The second issue of Ika is out. This is a journal devoted to Literature and the Arts, is published by the Faculty of Creative Arts at Manukau Institute of Technology and is currently edited by Anne Kennedy.
This not your run-of-the-mill journal as it included a big book pasted inside a small book, a poster, a handful of postcards and a sticker. The postcards are terrific; they have a graffiti image sourced by Caryline Borerham and poems by Semira Davis, Courtney Sina Meredith, Alice Miller and Richard von Sturmer.
The look of the complete package is fresh. The line up of contributors on the literary front diverse and includes students at MIT and from Hawaii along with familiar poets. I am not sure what the submissions policy is but the guest poets include Emma Neale, Steven Toussaint, Helen Rickerby, Grace Taylor, Lee Posna, Daren Kamali, Jeffrey Paparoa Holma, David Eggleton, Michelle Elvy, Geoff Cochrane, Sue Fitchett, Johanna Emeney, Kirsti Whalen. That gives you an idea of the range of voices and styles.
A couple of personal favourites: I loved the curl and slide of Lee Posna’s ‘Island bay Blues,’ but two other poems really stood out for me. Steven Toussaint’s suite of ‘cradle’ poems are joy to read because the musical pitch is utterly rewarding. You follow the clash and link of vowels and consonants and fall upon tonal bridges, arcs and diversions. Wonderful. Emma Neale’s poem, ‘Pokpo,’ underlines how assured her writing has become. This poem reads in the ear so sweetly, yet it shocks and startles. It is risk taking not in terms of language that bends but in the degree of confession. And that confession is slipped in the cracks of the poem, subtly, surprisingly. It is a knock-out poem.
Long may this journal continue.
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