~by Katherine Indermaur, Managing Editor, Colorado Review
On Colorado State’s campus, the Center for Literary Publishing is the home of Colorado Review, a nationally recognized literary magazine. Colorado Review is published three times a year and features short fiction, essays, and poetry by writers from all over the world.
The poetry in this issue, curated by editor Donald Revell, welcomes the yearly awakening that is the spring season. Some poems question our role in all this blossoming, whether it’s in seeing and upholding it, in keeping or abandoning it, or in simply saying its name.
In “Pomp,” Sam Gilpin grapples with all we think the morning owes us:
arc of bird flight overhead,
a moment unnoticed,
early morning gray along the river
owing us nothing.
lay down these words
in the slopes of light
hanging over the fragile horizon.
this is a shadow you cannot keep to yourself alone,
circumstance and nothing more,
these little plans and designs,
still nothing more.
the gravel gray by the river’s edge.
In “Leaving Red Rocks,” Katherine Fallon watches landscape shift to burning, to Styrofoam, but not without its promises:
LEAVING RED ROCKS
The something changes. Fire licks along the interstate’s
plunging edge, Styrofoam plates of rice and sucked bones
are left out for yard dogs. Beauty is not what it once was.
On the outskirts of town, promises of asparagus
if the weather holds. Head another direction. Peel past
the clinging skin of the Havana. Make the harder choice.
Some of our favorite moments of the issue come when there’s an intimacy to the tender interstices of human and animal, like in this poem by Laura Paul Watson:
I stop myself from waking you
to make you listen with me.
Even in your sleep, you turn toward me.
The rosin of morning moves into the valley.
First light hits our bed. I am all pine for you.
Still, among the two-by-fours
and the pinkness of insulation: nuthatches
nesting hot within the wall:
the small thunder of them,
the clutch of them, out-flaps me.
They body themselves together, two in the sage,
the suet, the mud they’ve flown into our walls.
When I touch the hand you’ve slipped in sleep
from the covers, this soft day
triggers a choir behind our heads:
one voice wakes and finds itself hungry,
stretches a thin song to the beak,
opens one wide and wanting mouth
and wakes the others
who stretch their smallness alongside it.