BAMBOO RIDGE Issue #91 is an anthology of poetry and prose by 44 writers, including 29 Bamboo Ridge Writers Institute participants. Featured in this collection: Lee Cataluna, Kealoha, Brenda Kwon, Ian MacMillan, Chris McKinney, Susan Schultz, Lee A. Tonouchi, Cedric Yamanaka, plus winners of the Editors' Choice Awards, cover image of surfing legend Gerry Lopez along with an excerpt from his upcoming book, and selections from the late Kayo Hatta's journal notes and photos taken during the production of her movie, FISHBOWL.
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Another is "Pakala," a story he wrote several years ago that is as much about plantation life on Kauaʻi as it is about a favorite surf break. Lopez considers this his real favorite and is proud of the fact that it was selected for Bamboo Ridge.
"I've been reading Bamboo Ridge for years, but I've never had any aspirations of having any of my stuff appear there," he said. "Those are good writers. I am a surfer who writes a little."
His surfing friend and writing mentor, the late Big Island attorney Michael McPherson, helped Lopez make the connection to the journal. McPherson's poetry, short fiction, essays and reviews have appeared in literary journals, including Bamboo Ridge, since 1979.
"He was my tutor and helped me quite a bit," Lopez said. "He taught me about attempting to write seriously, and for that I am forever indebted."
McPherson told Bamboo Ridge editors about "Pakala," and they were surprised to learn it was written by Lopez. But they loved the story, said Eric Chock, an editor at Bamboo Ridge.
"It was nice to see that it was not just about surfing," Chock said. "It has a nice span of just growing up in Pakala and the local style. It has a little bit of plantation history and being Japanese."
A photograph of Lopez surfing a monster wave is on the cover of the new Bamboo Ridge. Chock, who grew up surfing south shore breaks, said it was a genuine thrill to have that shot.
"For me, it was just like a dream to have this famous person on the cover and in our issue," Chock said.
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