I cannot in any way claim to understand the varied experiences of LGBTQIA+-identifying peoples and communities—as a white, middle-class, cis-gendered woman living in a first-world country—let alone to comprehend those experiences on a globally disparate scale. Reading the poems in this issue of Rabbit, selected and arranged by Michael Farrell, is a humbling experience—these poems disturb positions of privilege and a narrow worldview; at every turn of the page, a new insight, pleasure, shock; as ‘nonfiction poetry,’ each poem ripples in its own manner of seeing and feeling in the world.
Catherine B. Krause’s ‘This Poem Is Coming Out As A Trans Poem’ has given me much pause for thought about the intentions behind a literary journal producing an LGBTQIA+ issue. We hope and aim, in every issue of Rabbit, to publish a diverse spread of voices; further, the poems in the following pages would not be exclusively relevant to a ‘special’ issue as such. Is an issue dedicated exclusively to the publication and promotion of poems by poets who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer, Intersex, Asexual and/or more therefore superfluous? Is such a publication enacting its own kind of segregation? Such difficult questions keep us from assuming any singular, ‘right’ or righteous path or approach, whether as publishers, editors and/or writers. They encourage us all to maintain a level of fluidity, to consider multiple perspectives, to be open to critique and to use that critique productively.
I believe that there is, however, a distinct force that arises from a collocation of poetic voices responding to a specific call, as can certainly be gleaned from our 24th issue of Rabbit. Through various poetic devices and forms, we can perceive intersections and assemblages, difference and multiplicity. Lines of thought collide and jostle through collage, extended metaphor, cultural critique and experiment. Resilience is refracted through mischief, celebration, confession. These poems are politically and personally charged; it is exciting to be able to channel the combined energy of their efforts towards our Rabbit readers.
—Jessica L. Wilkinson