Edited by Amylia Grace and Heather Ann Schmidt Cover painting: “Downy Wren” by Heather Ann Schmidt
Harry Calhoun Chasing the squirrels 90 pounds of Labrador glowing black as an overcast night and hopping to be let out I open the back door to the deck and he bolts like a thoroughbred from the gate and if squirrels could not climb trees or if dogs could fly he would be Von Richthofen, ace of dogs, and in my mind he is but maybe I just empathize, waking most mornings to words hanging high in the trees poems like squirrels taunting me and I stare up but cannot quite reach them
Fumbling for silver bullets Descending into childhood trying to understand aging At an isolated outpost in your imagination playing in your youth in your mind it was Africa and in the game you and your playmates played you pretended to stay up all night waiting for the werewolves inevitably descending on your camp and you took turns standing guard and sleeping but one night that you’ve frequently dreamed about since in your fantasy playing you slept but the sentry also fell asleep and the werewolves battered at your gate and you woke panicked fumbling for your silver bullets which unfortunately are Hollywood mythology and equally unfortunate the werewolves are real
Evening, May 21st I take my dog out, one last trip to the deck and beyond to the back yard before we sleep. I’m barefoot in t-shirt and cotton gym shorts and it’s not chilly at 10 p.m. for the first time in months. Alex mostly sits by me as if he knows my contentment. Takes a leisurely stroll swishing through the high grass, the lawn I will mow this weekend. All this, a month before solstice! Bliss. The days grow longer, the grass grows greener and warmth grows a pumice next to our souls that steadily erodes away some measure of our grief
I feel like being a poet today Work doesn’t creak in the right key on the loose plank of the hardwood floor as I step through the doorway from my bedroom. Office and typing don’t cast the same ochre shadows as the egg-yolk pencil and its lead etching lines in the sultry bedroom on the yellow pad. Poetry is such a creative way of saying, “I just don’t feel like getting up today.” I feel like feeling, doing work I don’t get paid for, and the cocoa and brown contrasts of our new bedroom furniture are to die to describe. Like pouring chocolate milk into espresso, adding Venetian-blinded light and waiting for it to ignite. And I would step outside this splendor why? To get a swig of brandy, the color of gasoline that fuels me to the beach, the drowsy alcohol and lulls me to sleep, where I dream that I have to work to keep on creaking in whatever minor key these old bones move to
The wrong thing It could have been a thousand percentage points of bad or a thousand exclamation marks too loud, but what I said had no business being alone with us in this small room. In our bedroom, yet. This explosiion caused the gaping hole of this morning’s silence.
Mark DeCarteret st agatha your heart still brings word from within this cross-stitched chest of both flame & chill st dorothy snow lit from within-beautyâ€™s given to bedlam when opposites wed st thomas sherwood I couldnâ€™t think less of God & why'd He have it any other way? st apollonia after the third tooth you took what came next (to be) some kind of a dream
st scholastica I shook like thunder-brothers, we look more alike when favored by rain
Joan Dupre 1981 It was the year Iowa farmers clubbed to death 15,000 jack rabbits for eating their crops. Piles of bodies, heaps of red and white, stiff, matted hair, dried masks of blood. It was the year 33 Haitian refugees drowned off the coast of Fort Lauderdale, in sight of shore. Bloated, bobbing shapes, pieces of broken boat floating, loose ropes weaving in and out like eels. That year your belly turned hard, distended under your loose print shift. You shuffled on feet stiff and swollen with water, reaching, always, for the pack of Kools tucked into your bra.
You got the virus that was going round, vomited all day, your breaths shallow, white suds, foam, spilling from your mouth. That night the sound of hammering on the kitchen door â€“ someone yelling to hurry. The next day, I went through your address book. I called your friends, telling each one of them that you were gone until I got used to the word dead. When they dug your grave the earth was packed tight, breaking apart easily as the grave diggerâ€™s booted heel kicked the shovel in.
