Backchannels No. 6 / Fall 2020

Kyle Hemmings photo City of Love black and white people on phones in Philadelphia in Backchannels Journal
“City of Love” by Kyle Hemmings

Dear Readers, 

We offer you our sixth formal edition, which is practically our seventh when you count the Pandemic Edition in April. We are so pleased that this collection is ready just in time to enjoy before the holidays. In Iowa it’s the season for crackling fireplaces and mugs of tea, and we hope you can include some cozy reading time into your schedule as well.

Edition six has been crafted with love and care against the backdrop of not only the pandemic, but also a time of general uncertainty and unrest, as well as the land hurricane in August that devastated so much of Iowa where we live (if you have a moment, google “derecho” and be prepared for some jaw dropping photos). The three of us searched for internet connections to continue reading and responding to submissions while power outages stretched past two weeks in many areas. In the midst of this natural disaster, your words and art were like balm to our spirits in such chaos. Creative work has the ability to have such an effect, and for that we are most grateful.

Sending light, 
Laura, Leslie & Mary

Jessica Klimesh – Because and Because (flash fiction)

LA Felleman – Two Poems

Ken Wetheringon – The Last Grave (fiction)

Eddie Fogler – Rose-Colored Dreams (poem)

Ace Boggess – 47th Birthday (poem)

Emma Erlanger – An Interview In Fractals (flash fiction)

William C. Blome – I Can’t Be Sure (poem)

Rita Plush – Not Too Late to Liberate (non-fiction)

Ellen Dooling Reynard – Valley Lights (poem)

Dr. Thomas Reed Willemain – A Poet’s Time (poem)

Hibah Shabkhez – Two Poems

Adrian Slonaker – Five Poems

R.T. Castleberry – An Animal or A God (poem)

Paul Ilechko – The Value of Color (poem)

Zach Murphy – In Rotation (flash fiction)

DS Maolalai – Someone That You Know Somewhat Well (poem)

Max Johansson-Pugh – The Beginning of an End (fiction)

Zebulon Huset – Of Only Asparagus and Elephant Dreams (poem)

Carol Casey – The Socks (poem)

Mike Hickman – When the Moment (fiction)

John Grey – Man with a Scar (poem)

William Doreski – Halloweeny (poem)

John Sweet -Two Poems

Robert Ford – Adieu (poem)

Robert Beveridge – Return (poem)

Seth Jani – A Grace (poem)

Kara Goughnour – Desert Druid (poem)

Melodie Corrigal – A Week to Dine Out On (fiction)

Robert Funderburk – From This Desert (poem)

Claire Benevento – Blackberry Blood (poem)

Emily Keverne – Goodnight (poem)

David Duer – Two Poems

Jillian Smith – Stealing from Whole (poem)

About the cover art and artist:

“I love street photography and I use a small  LUMIX camera that I purchased in Chinatown, NYC, about 6 years ago. I like walking all over the city and taking pics from all kinds of angles. I also like asemic writing which is an art that simulates cryptic alphabet and code.”

Kyle Hemmings has an MFA from National University, CA. He has been published in is/let, MacQueen’s Quinterly, Spelk Fiction, and elsewhere. He loves street photography.


Mary Bardsley, Editor
Leslie Caton Frey, Editor
Laura Johnson, Editor

Cover art by Kyle Hemmings

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