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The Fairfield Review

About The Winter 1998 Edition

Welcome to the Winter edition of The Fairfield Review. This issue marks the beginning of our second year of publishing quality writing from new and established authors of poetry and short stories. We are proud to include a number of artists who published work in our first four issues, and pleased once again to introduce new writers to our readers.

Our featured poet this quarter is E. Doyle-Gillespie, known as "Zbear" in America On-Line poetry circles. We were introduced to Zbear's work as part of a UK Transatlantic Critique club we discovered last Fall. Reading Zbear's poems, we were reminded of Linda Pastan's lines:

"Finding a new poet
is like finding a new wildflower
out in the woods. You don't see
its name in the flower books..."

We had the sense of "happening upon" Zbear's work and pleasure of finding more deeper meanings and references upon each new reading of his work. For example, in Ramadan, we like the contrast of the rites of Islamic religion with Christianity, and the inner conflict of a living a "spiritual" versus a "religious" life. In Files, we very much enjoyed how the ethereal is used in contrast to the "real," such as the figure of the woman wafting in and out suggesting the memory of a real lover, the references of exact times and places versus the ethereal day dream-- which harkens the concept that poetry can arise out of the most banal of experiences. While the concrete references gave us pause, we found them mostly secondary to the impact of their preciseness. We found that the literalness of time and place (a certain cafe, etc.) adds to the painting of the mental picture, as well as enhancing the believability and creating a true sense of "place."

It is this depth and interaction of the metaphors we find in Zbear's work that impresses us. And, in reading all the pieces in the "series" he sent, we find interesting stories and images that dovetail with one another, adding new meanings we had not seen earlier. We are pleased to present seven of Zbear's poems (starting here) which we feel represent the best of the work he sent us, and invite you to send us your comments.

What would a February release be without paying homage to St. Valentine? It is appropriate that in the ides of Winter the lovers speak. It is with that though in mind that we include a number of poems as alternatives to usual greeting card madness. We start with a feature from Gordon Edwards, titled Two Lovers, which provided the lyrics for a recent choral composition by Steven Sametz that made its debut in October. Two of our alumni writers were kind enough to submit Two Love Poems which we have published anonymously. In addition, we call your attention to Penelope Greenwell's Touch and this quarter's classic poem, Natural History, by E.B. White.

For fiction we are pleased to welcome back John Jennings who first appeared in our Summer 1997 issue. John has written a modern western of sorts, titled Moab, Utah. In addition, two of our poets, Halsted and Gordon Edwards, have written poems in response to John's story. We suggest reading the story and then the poems: John and Story.

In addition, we have a story from the UK Transatlantic Critique Club, which we think you'll enjoy. Dave Bothwell has written an intriguing story of science fiction, presumptuously titled Faith, that raises time-honored questions of the philosophers.

You can find a complete list of this issue's writings in the table of contents and information about contributors in About the Authors.

Please send us your comments and suggestions. When you visit our site, please fill out our Guest Book or drop us a note via email. Also encourage your fellow readers and writers to visit The Fairfield Review and submit their writing for consideration in our Spring issue. We continue to encourage submissions from students and new writers.

With the turning of the new year, and the cold wash of Winter winds, we grow a bit nostalgic. So we leave you with the words of E.B. White: "Thus I, gone forth, as spiders do ... Attach one silken strand to you."

Janet Granger
Ed Happ

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