Some People Are Colorblind
by Kate MacLam
but others just can’t see
all the grey in the world
they will tell you the tinman
is white or maybe black i will
tell you he is silver and searching
for his heart or at least a stopwatch
to tell him how fast it would beat
if he could ever look the man
he loves in the eyes or touch
his flexing muscle we all know
love is a social construct
we all know love
is a run in a pair of fishnet stockings imagine
rocky horror the way god intended everything
bleak until frank’s arrival i want
a movie that goes the other way
everything in color until the trouble starts
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by Michael Metivier
There’s a bullet hole in the only sign
for miles, just over the brook from our house
across a narrow bridge. We live close
enough that in the winter we can see its red
reflected through the desaturated woods
and maybe a car or two per hour inching
up to it. Now in the season’s dregs
from the same window I witness
a pair of grouse huddled in a tree,
I track the brook’s rush in relation
to rain falling high on the mountain towns,
I’m impatient for the ferns
and the bloodroot that seem impossible
when everything once soft has been brittle
for so long, and yes, I think about the hole
someone blasted, the shell tumbling
into a snow drift and the bullet catching
the old bones of a pollarded willow. Then I admit
to my shame there must be some pleasure
in firing a gun into the night, even just once,
and at what better target
than something telling me to stop.
Terms of Agreement
by Mary Biddinger
The man who described himself as a contemporary American novelist
in his biography for the Nextdoor neighbors forum hasn’t mowed a blade
of his lawn since May, but who cares about that when there are costeffective
generics to assess, easements to criticize, balking about frontage
which makes nobody else recall nights in the Winchester Mall overflow
lot, the one never used because there were never crowds. Oh, the fronting
executed there. I briefly showed a class a snapshot of some jeans noted
in a poem (I once owned a pair) and my evaluations shuddered. However
we soon moved on to discussing fates of wild horses, which banished
all memories of distressed denim. The woman who typed “HI” in response
to the heated discussion of chipmunk proliferation, or the headstrong
babysitter who uploaded a pic of herself eating two ice cream cones at once:
instantly forgotten. None of them knew I was surrounded by couch
cushions, regarding a sepia portrait of a cherished ex like it was newfound
currency. Back then I had a vague notion that fifteen years later we
would be separated by amateur divorces and lactose intolerance and miles.
Warmed by the heat of our respective pit bulls, we would hang on to
imaginary lockets while reading (again) Cold Mountain, like it was secretly
the story of us. But the real story was why the intersection of Rhoades
and Maple was flooding. Perhaps the new mini strip mall, or illegal dumping,
which is how you described it when I dropped my big salad and ghosted
contrary to the terms of our agreement, which were written in gross cursive.
Sometimes I yearn to fill out the rest of my bio, but right now it’s mostly
symbols: a wave, a skull, a shark, a daisy that might look nice behind an ear.
Self Portrait as Dog Breed Description
by Eileen Cleary
Bred from Irish stock with others bled in.
Thin coat of sunlit hair
with red highlights, often redder
in summer. Scared of loud noises,
sensitive to house plants. Do not leave
food out, will eat even if already fed.
Without early socialization, expect odd behaviors.
Can be left alone for long periods but enjoys company.
A quiet breed. Not prone to biting.
Good with children and other dogs.
Week Three with Fourth Graders & Teaching Poetry
by Gary Dop
They fidget, 25 half-formed widgets, forced
to fit the machinery of my manic mini-lecture
on metaphor—all her fun tricks and figurative friends.
“What animal are you?” and “What do you feel like?”
I ask them to write on their wide-rule pages. Then—
no idea why—I mention Wordsworth’s “Ode to Duty.”
I say to fourth graders: “Ode to Duty.” I say, “Duty.”
