New Skies Ahead: Announcing Our Next Reading Period

After a month that included a total solar eclipse and multiple meteor showers, what could be more exciting than the skies opening to reveal….

A new Artful Dodge reading period!

Yes, this September we are getting out our telescopes and searching the skies of Submittable for your art, stories, poems and essays. Foreign languages are fine as long as well translated. Our new reading period will run from September 1st through November 30th

During these months there will be an autumnal equinox—and an evolving celestial firmament. Let the shifting of skies and seasons light up your new writing!


–Megan Murphy, Assistant Editor

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College of Wooster Alumni and Artful Dodge Contributor To Present Their Poetry

I love poetry readings. They are a place to come together as a community of writers, readers, and book lovers to celebrate the power of language and story telling. In a few weeks, I hope you will join me to celebrate poetry and listen to two truly fantastic writers read their work. On July 19th 2017, from 7-8:30pm, Danny Caine and Philip Metres will be inspiring listeners with the power of their poems at Mac’s Backs-Books, an independent bookstore in Cleveland Heights, Ohio. I am so excited for this event. I have had the absolute pleasure of working with both Danny and Philip, and can attest that not only are they passionate and driven poets, they are also incredibly kind people. They also have ties to the College of Wooster and Artful Dodge! Danny Caine graduated from the College of Wooster in 2008, where Artful Dodge editor-in-chief Daniel Bourne advised his Independent Study thesis. Philip Metres is a professor at John Carroll University and an accomplished poet who has been published in Artful Dodge several times.

If you are in the Cleveland area, I sincerely hope you will join me for what is sure to be a night of incredible poetry. For more information, check out the event on Facebook.


–Megan Murphy, Assistant Editor


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Artful Dodge Contributor Lynn Powell’s Award Winning Book To Be Published This Fall

Over the course of its 30 plus years of existence, Artful Dodge has been proud to feature a variety of writers, both emerging talents and seasoned professionals. One such writer is Lynn Powell, poet and creative writing professor at Oberlin College. Her latest book, Season of the Second Thought, won the Felix Pollak Prize in Poetry, and will be published by the University of Wisconsin Press this November. One of the poems featured in this upcoming collection found its first home with Artful Dodge many years ago! “October Edge” was first published in Artful Dodge 44/45.

October Edge

 Mapless and skidding again on a backroad prickly with teasels
and the skeletons of lace, you glimpse a non sequitur
of nirvana: a woman in wings on the sidewalk stoop
of The Church of the One True Freedom.
She glances up from an open book—

But you will not brake today for grace.
You round the reckless curve, past outbursts of orange with no faces
forced yet on them, past bins and barrels of crimson wholesale fruit,
and tombstones disheveled in the drizzle, staggering after
their long-lost ballast of grief—

the blurred signs vanishing like everything else
in the hindsight horizon, and the black tires committing
your incendiary heart farther, faster, out past the charred trunks of the
the miles of martyrs with feet held fast
to the banked flames of their own making.


I love how this poem, particularly the second stanza, captures the paradox of October. There are both “outbursts of orange” and “disheveled…drizzle.” I have often heard the expression that autumn is a time of change, and Powell has captured the in between-season anxiety of that transformation so well. That, paired with the image of a woman wearing wings and “the miles of martyrs,” makes this poem beautiful and engaging.


To read more about Lynn Powell’s latest book and how you can buy your very own copy this fall, click here.


On behalf of everyone here at Artful Dodge, Congratulations, Lynn!


–Megan Murphy, Assistant Editor

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A New Type of March Madness: Announcing Our Next Reading Period

Before the cruel mud of April, the Artful Dodge is falling down the rabbit hole–and hoping there’s plenty of great literature to land on. (Perhaps we’ll find ourselves delighted to land on yours especially). We will be accepting submissions from March 1st through the 31st.

So roll up your trousers! Hie thee to thy ravens and thy writing desks! We’re curiouser than ever to see what you bring to our Wonderland.

To paraphrase Grace Slick, “Feed our head.”




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The End is Near…

It is probably important now more than ever that we share each others’ stories, that we read each others’ poems. Unfortunately, in just a few weeks (on November 30th), we at Artful Dodge are going to have to close our current reading period.


There are so many stories out there…

Stories about walls that keep growing and growing until they fall into rubble.

Stories about climbing down a hole just to see what’s there.

Stories about fairies that tattoo their wings.

Stories about a girl who talks to trees.

