The Quiet Boy Noé Who Waited to Speak

 

He listened, very well.

He could not help himself.

 

Every sound he heard he remembered,

Making a great library of music inside himself.

 

He didn’t mean to, but could not help himself.

A sound asks for attention,

Alberto Ríos’s latest collections of poems are A Small Story About the Sky (2015), The Dangerous Shirt (2009), and The Theater of Night (2007)—this last the winner of the PEN/Beyond Margins Award, and all three from Copper Canyon Press. A finalist for the National Book Award in 2002 for The Smallest Muscle in the Human Body and the recipient of the Western Literature Association Distinguished Achievement Award, Ríos has taught at Arizona State University for over thirty-five years. He is Arizona’s inaugural poet laureate, a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, and director of the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing at ASU.

on Look at the Lake by Kevin Brophy

Marianne Boruch’s ten poetry collections include the recent title The Anti-Grief (Copper Canyon Press, 2019). She was a Fulbright Senior Scholar in Australia last year at the University of Canberra’s International Poetry Studies Institute, observing the astonishing wildlife to write a book-length sequence, a neo-ancient/medieval bestiary, which is forthcoming from Copper Canyon. The poems in this issue are a part of that collection.

on Heart Like a Window, Mouth Like a Cliff by Sara Borjas

Situated midway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, about an hour’s drive from the geographical center of California, the inland city of Fresno and the wide expanse of the San Joaquin Valley around it have nurtured a number of influential …

on Tokyo by Michael Mejia

Tim Horvath is the author of Understories (Bellevue Literary Press, 2012), which won the New Hampshire Literary Award, and Circulation (sunnyoutside press, 2009), and his fiction appears in ConjunctionsAGNIHarvard Review, and elsewhere. He teaches creative writing at the New Hampshire Institute of Art in Manchester, New Hampshire, and in the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop’s program in Granada, Spain. He is currently working on a novel about contemporary composers and musicians.

on Oculus by Sally Wen Mao

Oculus, Sally Wen Mao’s second collection, travels swiftly and deftly through time and urban landscapes across continents. Unbounded by death and transcending history, these poems interrogate the relationship between technology and the body and confront the symbolic violence of …

Mary-Kim Arnold is the author of Litany for the Long Moment (Essay Press, 2018) and the forthcoming The Fish & The Dove (Noemi Press, 2020). Awarded fellowships from the Rhode Island Foundation and the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, she holds an MFA from Brown University and now teaches there in the Nonfiction Writing Program.

on Horizon by Barry Lopez

“It’s good to know where you come from, so that you do not live as though you’re lost,” Barry Lopez writes about halfway through Horizon, his first full-length work of nonfiction since he cast his careful gaze on the …

Patrick Pittman is a writer and editor who has reported from many remote corners of the planet for print, radio, online, and film. He was previously the editor of the Montreal-based magazine The Alpine Review and the Australian magazine Dumbo Feather. His debut theater work, Prompter, was staged in Melbourne in 2013. He is currently based in Toronto.

Vexed Heritage: Two Southern Poets (on R. T. Smith’s Summoning Shades and Natasha Trethewey’s Monument: Poems New and Selected )

Floyd Collins earned his MFA and PhD at the University of Arkansas. A book of critical essays on poetry, The Living Artifact, is forthcoming from Stephen F. Austin University Press in spring 2021. The Teresa Poems will appear from Somondoco Press in fall 2021. His poetry and critical prose appear regularly with The Arkansas Review, The Georgia Review, The Gettysburg Review, and The Kenyon Review.

Bodies, Political and Religious (on Leonard Cohen’s The Flame: Poems Notebooks Lyrics Drawings; Marilyn Chin’s A Portrait of the Self as Nation: New and Selected Poems; Kazim Ali’s Inquisition; Del Samatar and Sofia Samatar’s Monster Portraits; and Li-Young Lee’s The Undressing)

Jeff Gundy’s eighth book of poems, Without a Plea, was published in early 2019 by Bottom Dog Press. Recent poems and essays are in Cincinnati Review, River Teeth, Forklift, Ohio, Terrain, and Christian Century. He is at work on a series of lyric essays about the Illinois prairie with the working title “Wind Farm.”

 

“A Starting Point” (with an introduction by Katie Geha)

 

INTRODUCTION

Toyin Ojih Odutola is a visual artist consumed by the literary. Her drawings of figures are often cloaked in narrative allusions, and the build-up of marks on the page becomes a language which can be read. After all, …

Toyin Ojih Odutola lives and works in New York. Her work has been exhibited at the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Brooklyn Museum, Studio Museum Harlem, and many other places, and is held in collections including those of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney, and the Museum of Modern Art in New York; the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art in Washington, D.C.; and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

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