Editor’s Notes

Dear readers,

The poems in this issue explore external and internal landscapes, geometry and fluid mechanics. These two vastly different poems demonstrate the variety Bywords offers on a month-to-month basis. This variety stems from the diverse submissions Bywords receives.

In the section on “About Bywords” you’ll see the following:

“No one approach or group of writers is given preference. Instead, Bywords is open to all practitioners of the genre and attempts to reflect the diversity of practice in the Ottawa area.”
This is a statement written by the original Bywords team almost fifteen years ago, but it still holds true today and will always be the case. Bywords is a mirror of the times and depicts the trends and themes in current poetry. In other words, the style of Bywords is the style of the poetry we receive: sometimes experimental, sometimes traditional, sometimes lyrical, and sometimes narrative, but always well-written.

Our selection committee is drawn from the creative writing and English literature classes of Seymour Mayne of the University of Ottawa. Recently the Sasquatch Reading Series hosted Professor Mayne’s current class. Ten students read their work, which ranged from witty rhyme to metaphorical abstraction to lyrical free verse. Professor Mayne pointed out that the students wrote in a variety of styles as is always the case for his class. The University of Ottawa recently awarded Professor Mayne an Excellence In Education Prize for 2005. Bywords congratulates Professor Mayne on this well-deserved award. His knowledge and passion for poetry have contributed to shaping Bywords’ selection committee and to the diversity of excellent poetry we publish.

Our next Bywords publication, this is NOT a family venue, will be launched as part of the Dusty Owl’s Reading Series on Sunday, March 20, 2005 at 5:00 pm. Reading from the publication will be Lynne Alsford, Heather Cardin, Thomas Hawkes, Kathryn Hunt, Colin Morton and Barbara Myers. Local singer-guitarist, Ilker, will perform music. The chapbook will be on sale at the reading. We hope you can join us for a late afternoon of poetry, music and spice. We hear there will also be cake to celebrate the first anniversary of the Dusty Owl at Swizzles.

Thanks to everyone who submitted poetry, events, links and news this month.

I owe the hard working volunteers a round of beer at the very least for all they do every month, but especially this month where they’ve had to vote on Bywords.ca, this is NOT a family venue, and the spring issue of the Bywords Quarterly Journal. For this month, they’ve seen and voted on over 200 poems. If you see one of our committee, please offer a hug or a pat on the back. This month’s Bywords.ca selection committee was

Jesse Ferguson, Joe Goski, Stéphanie Lafleur, Nicholas Lea, Kemisha Newman, Sarah Ruffolo , Betty Warrington-Kearsley, and Genevieve Wesley.

Stay tuned for information about our spring reading: Bywords Meltdown, on April 17, in the next issue.

If you have comments or questions, I’d love to hear from you: editor@bywords.ca.

Amanda Earl