The Georgia Review and ‘The Circus Train’ have come to town
July 9, 2013Print
- Stephen Corey
Athens, Ga. - The just-released summer 2013 issue of The Georgia Review features one of the longest individual works in the journal's 67-year history, Judith Kitchen's essay "The Circus Train."
A complex yet easy-reading set of meditations on memory, mortality and history, it occupies a full third of the issue; however, Georgia Review Editor Stephen Corey thinks most readers will finish the piece wishing it didn't have to end.
Kitchen, a regular contributor of reviews and essays to the journal for more than 20 years, notes early on in "The Circus Train" the double nature of memory: "Odd how the body seems to carry the years on its back. Piled up, one upon another, an increasing heaviness. Yet some people carry theirs lightly. Maybe they are the ones who are good at forgetting. Each day comes new, like fresh-ground pepper perking up the palate. They go out into it open to whatever it brings. But I am burdened with memory, its unerring sense of itself, so the new days must be measured against the old."
Environmentalist Scott Russell Sanders (like Kitchen, a familiar name to Georgia Review readers) offers "Near and Distant Bears," a grim-but-still-hopeful assessment of where we stand—and must come to stand—in the climate-change confrontation, a confrontation Kitchen might argue is often between those who have a sense of history and those who see only the present moment.
Poet Rebecca Cook and fiction writer David Griffith make their first appearances in the Review, as does reviewer Floyd Collins—whose end-of-issue discussion of Al Maginnes' "Inventing Constellations" bookends with a Maginnes poem, "Music from Small Towns," which is the issue's opener.
From Maine comes John Winship's odd-angled, haunting and wry "Presentiments," a portfolio of acrylic and oil paintings born from old black-and-white photographs and taking their overall inspiration from a four-line Emily Dickinson poem: "Presentiment—is that long Shadow—on the Lawn/Indicative that Suns go down—/The notice to the startled Grass/That darkness-is about to pass—."
For further information about The Georgia Review, founded at the University of Georgia in 1947 and published here since, see www.thegeorgiareview.com or call 706-542-3481.