The unifying “theme” of the four poems in Foursquare 2.11 might be “bodies,” or it might be “pain” or “creation.” Poetry by Laura Elrick, Cathy Eisenhower, Nicole Zdeb and Katie Kemple; cover photo by Katrina Rodabaugh. Very limited overruns at Etsy.
One reason, besides the many that are obvious (personal life=havoc), that Foursquare issues have been delayed for the last six months is that I’ve become much more exacting about the poetry– what I choose, how it fits together, how the cover image and fabric reinforce or bring out the things that are interesting to me in the poetry. Since the poetry often isn’t “about” anything, this process requires a light but decisive editorial touch. Foursquare‘s never been under-edited, but it was more playful in the first year, groups weren’t chosen as carefully, and images/fabric were chosen more for seasonal appropriateness and cuteness than for what critical viewpoint they might add to the poetry. I still think about seasonal appropriateness– after all, it’s a monthly magazine, how could one ignore the changing days? … But I also draw out of the pool of submissions four poems that work with and against each other, as the unique space of the quartered square permits. Each issue of Foursquare has become more of a work— and thus, understandably, more work. Which is why 2.11 is being released before 2.10– sorry librarians– 2.10 simply hasn’t “come together” yet.
For those of you who didn’t get a chance to subscribe to Foursquare last year, note that there are four issues now available on Etsy— you can buy 2.7, 2.8, 2.9, and 2.11 without a subscription.