It is with great excitement and a deep sense of accomplishment that we present to you this collection of remarkable literary works.
The selection process was not an easy one. We spent countless hours poring over submissions, each one offering a glimpse into the myriad emotions, experiences, and dreams that weave up a tapestry of generations. Our team faced the exhilarating challenge of curating an issue that reflects the diversity of voices and genres present in the literary community.
In these pages, you'll find a wealth of emotions, experiences, and perspectives that reflect the world as seen through the eyes of writers from all backgrounds. The theme for this issue, Interconnection, was demonstrated through both the breadth of the work published and their writers—we received almost 200 pieces, with authors from Pakistan to Hungary, from the American South to right here in the Bay Area.
We are proud to exhibit work we feel illustrates the diversity and unity prevalent in the literary community. We invite you to immerse yourself in the lyrical verses, captivating narratives, and thought-provoking explorations that our contributors have shared. Together, the themes, styles, and perspectives showcased in these pages speak to the medley of experiences that bind us all together.
“The smoke had other plans— / it crept like an angel,” Mario Duarte writes of nature and the inevitable sadness of the human experience. The smoke, as well as everything bigger than us, “waited for the old, / the young, all ages.” As you read, we hope you, too, will feel this same wonder and urgency of time and time lost, but also the same quiet happiness that we felt at each vocalized universality. Read everything you can, but also, go see the world. In William Doreski’s words, go meet “winsome little people / at the market.” Push the cart through the aisles and “unzip [y]our native playfulness.” Discuss controversial literature in the storm. In the end, we hope you, too, in this uproarious twenty-first century, will slow down for a stanza or two—to find great meaning in our shared commonplace, to feel terribly, wonderfully, undeniably human.
This inaugural issue is just the beginning. Eucalyptus Lit aims to be a beacon of creativity and inspiration, and we are so excited to continue this journey with all of you. Over the past two months, our dedicated team collectively spent over six hundred hours planning and working out logistics, brainstorming on late night Zoom calls, obsessing over emails and website design, and reading and writing notes on submissions. But it took so much more than that for us to be able to bring this magazine to life. We must extend our heartfelt gratitude to each contributor who entrusted us with their work—we are touched, humbled, and forever grateful at the willingness of everyone involved to support this fledgling magazine started by three teenagers, who didn’t even have a single issue under our belts. To our readers, thank you for joining us on this journey. Your support fuels our passion and deepens our commitment to showcasing the literary talents of writers across generations. In the end, our magazine stands as a tribute to writers and their narratives, their—our—shared love for the written word and for the people all around us.
“These secrets have always been sleeping, just / so I can go on, take my time,” writes Olivia Burgess in “Pavement Magnolias.” With that, we invite you into these pages. Go on. Take your time. We hope you'll find moments of recognition, inspiration, maybe even transformation. May the secrets in these stories and poems remind you of the universality of human experience, the power of storytelling, and the profound impact of language on all of our lives.
With so much love,
Iris Cai, Felix Chen, and Jessica Wang