To start, congratulations are in order to poet Casey Z. Andrews. Her poem “After Life in Two Parts” won Solstice’s annual poetry contest, as judged by Reginald Dwayne Betts, author of Bastards of the Reagan Era and the forthcoming Felon. Andrews’s poem exhibits several of the elements that make me jazzed about our current poetic moment: formal creativity, syntactic and imagistic vitality, and emotional durability. These qualities crop up throughout the poems in this issue from Judith Terzi’s “Abecedarian,” which reflects and refracts statements made by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Annaliese Jakimedes’s prose poem “Cachexia of Time.” From where I sit, the American poem is as vital as it has been since the mid-20th century, and the poetry editors and readers at Solstice are proud to find work that adds to the contemporary chorus of voices engaged in the sometimes euphonic, sometimes raw-throated, always necessary work of poetry.
Iain Haley Pollock