Review: “Pilgrim’s Gait” by David Craig

Eugene, OR: Resource Publications (imprint of Wipf & Stock), 2015. Paperback. 124 pp. ISBN: 9781498225564

reviewed by Marjorie Maddox

Both affirming and unsettling, David Craig’s Pilgrim’s Gait walks us sometimes stub-toed, sometimes limping, sometimes leaping for joy across continents and centuries in this pilgrimage of poetry and prose.

In the first section, “Pilgrim’s Places,” we find ourselves with the poet and his family journeying through Europe and the United States. At Garabandal, Craig exclaims, “It was labor intensive, / this waiting for God!” (2) and even more so as the family— including a three-year-old with Downs’ chiming in with comedic alleluia’s—find they are waiting during the “wrong year” for healing. Throughout, such amusing and somber missteps eventually make for sure footing as the narrator approaches sites of “fake apparitions” (9), churches “decrepit enough to convince anyone / that what mattered most wasn’t there” (5), “God dancing, as He always does, / in feathers, in the past” (8), and—most importantly—the realization “what could any of us, finally, have traded / for what we’d been given” (4)?

November Update

Fall has finally arrived here in Central Texas, and we are busy working on preparations for the upcoming issue and festival.


In the middle of last month, we finalized our selections for Volume 21, which will be released in February. The issue features work by 46 writers and 2 artists. You can find the full list of names here on our blog as well as on our Facebook page.

Here are the “numbers”:

1. 1,127 total pieces (poems, stories, essays) submitted
2. 65 Essays: 4 accepted
3. 81 Short Stories: 5 accepted
4. 981 Poems: 40 accepted

Review: “Basic Disaster Supplies Kit” by Marci Rae Johnson

reviewed by Aaron Brown

Bowling Green, KY: Steel Toe Books, 2016. Paperback. 82 pp. ISBN: 0986357510. 

[Note: Marci Rae Johnson will be a featured presenter at the 2017 Windhover Writers’ Festival, Feb. 15-17.]

It doesn’t take much time before Marci Rae Johnson’s latest poetry collection Basic Disaster Supplies Kit has you laughing, cringing, and experiencing every emotion in between. This is the kind of book only possible in the 21st century: a collection of poems referencing Buzzfeed articles as much as Holy Scripture, blurring lines between sacred and profane, the familiar and the disorienting. The voice that emerges through these poems is a strong one, not just in its at times brash critique of masculinity, religion, and culture but also in its overpowering moments of quiet introspection.