Saturday, July 31, 2010

Feedback on Issue 12

The response to Issue 12 "A Fetish for Good Poetry" has almost all been very positive. A few people have raised interesting questions about our inclusion of several gay-themed poems in the issue. Aditi Machado even Twittered about it: "Why is gay sex 'weird'?"

In her case, the confusion probably arose from Nigel's (obviously, I thought) tongue-in-cheek use of "weird" in his editorial. In this twittering age, irony is a risky thing.

We also interpreted the theme fairly loosely, of necessity. Otherwise we would have had to eliminate much of the issue.

Take Marybeth Rua-Larsen's "Aubade," for example. The speaker sounds more like an adventurous wife adding some spice to her marriage than a fetishist in the strictest sense of the word. And the speaker in Michael Ferris's "Those Hills" just happens to like a nice ass - that's hardly unusual. We accepted those poems because we liked them and they were at least tangentially relevant to the theme, though not necessarily right smack on the nose.

Anyway, these questions raise some interesting questions themselves. As I see it, all of Jee's poems in the issue have a kinky element, independent of orientation. But just for the sake of argument, let's suppose that wasn't the case. Is including a sexy poem by a gay poet in a fetish-themed issue the same as literally equating "gay" with "fetishistic"? I don't think so. And underlying that question is another, trickier, question: inaccuracy aside, is there something insulting about such an equation? Only if you think fetishes are bad.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Shit Creekers paddle on!

Issue 12 of The Shit Creek Review is now online:

Issue 12: A Fetish for Good Poetry

Highlights include an interview with featured poet Jee Leong Koh; essays and reviews by Moira Egan, Quincy Lehr, Marybeth Rua-Larsen and Paul Stevens; poems by Mike Alexander, R. Nemo Hill and Jennifer Reeser; and artwork by Pat Jones, Maggie Mae-Hymn and Julian Mendez Perea.

Thanks and kudos to all the contributors for their fine work.