For a moment, the sudden silence misleads. I think
maybe they know the poem, their teacher, barely 22
and sitting in the back, eyes on her phone,
taught them the Romantics. Then the truth
in chuckles, giggles, and full gaffas
as I hear repetition of “duty.” The teacher,
Ms. Boots, looks up, glad to see the kids engaged,
no idea what I’ve stepped in. All at once,
I know what must be done. I repeat: “Ode. To. Duty.”
They laugh. I’m killing it. I say, “The Duty of a poet,
as far as I’m concerned, is never to stink.”
Half of them, wide-eyed, glance back at the teacher,
the others hold their sides. “Sometimes,” I say,
“my duty brings great joy. Sometimes my duty
brings sorrow.” I point to the kid in the front
and say, “Give me a metaphor, Jackson.”
He grins: “My duty is like that funky
fire cracker smell: pop, pop, stink cloud.”
I say, “Brilliant simile!” Ms Boots, who’s heard
too much, says, “That’s enough, Jackson.
We’ll have no more—” I interrupt. “That’s right,
boys and girls, no more similes!
Time for metaphor. Jackson, your duty
is not like a funky fire cracker smell—”
A kid in the back shouts, “Pop, Pop, Stink Cloud.”
Ms Boots says, “Enough. You aren’t animals.”
I say, “No, Ms. Boots, today, they are.
They’re animals learning to growl and claw
and fly.” Another kid says, “and to duty.”
I correct: “‘Ode to Duty,’ that’s Wordsworth.
And, take Layla here, she’ll tell you.
Layla, what are you?” Layla looks at Ms Boots,
back at me, out the window at the wind
and light—she scans the scribbled lines
on her page and closes her eyes. The room’s silent,
awaiting some new duty riff.
But before she speaks, her eyes
press out several quiet tears.
None of us know anything. Layla
pushes her hands into her hair,
and says, “I’m a dragonfly, a globe skimmer—
I don’t want to go home
or to be here. I am above the river
gliding free in every wind,
where I see things
only dragonflies see.
My whole head is an eye.”
by Andrew Hemmert
In the library basement bathroom
a plate-shaped absence cut through
the blue polymer stall divider.
The blue of the stall divider was faded, streaked
with transparent stains, and the hole abrasive
at its edges. Abrasive to the eye.
I didn’t touch it, at that time
having no idea why there would be such an opening
between the stalls—and once I realized
what it was, no idea how whoever cut the hole
did so in secret, without anyone noticing.
Soon after, the library covered it up
with a sheet of metal. Which seems to me, now,
like someone nailing shut the covers
of a book, so what was passed through,
and then refused passage, was less flesh
than knowledge, then knowledge made secret,
a secret like something whispered
by one boy to another at a sleepover—two hands
cupped around an ear, two sleeping bags
rolled out in a basement, a pull-cord bulb dangling overhead,
waiting to be touched and turned to light.
Things Are Not Going Well Between You and Julianna
by Emma Cairns Watson
But at the restaurant that year it gets a little less dark every day.
Women start coming in and giving you the outsides of their mouths
on paper, and terracotta cotton, and the leaves of horse
chestnuts. What are you going to do with all these kisses?
There’s a plant sad old gardeners call lady of the night. It’s yellow,
the flower, and gets mopey in full sunlight like Julianna does and dies.
But during a summer sundown: you should see her open.
Your father was sleeping with a woman down the road who kept ladies
in her beds. It was a father-daughter thing, going to this affair. Your mama liked it.
You’d be given front-row dirt to watch the nightly miracle. Don’t move, don’t come
looking. In the time it took the flowers to remember
to be yellow eyes and stare, like you, at girls at twilight
he could be in and out. And the garden was so quiet
and smelled like black soil and mama’s whitest wine and
in school that year you learned about Babylon, its hanging gardens and its whores
and thought, in future, (though there were other reasons too, and better ones)
I don’t think I’ll have much to do with men.
