A Journal of Disability Poetry and Literature

Volume 13     Issue 2     June 2019


Your are looking at the 50th issue of Wordgathering. We feel that is quite an accomplishment. Of journals in the United States dedicated to disability literature, only Kaleidoscope and Breath and Shadow can boast a longer history. Poets in this issue include Devon Balwit, Charley Barnes, Jeannine Hall Gailey, Donna Gary, Jodi Girouard, Lynn Guttmann, nancy viva davis Halifax, Mary Keating, Marie Nazari and Therí Pickens.

Our Response section returns with this issue with feedback from participants about the first ever Zoeglossia conference for disabled writers. Organized by Jennifer Bartlett, Sheila Black and Connie Voisine, it took place from May 16-19 at Our Lady of the Lake University. Participants Stephanie Heit, Stephen Lightbown, Margaret Ricketts, Ellen McGrath Smith, Jessica Stokes, Zoe Stoller, Gaia Thomas, and Viktoria Valenzuela all offer their reactions.

Kathi Wolfe's keynote speech for the Zoeglossia conference can be found in this issue's essay section. Also in that section essays from Paul Hostovksy, Carol Jeffers, Fay Loomis, Meghan E, Macnamara, Katie Lee Mullins, J. Tyler and Tyler Turpin. Jim Ferris responds to writers who discussed his essay on crip poetry in the March 2019 issue and Roy Wahlberg adds part two to his narrative of life as a disable poet in prison.

We are fortunate to have three great interviews this time around. Poets Meg Day and Niki Herd discuss their work in assembling the collected writing of Laura Hershey for publication. Katie Rainey tells readers about opportunities for publication with Dead Rabbit Press and Jillian Weise is interviewed about a poem that comes from a writer known as the Nightengale of Samarkind.

Of course, reviews of new books are always an important part of our journal. In this issue we take a look at new fiction by Maya Northen Augelli, Nicola Griffith, Raymond Luczak and J. L. Powers. Poetry books come from Kara Dorris, Sara Elizabeth, and Travis Chi Wing Lau. Lastly, we take a look at Carol Jeffers, The Question of Empathy. A chapter from Christine Stewart-Nuñez's memoir They Fall Into Screams can be found in the excerpts section.

We are fortunate to have poet Diane Wiener take on the challenge of filling this issue's "Gatherer's Blog" in discussing the challenges of her own poetry writing. The guest editor of the Reading Loop is Daniel Sluman, who describes five disabled poets who have influenced his writing including Larry Eigner, Laurie Clements Lambeth, Tom Andrews, Matthew Siegel and David Wollach.

We're proud that Wordgathering has made it through the first fifty issues. As we head into the next fifty there may be some changes in the wind. In our September issue we would like to take a look back at some of the things that the journal has accomplished. If Wordgathering has been important to you as a writer, useful to you as a scholar/student/researcher of disability studies, or simply enjoyable to you as a reader we would love to have your feedback. You can let us know by emailing us at comments@wordgathering.com and including "First 50" in the subject heading.

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 disability literature. We invites readers to follow us Facebook and on Twitter @wordgathering.

The Editors

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