Rust Belt Poets
The Fall 2017 issue is dedicated to poets of the Rust Belt, a region of the United States stretching from the Great Lakes to the upper Midwest. The name refers to the deindustrialization, population loss, and urban decay due to the shrinking of its once-powerful industrial sector. One explanation for the results of the 2016 U.S. elections was the shifting political attitude of this region, and we thought we’d check in and find a first-hand account of what’s going on through the poet’s eye. Twenty-one poets contributed to this feature, chosen from over 2,000 submissions. In the conversation section, editor Timothy Green—himself a Rust Belt poet—talks to Detroit-based psychotherapist and poet Ken Meisel. Having lived in the Rust Belt his entire life, Meisel offers deep insights into the region’s psyche, and discusses a range of other topics, from marital love to a model for turning his art into charity.
The issue also includes seventeen poets in another eclectic open section.