Welcome to the Summer Solstice 2020 issue of Eternal Haunted Summer!
Our theme for this issue is Holy Days. Every tradition has its sacred festivals and important dates. Some center around Deities, others around the change of the seasons. Some focus on ancestors, others on historical incidents. This issue of Eternal Haunted Summer features poems and short fiction which address all of these types of Holy Days.
The Wheel of the Year appears in a number of works in our Poetry section. Kim Malinowski addresses two opposing Holy Days in “At the Crossroads: Beltane and Samhain,” while Clay F. Johnson’s “The Fires of Ecstasy at Samhuinn” is a dark and sensual meditation on that ancient tradition. Michele Merkel’s “Mabon’s Melodies” is a howl in the darkness, while Lynette Mejía’s “Quarter/Cross-Quarter” echoes through the year as mortals and Deities alike celebrate the passage of the seasons. “Black Cat Chant” by Ashley Dioses is an evocation of feline familiars, while “Pumpkins” by KA Opperman is an homage to that most emblematic of fruits. Fiona Pitt-Kethley makes her EHS debut “The Chicken Mine,” which calls us to seek and find the sacred in humble and hidden ruins, while Colleen Anderson reminds us in “Dithyrambos” that any night can be sacred when a God is given welcome. Cathy Bryant makes her debut with the Welsh-inspired “Golowan,” while Adam Golaski brings ancient rites into the modern world in “June first.” Nicole J. LeBoeuf reminds us of just how hard it can be to leave sacred space and return to mundane reality in “The Mardi Gras Tree,” while devotees of “Marzanna” honor that Goddess on the Spring Equinox in Gerri Leen’s poem. Scott J. Couturier takes us to the most isolated, inhabited island in the world in “Old Year’s Night,” while Ceallaigh S. MacCath-Moran shows us that activism in defense of creation can be a sacred act in “Tiw, Tiw, Tiw: A Triple Invocation of Tyr for the 2019 Global Climate Strike.” The mother of creation reminds us of our ritual obligations in “To the Goddess” by Jennifer Crow, while Elizabeth Davis teaches us that every day is sacred “To the Unknown God.” Finally, witches of every color and gender gather in Lorraine Schein’s effusive celebration of “Walpurgis Night.”
In our Fiction section, Oliver Leon Porter makes his EHS debut with the bittersweet “Christmas 2019,” while Joel Donato Ching Jacob makes his debut with the Tagalog-inspired “Ginoong Panay.” Daniel Stride’s “The Last Libation” centers around an apocalyptic Anthesteria, while Nicole Rain Sellers makes her first appearance with “The Radix Scripts,” in which a loving mother offers advice to a daughter whose name will echo down through history.
Lastly, Reviews! EHS editor Rebecca Buchanan looks at the paranormal mystery Black in White by JC Andrijeski, while Tom Cabot reviews Lifting the Veil by Janet Farrar and Gavin Bone. Shannon Connor Winward delves into the eco-mythical Trinity Sight by Jennifer Givhan, while Erin Lale addresses What Does Heathenry Mean? by Garman Lord.
Enjoy! And Happy Solstice!