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After featuring long-form fiction in our summer issue, in this issue, I decided to focus on poetry and super short personal narratives. Although I love the way a good story can pull me in and away from the world, reading a novel can also be an exhausting experience—especially if you get caught up in marathon reading sessions as I do!

One thing I love about shorter forms of writing is the way I can read them and return to the world feeling refreshed, as if I’ve just taken a brisk walk or had a drink of cool water on a hot day. I love to read a poem or a shorter narrative once through at a regular pace, and then reread it slower, and continue rereading and revisiting it at intervals. I have memorized some of my favorite poems and always find that their meaning seems to change (and expand!) over the years as my own experience grows and my perspective changes.

Finally, I just want to note that many of the poems in this issue were submitted to our 2020 book contest as part of longer poetry manuscripts. Although we ultimately were not able to publish every manuscript we loved, we are thrilled to share some of this really excellent work with you!

Enjoy the start of fall.