You could take those animal print patterns: the spot and stripe
and dapple of women’s mouths, red against old flat and press
them into a book of the way other people want you; call it mouths you haven’t kissed
for her sake. Still she won’t like it, your offering, thin sacrifice
of beeswax and mica, will go up in votive smoke. Up in your father’s house nothing
makes as much sense as this yellow bonfire she’s making now of love for you,
heat that roasts and opens bad hearts like the skirts of sepals,
something that knows how to last the day.
Letter to M, far from the idyllic shore
by Kathryn Smith
Yesterday, I was pummeled by grief before I knew
what was happening. Judith Butler says that’s
how grief happens: one sets out with a project in mind
and finds oneself foiled, exhausted, unable
to proceed. I don’t even know who Judith Butler is,
but somehow she knows me. She knows I
am not special. Everyone hurts all the time. Then
this morning, the pain and the blood. In college
I read an article (by a man, no doubt) that said
Sylvia Plath wasn’t depressed; she just had PMS.
It made me want to stick my head in an oven.
These days I want to crawl into bed and cry
myself to sleep in the middle of the afternoon.
It’s not so bad. Give me a shoreline brimming
with dead crabs, and I’ll get over it. I’m no expert—
just another person made of lead who has sometimes
confused sadness for desire. The time I thought
I would change my life completely, J held on
and wouldn’t let go. And the second time. The third.
Over and over in inertia’s clutches. It’s so boring, I know.
I’m toeing the edge of my past like a kelp-thick shore
teeming with flies. Not even seagulls want crabs
once they’re dead. They know what’s hollow.
I love the shells and how they fragment, though I know
they were killed by toxins and rising ocean temperatures
and the cold science of overabundance. Look how the end
of that word is dance—a dance on the graves of all
the dead ocean-dwellers. Every day I learn how to kill whales
more quickly. Now that’s a thing to grieve. It was so long ago
that I wanted to die. Lifetimes, really. I’ve locked away my secrets
and thrown them in an ocean. Maybe that’s why I live so far
from the shore, but every chance I get, I stare it down.
The New Lake
by Mark Leahy
It is not natural, it is essential.
It is essentially a ditch
for storm-water runoff
to prevent flooding,
ringed with willows
to combat erosion,
stocked with a diversity of fish
to eat the feces of other animals.
The arriving snakehead bird
cannot believe its luck
I chase it on my lunch break,
its knife beak bound
in discarded fishing line,
tripping over its wide feet,
but faster than me.
I ask a stranger from the hospital
across the street for help
but he doesn’t understand,
shakes his bandaged head
as it hobbles starving toward
what it believes to be
the safety of the water.
Tomorrow, I will come back and watch
a woman teach the wood stork how to beg for scraps,
and I will watch a heron swallow a duckling whole,
like spun sugar plucked from the reeds,
and the snakehead bird will sleep
between the dead, wet leaves,
and I will have been of no particular use
to any of them.
Lessons in Dentistry
by Rita Feinstein
You told me not to cry,
but I cried as my pink
saliva filled the sink.
You told me your brother
dug a snow shelter
after the same surgery—
the melted water in his ear
hardened to an icicle overnight
and punctured the drum.
You told me, This is how
we earn respect: Walk it off.
Sleep it off. Suck it up.
This is your family creed:
a year’s worth of lamb meat
frozen in the basement,
a brush hog, an orchard,
and a shotgun. Willpower
over pain. Willpower
as a potent anesthetic,
whiting out nerves as teeth
are mined from the bone.
Anesthetic as willpower,
because not everyone can
brick up their pain in an igloo.
When a bone is broken,
a new snowfall of cells
rushes to patch the crack.
When a tooth breaks,
it cannot heal itself.
I always thought the teeth
were the strongest bones.
Now you’re telling me
that teeth aren’t bones at all.
Linette Marie Allen is earning an MFA in creative writing and publishing arts at the University of Baltimore. A native of Washington, she’ll drive 40 miles anywhere for single-origin coffee and dog-eared books. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Pleiades, Notre Dame Review, and Prairie Schooner.
