Issue 109 / Spring 2011
STORIES Maury Feinsilber Galatea in Situ Billy O’Callaghan Forty-One Is Not Old Nicholas Rinaldi The Gods Wear Funny Hats John Haggerty The Language of Fireflies Steven Bloom A Work of Fiction Julie Woods Karnes The Family Man James Brubaker Oh, Yoko Jim Nelson Inside the Footnote Carolyn Kegel Crazy Legs Devin Murphy The Olean Football Roster Susan Sonde Down Time Deborah Baker DIY Craig Curtis Anatomy
POEMS Daniel Tobin Orpheus in Second Life William Kelley Woolfitt Red Notes Bruce F. Kawin Star Matthew Murrey Blower Doug Ramspeck Original Bodies Brady Rhoades 1947 Lorraine Schein In the Luck Factory Twixt Electric Lines Derek Henderson from memoranda Oliver Rice A Reckless Progress Edward Adams Hodges Today I Thought of You David Blomenberg Wedding Party Variations on Three Dreams of Water Marcia L. Hurlow Visiting Scholar Christine Hope Starr Plastic Explosive Vlado Kreslin (translated by Urska Charney) Instead of Whom Does the Flower Bloom From the Slovene Fox DeMoisey Night’s Last Nocturne Wanda S. Praisner The Love Ring Jack Granath Body Packing Amanda V. Mead Gone Matt Schumacher cocktails crow like roosters
ESSAYS AND MEMOIRS Christopher Thorton Letter from Iran: Voices from the Streets Kathleen Spivak Talents in a Teapot: Robert Lowell, Elizabeth Bishop, and Boston
From the editor’s desk
For the first time in its over 40 years of continuous publication, Confrontation is including in its pages a section devoted to the visual arts. Why break precedence with the magazine’s own history, some might ask. Or—another legitimate question—why put paintings in a magazine devoted to literature?
We have a number of reasons for initiating this new section. One is that we have always been an eclectic magazine, open to writing with a variety of perspectives on the world and on the human, open also to beginning writers as well as established ones. Why not, we asked ourselves, push the idea of eclecticism a little further? Another reason for the change is that we wanted to enhance the visual appearance of the magazine. We also wished to give our readers an additional source of aesthetic pleasure. Literature has its own considerable and powerful aesthetic impact, of course, rooted in the beauty and extraordinary capacity of language to move us emotionally, spiritually, sensuously, and intellectually. Words make shapes, lasting shapes, on the page and in our memory and hearts. Language has Confrontation’s deepest loyalty, and particularly the language that in its shapeliness, its suppleness, and its complexity, engenders literature.
But out there, just beyond sight, we felt the visual arts beckoning us to new shores. While they have a different vocabulary from literary art—proportion, texture, color, mass and the like—they share the intention to delight (in the broadest sense of the word), to create a world, to unseal our eyes, to move us away from the routine and the customary, away from the unseeing life. In a quiet or a dramatic way, all art can ravish us. And if art doesn’t always humanize us, it does remind us of what it means to be human, something we think we always know, but frequently need to be reminded of.
Hence in this issue we are delighted to share with our readers a few paintings by the artist Esteban Vicente, an immigrant who left Spain during the Civil War in the 1930’s and settled on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Years later, he also lived, as did and still do many other artists, on the East End of Long Island, where the land runs out and the water flows unimpeded to Europe. He is in that sense a local painter, or rather, once he left Europe, he became a local painter. An abstract expressionist and member of the New York School (a large group of artists which included Willem de Kooning, Louise Bourgeois, Helen Frankenthaler, Jackson Pollock, Philip Guston, Cy Twombly and Mark Rothko), Vicente was clearly influenced by the oceanside light and by the open land and immense skyscapes of the East End. Our choice of his work was inspired by recent exhibitions of Vicente’s work at the Parrish Museum in Southampton, New York, and at the Ameringer McEnery Yohe Gallery in Manhattan.
with that leash of a look before goodbye,
stalled by a delay with someone’s straw bag,
and willows. The skin of night stretching taut
like a drum. The view from the back porch where