Fall 2021



Hannah D. Markley, Editor
Class of 2023


Back in May, Eastern Meadowlarks and Bobolinks strung their notes between the powder-blue tobacco barn and stone fences in a field a few miles from my house. I interrupted their conversations every time I walked the mown paths down there. I hated to interrupt them, but there was no way to hide even the smallest step. They fluttered up from the tall grass and Queen Anne’s lace, and each time I paused and held my breath, hoped one would stay, that maybe we could make a kind of pact to share the place, even if it were just for a few moments longer than the last time.

Then, I left Kentucky for the summer, and I returned to find the Bobolinks gone, already South America-bound for the winter. And, I suppose, the eastern Meadowlarks will be leaving soon, if they aren’t already gone. A few farmers baled the fields since I last saw them, so even if they did stay, there’s not much of a place to land. They will return, as will the Bobolinks, but this season they take their leave. This is the way of things, an uneasy alliance with change.

This issue, in the craft essay “You Will Not See Zapotec Die,” Wendy Call writes that she came to her work as a translator because of migration. Her essay explores this path from language to language, but also the impact of migration and translation within a language and across generations. Our Contributing Writer, Keats Chaves, interviews one of our newest faculty members, Sequoia Nagamatsu, on his own mentor experiences, and, finally, we celebrate our virtual residency with a photo essay.

As always, we celebrate our community’s Publications, Announcements, Opportunities, and Literary Citizenship.

Please join me in welcoming Elissa Favero as the new Assistant Editor. I’ll be the Editor for the next year, and I am so grateful to Keats Chaves, Sydney Elliott, and Garrett Brooks for their support coming into this year. Also, many thanks to each of you for your readership and support of Soundings and the RWW community in its many iterations.

So, here’s to the next year—I hope that wherever you are, it is one marked by connection in writing and community.

—Hannah D. Markley