Editor’s Page

Summer 2018

Dear Readers,

Preparing a new issue of Persimmon Tree means being surprised. This summer issue is no exception.

Tackling the submissions pile:  I am always surprised by how many interesting pieces I find, many with unexpected endings (see “The First Kiss”), although I have stopped being surprised at how good so much of the writing is.

Reading through the Short Takes Jean Zorn has selected:  The surprise is the unexpected ways you interpret the topic as well the different tones of the pieces you send in (when “Time” was the topic we even had to keep two pieces back and move them to a more serious venue in this issue).

Choosing a visual artist:  Who knew an “art book” could be a book turned into a sculpture? I am also happily surprised by how many of the artists who have appeared in Persimmon Tree are later honored with prizes (for example, Kay Walkingstick, Sheila Hicks, and Joyce J. Scott).

Judging poetry contests:  I suspect even the judges are surprised by the flood of poems you submit.

Putting it all together:  This time, to my surprise, I was so moved to tears, I had to take breaks when editing and rechecking some of the pieces … I suspect you will easily guess which ones.

Here’s to summering with the surprising Persimmon Tree,
Sue Leonard



For 45 years, Sue Leonard taught every variety of history except American mostly at independent high schools for girls — with a brief stint in a poverty program school for pregnant teens in Bedford Stuyvesant. In the mid-nineties she and her late husband John Leonard were co-editors of the Books and Arts section of the Nation Magazine. Since retiring, Sue has filled up her days with reading, needlework, family, friends and long walks.