Friday Jan 21

Robert Clark Young This month we welcome back Jacqueline C. Kelley, whose story “Abe” is not about our sixteenth president, nor about Abe Vigoda, nor about any other Abe whom you are likely to recognize. In fact, it may take you a couple of paragraphs to figure out who exactly this Abe is. But once you do figure it out, you’ll want to stick with him. On the page, that is. Despite the best of his personal qualities, you might not want him in your house or car.

Walter Giersbach’s “Dusty Poems from the Barnyard” is, in many ways, my favorite kind of true story—a historical detective mystery that not only has a literary bent, but which is bent on literary matters. The quest here is for literary treasures from the past, and it’s a treat to see how the author explores his own family history at the same time.

Probably the greatest pleasure in helping to edit this journal is the discovery of new talent. Rarely, one discovers a young writer who arrives with a voice that is fully mature. Such a voice belongs to Angela Sparandera. Her every sentence shimmers across the page as though her words were always meant to exist. The same can be said for the sweep of her narratives. This is the first time she’s published creative work. She is such a natural writer that she can write evocatively on any number of subjects. I offer you three of her best pieces: “I Am Good at Eating,” “My Old Job,” andLatin Music.” I have no doubt that Ms. Sparandera’s byline will be appearing on plenty of articles and stories and books in the years to come.