It is no news that we’ve been away on hiatus for about a year now. First, we would like to thank the many persons who reached out, concerned about what informed our abrupt “sabbatical”. And while in more ways than one our reason is quite personal, it centres on one large word—yes, you’re possibly guessing right right now—the very same crippling monster that has ravaged souls and families in the past one-plus year: COVID-19.
In any case we are back and better. We must also use this opportunity to apologize for the delayed responses to emails and social media messages. We have responded to many of them, allaying our readers’ fears, and we are still responding to the many incoming messages.
That said, issue 33, or our post covid issue (as we’d like to call it, despite knowing covid is far from over), is as wont, lumbered with writers with both a balanced and heightened sense of language, emotion, and wit, as can be observed in the short stories by Andrew Bodinger and Pooya Monshizadeh (translated by Sajedeh Asna’ashari). Elizabeth Hanscombe’s non-fiction takes us into memories of her childhood— the grabbling poverty, a sexually abusive father and a dutiful mother. And the poet, Tade Ipadeola, renowned for his convoluted operation with words, as with Karen Petersen (in a long poem), explores cities and attachments to them. Umar Sidi bursts open abstract imaginations for literary access, and George Freek, in the tradition of ancient Chinese traditional poetry reminds us that poetry, irrespective of age, tradition, and era, will always matter.
It is with both hope and optimism that we present Issue 33 to you.