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From the Editors

Editors' Note for the Spring/Summer 2002 Issue

In spring 1997, Clackamas Literary Review began its journey. Its origin was probably in conversation over icy mugs of beer with the intrepid Tim Schell and Jeff Knorr laughing and back-slapping, then making the magazine happen. As Tim wrote recently, "It seemed to us that the mission was obvious: create a literary journal that would publish the best literature we could find regardless of who wrote it. That was our mission then, and that is our mission now." In the five years since Tim and Jeff launched CLR, the journal has grown and flourished with this goal always in mind. The flourish has included awards from the Community College Humanities Association for Best New Magazine in 1997 and honorable mention for Most Improved Magazine in 1999, a story, "Kansas" by Stephen Dobyns selected by Amy Tan for Best American Short Stories, and five Pushcart Prize winners from 1997-2001.

And writers have recognized the sincerity and earnestness with which Tim and Jeff have performed this editorial mission. We receive hundreds upon hundreds of submissions each year, all unsolicited, from writers all over the world. Their selection of experienced and emerging writers from diverse backgrounds and geographic locations is one mark of their generous hearts. Another is the breadth of character and emotion that these stories, poems, essays, and reviews have offered.

In much the same way, the sampling of Jeff and Tim's work that we include in this issue illustrates the depth of their character and their skill as writers. Jeff's poems use the natural world as a backdrop for the struggles a father may feel for his son, for a self-conscious and futile resistance to death, and for the comfort nature offers the full and lonely heart. In a very different setting of Africa, Tim creates a world in which an alienated character recognizes the system he supports in his role in the U.S. foreign service. Tim's poignant and timely metaphor offers a searing view of his own country and his experiences overseas. Both writers share their keen perceptions and their meticulous craft, and crown five years of exemplary leadership with these fine works.

Last spring we said our good-byes to Jeff and now with Tim's departure last winter, the journal bids farewell to our remaining founding editor. We will miss Tim's exuberant leadership, his strong sense of the craft of writing, and his broad and generous vision. Even as we recognize our loss, we acknowledge his contribution to the publishing landscape, and we wish Tim all the best as he begins his next great adventure.

And now as we begin our next five years, we pledge to continue the work of these two fine editors to the best of our abilities.

Kate Gray and Brad Stiles

Contact the Editors

Brad Stiles
503-657-6958 ext. 2609

Kate Gray
503-657-6958 ext. 2371

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