Today is the start of Black History Month and the Chinese Lunar New Year, the Year of the Tiger. It’s a time of celebration, new beginnings and reflection. In March, it will be two years since we went into lockdown mode. Eventually, and slowly, as vaccinations became more readily available, we went outside, as the famous TikTok videos say. Hopefulness was in the air, and it was the only thing that needed to be contagious.
We went outside. We started making reservations and eating outdoors. We even began going to movies and outdoor concerts, all with our masks on. Things were finally reopening, and not just businesses. We were reopening ourselves–to others, to planning trips, to classrooms and to some sense of normalcy, even though we all know there is no going back to pre-pandemic days.
Recently, all of this came to a halt due to the Omicron variant, and we have had to readjust again to staying inside, isolation, remote learning and social distancing. However, as this issue, with stellar and timely contributions by Danielle Broadway, Natashia Deón, Pete Hsu, Ruthie Marlenee, Chinyere Nwodim, Lillian Ann Slugocki, Mike Sonsken and Los Angeles Poet Laureate Lynne Thompson, illustrates, we remain open to loving ourselves, our communities, families, friends—and to the absolute necessity for poetry and literature in our everyday lives.–Luivette Resto, Executive Editor, Angels Flight • literary west
Feature photo by Misha Sokolnikov, courtesy of Flickr