Throwback: “This Game Do That to You” by Nicholas Mainieri (Spring 2010)

With the World Series underway, we thought it would be a great time to feature a story from spring 2010—our baseball issue. Below, enjoy Nicholas Mainieri’s “This Game Do That to You.”

You can hear Nick read, along with The Southern Review contributors and Louisiana writers Alison Pelegrin and John Biguenet, at this year’s Louisiana Book Fest on Saturday, November 1. The trio will participate in “Approaching Eighty: A Pre-Anniversary Reading from The Southern Review,” from 2:15–3:15 pm in House Committee Room 2. Also, swing by The Southern Review‘s table in Exhibitor Tent 1 for subscription deals, a chance to meet the editors, and gear from the journal.

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Throwback: “I Hate Telling People I Teach English” by Wendy Barker (Spring 2009)

Over the past five years we’ve published a number of Wendy Barker’s teaching poems, including this one, “I Hate Telling People I Teach English,” from the Spring 2009 issue of The Southern Review. Recently, Barker’s work won BkMk Press‘s John Ciardi Prize for Poetry. The award includes publication; her book, One Blackbird At a Time: The Teaching Poems, is forthcoming in Fall 2015.

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The Southern Review Approaches Eighty and the Autumn Issue Is Now Available

We have just returned to school, or at least I keep telling myself that, and yet it is already October, well into the new school year. Despite the quick passing of the days, the second half of August and all of September did not go unnoticed, as our submissions period opened September 1, with a robust response. My coeditor, Emily Nemens, and I are excited as we continue our preparations and read potential manuscripts for the eightieth anniversary year of The Southern Review.

The anniversary begins with the winter 2015 issue on which we are currently working. As we plan the upcoming year, we have been aiming for each of the issues to be more special and memorable than usual, with features such as art from Ed Ruscha and a tribute to Larry Levis that includes a suite of his unpublished poems and works from writers who were close to or influenced by him. Additionally, we have several readings featuring our contributors scheduled, including panels at the Louisiana Book Festival and the AWP conference, as well as a reading at the Strand bookstore in New York in May.

While we are certainly busy and thrilled with celebrating the journal as it reaches another milestone in publishing, we are also happy and proud of our work on our most recent issue, which has just come out. The autumn issue’s cover presents a striking photograph by Pieter Hugo of a man lying under a tree that looks brutally contorted by wind. Hugo and the three other local and international artists featured in the journal’s insert are part of Prospect New Orleans’s biennial exhibition, P.3: Notes for Now. The biennial is a citywide exhibition that got its start after Hurricane Katrina, and the impact of the lone, battered tree is eerily familiar to those of us who went through the storm.

The table of contents on our website lists how many fantastic writers are featured this season. I will take a moment here to note that this is the first issue in which Emily Nemens has selected all of the prose, and it is an outstanding collection. But, as everyone knows by now, it’s the poetry that always captures my heart. This issue opens with “The Dissection,” a poem from Dean Rader (making his first appearance in our pages) that incorporates ideas of beauty, art, friendship, and anticipation, all unfolding with the familiar mix of tenderness and darkness found in the children’s classic tales of Frog and Toad. I loved this poem immediately when I read it and have to admit that if I didn’t have a six-year-old daughter, I would have never fully appreciated the work for how closely it captures the tone of those stories my daughter and I enjoy reading and snickering to at night.

Charles Rafferty is back in our pages with four new prose poems. Can we ever get enough of Charles Rafferty’s work? I think not. (Back by popular demand, he also reads them in our audio gallery.) Back again, too, is Jill Osier, with her poems, “Postcard,” “Souvenir,” and “Tenby,” whose image of children plucking shells from the sand reminds me of my time living in Wales: the wind and rain and waterfronts always cluttered with small boats and children shoveling sand. Beth Bachmann returns with two compact, imagistic poems, as does Dana Roeser with a ten-page narrative journey that addresses eye surgery, the death of a friend, and the love of horses, among other things.

We also have several poets appearing in the journal for the first time, including James Davis May, whose affection for 1970s TV icon Dennis Weaver won me over in his poem “Duel,” named for the movie starring Weaver. McCloud along with McMillan & Wife and Columbo were staples of my childhood TV viewing. I have fond memories of piling onto the floor of my living room along with my siblings (we had too many kids for everyone to get a seat on the sofa and chairs) to watch these mysteries each week. In “Duel,” May’s speaker is a man confounded by human nature—as exhibited by the driving tendencies of men and women—and how it compares to that of animals, specifically his “good dog.”

And now the time I have allotted myself to write a few words here has expired. I will close so that I might return to editing the winter issue and reading submissions. These days reading feels like a search for shells buried in the sand, shells that once I find I will slip into my pocket for the long walk home.

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Throwback: “The Manhattan Lunch: Two Versions” by Peter LaSalle (Winter 2013)

This week’s #TBT features the first half of Peter LaSalle’s story “The Manhattan Lunch: Two Versions,” a section entitled “Magazine Girls.” The story originally appeared in the Winter 2013 issue of The Southern Review. “The Manhattan Lunch: Two Versions” is included in LaSalle’s new story collection, “What I Found Out About Her,” out last week from Notre Dame Press.

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Throwback: “Ellipses for the Rain on Its Way” by Jeff Hardin (Autumn 2008)

“Ellipses for the Rain on Its Way” originally appeared in the Autumn 2008 issue of The Southern Review. The poem later appear in Notes for a Praise Book, published by Jacar Press in 2013. Two new poems by Hardin will appear in the Autumn 2014 issue. To read these, and dozens of other remarkable poems, subscribe now.

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