This issue opens with a poem, “Poetry Ought to be Able to Comprehend the World,” by the late poet Frederick Smock (1954-2022), a Kentucky Poet Laureate, a friend and supporter of The Louisville Review for decades, and guest poetry editor of our recent forty-fifth anniversary issue #90. Editor Sena Jeter Naslund’s tribute, “In Remembrance of Frederick Smock, a Kentucky Poet Laureate,” and Tony O’Keefe’s poem, “Mourning,” honor Smock’s life and work.

The art featured on the cover, Turbulence, a three-dimensional painting by Ying Kit Chan, gestures toward some of that complexity by engaging man-made climate catastrophe; the illuminating “Essay on Cover Art: Turbulence” by Chris Reitz connects the formal elements of Chan’s painting to the conflicting worldviews that contribute to climate precarity.

In this issue TLR presents new poems from Chinese poet and artist Congxia Ma, both in the original Chinese script and in English translation. In the fiction in this issue engages a wide gamut of concerns and locales, from the terror of being young and female in pre-Roe v. Wade small-town America in Patricia Foster’s “That Life,” to the atrocity of nuclear devastation in Hiroshima in David Wilde’s “The Red Oleander,” to the joys of serendipitous encounters in the streets of Istanbul in Sarah Martin’s “Magic Birthday.”

Diane Aprile’s nonfiction essay “Keeping Records” was previously published in TLR #66, and Aprile revised the piece to reflect her recent move back to Louisville, KY, from Seattle. For an extraplanetary journey, readers can travel through the solar system in “Mandorla Golry,” an excerpt from Robert Eric Shoemaker’s recently completed serial poem, A Planetary Spell, an exploration of queerness and magical poetics. 

Both Aprile and Shoemaker read their work at the 2022 sessions of Voice & Vision, an annual summer reading series presented by 21c Museum Hotel in Louisville in partnership with Spalding University’s Naslund-Mann Graduate School of Writing and The Louisville Review; Voice & Vision is coordinated by TLR’s Managing Editor, Amy Foos Kapoor.

Editor: Sena Jeter Naslund
Associate Editor: Flora K. Schildknecht
Managing Editor: Amy Foos Kapoor
Guest Poetry Editors: Debra Kang Dean, Wanda Fries
Guest Fiction Editor: Drēma Drudge
Cornerstone Editor: Betsy Woods

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