University's Stadler Poetry Center features first-rate poetry from skilled poetic practitioners. We were particularly partial to Mary Ruefle's poem "English," which appears in the Spring 2004 issue. Details and guidelines at http://www.bucknell.edu/News_Events/Publications/West_Branch/index.html. (--L.S.)