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Gentle Readers,
It is my pleasure to introduce the Guest Editor of the most exclusive Melic yet, what with our acceptance rate for "serious" poetry approaching that of some of the snootiest print-zines. No small amount of this credit belongs to Sharon Kourous, who after consenting to edit this father-themed issue, promptly suffered her own beloved nonagenarian hospitalized for a mysterious illness (thankfully home again now, doing well). This, in hindsight, predictable karmic eventuality necessitated but little help from me, since I was out traveling the country for near two months, during which I had the opportunity to meet Sharon and her father in that hotbed of poetic webevolution, Toledo, OH.

Thanks, as always, to our esteemed webmistress, Blake Kritzberg, for designing what we think the most user-friendly litmag on the net. Does anyone else have an open board (Melic Roundtable) that can handle 5000 page requests a day as smoothly? She is a wizard.

And now, dear Sharon, I yield the floor to your most capable ear — and pen, with Melic's deepest thanks for your contribution.
C.E. Chaffin


From Sharon Kourous, Guest Editor Melic VI:

Teachers take their summers off for granted. The long winter hours may justify that, but we often forget not everyone can tend the garden and the muse in leisure — part of the year, anyhow. Sifting through the submissions to Melic this summer, I arrived at a humble respect for those writers who get up, go to work, come home, tend to family concerns, and still write. Against all odds, against the slogging hours, against the many human needs and demands, poets write. The Melic Roundtable Board proves this as well, as do the many fine sites across the web. If the health of a society can be measured by the health of its artistic community, I believe the web is injecting all the right vitamins. Reading for Melic has been a privilege.

Little did I know, when I told CE I'd have time this summer for Melic, that the theme and my personal life would collide so directly; that I would have to call on him for rescue while I tended to immediate family concerns; that I would come home from my fathers hospital room to read the many fine father poems which came our way with a lump in my throat for my own. Thanks, CE, for picking up when I dropped the ball, and for your warm support while I was necessarily away from art. Or was I away? For all good poetry derives from and celebrates the very demands life places upon us.

Although no one poet is featured in this issue, we hope you will find a range of work worthy of your attention. The issue reflects our complex relationship with our fathers, the constant tie of the blood, the many ways we break free from and yet are always tethered to our families.
For Melic and Art,
Sharon Kourous

Note: CE has selected four standards to recite in lieu of a featured poet. He will also be facilitating the basic poetry course slated to open (online) 10/1.