June 25, 2024 - "Sestina by Elizabeth Bishop" - May Huang, edited by Sara Cantor

Difficulty ● ● ◐ ○ ○

Puzzle Notes

Dear friends:

In your inbox tonight, a poetic puzzle by May Huang. A lightly challenging 11x12, "Sestina by Elizabeth Bishop" pays homage to the poem in the title, which you can read here. (We recommend reading the poem after solving the puzzle.)

May is a Bay Area-based constructor who was on the 2022 Lil AVC X roster and has published puzzles in places like USA Today and Apple News. In her free time, she enjoys swing dancing and translating literature from Chinese to English. Her day job is in public relations.

May: "This puzzle was borne out of a desire to make more poetry-inspired puzzles; both poems and crosswords are mediums that engage in wordplay, formal constraints, and of course the concept of "theme." The sestina is my favorite poetic form because of its sheer density and use of "end words" that connect the poem, much like how in a tightly-packed crossword grid, it's the theme entries that ground our experience of solving the puzzle. Just as a themed crossword has a "revealer," a sestina has an "envoi" that brings the end-words together in the final stanza. Elizabeth Bishop's "sestina" is a poem that has stuck with me for years. I hope you enjoy solving this puzzle, experiencing the poem, and maybe having those lines blur a little bit!"

Headed to your inbox next week: a midi by roster member Kareem, and another midi by a guest constructor.

Thanks for you support!

Your friends at Lil AVC X

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