Geoff Anderson founded the non-profit Janus: Arts & Letters, focused on developing multi-racial, multi-ethnic poets. He’s a Callaloo fellow, and a cat person with a dog. He is assistant poetry editor with Flypaper Mag, and has work in Yemassee, Southern Indiana Review, and The Journal. AndersonGeoff.com.
Devon Balwit teaches in the Pacific Northwest. Her most recent collection is titled A Brief Way to Identify a Body (Ursus Americanus Press). Her individual poems and reviews can be found in Relief: A Journal of Art and Faith, The Cincinnati Review, Tampa Review, apt, Free State Review, Timberline Review, Rattle, and more. More of her work can be found at Pelapdx.Wixsite.com/DevonBalwitPoet.
Scott Beal’s first book, Wait ’Til You Have Real Problems, was published by Dzanc Books in 2014. His chapbook, The Octopus, won the Gertrude Press 2015 Poetry Chapbook Contest and was published in 2016. His poems have recently appeared in Michigan Quarterly Review, Rattle, Opossum, Diode, Pleiades, and other journals, and have won awards including a Pushcart Prize. He teaches writing at the University of Michigan, serves as Dzanc writer-in-residence at Ann Arbor Open School, and cohosts the monthly Skazat! reading series in Ann Arbor.
Ellery Beck has poems published or forthcoming in Potomac Review, Arkana, Little Patuxent Review, Thin Air Magazine, The Broadkill Review, Prairie Margins, and The Susquehanna Review. She was a winner of the 2019 AWP Portland Review flash contest. She is the interview editor for The Shore Poetry.
Sheila Black is the author of four poetry collections, most recently Iron, Ardent (Educe Press, 2017). She is a coeditor of Beauty Is a Verb: The New Poetry of Disability (Cinco Puntos Press, 2011). Her poems have appeared in Poetry, The Spectacle, The Nation, The New York Times, and other places. She currently divides her time between San Antonio, TX and Washington, DC, where she works at AWP.
Melissa Brewer lives in a Lubbock, TX cotton field and shares her home with three sweet mules and one stubborn (yet quite charming) husband. She holds an MA in playwriting from Boston University and a BA in creative writing from Texas Tech University. Her poems have most recently appeared in Southern Poetry Review, riverSedge, Bearing the Mask: Southwestern Persona Poems, and The Southern Poetry Anthology, Volume VIII: Texas.
Kierstin Bridger is a Colorado writer and author of Demimonde (Lithic Press), the 2017 Women Writing the West’s Willa Award. She is also author of All Ember (Urban Farmhouse Press). Winner of the Mark Fischer Poetry Prize, the 2015 ACC Writer’s Studio award, and short-listed for the Manchester Poetry Competition in the UK, Bridger is both editor of Ridgway Alley Poems and codirector of Open Bard Poetry Series. She cohosts Poetry Voice with poet Uche Ogbuji. Find more of her work in December, Prairie Schooner, and Painted Bride Quarterly. She earned her MFA at Pacific University. KierstinBridger.com
Poet and photographer Ronda Piszk Broatch is the author of Lake of Fallen Constellations (MoonPath Press, 2015). Ronda was a finalist for the Four Way Books Prize, and her poems have been nominated several times for the Pushcart Prize. Her publishing credits include Blackbird, Prairie Schooner, Sycamore Review, Mid-American Review, Puerto del Sol, Public Radio KUOW’s All Things Considered, among others.
B.J. Buckley is a Montana poet and writer. Her most recent horticultural experiments involve growing tomatoes and peppers upside down.
Bailey Cohen is the author of Self-Portraits as Yurico (Glass Poetry Press, 2020). An undergraduate student at New York University, Bailey studies English literature and politics. His work has appeared in publications such as Southern Indiana Review, Boulevard, PANK, Raleigh Review, Boiler Journal, Longleaf Review, a part of Poached Hare’s monthly special, and elsewhere. Bailey edits Alegrarse, an online publication of poetry and interviews, and serves as associate editor for Frontier Poetry. He can be found online across most social media platforms @BaileyC213.
