Through The Keyhole: An Addict's Account
by Rob Kaniuk
I wake on a bunk, in a room with another man. The cell is 120 inches long, 78 inches wide. It is cold, filthy—I am dope-sick behind bars.
As the morning headcount commenced in the Yavapai County Detention Center, I looked out the thin sliver of a window above my concrete bunk ...
Hallelujah! I'm No Genius
by Scott Edward Anderson
Arthur Rimbaud, the visionary 19th Century French poet, was a classic young literary success story: discovered in his teens, celebrated by the literati of his time, some of whom -- literally -- fell in love with him; one of whom shot him in a pique of passion.
In his “Lettre du Voyant” (Letter of the Seer), Rimbaud explained, “I say that one must be a seer, make oneself a seer. The poet makes himself a seer by a long, prodigious, and rational disordering of all the senses. Every form of love, of suffering, of madness; he searches himself, he consumes all the poisons in him, and keeps only their quintessence.” He was 16 years old ...
Five reasons to try speculative fiction
by R. David Fulcher
Lovers of mainstream fiction steer away from books labelled as speculative fiction – typically science fiction, fantasy and horror – like the plague. To many, these books are considered extreme, graphic and downright weird. However, these people are missing out on some great fiction, just as if you limited yourself to steak and potatoes every night while missing out on some great international cuisine ...
lessons on the environment: Revisiting robert bly
by Brian Fanelli
Robert Bly and James Wright edited the first issue of The Fifties in 1958; a passage on the inside cover reads: “All of the poetry written in America today is too old-fashioned.” As a way to make a name for themselves and the magazine, the poets were responding to the Modernists, especially T.S. Eliot and Ezra Pound’s idea of taking personal narrative and emotion out of poetry. By the 1960s and 1970s, Bly’s poetry showcased his environmental concerns and protest against the Vietnam War. During a period of greater political engagement and more attention drawn to environmental issues, due to the Paris Climate Agreement, now is a good time to revisit Bly’s work, especially his environmental and neo-Romantic poetry. Bly can teach creative writers not only how to be more attuned to nature but how to be an active citizen ...
Review of THE PLANET OF THE BLIND
by Ray Greenblatt
How does a blind person write a memoir? How does a blind poet write a memoir? Using all the senses—taste, smell, feel, hearing. Stephen Kuusisto with a miniscule corner of one eye was able to see light; so he also paints a phantasmagoria of hues and forms. The greatest challenge in writing this review was the vast wealth of poetic writing from which to choose. Omitting so many fine passages to fit the word limit involved painful decisions. Nevertheless, since this is a type of autobiography, let us return to his very beginnings.
the poetry of Joseph Cilluffo, Marie Kane, Judy Kronenfeld, Diana Pazicky, and Tree Riesener
In this issue, the Schuylkill Valley Journal is happy to share the poetic work of Joseph Cilluffo, Marie Kane, Judy Kronenfeld, Diana Pazicky, and Tree Riesener. These poems are full of mystery and imagination. Read them here.