Theme of college journal leaves room for creativity

Progenitor for 2019 is available at two locations on campus


In spring semester, Arapahoe Community College students with an inclination toward writing, graphics and publishing enroll in English 231, where they learn much by compiling, designing and publishing the new issue of Progenitor, a classy, award-winning art/ literary journal, issued annually.

“Progenitor,” a noun, is defined on the first page as “a person that originates a cultural or intellectual movement; a biologically ancestral form.”

Copies of the 2019 issue are free and can be found at Colorado Gallery of the Arts and in the college library, both on the main ACC campus at 5900 S. Santa Fe Drive, Littleton.

Nine students and three faculty members created the 2019 edition from a large number of submissions received from writers who ranged from current ACC students to writers from the local area and across the nation — to an Australian poet and teacher in Queensland.

Students read submissions and selected the variety of art, nonfiction, poetry and fiction that appear within the sophisticated photographic cover by Addison Van De Walker. It depicts a theatre marquee, with bright neon lights and traffic speeding by.

An introductory statement by editor Mary Innerst says: “This year’s theme of `Theatre’ evolved from a visual subject in the early stages of the design phase into our literary theme for the entire issue. This gave us a wide umbrella to work under. We were able to capture a broad array of experiences, identities, themes and forms and to explore the plethora of work we received on quality, free from a restricting theme ... All the world’s a stage and together, we are the cast who performs upon it …”

Thirty-six entries were selected for publication and the project was wrangled by Jamey Trotter of the English Department, John Hall of the Graphic Design program and Trish Sangelo, a photographer/teacher who directs the Colorado Gallery of the Arts.

Trotter wrote a touching dedication to retired English professor Chris Ransick, who led the Progenitor project for a number of earlier years and also served as Denver’s poet laureate.

Each year, ACC holds a literary contest and both the nonfiction and fiction sections are led by a recent winner.

In nonfiction, the reader finds Renata Dolz’s “In a Teacher’s Shoes,” an account of her hectic day as a substitute teacher at Denver’s Dora Moore School, with a cumulative picture of the students she meets … “Could I handle that situation with the grace and sympathy she did?” one wonders. It won in the literary contest at ACC.

“El Gato” by Kate Niles of Durango, also a winner, tells of a sickly, hungry neighborhood cat, whose owner is in the hospital … It also tells of a neighborhood and some of the folks who live on the block and their interactions — a particularly nice piece and tied well into the theatre theme of the issue. Players of all sorts live in a neighborhood “known to real estate salespeople as Tupperware Flats.”

Illustrations include nicely designed/composed art photographs such as Holly Giannaula’s glowing “Busy,” a backlit speckled flower with a very busy bee, and Gillian Davenport’s mysterious portrait study, “Divine Maternal.” Who is that woman, anyway??? (Another story needed!)

Funding for Progenitor is provided by the English Department at ACC and presumably a copy has begun its journey into the annual awards circuit by now. We will await news with interest — this is probably the most handsome issue of the journal yet!

Readers are advised to stop by the Littleton campus to pick one up. (Free.)

Note on submissions:

Accepted from published and unpublished writers, students and the writing community, through Submittable online submissions manager, between Oct. 1 and Feb. 15. Choices made through a blind review process. See


Our Papers

Ad blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an ad blocking plugin in your browser.

The revenue we receive from our advertisers helps make this site possible. We request you whitelist our site.