Stories about the pet goldfish you never had.

Stories about scaring children like God scares you.

Stories about pressing issues that face today’s youth–like pressing your shirt without setting off the fire alarm.

And your story too.


There are so many poems out there…

Poems about trees that grow towards the center of the Earth.

Poems about fires that don’t burn.

Poems about flowers that toss and turn in their beds.

Poems about raindrops after they scatter into a lake.

Poems about shirts that want to be socks.

Poems about a giraffe that wanted to be a lamp stand.

Poems about squirrels that are allergic to nuts.

And your poems too.


So don’t forget to submit by November 3oth!

See you later, alligator!

After while, crocodile!

What’s the story, morning glory?

What’s the tale, nightingale?

What’s the poem,                 –dammit, what rhymes with poem?

The Artful Dodge Editors

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The Divorcees

As I close out on this wonderfully wordy ride, I’d like to go back to where it all began for me. When I was a freshman, the first copy of the Dodge that I came in contact with was issue 50/51. For that reason, it has a bit of a special place in my heart (yeah, yeah, even I’m not immune to nostalgia). The first story that I read from AD was “Plastination” by Brian Beglin (and I know I’ve already mentioned this story so I won’t get too caught up on it). This story is one of the most recent examples of a story that creates its own world-logic. The thing is, the logic isn’t even anything different from our own, it’s just applied to a fad that in our world is physically impossible, but the driving emotion is all too common.

But I don’t want to get hung up solely on “Plastination.” I’d like to also talk about Lynn Levin’s re-imagination of Eve and Lilith. I often find myself turned away from literary re-creations of biblical figures because I find that they often don’t really develop the characters of the existing cast. But Levin’s characters are different. Adam’s wives have not just fled the pages of the Bible, but have fluttered into a department store to escape the Bible’s sexually-constricting script, finding themselves unchained from any implied guilt, even while a mysterious eye looks on.

Reading Levin’s poems gave me a feeling of empowerment. Seeing these traditionally strictly casted women liberated from their original characters gave them the ability to shine in a way I haven’t seen in other reproductions of biblical lore.


With this, my last summer hit, I bid you adieu

—autumn, Editorial Asst.



As a thank you for partaking in my efforts to stay sane this summer, I’d like to offer you a discount on all Artful Dodge issues (well, aside from the ones we don’t have, of course). I would be tickled pink if you sent me a letter in response to any of my summer hits along with a check for a Dodge of your choosing. Or, if you’re not the letter-loving rascal I thought you were, then it is just as acceptable to send in a small note saying “autumn sent me.” That, dears, will get you a dollar off any of our issues (that includes our current issue, AD 52/53), making back issues $4 and our current issue $11.

This offer stands until September 1st, when our online submissions platform goes live, and you can order issues directly through Submittable.

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Now that I’m nearing the end of my summer literary adventures, I feel it is only right that I introduce you to another one of my small passions: mythology. To me, mythology is not just a set of fairy-tales imbued with magical god-creatures, it is a fantastical way of explaining the world as we see it, a way of portraying the hidden. A favorite element of lore for me is the stories’ connection with oral tradition. Each story travels and changes each time it is told: although many details may be tweaked, and sometimes even completely erased or added, the core purpose of the story remains.

So, today’s hit is sampled from Artful Dodge 38/39, a small set of myths on crocodiles and caiman complied from Colombian students studying to become teachers in their communities and supplemented by oil pastel drawings done by Luis Fernando Arango and Kathryn Arango. The myths themselves depict caiman as a source of magical power, and their pastel pals are quite the beautiful addition to the stories. For example, one set features the story of a woman who marries a magical man who transforms into a caiman around regular people. The woman is the most beautiful in her village and could have married any man there that she wanted, but instead decides to run away to what everyone else assumes is solitude. Of course, Arango’s re-telling is much more detailed and breathes more life into the story, so I would go ahead and read his version if you get the chance.

I’d also like to mention that Ananya found these myths a few years ago and provided an excerpt in a blog you can find here:



autumn, Editorial Asst.


Remember: you can get a dollar off if you order a copy of the Dodge from now until September 1st, when our online submissions platform goes live (we should also have online ordering of issues optimized through Submittable as well). This offer stands for any back issue and our current issue, #52/53 (making back issues $4 and our current issue $11). Just make sure to send in your cash or check with either a note saying “autumn sent me” or a letter in response to one of the hits.
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