The Cicadaâ€™s Song The cattails along the river are matted like tangled hair encrusted with the first frost. At noon, we climb a rock face, wet and slick as a rain boot, and slide back down, taking turns pushing the other up. At dusk, the sky turns the blue of bruises, broken only by thin strips of clouds, their bottoms flat as irons. The setting sun makes shadows like gullies. Our shadows, tall and thin alongside us, overlap. At night a silo lights the skyâ€” a church dome above a field
where sheep, curled asleep, scatter at our approach. Back at camp, your eyes, the color of the pond edge, are asking me to ask and your hands are on me, leopard smooth, until the song of the cicada begins, the sound of love splintering until all we could hear was a loud white noise.
Notes from a Woman in Psych Ward 6 You don’t know, do you? That you shut me like a wicked book, slammed me shut, hard. I remember thinking when you did it, that you should slap it down harder, again and again, until there’s no feeling left. And now there is just an endless circling, a cage on a Ferris wheel that never stops long enough to open the door. All the flailing I would do, like a shot duck. Sometimes I laugh to think of it. I know what you think when you see me laughing soundlessly, chest heaving, a grin like an idiot, and I won’t let you in to know more. Then my look will change, and you call the nurse to come with the needle. Why do you come here? To punish yourself?
As if I think there could be punishment enough. I would kill you without skipping a breath, as you once almost did to me. But no, I’d rather keep you alive just to see the look on your face. I struggle against the needle’s effects, hanging in the air between two tall buildings, impaled on an iron fence, while you are slipping away. I’m sliding down, hallways, tunnels, laundry chutes, fleeing, until a heavy steel door slams shut, shut, shut, shut inside me like a drum beating, sound crashing around me, a house burning, the burning beams cracking over me, trapped, screaming. Later when I wake, the burning is inside embers scorching my throat you can see them in my eyes and I think of lunging for you.
Now you talk to me as if I were sitting across the breakfast table, slicing a grapefruit, passing the sugar bowl. You smile. I hear the doctor telling you there’s something else he can try. I curl deeper into my half-sleep close me up inside where you can’t get at me can’t touch me can’t hear my silence.
Looking for the Moon An innocent act, this barricade, this shoring up against tomorrow unconscious, amorphous â€“ you canâ€™t pin it down, make it stick. The sandbags sit against the wall, cheap metaphors for what lies between us, a heavy substance, burlapped, sacked, thrown against the future by a heavy muscled arm, a gloved hand, a dock worker on second shift. I look up as the waitress pours another glass of wine and see you looking at me. Later we agree to address it later, not naming it, but promising to remember, to name the vehicle, the tenor, to use the words to get at, to get around, to stack against a past of misused conjunctions and prepositions. Now the connecting words refuse to make sense.
Nouns and verbs we’ve strung together wait, hiding, looking for the moon on brownstone steps, in train stations, on fourth floor landings, stairwells, hallways, empty rooms, echoing with footsteps – your breath, my breath, the rhythms of us. Left is the feel of your cotton shirt, rough against my face, your belt buckle at eye level glinting an invitation, a warning, a beginning that doesn’t include me.
I clambered aboard as ordered. It was dark inside, though it wasn’t night and wouldn’t be night for hours. Ghosts of lost objects patrolled the aisle. I leaned back and closed my eyes. When I woke up, fire was cradling my head in its lap. We were far from anyplace I knew. The woman reading to her seatmate hesitated over certain words – verdigris, exculpatory. Others passed around a Polaroid of a wall. Poor everybody, I thought. The sun, suddenly below the horizon, continued to breathe with difficulty.
Amylia Grace Freeing Atlas When it blizzards, I want it to be my fault. I want to walk on icy rivers round the yard and freeze the stone path to my door. History rappels down a ledge. I hang sideways on a sill near the top. All I cannot see lies below me. I am lowered on invisible strings. (The world presses down.) When I was a child I was put in a room. Storms entered through the second story floorboards. Fires spread across the ceiling. (When the door swung open, I jumped.) There were birch trees outside; the wind moved
them only at night. I lit candles in my closet. I crawled on burning sand toward creases of light. (Nothing to do but walk in thickness.) I want to climb back up the wall. I want the sky to squirm overhead. I want to walk in rain in the desert and carry the sky on a camel.
