you are in the diode archives spring 2010



When I started diode, I hoped to create a community of writers, something I missed in my own life having moved to Doha, Qatar, in 2005. I missed being a part of a community of poets, and I hoped diode could create such a community. I enlisted Jeff Lodge to serve as co-editor, and in the fall of 2007 diode was launched. Diode has come to exceed our hopes in every way. We have connected with so many amazing, generous poets, and thoughtful, passionate readers. It has been an honor to be a part of this community.

Even after three years, diode continues to create connections we couldn’t imagine in 2007.  Like this one: When I was sixteen, a sophomore at Vernon Township High School in Vernon, New Jersey, a teacher read a poem about finding a dead mouse in a cupboard. I had almost no experience with poetry. I had a vague remembrance of having read Jabberwocky in grade school, and an even more opaque recollection of a Frost (?) poem with an image of mountain peaks that the teacher pointed out resembled a saw blade. This “mouse poem,” as my memory filed it, slapped me awake to poetry, and began my own attempts at writing. The imagery was striking, and tangible. I could see the poem in my mind and it stuck there. For thirty years. Then came Facebook. A few months ago I found Therese Mattil, an English teacher from my high school, on Facebook and we began corresponding. I paraphrased a few lines from the “mouse poem” and asked her if she remembered it. Not only did she remember the poem I had heard back in 1980, she is its author. I’m delighted to be able to present this poem, and one other, by Therese Mattil, in this issue.

Another connection: A year ago, co-editor Jeff Lodge returned to the US. When friends part, comfort comes in making promises to keep in touch, but often, time and distance grows and touch is lost. Diode has created a link between us that is impervious to time and distance, and I am grateful for it.

And finally, the most important connection of all: our connection with you, dear reader, wherever you are and whatever your path to poetry, and to diode.  I thank you, and Jeff, he tells me from seven thousand miles and several continents away, thanks you as well.  You enrich us both in ways we cannot measure.