blackbird online journal spring 2002 vol.1 no. 1



Sarah Bednarek, Jennifer Dickinson, Neil Grimmett, Jennifer L. Knox, and Brian Teare might not be names with which you are yet familiar, though that may be about to change. We at Blackbird are pleased with the opportunity to introduce you to the striking and memorable work of these four writers and one visual artist—a sampling of eye-opening, skillfully crafted and ingenious work which demonstrates the remarkable promise and ability that are present in the new voices of contemporary art. In fact, they are joined in this issue by a number of writers whose work demonstrates the varied and vigorous efforts emerging in the 21st century, allowing us a measure of optimism about at least one arena of human enterprise in our time. We invite you to join us in welcoming such work.

Sarah Bednarek
"Gestures belie something about the individual using them. Fidgeting, pointing, pounding on the chest, all of these things connote the deeper characteristics of [public] officials. Gesture is a non-verbal language. Self-conscious gestures imply insincerity and unself-conscious gestures imply sincerity. . . ."
Jennifer Dickinson
I've been going to the beach nearly every day since I was born. Until three weeks ago. That's when my best friend, Violet Frank, was found strangled in the sea grass near my house. I used to go to the beach even in winter, which you know in Florida isn't really the winter, just more like spring with a bad cold. . . .
Neil Grimmett
The beaters were huddled together now, leaning on sticks and gossiping as their terriers and spaniels sniffed and scent-marked around the courtyard and stables. Jason peeped out from the tack-room. He wanted badly to go over to them but could not find the courage. It did not matter how hard he might have tried. That would not count. He had failed and shortly everyone would know. . . .
Jennifer L. Knox
Lie down someone said and I fell asleep
under the only tree around for miles:
a scrawny thing but sprawling—purple
wood, low to the ground, more bramble
than branches. . . .
Brian Teare
                         sent for you last week    dogwoods
a swansong    white flowers
                         on whitewater    weather continues . . .

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