In the midst of a creative lull last week I called a poet friend to discuss those dreaded fallow periods that, at one time or another, most artists must face. It was both frightening and motivating to hear him say he believed the whole world conspires against putting words on the page, against the making of something. Whereas I thought I only had to contend with lethargy and neurosis in order to write poems, suddenly I was confronted with the fact that NHL hockey, my mother, and French bread pizza might all be in active opposition to the craft. But a serious consideration of my friend's idea reveals this conspiracy to be, at least, partially true. Unless one is fortunate enough to spend all of their time in books, pitfalls of intellectual stagnation abound. In an age in which ease and simplicity are touted everywhere as preeminent virtues, art asks us to choose the complicated and difficult. Writing a poem that explores the immanence of human violence—as Daniel DeVaughn has in this issue—is far from simple. Crafting a story that earnestly investigates a familial history of suicide, as Ree Davis' Unforgiving does, is not easy. Ultimately, my friend's comment served as a reminder to keep choosing the difficult; to keep chipping at the rock wherein the beautiful and necessary lie. Facing the Blue-toothed Goliath of inanity, let us continue to be Davids wielding slings hand-woven, our stones inscribed with poems for luck.
This is a fantastic issue, please enjoy and share.
Executive Editor, Fogged Clarity