Readers have been anticipating the latest release of The Toucan and Issue 8 is finally squawking the squawk. Editrices Liz and Laura apologize quite generously for the delay, in two posts no less. One is titled “We’re Falling Asleep, But It’s Up!” and the other is that venerable refrain: “Stress and Coffee.”
If you were curious what these highly intelligent editors (oops, they prefer “editrices”) are like when REM deprived, strung out on caffeine, and wallowing in nerves, ponder no more. The result is a verbal mania that nevertheless retains the wit and banter these brave writers have become known for.
Have no fears, the quality of The Toucan is unfazed by their exhausted delirium. In fact, Issue 8 might be the best ever.
Here is part of the delightfully manic intro:
This issue is a bit shorter than the two previous, but it sure hits the mark for quality. The scales are tipped for fiction, we admit. Maybe it’s the alliteration, fall, fiction, “Flower Power”…and by the time you finish that one you’ll have even more questions about what’s in the mascot’s cigar. But there’s a sobering, bracing quality to the work. Suicide is contemplated, death is pondered, realizations laid bare, voyages meet with “Various Crash Landings” and THE HIPPY IS GOING EXTINCT! Eventually, “It All Becomes Fiction” and fall is as good a time as any to remind ourselves of that. But we do wish our readership would avoid bears, otherwise you might be pondering death sooner than you think.
That last bit is a reference to “Mountain Guide for Avoiding Bears,” a poem by William Neumire, which is included in the Issue.
The Toucan is published entirely in a blog format, which leads to a towering column of story and poem that spills over three or four separate pages. To read the whole thing, you have to keep clicking on “Older Posts,” an elusive ant-sized specter at the bottom of your scroll down.
There is no table of contents either (hard to do in blog format). Being the congenial Owl that I am, I hereby provide an unofficial list of all the poetry contributors in Issue 8 (in no particular order):
[Owl Who Laughs]
As you can see, there are only five of us, but wonderful stuff. I hope you get a chance to drop by. You’ll also find excellent color photographs woven into the text. One is the most handsome picture of a toucan I’ve ever seen (keep in mind, though, that I’m not an ornithologist). And the other, titled “Duality” is quite sexual. Though whether it is erotic or philosophic or artistic--or all three-- depends on the wandering eye of the beholder.
Toucans and owls don’t normally mix, but an exception is in order for this fantastic production by Liz and Laura. Check out Issue 8 for sure!
PS: Here’s a shortcut to my poem (“Field Towards Road”), if you want: