296.4 Fall Issue 2011
A few years ago, a reader wrote a complaint letter about our saying “Cowabunga!” here. It was summer and the surf was up even though we live in the Midwest. Back then, we vowed never to say “Cowabunga” again. Here. But art, in part, is finding the contrary moment within the expected emotion or response. As the Midwestern leaves sail into the sky this fall, we think about US Army paratroopers yelling “Airborne” as they jump. At the same time, some soldiers say, “Only bird shit and Airborne fall out of the sky.” So, in the spirit of transgression, we say . . . COWABUNGA!
This month’s fiction is full of contrary impulses. Marc Dickinson’s anti-Hallmark Christmas story features a father struggling with personal demons and bouts of aggression; Vicky Mylniec explores the defamiliarized dynamics of a mother-daughter relationship, in which the youngster is encouraged to steal.
In honor of Native American Heritage Month, celebrated in the US in November, we also offer poems by Anita Endrezze (Yaqui) and Allison Adelle Hedge Coke (Huron/Cherokee/Creek/Métis).
We’re launching a quarterly podcast, the “NAR Literary Roundtable,” where we talk about writing, the writing life, and specific pieces. Download the first episode from NorthAmericanReview.org or subscribe on iTunes. Please tell us what you think on our Facebook page at facebook.com/northamericanreview.
Enjoy the issue. Cowabunga, cowabunga, cowabunga!
Untitled [pencil] • Li-Ying Bao
Illustration for Bold as Can Be, a short story [graphite on paper] • Kim Behm
Untitled [digital collage] • Marty Gotera
The First Human Cannonball • Gary Fincke
Island of the Deaf • Claudia Burbank
The Beekeeper’s Daughter • Nadine Sabra Meyer
Packing Grapefruits • Lilly Deng
Thirteen Ways of Looking at an Indian • Anita Endrezze
Calling Westport • E. Tammy Kim
Delivering the Xmas Mail • Brian Swann
Reverence • Andrew Najberg
Climbing the Lighthouse • Faith Shearin
Making Camp • Leslie Adams
Going Onstage • David Wagoner