After the political and emotional storms of 2022, it feels almost as if summer 2023 is in the doldrums. We haven’t had a new prime minister or monarch for ages, nor an extreme weather event worth recording (which of course is tempting fate). That big ‘do’ in London has been and gone without major incident, Leeds United has been relegated, and no-mow May has yielded a somewhat underwhelming range of offerings for pollinators this year (have to get a sustainability mention in, to sustain our eco-credentials).
From out the still, misty waters of spring 2023 emerge, Nessie-like (or channelling Excalibur?), visions, ghosts, subconscious desires and fears in the form of Mermen, close encounters with Thor, holocaust survivors, bathers cursing in Welsh, new planets in the making. We meet a nameless (but adored) farm vehicle, dodge stray bombs, excavate human remains, say farewells, consume the world, avoid Jehovah’s Witnesses, and learn how to get back into our bodies. We celebrate bagpipes and velvet underpants. We have an unusual number of villanelles. We have reflections on the process of writing (and performing). In the rich medley of offerings I am, as always, touched by the creativity, honesty, tenderness, rage, despair, and joy which you writers pin down on the page for us to read. We love fostering the community which is Dream Catcher.
On a more sombre note, the editorial/publishing crew were stopped in our tracks by the passing of one of our number. We honour Clint Wastling, and dedicate this edition of Dream Catcher to his memory. Reflections from the editorial team may be found inside.
We are delighted to welcome Will Kemp, a poet and short story writer especially well known to York folk, and also further afield, to the panel of ‘readers’ of your submissions. Keep ‘em coming!
This issue’s featured artist is Chantal Barnes who is also the daughter of Richard Barnes who we featured in Issue 42