Every spring we feel it—the softening and
warming of the earth, the dried and dead moved aside to allow green new life to nudge up first growth. Tender leaves unfold,
blossoms open like palms toward the sun-filled sky. It is spring, yes, spring! A time of renewal, and hope, and rebirth.
This spring has special meaning to me, for I have
started a new life, a rebirth of sorts, of my own. I’ve left suburbia behind to move to a century-old red farmhouse
on ten acres. I call it Z Acres. Half of the sloping land is woods and pond; the other half is tillable field that stretches
toward the distant horizon. I am discovering the farmer in myself.
Not just farmer. I am discovering how the spirit
unfolds when given such lush environs, a place of solitude that invites dreaming. The writer in me is stretching long cramped
muscles. Nature is a wonderful muse. As the flowers come up, as the vegetable garden sprouts, so does my inspiration for fresh
new words—and not to forget the careful weeding!
Enjoy the spring garden here, in our spring issue
pages. Color and visual pleasure is brought to you by Margo McCafferty and Tom Rudd, artists from the Keweenaw in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. We have poetry, fiction and nonfiction as always, yet always new. A Good Cause is about the witnessing of life sacrificed for the meat-eaters that most of us are; the organic movement should involve
this final and thoughtful connection.
Not to be missed: Kalamazoo & Beyond, this issue in three remarkable pages. These have been carefully and lovingly tended to by Kim Grabowski, our Kalamazoo College
intern editor. Kim has also contributed insightful author interviews with Traci Brimhall and Laura Kasischke, adding in book reviews by these authors and others. And she has organized a tribute to her mentor, poet Diane Seuss.
And then there is our Joannie. Our very own poetry
editor, and The Smoking Poet wouldn’t be so filled with words that turn the
page to flame if it weren’t for Joannie Kevren Stangeland’s devotion. Joannie’s newest poetry collection,
Into the Rumored Spring, is entirely dedicated to a friend who fought and won over cancer. Read about this tribute.
Read, be inspired, be moved, be turned to flame
and perhaps plant a few words of your own. Celebrate spring.
With a good word,