Gargoyle 64, of course! The amazing 500 plus page literary annual, edited by Richard Peabody and Lucinda Ebersole. I love everything about this journal, especially the fact that my prose poem, “Another Cock and Bull Story,” appears in this issue. Richard, with his impeccable taste for the sagaciously off-kilter, assembles seriously good reading year after year, and I am thrilled to be part of it.
Several years ago, when I was beginning to submit work to journals, Richard returned my poems, with a scrawled note, “Do you have anything edgier?” This was in the days of postal submissions. I sharpened my paper and envelope and tried again. “Sorry,” he wrote back and then suggested more appropriate markets. But no, I wanted Gargoyle. I knew the poems I needed to write needed to appear in the company of other Gargoyle authors. I was edgy on the inside; it just wasn’t on the paper yet.
As I continued writing and revising, I kept “edgier” in my mind as a goal-cum-permission and then success! My prose poem, “Desiderium: Ardent Longing, As for Something Lost,” appeared in Gargoyle 59. Two more prose poems, “A Short Manual on Flying” and “Walter Mitty, Wonderbra and I Were Born in 1947,” were published in Gargoyle 60, and two more poems have been accepted for Gargoyle 65.
I met Richard at the 2013 AWP conference. I told him how freeing his “edgier” comment had been for me. He was gracious, but had no recollection of our interaction. I imagine he has extended himself to so many aspiring poets, that it is all in day’s work. Gargoyle, founded in 1976, 30 years in print. On its website, a Poets and Writers quote that in its history, 45% of published authors have been women. A lifetime of good work. Thank you, Richard and Lucinda.