Old Ephraim (an excerpt from The Manifold Destiny of Eddie Vegas)

The mechanism that relayed the visual majesty of a still panorama of mountain and valley, river and tree line, snow and sun, shadows unseen yet known and darkness invisible where life ate life and thought not, or where desert yielded scrub cactus and range, the living seen still or as the disappearance following on rapid bursts of movement, what relayed these for indescribable sensory bloom inside a man as majesty, this is what Tom Garvin sought with his meditations and was awarded for delineating fecklessly in prose poems.

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Punnery & Nunnery: An Interview with Rick Harsch

Rick Harsch’s new novel, The Manifold Destiny of Eddie Vegas, is now available in a special edition run of 100 signed copies. At over 700 pages, the novel “is in part a story about what empire has wrought, and how over the recent two centuries the United States rose to global economic mastery and nuclear proliferate madhouse. But it is also an absurdist masterpiece and a metafictional epic rooted in American history (including the story of Hugh Glass, his journey along the Salmon River and the epic battle with Old Ephraim, a giant bear), and the impact of that history on our modern society (the movie by DiCaprio notwithstanding).” Order here.

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Quetzalcoatl Comet

He looks out across his resplendent city in the glowing sunrise and sees the sacred sun silhouette the Temple of Tlaloc and Huītzilōpōchtli. Will the latter god save them from the annihilation in his recent dreams, or had the war god grown sick of the priests’ gifts of gory hearts and flayed corpses? Had he decided to do the unthinkable and abandon the Mexica to darkness, famine and extinction? The dawn sun basks the sky in a fiery orange. The water of Texcoco scintillates in the light, and the causeways reach out to the world beyond Tenochtitlan, from where the strangers with metal skin and moveable volcanoes for weapons will deceive him and raze his kingdom to the ground.

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Some Random Thoughts on Voice (Or, Why Writing Programs and Workshops Aren’t Really Worth Your Time)

The name of this column is taken from Thomas Wolfe’s Look Homeward Angel. The entire passage is as follows: “My dear, dear girl [. . .] we can’t turn back the days that have gone. We can’t turn life back to the hours when our lungs were sound, our blood hot, our bodies young. We are a flash of fire—a brain, a heart, a spirit. And we are three-cents-worth of lime and iron—which we cannot get back.”

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The Sea-Rabbit by Wendy Walker

Photo credit: Courtney Mooney

About Wendy Walker, from her website: “Up to 1994 I worked in known genres: the novel, novella, tale, poem. Since that time I have turned more to critical fiction, writing with constraints, and cross-genre writing, splicing these together to develop new ways of addressing problems at the crossroads of literature and history. I begin by listening to the demands of a given subject. The subject suggests approaches from a variety of directions, and I try to shape a form to open as many of those approaches as possible. The form is satisfactory if it honors the complexity of the subject addressed, rather than diminishing it, and resolves the material in an elegant manner. […]

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Thrill of the Hunt: An Interview with the Founder of Tough Poets Press

George Salis: I consider you something of a superhero, championing the underdogs of literature who have been wrongly neglected. And so, what is the superhero origin story of Tough Poets Press, does it involve radioactive spiders, gamma rays, mutant genes?

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