Touch: The Journal of Healing


Editor's Choice: The Voice of Kristin Roedell

Very late in the submission period for this issue, we received four poems and one prose piece from a writer of whom we had never heard, Kristin Roedell.  Each of the works showed great maturity not only on the part of the author's writing skill, but also in the approach taken with the themes of the works.  The adept use of poetic and literary technique aside, I was immediately intrigued by the perceptiveness of the writing, the author's ability to convey elements of human interaction, and, in some of the pieces, how deeply they spoke of the physical, emotional, and spiritual Touch of humanity.

Two of the four poems and the prose piece didn't quite fit the vision of our journal.  Nevertheless, what came through for me in all the pieces was a deep sense of truth in the writing, truth that can only be told by one who has experienced it.  In the back of my mind, I believed the author showed great potential to become our Editor's Choice if more of her work spoke with equal strength to the journal's theme.

During our weekly submission review meeting, Daniel and I discussed Kristin's work in detail.  We both recognized the degree of craft that went into the creation of the works she submitted, and we both agreed that two of the poems, "Field Guide" and "Blushing Birds," were an excellent fit for our journal.  We both also identified the potential for publication in the three works we did not accept, and we suggested the author submit them to other journals.  I remain hopeful another editor will recognize the truth and craft that went into those pieces.

Although privately I considered Kristin's work as a strong candidate for our Editor's Choice selection, when Daniel suggested the same, our decision was clear.  I promptly wrote to Kristin and invited her to submit more work to us.  Shortly thereafter, four more poems arrived.  From these, we selected "Girls with Gardenias" to feature with her other two poems.

There are common threads which tie these poems together.  All three poems speak of daughters and all three poems speak of loss.  Individually, each poem uses reflection as the narrator looks back to moments from the past, and there is a sense of regret or longing for a relationship which existed but failed or failed to ever exist.  In addition, whether directly or subtly, there also lies a unique sense of strength and of self in each poem.  But of the many messages a reader can draw from these three poems, the one message which resonates the loudest for me is the message of acceptance, acceptance of what was or what may have been, and particularly, the tenderness with which the acceptance of those memories is treated.

With great clarity, "Field Guide," "Blushing Birds," and "Girls with Gardenias" speak to the process of recognizing, accepting, working through, and going on in life after a debilitating and devastating event.  They epitomize the vision of this journal, and this is why I have chosen to feature them as our Editor's Choice collection.  I am very proud to bring them to you, and I am equally grateful to their author for entrusting us with them.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you a voice of Touch: Kristin Roedell.

O.P.W. Fredericks, Editor

© 2010 O.P.W. Fredericks


Copyright © 2010

Touch: The Journal of Healing

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