Sadness Isn’t The Only Muse

Derrick Austin

I can’t imagine myself reading bedtime storiesto a toddler, and I’m older than my father waswhen he read those brightly colored books to me.His voice is deeper than mine will ever bebut just as sweet. I always picked Freight Train.I loved the black caboose. A train runs across this track…through tunnels and cities, darkness and light, forever.I still love books where nothing happens,good or bad. The page is one landscape I move through.

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Derrick Austin is the author of Tenderness, forthcoming from BOA Editions in Fall 2021, and Trouble the Water (BOA Editions). He is a 2019-2021 Stegner Fellow in Poetry at Stanford University.

Volume 12.2

Pullman, Washington

Washington State University

Editor-in-Chief
Bryan Fry

Guest Poetry Editor, Issue 12.2
Maya Marshall

Assistant Poetry Editor
Elizabeth Forsythe

When H.K. Hummel and Stephanie Lenox founded Blood Orange Review in 2006, they wanted to make an inclusive space in contemporary literature, “to create a home for emerging and established writers” where readers might discover narratives, voices, and forms that challenged expectations with bold and startling artfulness. They built the journal from their respective kitchen tables in Tempe, Arizona and Port Angeles, Washington, and quickly found an international reading audience. In 2008, Bryan Fry joined the editorial team and created an internship at Washington State University, establishing the journal as an educational tool and prompting the development of the English department’s track in editing and publishing. In 2015, Hummel and Lenox transferred the journal’s editorial operations to Washington State University, and they continue to serve as advisory editors. Meanwhile, Blood Orange Review maintains a penchant for boldness and a commitment to publishing historically and aesthetically underrepresented writers.

The journal is now supported by a team of WSU creative writing faculty and students, with Bryan Fry serving as Editor-in-Chief. Blood Orange Review has published the work of respected writers such as Kim Barnes, Kwame Dawes, Camille Dungy, Brenda Hillman, Nathaniel Mackey, Diane Seuss, Brian Turner, and Joe Wilkins.

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