from the editor
The ancient Greeks saw Chaos as the dark abyss from which life sprang.
Mathematicians use Chaos theory to explain how small decisions can give rise to unexpectedly grave consequences.
Chaos is a cluttered bedroom, a busy street corner, a blinding snowstorm.
In Paradise Lost, John Milton described Chaos as “the vast immeasurable abyss, / Outrageous as a sea, dark, wasteful, wild.”
Most of us spend our lives trying to ward off Chaos. We keep agendas, we make grocery lists. We look for patterns, symmetry, and structure. But what happens when we no longer avoid Chaos, and instead embrace it? As writers and artists, a big part of our job is to revise and to edit, to impose order on an unordered world. How do we preserve the thrill of inspiration, of turmoil, when we work in a medium with inherent structure? What if, as Friedrich Nietzsche said, “You must have chaos within you to give birth to a dancing star”?
Issue 56 of Hayden’s Ferry Review is about celebrating the unordered, the frenzied, the messy, and the “dark, wasteful, wild” in all its forms. The pieces in this issue start conversations about how and why Chaos can be important and powerful to us as artists and as human beings.
Thank you to our wonderful editors for their creativity and their spontaneity. Thank you to our contributors, who explore Chaos in content, style, and form. Thank you for trusting us with your work—trusting us to read it, to share it, and to turn it sideways.
Please visit our table at the AWP bookfair (1226) to purchase a discounted copy of Issue 56. Copies will be available online soon.
Issue 56 Contributors
Prose: Megan Mayhew Bergman, Jaclyn Dwyer, Lindsey Drager, Miles Klee, Lisa Locascio, Maia Morgan
Poetry: Gavin Adair, Lindsey D. Alexander, Partridge Boswell, Eric Burger, Lauren Clark, Mary Cisper, Mary-Alice Daniel, Ezra Dan Feldman, Sally Houtman, Alyse Knorr, Calgary Martin, Phoebe Reeves, Courtney Mandryk, Martin Rock, Sam Sax, Kent Shaw, Chris Siteman, Lauren Goodwin Slaughter, Donna Steiner
Translation: Alireza Taheri Araghi [Sodeh Negintaj], Margaret Jull Costa [Medardo Fraile], Dennis James Sweeney [Ronald Legrand], Toshiya Kamei [Claudia Apablaza], Jeffrey Zuckerman [Antoine Volodine]
Art: Ron Bimrose, Brenton Hamilton, Forrest Solis (Cover Artist)
Issue 56 Masthead
Editor: Dana Diehl
Managing Editor: Chelsea Hickok
Art: Ashley Czajkowski
Special Projects: Heath Wilcock
Copyeditor: Mindy Wilson