Katharine Coles’ latest collection of poems is Wayward (Red Hen Press, 2019); her collection of essays, The Stranger I Become: Essays in Reckless Poetics, will be out from Turtle Point Press in 2021.
Star Coulbrooke is the Inaugural Poet Laureate of Logan City, UT. She founded the Helicon West reading series and directs the Utah State University Writing Center. Her most recent poetry collections are Thin Spines of Memory, Both Sides from the Middle, and City of Poetry.
Lee Ann Dalton is a poet, fiction writer, and LGBTQIA+ youth advocate. She holds an MFA from Vermont College and her poetry has appeared in journals such as Mezzo Cammin, New Ohio Review, and Faultline. She keeps bees and can catch a swarm without getting stung. She lives in southern New Hampshire with her husband and daughter.
Julie Danho’s first full-length collection, Those Who Keep Arriving, won the 2018 Gerald Cable Book Award from Silverfish Review Press, and her chapbook, Six Portraits, received the 2013 Slapering Hol Press Chapbook Award. Her poems have appeared in Pleiades, Alaska Quarterly Review, Blackbird, and New Ohio Review, among others. She has received fellowships from the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts and the MacColl Johnson Fund.
Chelsea Dingman’s first book, Thaw, was chosen by Allison Joseph to win the National Poetry Series (University of Georgia Press, 2017). Her second book, Through a Small Ghost, won the Georgia Poetry Prize and was published in February 2020. Her recent work can be found in The Southern Review, The New England Review, and The Kenyon Review, among others.
Michael Raudzis Dinkel is a writer and artist living in Anchorage, AK. He has an MFA in creative writing from the University of Alaska Anchorage. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in River Teeth, The Gettysburg Review, and Orion.
Wendy Drexler’s poetry collection, Before There Was Before, was published by Iris Press in 2017. Her poems have been, or will soon be in The Atlanta Review, Barrow Street, J Journal, Nimrod, Prairie Schooner, Salamander, Mid-American Review, The Hudson Review, The Threepenny Review, The Worcester Review, and Valparaiso Poetry Review, among others; featured on Verse Daily and WBUR’s Cognoscenti; and in numerous anthologies. She’s the poet in residence at New Mission High School in Hyde Park, MA, and a programming co-chair for the New England Poetry Club.
Jeff Ewing’s poetry, fiction, and essays have appeared in Crazyhorse, Southwest Review, ZYZZYVA, Willow Springs, Subtropics, and Saint Ann’s Review. His debut short story collection, The Middle Ground, was published in 2019 by Into the Void Press. He lives in Sacramento, CA with his wife and daughter.
Kim Garcia is the author of The Brighter House (White Pine Press), DRONE (The Backwaters Press), Madonna Magdalene (Turning Point Books), and a chapbook, Tales of the Sisters. Her poems have appeared in Crab Orchard Review, Crazyhorse, and Mississippi Review. Newer poems have appeared or are forthcoming in IMAGE, Tupelo Quarterly (winner of the 2019 Broadside Prize), New Ohio Review, The Summerset Review, and Colorado Review. Garcia teaches creative writing at Boston College.
Marie Gauthier works as a marketing projects specialist at Pioneer Valley Books. She is a Franklin County Regional Representative for Mass Poetry, curator of the Collected Poets Series, and President of the League of Women Voters of Franklin County. She serves on the LWVMA Membership Steering Committee and on the Buckland-Shelburne Elementary School Local Education Council. Her poems have appeared in Cave Wall, Poetry Northwest, The Common, and elsewhere. She lives in Shelburne Falls, MA with her family.
Caroline Goodwin’s poem in this issue is from a manuscript about the death of her husband in 2016 entitled The Trades. She is a former Wallace Stegner Fellow in poetry; she lives and teaches in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her books are Trapline, Peregrine, The Paper Tree, and Custody of the Eyes.
