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From the Editors

Introduction to the Spring/Summer 1998 Issue

As editors of the inaugural issue (Spring 1997) of the CLR, we had the usual concerns of editors at work on a subsequent issue: would we have enough funding to continue publication; would we have enough submissions from which to cull the best in poetry, fiction and essays so that this second issue could measure up to the first (awarded Best New Magazine of 1997 by the Community College Humanities Association); and, would the distribution of the new issue see its way around the country to the nation's libraries, writing programs and our growing list of subscribers; in short, would our poets and writers find the audience they so richly deserve.

Despite the budget constraints inherent in the arts today, we are able to continue publishing; in fact, as of this year we are a semi- annual literary publication due to, in large part, the support of the Clackamas Community College Foundation. Thus, we are able to advertise our very presence, and the submissions come roaring in. We believe you will find this issue up to the standard set in the first issue of a year ago. In these pages you will read the fiction of H. Lee Barnes, a writer now making a name for himself: in "Stonehands and the Tigress," Mr. Barnes mixes Asian folklore with horrific reality in the jungles of Vietnam.

The novelist Valerie Miner, who served as judge of the Spring Fiction Contest, contributes with a chapter from her new novel, Range of Light, wherein the rugged terrain of the Sierra takes hold of Adele in the most naturalistic of senses. Because of the quality of the fiction submitted in the contest, Ms. Miner chose co-winners: Andrea Masters' "The Dancer" puts the reader in a line of Jews about to be exterminated by the Nazis, and Elaine Winer's "Summer's End" reveals the great difficulty of admitting that a friend will soon be dead. And Mark Andres, whose oil-on-canvas of the Oregon City Falls graces our cover, explores a father's dubious attempt to avoid fadng a son's illness in "Who's Up Next."

In poetry, we were very pleased to have Vern Rutsala judge the Spring 1998 Poetry Contest, and we are excited to showcase three of his new poems. In addition to Mr. Rutsala's work, this issue's poetry is anchored by such experienced voices as Jana Harris and Walt McDonald; with tremendous compassion, both capture a hard and enduring life of pioneering and living on the plains. This brings us to experienced voices which many readers may not yet have encountered: poets such as Beckian Fritz Goldberg and Kevin Stein are surely poets to take note of, and we're glad to have their poetic strength and experience. Poems such as Ms. Goldberg's "Blown" and Mr. Stein's "Rhetoric" ought to compel one to read more of their work.

Poets such as Sean Thomas Dougherty and Allen Braden offer us voices which are sometimes edgy and gritty, yet they complement this with quieter poems as well. If you haven't had the chance to see Mr. Dougherty perform, take it. If social realism is something that is a strength behind these poets, let us couple that with lessons from some hard and ugly history: the poignant poems of Theresa Ford and Steven Herz should keep us pondering oppression and the beauty of resilience long after we read their work.

This issue features a strong group of Oregon poets—Judith Barrington, the winner of the Spring Contest; Tim Barnes; Linda Elegant; Elizabeth Knight; Judith Montgomery; Vern Rutsala; Steven Sher; and Floyd Skloot. Mr. Skloot strikes again with his masterful poetry rooted in deeply evocative images while Barrington and Barnes combine the soul and intellect with natural forces. Look forward to books by Ms. Montgomery, Ms. Elegant, and Mr. Sher. This collection of poets illustrates the range of experienced and emerging voices this state and other states' literary communities offer.

Again, thank you for reading. Because this is in your hands, we trust these poets' and writers' voices find their truest reward.

Jeff Knorr and Tim Schell

Contact the Editors

Tim Schell
503-657-6958 ext. 2520
tims@clackamas.cc.or.us

Brad Stiles
503-657-6958 ext. 2609
brads@clackamas.cc.or.us

Kate Gray
503-657-6958 ext. 2371
kateg@clackamas.cc.or.us


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