A Journal of Disability Poetry and Literature

Volume 10     Issue 4     December 2016


With this issue, Wordgathering marks a decade of publication. Since its first appearance ten years ago, this journal has published the work of 348 poets, reviewed 164 books, and interviewed 74 writers and others working in the field of disability literature. It has also given readers 145 essays, 40 pieces of fiction and a sampling of work being done in disability art, music and photography. Not bad for a journal that emerged out of a disability-writers workshop.

The December 2016 issue is somewhat unusual in its inclusion of a large number of essays. Kathryn Allan, Michael Amram, Karl Sherlock and Lelani Squire draw on their personal experiences, while Elizabeth Dahab and Melissa Gilstrap focus on disabilities interpretations of literary work.

Of course, poetry is still a central part of any issue of Wordgathering. Poets Timothy Allen, Jessica Goody and Lynda Lambert return with new work, but included in the journal for the first time are Izaak Bacik, Emily Brenchi, Morris Eidlesberg, Angele Ellis, and René Harrison. In addition, all three of the journal interviews in this issue are with poets: Morris Eidlesberg, Veronica Noechel, and Andrea Scarpino.

Two of the three book reviews this time around involve poetry as well –Angeline Schellenberg's Tell Them It Was Mozart and Amy Berkowitz's Tender Points. The third is a new novel by well known writer, Floyd Skloot. The excerpts section give a foretaste of two upcoming books, a poetry collection by Constance Merritt and a memoir by Anand Prahlad.

In addition to all of the above, three other pieces in the December issue are worth special mention. The art section takes a quick look at the current exhibition of disability portraiture by Riva Lehrer. Our Reading Loop, this time created by memoirist Eileen Cronin and Andrew Lakritz, finds a link between contemporary writer Dagoberto Gilb and Robert Frost. Perhaps most impressive of all is Daniel Simpson's tribute to his brother David, poet, playwright and composer who died a year ago from ALS. It draws together samples of Dave's work with responses from a range of writers.

From the first issue of it's publication, one of Wordgathering's driving concerns has been making the literary work of writers with disabilities available to a larger public. Perhaps, it is fitting, then, that at the end of a decade of publication we can announce a first. An anthology of disability short fiction, The Right Way to Be Crippled and Naked, edited by Sheila Black and Michael Northen, will be published by Cinco Puntos Press and available in January 2017.

Writers interested in keeping current on disability literature can join us on Facebook and on Twitter at @wordgathering.com. The activities of the Disability Literature Consortium can be followed on their blog or contacted at dislit666@gmail.com.

Wordgathering continues to seek work that develops the field of disability literature. We invite the submission of poetry, short fiction, drama, art and essays that discuss poetry from a disability perspective or that contribute to the theoretical development of the field of disability literature. The journal appreciates hearing from authors whose books are

with the mission of Wordgathering and would like them reviewed. Our guidelines provide further information about the kind of work we seek. We value our readers' opinions and hope you will send your comments, concerns or ideas to us at comments@wordgathering.com.

The Editors

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