Laura Grothaus is a Baltimore-based poet and visual artist. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and garnered awards internationally, from Poetry in Pubs in Bath, England to the Nazim Hikmet Poetry Competition in Cary, NC. Galleries in New York and San Diego have shown her drawings, and she’s partnered with musicians, activists, and visual artists on workshops and performance projects in Chicago, Cincinnati, and Baltimore. When she was five years old, she lit her hair on fire with her own birthday candles.
Shelby Handler is a writer, organizer, and educator living on Duwamish territory/Seattle. A 2019 Richard Hugo House fellow, their recent work has appeared or is forthcoming in Gigantic Sequins, Pacifica Literary Review, Homology Lit, 3Elements Review, and the Write Bloody anthology We Will Be Shelter: Poems for Survival. Follow them: @shelbeleh
Jessica Hincapie is a writer and teacher raised in south Florida. She received her MFA in poetry from the University of Texas and is currently the program director at the Writing Barn, a workshop and retreat space in south Austin. She teaches creative writing to children, young adults, adults, and senior citizens with onset memory loss. She is the recipient of numerous poetry awards including winner of the Michael Adams Thesis Prize in Poetry judged by Camille Rankine, honorable mention for Gulf Coast’s Poetry Prize 2017, finalist for Frontier Poetry’s 2018 Industry Prize, and more. You can find her work in The Indiana Review, Meridian, Ruminate Magazine, New Ohio Review, and elsewhere.
Michael Hurley is from Pittsburgh. His work has appeared in or is forthcoming from The Cincinnati Review, Sycamore Review, New Delta Review, The Massachusetts Review, Copper Nickel, Mid-American Review, Prairie Schooner, Alaska Quarterly Review, North American Review, FIELD, Crab Orchard Review, Blackbird, Washington Square Review, and elsewhere. His chapbook, Wooden Boys, is available from Seven Kitchens Press.
Christine Jones is author of the full-length poetry book Girl Without a Shirt (Finishing Line Press, 2020). She’s also the founder/editor-in-chief of Poems2go, an international public poetry project, and an associate editor of Lily Poetry Review. Her poems have appeared in numerous journals and online, including SWWIM, 32 Poems, Cagibi, Passager Books, Blue Mountain Review, Ruminate, Mom Egg Review, Literary Mama, and Salamander. Her poems have also been broadcasted on WOMR’s Poet’s Corner, and WCAI’s Poetry Sunday. She lives in Cape Cod, MA.
Kate Kingston has published two books of poetry, History of Grey, a runner-up in the Main Street Rag Award and Shaking the Kaleidoscope, a finalist in the Idaho Prize. She has also published three chapbooks and is the recipient of numerous awards including the W.D. Snodgrass Award for Poetic Endeavor and Excellence, the Ruth Stone Prize, and the Atlanta Review International Publication Prize. Kingston is currently working on a series of memoir poems titled “The Future Wears Camouflage.”
David Dodd Lee is the author of ten books of poetry, as well as a forthcoming book of collages and poetry entitled Unlucky Animals. He writes and makes visual art and kayaks in northern Indiana, where he lives on the St. Joseph River. He is an associate professor of English at Indiana University South Bend.
Joel Long’s book Winged Insects won the White Pine Press Poetry Prize. Lessons in Disappearance (2012) and Knowing Time by Light (2010) were published by Blaine Creek Press. His chapbooks, Chopin’s Preludes and Saffron Beneath Every Frost were published by Elik Press. His poems and essays have appeared in Gettysburg Review, Sports Literate, Prairie Schooner, Bellingham Review, Rhino, Bitter Oleander, Massachusetts Review, Terrain.org, and Water-Stone Review, among others. He lives in Salt Lake City.
Robert Lynn is writer and attorney from Fauquier County, VA. He is currently an MFA student in poetry at New York University. His poems have been featured or are forthcoming in American Literary Review, Antioch Review, Blackbird, New Ohio Review, and other publications. He lives in Brooklyn.
