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Stroboscope Magazine

Stroboscope Magazine, Author
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Editor's Note

Welcome to the inaugural issue of Stroboscope. It began as a conversation in a cluttered apartment—a collision of haphazard hunch and calculated experiment. Jana and I had been working with digital tools in our work lives, but we were secretly daydreaming about siphoning these skills to pour into creative projects. We wanted to publish literature of a different breed: to apply to contemporary poetry the digital methods we use to curate exhibits about literary history. We wanted to design an online publication that wouldn’t just emulate a print journal but would demonstrate how digital publishing interrupts, mediates, and fosters poetry.

I love print. The chaos in my apartment is a testament to compulsive bibliophilia, but I’m curious about digital poetry and what forms are made possible online.

The theme of "versions" organizes the issue, and our contributors exploit this theme through a surprising range of means, presenting numerous witnesses of their poems—rough hand-written sketches, unpublished drafts, images, translations, live performances, and collaborations with artists, Wikipedia, and dictation software. Our contributors hail from Vancouver, Las Vegas, San Diego, Montréal, Boston, New York City, and Reykjavík. And so Stroboscope functions not only as a magazine, but also as a global portal for tinkerers of poetry.

The caliber (not to mention the reach) of the submissions was humbling, especially since our call felt like a shot in the dark. CS Danforth proffers a poem in the form of a form, inviting readers into the poetry-making alchemy. Gaelan Gilbert resurrects Lydgate as a whale in a concrete poem. Lindsay Cahill ventriloquizes Bart Simpson so that he lends his voice to the polyphony of a rawlings' “The Great Canadian,” a sprawling poem that inhabits multiple media and incorporates various artists.

The issue features poetry from emerging and established poets and an interview with a rawlings, a poet, editor, and interdisciplinary artist residing in Iceland. Her dizzying number of inspired print, digital, and collaborative projects have influenced Stroboscope, and so it was a thrilling surprise when she submitted to the magazine in its zygote phase. I first met a rawlings ten years ago at the Toronto Small Press Book Fair when she was working for Mercury Press. She correctly identified me as a teenager and promptly ushered me through a maze of small presses to a table where a literary festival was on the lookout for young poets. I can honestly say that this encounter with a rawlings at Trinity St. Paul’s Church on Bloor Street was pivotal for me. It has been exhilarating to witness a rawlings’s career unfurl—her poetry is always enquiring, illuminating, and multifaceted as it plays in different environments. And so it’s with great pleasure that I publish this interview with a rawlings and her effervescent, barely containable poem “The Great Canadian” in the first issue of Stroboscope.

I hope this online magazine can publish poetry in such a way that we encounter the poem as a performance, as a multimedia object, and as mutable and infinite. As CS Danforth puts it:

Adèle Barclay

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