top of page
Paper-Moon (3).jpeg

EDITOR'S NOTE
 

When violence is at the forefront of individual or collective consciousness, the expression of truth, argument, grief, and anger can be nothing but immediate. Veils of flowery description, elaborate metaphor, and sensuous simile stay folded in their drawers as writers reach for more direct tools and phrases. In varied forms and styles, poems in this issue utilize elements of prose and narrative-driven conceits in which speakers come across as real people studying an imperfect society. 

 

The strength of narrative often lies in striking quickly, and perhaps more deeply, at how a reader confronts themselves as citizen. The poems of Paul Hostovsky and Alexander Loukopoulos, in capturing a feeling of churning as writers in public spheres, enrich the communal and political aspects of works by Steven Cordova, G.A. Hindy, and Adam Deutsch. There are places to go, work to be done, and mistakes to atone for. Image aesthetics are subtle, flickering, and cool – sometimes relegated to the visuals of line and form. 

I am amazed at how much these writers accomplish (and without dialogue), creating immersive, sleek scenes in one page or less; catalyzing what New York poet Matthew Yeager has described as an “adjustment in world-view, or an affirmation of a distressing truth already known, but now better understood.” Warehouse employees take a smoke break in the rain. A lawn ossifies overnight, and we see the end of a life. Or, like a gunshot, a single moment balloons into the incomprehensible vastness of time.

 

Even poems that seem internally placed or that lean toward the surreal level volleys at routines, hypocrisies, and questionable cultural influences. Many employ irony – toward humor, light absurdism, and satire, rather than schadenfreude. There also remains an examination of external turmoil in these inner places – an acerbic presence of violence in the cases of William Ward Butler and Francis Bede, but also care and awareness in poems by Michael Mark and D.S. Maolalai. 

 

In our cover image, Paper Moon by Emily Krill, watercolors contrast with a black sky, glowing moon, and curves of cursive that remind me of looping sand dunes, seagrass, and little fish. Emily’s use of railroad work orders reminds me that transcendence also occurs in common or utilitarian oddments and locations of labor. Poets like Scout Faller similarly collage brevity, objects, and slices of life.

 

Like Emily, many of our writers keep candid references to writing on the page. In addressing this medium of theorizing – in naming themselves – they may naturally suggest the question of what comes next. What is the role of art in situations where we seem predestined to repeat patterns and make oversights?

 

We end this issue with a beautiful poem by Mario Duarte – with the sea and intersecting lines of dreams and realities. Thank you for reading and supporting Bicoastal Review.

ISSUE 3
 

 

ALEXANDER LOUKOPOULOS

North Star

My First Reading

MICHAEL MARK

Eyeglasses

Palliative Care

D.S. MAOLALAI

Everything’s alright with me

Companionship

G.A. HINDY

Haunting at Home Depot

FRANCIS BEDE

Freedom by Numbers

 

WILLIAM WARD BUTLER

Cartridge

 

ADAM DEUTSCH

Neighbors, the Hill, and Probate

Catch & Release & Catch & Release

STEVEN CORDOVA

Acceptance Speech

PAUL HOSTOVSKY

I Will Die in Florida

 

SCOUT FALLER 

My Dead Name is Shared with a Houston Rapper

middletown

MARIO DUARTE

Now the Dream Said

 

ABOUT THE ART

bottom of page