Magma has changed to Submittable. Please follow this link to submit.
For the next issue of Magma we’ve chosen the theme of ‘Risk’. We’re aware that risk is in itself a risky word. It is open to interpretation. And what we hope to present in our call for submissions is just one understanding.
For us, the conscious act of taking risks is in itself the act of living. It is an act of exposure. Of gambling. Of disobedience. An act of fearlessness. It is the constant awareness of risk, learning how to push ourselves to the edge of what is possible that governs everything we do. And as always, when you increase the stakes, the chance of failure is always more probable. But then we’d much prefer to see poems that fail big than fail small. Because the further you push yourself towards that proverbial edge, the more likely you are to produce something fresh, something unique.
In practical terms, we believe risk means deliberately withholding from your audience what is familiar to them and substituting an unknown quantity; in other words, aiming to introduce them to an unexpected pleasure, to change their minds about what it means for a poem to be successful. The risk, obviously, is that they do not find anything pleasurable or meaningful at all in the new experience and reject what you have to offer. But without such risks being taken, poetry inevitably slides towards repetitiousness.
How does this manifest itself? Perhaps in the current climate it would be as simple as writing a love poem to David Cameron. Perhaps not. But then that’s what we want. Your thoughts. Your understanding. Your interpretation. But what we would like to see a poem do is to force us, as the reader, to the ledge, hang one foot, one line, our whole consciousness over the precipice and then draw us shuddering, sweat-drenched, changed, back in. So there’s the challenge. We look forward to reading your poems. But please, we implore you, roll the dice! There are no rules.
Magma has moved all its submissions online to Submittable. Submissions will no longer be read if sent to our Magma email address. Please follow this link to submit. If you don’t have an account, you can create a new one easily in a couple of minutes. Submissions are invited from June 1st to September 30th 2015.