Magazine Report: Image Magazine Volume 9, Issue 1 (1981)

All right, I’m not going to make a habit of reviewing the various and sundry literary magazines that I pick up for the poetry. But this particular magazine struck me on many levels:

Image Magazine from 1981

Here’s what I found noteworthy:

  • The book was laid out before desktop publishing, so it required cutting and pasting. No, the real thing, from which the computer metaphor arose. I did some of that myself in the olden days.
  • The magazine was based in the same suburb in which I live now. Meanwhile, in 1981, I lived in a housing project in Milwaukee.
  • The mailing address of the magazine is a post office box in the zip code of this very suburb. 13 years after this magazine appeared, I used the same post office for my literary magazine. I did not live in St. Louis proper at the time, but wanted a St. Louis mail address for submissions. I had to drive 45 minutes from Jefferson County to check the box. Which was rarely full.
  • Yes, the Image magazine does include a poem by Lyn Lifshin. You know the six degrees of Kevin Bacon? Well, if you’re any kind of poet at all, you’re one degree of Lyn Lifshin. That is, you’ve appeared in at least one magazine with her. Heather has. I have not.

Those are the crazy things that I thought about when I looked through the magazine. The artwork is what would later become known as ‘zine-ish, with a lot of simple hand-drawn bits. The poems are of lightweight literary quality. But I got a kick out of the magazine for the other things which it reminded me of and the wonder of wondering who these guys were that put this out right at the beginning of the Reagan era.

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