Spring 2018, Volume 24

From the Poetry Editor

Spring 2018: Iíve Believed in Wilder Things

Dear Reader,

Thank you for finding your way to the Spring 2018 issue of Verdad, an issue that comes to life after a long, hard winter (here in New York, anyway). To honor the revitalization this time of year offers, this issue features a ‘Spring Cleaning’ poem by Jane Glasser:

“When I’m finally purged,
Lemon-scented and emptied out,
I am overcome by sadness.

Like footprints sucked from a rug,
A profound loneliness
Haunts the immaculate
Rooms of my house”

You’ll also find Stuart Greenhouse’s ‘Mechanistic Reproduction of Distant Motion’ whose speaker wants “always to be like that tree / where gentle things mingle.” These natural burgeonings both call forth life, and have us questioning its limits as Christopher Buckley’s ‘Evening Walk’ reminds us; as does Lana Bella’s sea-haunted poem ‘Dear Isadore’ whose speaker is plagued with “heartache / worn smooth as a boat’s stern.”Another plagued speaker appears in Jiordan Castle’s ‘The MetroCard Machine Asks Whether I Want to Add Value or Time,’ a poem about a speaker visiting her father at a hospital:

“I’ve been praying to ghosts
because they seem more likely to listen,
all air and exorcism.

I’ve believed in wilder things,
like palm readers, trains that run on time,
a heaven I can touch”.

Meanwhile, Steve Mueske offers us two poems, the first of which, ‘Brackets,’ contemplates the difficulties of solitude, of trying to connect with others while realizing the seeming futility of the pursuit: “O, parallel lives, / all this time I’ve been saying /  we, but I really mean me. Is this true for you // as well?” And Kareem Tayarr’s ‘On Teaching The Wind in the Willows’ leaves us with this at-home exercise:

“What it is we would miss most about our homes were we ever
forced
        to leave them for good:

Someone says, ‘bagels with cream cheese,’
Another says, ‘late night swims in the pool,’
A third says, ‘the voice of my mother, singing in the kitchen.’”

We also feature four of Robert Rothman’s poems that help us find “a calm inside the calamity,” and Susan Grimm’s ‘Black Horse from Antiquity’ whose speaker canoes toward an island of horses away from parents on shore who “call and call as much as they liked. It became // (torrent) a kind of music.”

As always, this issue and its music was a synthesis of efforts, and no introduction would suffice without a hearty thank you to Bonnie Bolling, Rochelle Cocco, and Jack Miller, my co-conspirators who put in all the work that keeps this ship afloat.

 

                                                                                     — Bill Neumire