AN INTRODUCTION TO THE SPECIAL ISSUE
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The pandemic has created a multitude of sicknesses in varying shades.
More than a single illness, it infects our spaces and our ways of thinking—inverting the public and private, fiction and fact. We open the eyes of our cameras into places where work had not previously intruded and watch as our own understanding of what is possible and what is not turns to dust. The political climate distorts perceptions of truth—for some—while for others, a harsher light shines on the faulty binary systems that scaffold our country.
For a few, the aftermath of the erosion of meaning brings with it a breakthrough.
Said another way: our worlds become so small and so very large, simultaneously. We have too much time and too little, too much intimacy and yet not enough. Not enough space, and yet nearly too much to explore. What to make of this expanse of gray in the middle? Things get blurry.
I hope that these poems bring you a measure of (inner) space—to reflect and meditate on the emotional impact of the past year(s) in boundless fashion. None offer a neat conclusion. There simply is none. They exist quietly and fiercely in the cavernous space of the moment, which, if we have learned anything at all, is all that we have.