When not hiding in the fifteenth century, and sometimes even then, Jennifer A. McGowan has published poetry and prose in many magazines and anthologies on both sides of the Atlantic, including PANK and The Rialto. Her latest collection, With Paper for Feet, a series of dramatic monologues and folk tales, is available from Arachne Press (UK).
Owen McLeod’s poems have found homes in Copper Nickel, Massachusetts Review, New England Review, Ploughshares, The Southern Review, The Sun, and many other places. His debut collection, Dream Kitchen, won the 2018 Vassar Miller Prize in Poetry.
Michael Mercurio lives and writes in the Pioneer Valley of Massachusetts. A graduate of the Lesley University MFA program, he has poems published in the Indianapolis Review, Crab Creek Review, Poems2go, and Rust + Moth. Michael is a member of the steering committee for the Amherst Poetry Festival, held every September at Emily Dickinson’s house.
Avid cyclist, end-of-life counselor, and grandmother of five, Nancy Meyer lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her work has appeared in Colorado Review, Tupelo Quarterly, Bitterzoet, Indolent Press, The Centrifugal Eye, Sand Hill Review, Caesura, Snapdragon, Passager, Ageless Authors, and TheAsexual. She has been published in eight anthologies, most recently Open Hands by Tupelo Press and Crossing Class by Wising Up Press.
Anna Newman holds an MFA from the University of Maryland. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Best New Poets 2017, Rattle, Poetry Northwest, Tikkun, and elsewhere. She lives in Salt Lake City with her husband and dog, Bentley.
Dan O’Brien’s three poetry collections, published in the US (Hanging Loose Press & Measure Press) and in the UK (CB Editions), are War Reporter (winner of the UK’s Fenton Aldeburgh Prize; shortlisted for Forward Prize for a First Collection), Scarsdale, and New Life. His fourth poetry collection, Our Cancers, is forthcoming from Acre Books (University of Cincinnati Press) in 2021.
Will Reger is the inaugural Poet Laureate for the city of Urbana, IL. He is a founding member of the CU (Champaign-Urbana) Poetry Group (cupoetry.com) and teaches at Illinois State University in Normal. His work appears in Zingara Poetry Review, Passager Journal, Eclectica Magazine, The Blue Nib Literary Magazine, Broadkill Review, Cagibi, and Innesfree Poetry Journal. His first chapbook is Cruel with Eagles.
Seattle poet Susan Rich is the author of four books of poetry, most recently, Cloud Pharmacy (Julie Suk Prize shortlist) and The Alchemist’s Kitchen (Washington State Book Award finalist). She has been granted a Fulbright Fellowship, the PEN USA Award for Poetry, Times (of London) Literary Supplement Award, and an Artists Trust Fellowship. Rich’s poems appear in Harvard Review, Image Journal, New England Review, and World Literature Today, among many other publications. She has two collections forthcoming: A Gallery of Postcards and Maps: New and Selected Poems (Salmon Press) and Blue Atlas (Red Hen Press).
Suzanne Manizza Roszak is an assistant professor of English at East Carolina University. Her poetry has appeared in Colorado Review, Crab Orchard Review, Denver Quarterly, Poetry Northwest, and Third Coast.
Eric Roy has poetry forthcoming at Third Coast, Salamander, Bennington Review, and Westerly. His poems can also be found at Green Mountains Review, The Minnesota Review, Tampa Review, Salt Hill, Tar River Poetry, and elsewhere.
M.A. Scott’s poetry has recently appeared in or is forthcoming in The Mid-American Review, Pretty Owl Poetry, The Adirondack Review, Heron Tree, and Unlost. She grew up in Rhode Island and currently lives in New York’s Hudson Valley, where she likes to spend time with trees.
