I was delighted to be sent a copy of Neon literary magazine to review. It's a beautifully produced publication with a striking monochrome photo on the front. There are more striking black and white photos inside alongside the poetry and short stories.
The poetry and stories tends to be dark and circle round relationships, a selection of the titles hinting at the range of topics covered:
What You Need to Know About Your Caesarean Section by Derek Adams
Boot Sale Blues by Sarah Greenfield Clark
Nothing, Shadows by Jack Brodie
I'm always interested to read how authors relate to nature and there are some good examples here.
Jenny Gray's poem We Always Swam in Rivers uses the great outdoors as a backdrop to a poem that focuses on the narrator and their companion:
Red hair flowing behind you."
Noel Sloboda uses nature as metaphor in his poems to describe My Stepfather as a Porcupine and My Mother as a Raccoon.
Coyote Runs, a short story from US writer Nicole Cloutier, juxtaposes the life of a coyote with a group of youngsters who break into an abandoned rural house. The woods are presented as looming and threatening. This is never how I feel about woodland, but then if I go walking in the woods by myself in Scotland the largest animal I'm likely to encounter is a deer, and although dangerous people can lurk in the woods just as much as they can in the darker streets of Edinburgh, there are fewer examples of fugitives on the run from the law in Scottish woods than in US woods. Anyway those were the thoughts running through my mind as I read this story, which I enjoyed for the observations of the coyote woven in amongst the main narrative and for the thoughtful way the characters are drawn out.
You can find out more about Issue 35 of Neon magazine here.