PRISM 52:3 SPRING 2014 launches this week, and Spring’s in the air! Wherever you are, we hope your world’s lightening and brightening! To celebrate, grab the latest issue of PRISM and read a few tales of rebirth, growth, and lessons learned, featuring our Non-Fiction Contest winners and much more!
In “Reunion” the winning piece from our non-fiction contest, Re’Lynn Hansen uses an annual class reunion as a platform to explore aging, mortality, and the meaning of memory.
Rachel Rose’s poetry interweaves the sensuous world with wit and a tender, intensive mental acuity: “White Lilies” unravels the hard blossom of epiphany, while “Virtuoso” explores the ironies of talent, fame, and shame.
Miranda Pearson’s “A Walk in the Park” navigates the emotional landscape of grief and life after death. “We are learning about leaving;” she writes, “about holding on. How the body / is a new sort of friend, flawed, / unreliable.”
“Almost-Home” details Julia Zarankin’s complex feelings about the Russian city where she lived as a young child before her family immigrated to Canada.
Carla Drysdale’s poems “Inheritance” and “Rafael’s Question” consider the dynamics of the parent/child relationship and what we owe our parents, our children, ourselves.
In “Notes on Breath,” Jenny Boychuk uses the simple act of breathing as a jumping off point to explore the legacy of her complex relationship with her mother.
Alisha Dukelow recounts an amphibian childhood memory in “Metamorphosis,” her nod to Ovid. She leads us through the lush country of leg sprouts, pollywog gills, and “[m]urked specks mottling the yellow meniscus.”
Geoffrey Nilson likewise pays homage to a poet in his glosa “Fractals,” which borrows a few lines from Michael Ondaatje’s “The Time Around Scars.” Nilson shape-shifts through words, a bookstore, “a spider of airborne static / between dust & light.”
Harold Macy’s “Gelignite” tells the story of a second chance romance between a former housewife on the run from an unsatisfying marriage and a demolitions expert.
Paddy Chitty’s poem “Flash” is a funny, sad, startling romp down memory lane, ending at the crossroads where sentiment meets experience.
Sandra Lloyd meditates on the surfaces and tensions of lake life in her poem “Surface Tension,” threading the poem through a single, lucid sentence.
Iain Higgins’ translation of Paul Celan’s poem “Corona” captures the essence of its examination on the nature of time and experience.
In “Transactions” by Madeline Sonik, two brothers find themselves on a tense car ride with a possibly homicidal childhood friend.
Michael Johnson’s poems “In the Language of the Mountain,” “Rainmaker,” and “Hell” open like flowers: fragrant, dizzying, and dripping with colour.
Mark Lavorato’s poem “Hell” tackles the underworld with satire and sharp language, reimagining the Christian hell as a kind of (disturbingly) perfect shopping mall.
In “Fingernecklace,” Lori McNulty details the intense and complicated bond between two brothers who each struggle in their own way with the aftermath of a dark childhood.
Richard Kelly Kemick writes smart, researched poems, including “British Mountains, Yukon River watershed, 1851” and “Ghazal of the Caribou Fence”—poems that are able to engage both the source material as well as the reader. Lyric. Sharp. Heartbreaking.
Steven Slowka’s poem “Archaeopteryx” exists on the edge of memory, dreams, archeology, and the quiet processes of passion and time.
“When the Killer Whale Brought Evil to the Town of Paradise” by Drew Nelles tells the story of an idyllic town, a captive killer whale, and the rippling effects of human cruelty.
Michael V. Smith’s poems “Prayer for Solace,” “Prayer for Renewal,” and “Letter, 10:28 p.m.” employ tight, lyric observations of life and love, sprinkled with “[g]oats, gelato, beach, strawberries, [and] popcorn.”
In Bryan Castille’s “Letter From Iceland,” a young man meets up with his recently deceased ex-lover’s sister and confronts the fallout of a fateful choice.
Elee Kraljii Gardiner’s “Sharpening Skates,” is a coming of age, girl-to-woman poem that looks at the monthly ritual of skate sharpening as a metaphor for the skills necessary to become a woman. “I know where the Zamboni lives,” writes the speaker, “the third bleacher, the powdery heat / in the women’s change room, / the bitterness of the urinals in the men’s.”
And how about that cover image! Ontario-based artist Meryl McMaster captures the sudden abundance of Spring in her self-portrait “Anima.” Check her out at www.merylmcmaster.com.
Get the latest issue of PRISM international here! Happy reading, PRISMers!!