Volume 2 (2016) Sink Hollow, Fall 2016
There's a moment in John Cheever's story "The Swimmer" where Neddy, the protagonist, is poised at the edge of a highway waiting to cross and continue his quest to swim across the city.
"Had you gone for a Sunday afternoon ride that day you might have seen him, close to naked, standing on the shoulders of Route 424, waiting for a chance to cross. You might have wondered if he was the victim of foul play, had his car broken down, or was he merely a fool. Standing barefoot in the deposits of the highway - beer cans, rags, and blowout patches - exposed to all kinds of ridicule, he seemed pitiful... Why, believing as he did, that all human obduracy was susceptible to common sense, was he unable to turn back?"
Kafka has an answer, if you take Neddy as a writer. In front and behind him there's a great peril which must be navigated in a state of total vulnerability, of near nakedness. A feverish dream which can, at the outset, seem futile, purposeless, absurd. We find Neddy near the end of that dream, surrounded by detritus and dust, conscious of the enormity of his task, of its many and nuanced difficulties. Nevertheless, despite the susceptibility of obduracy to common sense, Neddy moves forward, driven by an inexplicable desire to finish what he began. He writes, and through that act, comes closer to the "horror of life" that awaits him at his journey's end. His is the same spirit of the young writers who give this journal both its heart and its strength.
Now, more than ever, the act of reading and creating literature performs an essential, exploratory and cathartic function in human life. We at Sink Hollow are privileged indeed to have the opportunity to participate in and expand that process. Thank you for reading, we hope you stay a while.