Editor’s Note

Time and chance: when I set the theme for this issue I had no inkling that I would end up using a shot of the famous Monte Carlo Casino as the cover image. That thought was triggered later by Henry Quince’s sonnet in this issue, “Dancing at the Casino”, which weaves together musical and chronological time, apocalyptic and gambler’s chance. What could better symbolise time and chance than the famous casino and its stately clock?

In our twelve sonnets selected from open submissions, again we see the theme interpreted in various ways, sometimes more or less obliquely or loosely. These sonnets are not necessarily all to the taste of all our judges — we use an averaging system — but these are the twelve that came through their collective scrutiny with the best overall results. (For anyone interested in submitting, the extra observations added to our Submissions page this time may be helpful.) 

The Issue 5 authors include several familiar names. Five cheers for Catherine Chandler on placing a sonnet in  every issue so far! Other repeat stars are Christopher Hanson, Maryann Corbett, Marybeth-Rua-Larsen, Michael Cantor, Henry Quince,  and Juleigh Howard-Hobson. Our new authors this time are Yakov Azriel, Antonia Clark, Stephen Collington, K. B. Kubin, and Susan McLean.

And continuing the Editor’s Invitationals, two current panelists have contributed sonnets of their own for the present issue. Their comments on sonnet selection and what they look for in contemporary sonnets should be of interest to anyone thinking of submitting work to 14 by 14. This time we have Julie Kane with her prizewinning sonnet “Used Book” and Paul Stevens with his innovative “Rock-a-bye” (unpublished to date). I hope our readers will enjoy these excellent sonnets and the accompanying short essays. 

My thanks again to the selection panel and our artist-photographer. (Detailed acknowledgments and links are here, where you can also see what time it is in Monte Carlo.) I’m happy to say that all selectors are continuing for the next issue.

Issue 6, due out October 14, will focus on the theme of Things speak for themselves: sonnets relating to physical objects — natural or man-made — seen objectively from any angle.