|Art work by Brent Spink|
An online literary magazine
“Words that turn the page to flame.”
And the years zip and zoom by, melting in the swelter of summer before the next season arrives. Just this past April 28, we—the fans, the readers, the writers, the staff of The Smoking Poet—gathered in our home town of Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA, to celebrate our fifth year of publication. We gathered at The Wine Loft, and the place was packed, every seat taken, and listeners lining the walls. A dozen writers read their work, and many more approached the open mic later in the evening. What a glorious evening it was!
Now what? Onward and upward! Another issue presented to you here, brilliant with the art work of Brent Spink, rich with the fiction, nonfiction and poetry of our fine writers. Feature writers include Sherry Ackerman, talking to TSP about The Good Life: How to Create a Sustainable and Fulfilling Lifestyle, and Daiva Markelis, sharing thoughts on her memoir of growing up Lithuanian in the United States, in White Field, Black Sheep.
Yet nothing stays the same, no, not even TSP. As we enter our sixth year, we take a moment to reflect on our past many pages. Our literary field of plenty will surely only grow more lush. We so enjoy the work so many of you send us, from all corners of the world, and we will keep printing here the very best. We plan to expand also on book reviews, music reviews, and social commentary such as A Good Cause. We will be making more room for what we do best—providing a stage for fine literature—and closing down the Cigar Lounge after this issue. Our nod of gratitude to Mick Parsons, Cigar Lounge editor, for overseeing many smoky issues of TSP.
Selfishly, we are also combining the coming fall issue with winter. As much as I, TSP’s editor-in-chief, love this magazine, it has required a great many hours to maintain and publish as a quarterly. In result, my own creative writing has had to smolder on the back burner. We will temporarily go to biannual publication with the next issue—but expand the pages of these issues. Look for more: more fiction, more nonfiction, more poetry, more art.
Keep up with our news on Facebook and on Twitter. We will keep you updated on deadlines, new themes, the occasional contest, and more fresh ideas for more years of a smokin’ literary magazine. We are here because you are.
With a good word,
TSP Founder and Editor-in-Chief
The Smoking Poet
The Smoking Poet Summer 2011 - Issue No. 19
Elisha Webster Emerson
Laura Elizabeth Woollett
Editors: Zinta Aistars, Ficton and Nonfiction; Joannie Kervran Stangeland, Poetry; and Andris Sīlis, Music