Notes From the Editors

Dear Reader,

Gray. When you say it, you feel it lean into your sternum. It’s heavy; a bag of wet concrete. It tastes like your favorite food if you ate it through plastic wrap. Almost like something. Almost like it’s too much of nothing—or, more accurately, too much of not quite enough of anything.

But gray gets a bad rap. Gray teems with energy: the Atlantic in the calm of a storm. A litter of kittens. The blanket of sky at dusk.

Gray is the bird’s-eye view of a million micromoments and the trillions of emotions that spawned from each. Think: You spend every day with someone—a parent, a friend, family, a pet—and the experiences blur. You’re left with familiarity. One day, you leave, maybe take a trip or move to a new town, and suddenly you’re surrounded by the particulars of the relationship. The reds, maybe. The raging oranges. The manic yellows. The sapphire joy. The peaceful lavender.

It takes energy to surveil the gray of life and put words to the colorful experiences it comprises. Your friend’s deeply genuine laugh. The way your dog leaps up to greet you. The graffiti you saw on the way home from work. The moments that have meaning when you parse them out. But that we throw out into the gray until we want them.

That’s what makes this issue so special to us. These stories and poems and experiences have precisely captured the colors of their moments, of their emotions. They embody vibrancy and stand out in the minds of not only their creators, but of the readers who encounter them.

We hope this issue speaks to the colors of your life. That you find complementary hues, or clashes that guide you down uncharted paths. And we hope it inspires you to put your gray beneath a microscope. Parse out the beauty, the pain, the rage—and share them boldly.

Yours in language,

Erin and Linsey

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