There are few publications that foster such a love of poetry in all its intricacies and histories as the New York City–based annual Parnassus (www.parnassusreview.com). Founded in 1973 as a source of poetry criticism by Herbert Leibowitz and former publisher Stanley Lewis—current coeditor Ben Downing joined Leibowitz in 1993—Parnassus has since established itself as a leading venue for both original poetry and related conversation. Slated for October, Parnassus Volume 34 includes an essay on Bob Dylan’s creative appropriation and retrospectives of poets Joe Brainard, Alicia Ostriker, and others. Parnassus welcomes submissions of poems, essays, and reviews year-round by postal mail.
“As an editor of a literary journal and a poet myself, I have an intimate knowledge of mistakes and failures,” writes editor William Waltz in his introduction to Issue 25 of Conduit (www.conduit.org), the theme of which is “Failing Famously.” The journal was founded in Massachusetts by Waltz in 1993 and is now published biannually in Minneapolis. Associate editor Steven Lee Beeber’s interview with novelist and memoirist Benjamin Anastas appears in the new issue along with poetry from Wayne Miller and Wendy Xu. The editors offer a specially designed T-shirt to the first five readers who find the intentional typographical error in the issue. A new Conduit website is coming soon; meanwhile, submissions of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, photography, and art are considered year-round by postal mail.
Published biannually since 1969 at Oberlin College, FIELD (www.oberlin.edu/ocpress/field.html) is a shining contemporary example of the classic American poetry journal. Editors David Young and David Walker focus on the presentation of new poetry, reviews, and essays, supported by a cast of semiregular contributors including Angela Ball, Kevin Prufer, and G. C. Waldrep. Alongside new poetry in Issue 91, due out in October, is a collection of essays on the work of the late Nobel laureate Seamus Heaney, with contributions from poets Marianne Boruch, Gail Mazur, and Carl Phillips, among others. FIELD continues to expand digitally: An electronic edition of the print magazine is now available via the LitRagger app. Poetry submissions are considered from August to May via Submittable.
Redactions: Poetry, Poetics, & Prose (www.redactions.com) was established in Spokane, Washington, in 2003 in response to the demise of Poetry Northwest (which has since been reborn). Named after Robert Kelly’s book of selected poems, Redactions is published today in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, under the editorship of Tom Holmes. Issue 18 is a detailed and loving homage to Wyndham Lewis’s revolutionary, short-lived modernist journal BLAST. Released on the centenary of BLAST’s first publication, the new issue of Redactions includes a BLAST tribute section, featuring a Vorticist sestina by David Lloyd and essays from modernist scholars Mark Antliff and Scott W. Klein. The Redactions editors consider poetry, fiction, and nonfiction submissions year-round via e-mail, and are especially interested in new work “from women and people of color.”
Southern Humanities Review (www.southernhumanitiesreview.com)—the quarterly journal founded in 1967 and published at Auburn University in Alabama—is redesigning itself from the ground up, with an overhaul led by new managing editor Aaron Alford. Issue 48.2 debuts the journal’s new look and features new poetry by Gabrielle Bates, Les Kay, and others, along with a novella by Judith Dancoff. Earlier this year, SHR launched the Auburn Witness Poetry Prize, an annual award of a thousand dollars and publication for the best “poem of witness” by an American poet, given in honor of Auburn alumnus Jake Adam York, who died unexpectedly at the age of forty in 2012. “We take our Southern roots quite seriously,” notes poetry editor Keetje Kuipers. “However, we read widely, and our poetry in particular is startlingly varied, not only in terms of geography but also style and subject matter.” Submissions for the prize won’t open again until 2015, but regular submissions of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction can be sent by postal mail from August to May.
Travis Kurowski is the editor of Paper Dreams: Writers and Editors on the American Literary Magazine, published in 2013 by Atticus Books. His website is traviskurowski.com.