D.R. Shipp, originally from Texas, is an observer finding his way. His work can be found in JuxtaProse, Chaleur, Cleaver Magazine, HCE Review, Silver Needle Press, and Waxing & Waning. He splits his time between now and then, traveling. He has a curious online following, Instagram @shippwreckage.
Johnna St. Cyr is currently an MFA student at the University of New Hampshire, where she serves as the poetry editor for the literary journal Barnstorm. Previously, she studied English and creative writing at Colby College, where she earned the Mary Lowe Carver Prize in Poetry. Her fiction has been a finalist in the Glimmer Train Emerging Writers Series, and the Very Short Fiction Competition. Her poetry is forthcoming in Gulf Stream.
Anastasia Stelse is a native of southeastern Wisconsin, a graduate of the MFA program at American University, and a graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi’s creative writing PhD program housed in the Center for Writers. She currently teaches at the University of South Florida. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Poet Lore, Sou’wester, Passages North, Fairy Tale Review, and Crab Orchard Review, among others.
Nancy Takacs’ The Worrier poems received the Juniper Prize for Poetry. Author of three books, and four chapbooks of poetry, she is currently the Poet Laureate of Utah’s Art City, Helper. A former wilderness instructor and creative writing professor at Utah State University, she teaches workshops for communities of writers. Nancy also spends time in Wisconsin, near the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore on Lake Superior. Nancy is an avid hiker, boater, swimmer, and enjoys spending most of her time outdoors.
Adam Tavel’s third poetry collection, Catafalque, won the 2017 Richard Wilbur Award (University of Evansville Press, 2018). He is also the author of The Fawn Abyss (Salmon Poetry, 2017) and Plash & Levitation (University of Alaska Press, 2015), winner of the Permafrost Book Prize in Poetry. His recent poems appear, or will soon appear, in Verse Daily, The Georgia Review, Puerto del Sol, New Ohio Review, Sixth Finch, Salamander, Potomac Review, and American Literary Review, among others. You can find him online at AdamTavel.com.
Isaac Timm graduated from Utah State University in 2014; he holds bachelor’s degrees in history and English creative writing. His poems have been published in The Helicon West Anthology (2016). He lives in Logan, UT with his wife, Aaron.
William Trowbridge’s eighth book of poetry, Oldguy: Superhero—The Complete Collection, came out from Red Hen Press in October 2019. It’s a greatly expanded collection of the poems appearing in the 2016 Red Hen graphic chapbook Oldguy: Superhero. Trowbridge is a faculty mentor in the University of Nebraska Omaha Low-residency MFA in Writing Program and was Poet Laureate of Missouri from 2012 to 2016. For more, see WilliamTrowbridge.net.
Laura Walker holds an MFA from Northern Arizona University, where she was editor-in-chief for Thin Air Magazine. She writes both poetry and fiction, and teaches writing classes at Southern Utah University. She comes from Southern California by way of Flagstaff, AZ, and always finds herself wishing for a little more snow and a little less sun. She has fiction featured in Black Works from Underwood Press and poetry featured in Gravitas, Roanoke Review, and CircleShow.
Steve Yates lives in southern Utah where he enjoys cooking, hiking, and working on a random variety of arts-related projects, including photography, sketching people, painting, and writing. For relaxation he enjoys watching low-budget monster movies with his beloved woman and interpreting shadows on cave walls.
Holli Zollinger is a self-taught artist who has made a career of her talents: drawing, painting, and surface design. She is continually inspired by her surroundings living in the desert town of Moab, UT. She is highly motivated by the art of creativity and incorporates the color, texture, and pattern she sees in the world around her. Holli’s work has been published and featured worldwide. HolliZollinger.com
A native of Utah, Shari Zollinger divides her time between her work as a professional astrologer and independent bookseller. She has been known to write a poetic verse or two with published work in Sugar House Review and Redactions: Poetry & Poetics. She recently published Carrying Her Stone, a collection of poems based on the work of Auguste Rodin. ShariZollinger.com