Issue > Editor's Note
by Charlie Coté

Editor's Note

Issue 69, November, 2015
Editor's Note

The Cortland Review thanks Charlie Coté for the photography featured on our Issue 69 cover. Coté is a clinical social worker in private practice and the author of Flying for the Window (Finishing Line Press, 2008), a book of poems about the loss of his firstborn son to cancer in 2005. Charlie writes:

Skaneateles Lake, specifically Slate Cove, a place that's been inhabited by my wife's family since 1910, has been a constant fascination for me, and like Yeats' Lake Isle of Inisfree, 'I hear it in the deep heart's core.' This elm, like the lake, makes its way again and again into my imagination, a subject with endless variations. I captured it with my LG smart phone.
Charlie's poems appear in The Cortland Review in Issue 36 and in the Spring 2008 Feature.

For this issue, The Cortland Review also thanks poet contributors Ace Boggess, David Bottoms, Melissa Crowe, Gregory Djanikian, Allison Donohue, Susan Grimm, Scott Hightower, Henry Kearney IV, Cindy King, Stephen Knauth, Nina Lindsay, Marissa McNamara, Catherine Pond, Emily Ransdell, Adam Scheffler, David Starkey, Phil Timpane, Sally Van Doren, Martha Webster, Abigail Wender, Bruce Willard and Mark Zelman. We also thank our fiction writers, Sarah Creech, Mary Ann McGuigan and Ralph Uttaro, Contributing Editor, David Rigsbee, for his review of Robert McNamara’s "Incomplete Strangers" and Contributing Editor, Chard deNiord, the new Vermont Poet Laureate, for his essay, "The Trouble with Poetry," in which Chard writes:
Writing poetry is a Sisyphean task. No poet ever writes the poem to end all poems. The poet, therefore, must love pushing her boulder up the proverbial hill. It's about the pushing, and then listening as the boulder descends back down the hill. If the poet ever comes to think there is an opposite side of the hill, then she writes under the delusion that she can say the unsayable, or that the truth is ultimately sayable, or that it is possible to escape the human condition and still write about it. The memorable poem is as mortal as the poet, as multifaceted as the truth, and as surprisingly beautiful. It all but touches the divine. As far as the poem's music is concerned, it is the sound of the poet's figurative boulder rolling back down the hill.
While The Cortland Review is always pleased to thank its dedicated and talented staff, Anna Catone, Elizabeth Cornell, Christian Gullette, Amy MacLennan, David Moody, Dallas Lee, Rick Tracy, Jennifer Wallace and, of course, Editor Emeritus and Founder, Guy Shahar, for this issue, we are also eager to have you meet our newest staff member, Eric Berlin. Eric introduces himself this way:
After ten years of sculpture, I returned to writing because I couldn't do without it. Also, poems are way more portable and easy to store. I earned an MFA in Sculpture from NY Academy of Art ('04), an MFA in Poetry from Syracuse University ('01), and a BA in English from Harvard ('96). Somewhere in there, I spent a year in LA performing improv, and I hope to return to that too. Currently, I live near Syracuse, NY, where I teach courses at the Downtown Writer's Center like Improvisation for Poets, The Poetics of Prayer, and Ear Training: An Aural Approach to Prosody.
Welcome, Eric!

We also proudly announce that The Cortland Review will be at AWP in LA with four dynamic TCR voices to celebrate our 20th year of continuous publication. We will be the event not to miss with Gregory Orr, Yusef Komunyakaa, Laure-Anne Bosselaar and Jeremy Bass, poet and composer with his classical guitar. We are on the schedule for Friday at noon, room 403A in the LA Convention Center. . .

. . . and here's more to keep your eye on:

November 9 is the deadline for signing up for the 12th Annual Palm Beach Poetry Festival, January 18-23rd. Some of your favorite poets, Laure-Anne Bosselaar, Carl Dennis, Denise Duhamel, Carol Frost, Thomas Lux, Tom Sleigh, Mary Szybist and Kevin Young, are faculty and Robert Hass, past US Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize winner, is featured guest. Apply online at

THE FROST PLACE is now accepting submissions for The Frost Place Chapbook Competition, sponsored by BULL CITY PRESS. Find all the details at

Looking for a residency?
are now being accepted: The residency begins July 1 and ends August 15, and includes an award of $1,000 from The Frost Place and an award of $1,000 from Dartmouth College.
Find the details at

hard-working classroom teachers and highly skilled poet/teachers share time-tested approaches to making poetry an essential element of the classroom, check out

For THE FROST PLACE CONFERENCE ON POETRY, a week of "intensive poetry camp" with writers who are deeply committed to learning more about the craft of writing poetry with daily workshops, classes, lectures, writing and revising time in a supportive and dynamic environment, check out

For generous and focused attention on your poems in workshops and one-on-one meetings with faculty, and the option of a full-length manuscript review, check out THE FROST PLACE POETRY SEMINAR at

For good poetry and short fiction anytime you feel like it and from anywhere, The Cortland Review has our Poets in Person videos for a special connection with your favorite poets and over 1400 poets and writers archived in audio and text. Grab your coffee and click on some links.

Ginger Murchison


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