Editor’s welcome

Issue #2.1 is the title of the latest evidence of the existence of Welling Out of Silence. The issue it refers to intends to take advantage of our web-little mag’s web nature. A little mag is (a few still exist) a small and usually ephemeral Literary Magazine, “hard copy”…paper, usually three times a year (literary folk take summers off, according to the late great Robert Creeley at least). I’ve seen, and even been seen in, a couple that lasted “through” issue #1, and I served as an Advisory editor of one, the Venerable and still lively Literary Review of Fairleigh Dickinson University, which has been around for over sixty years. Under the editorship of Walter Cummins, a CREATIVE, lively, and open minded man,  between 1989 and Y2K it printed more Chinese translations and debuted more translators than all the rest of American little mags combined.

BUT, let us return to the present, in progress, issue of Out of Silence, the “Beta” version 2.1. Being a creature of energy rather than matter (though there is plenty the matter with, the present editors), The Silence has the advantage of being able to simply grow, rather than having to be “compiled and edited”. Stuart Carduner and I have come to realize, in the process of getting this #2.1 out, that we can use some help, and if you’d like to get in on the ground floor of this long running-to-be little e-mag, (participate as an editor, work your way up to the capital E, join the masthead), send us your corrections … facts, commas, missing or repeated words, go for it.

But again, anyway, given the fact that we have some good work on hand, some of which we promised to put up earlier than this, and that we have work promised by JPS, and five other translators, some familiar names, including Farman and Larsen, we’re going to  open the issue!  When we get to the number of pages, or the number of contributors, that constituted Issue #1, we’ll remove the decimal from the designation. So, now, here, new work by David Hinton, from his brand new Shambhala book, Hunger Mountain, and a re-print of an essay which first appeared in Cipher Journal, and was offered us by Red Pine (Bill Porter). There’s also a brand new translation of a rarely translated but highly regarded POET, Yuan Hao-wen,  by a new voice, the British translator and budding novelist,  Kevin Maynard.  Soon we’ll be adding advance material from the forthcoming White Pine anthology of Chinese women poets, offering work from several talented new voices as well as the incomparable Jeanne Larsen, and an old friend of both TLR and this Page,  Mike Farman, another brilliant Englishman, honest to goodness rocket scientist and translator. There will be more to come as you provide it. I’m counting on work from translator and seal specialist Matthew Flannery, (if I recall correctly, Mr. Flannery, like Mike Farman, is also a discovery of Walt Cummins at TLR). His new tz’u poems from Sung Dynasty military hero Hsin Ch’i-chi are exciting. And the WORDs column will offer, at last,  a couple of new word for words, (this time from Canadian Jan Walls), for amateurs to try out. At WORDs we’ll also announce a contest, with prize books and publication in the Ocean of Poetry, for the top three submissions (Submit! Submit!…I hate the very idea of “submission”: let’s call them contributions).

As we go along we’re particularly looking for more first time translators, and we’ll be happiest to see translations by people who read Classical Chinese, but we’ll happily look at and print translations done in the manner of Pound (with Achilles Fang), Rexroth and Caroline Kaiser (with a variety of unnamed collaborators), and Rexroth (with Ling Chung). Most notably successful co-translators in the recent moment are Tony Barnstone and Chou Ping; in fact, most of our best contemporary translators work with others or with the aid of others, “standing on the shoulders of giants,” little ponies, or whomever.

A Chinese poem is a poem, first of all, and we are here to show, in the Ocean of Poems, the best efforts of English-speaking poets to make poems in English of those poems in Chinese.  In Out of Silence, we want to promote translations and discover and put forward translators. We also want to show you how translators think about how their translations get made. Here we are, here we stand, here we get going on with that business, in Vol. I, issue #2.1, and we hope you and K’uei Hsing, the God of Literature, approve of this offering. Our viewership continues to grow and we are making the best provisions we can to keep poems welling from the springs of creativity into the glorious sea of human experience.

Peace, your editor