Carole Lynn Grellas Teardrops from the Moon She was the last to touch your morning face before you walked down the hillside in tiny steps, with unsteady feet like an unrolling ribbon thrown to an unknown place of uncertain return, where distance is measured in eternal goodbyes and grasses grow high to cover all footprints that wade in heartache connecting days from solstice to solstice, drenched with dew or summer rain, or an angel’s saliva, from anointing blades with an imposing kiss, where no dominion is as powerful as the place you've left to dream.
Above a Cedar Floor you were caged in my closet for years, because I loved you to the point of madness. Barred in, your heart made weak; sweet broken thing, a tiny sparrow perched on a wooden branch. Forgive me. I remember each wing raised to a sliver of light in-between an old robe and worn-out raincoat where half-torn pockets once saved you from bad weather. Sometimes I opened the door and listened as you sang your silent song, barely audible but loud enough to push through imaginary clouds in search of your made-up heaven. Somewhere over a rainbow, until I could no longer stand it, the staring off, far into
nothingness as if something better was just out of reach. So I left the door knowingly ajar. A sympathetic moment I cannot explain. One feather remains in the toggle of that yellow slicker; a souvenir that lies without leaving like a small mercy hopes to heal a sin.
Parsonage through a Keyhole in Time When I was young, I ignored the grace of an eventless day, every magic of the seamless sky concealing a plethora of looming possibilities and that supernatural door inside your eyes; an ancient lover held there from another existence in death’s sanctuary for abandoned hearts, that wait for one more chance beyond a thousand nighttimes, like a grieving flower already dead or lost prayers released on a snowflake’s crystal with liquefaction sure to come. Today I threaded stars with ribbons I’ve saved holding letters unwritten and words from midnight telegrams never sent to a windowless heaven. But here in the dimness of an undone wish there is no now, only yesterdays that find their clearness through passing. I’ve missed all signs called faith, while obsessed with survival. It is only this memory that is true, only this remembrance that determines what never was. How broken is the iris that cannot see the rainbow?
Defend-Ants Let us give thanks for death of the pest that strutted with arrogance across the cookbook in serpentine steps on unfamiliar floors over the page half-dotted with chicken stock like an enemy soldier marching to war─ and let us give thanks to the loss of his followers; tiny smugglers on a silver spoon as they moved with purpose in organized style and light-fingered actions that called for penalty in the midst of a instant when something came over me I cannot describe; propelled my hand to disorderly conduct; a careless obliteration in a moment’s rage, forever tainting my heart with the perfect murder. Let us give thanks to the carnage of pests; OMG, a beautiful thing…
Shopping in San Rafael with my Grandmother I shouldn’t have seen you leaving the store with that fur jacket tucked under your arm. I was only a kid and you guessed your secret was safe with me as you turned down the aisle in the 3rd street mall. It’s been over forty years and even now I wonder how you had the balls to undress that mannequin and maneuver your way through the parking lot with such finesse. I might have said something to the store keeper, but my grandmother was trying on coats and admiring herself in the mirror, in the midst of your shifty departure and you gloated with such pleasure it gave me a shudder to think how cold you must have been to thieve a coat in front of a child, and that dummy looked so much better naked.
Alexandra Isacson An Alchemist’s Asylum 1. Theta Waves A blue tattoo loops serenity prayers around her left arm. She shoulders crescent moons & releases theta waves of lucent stars spun from silk stockings. She flutters moth wings & powders the night flowers.
2. Fingertips Hummers weave petals, leaves, cotton fluff & spiders’ silk in climbing roses.
Mothers tuck their bodies into nests: heads, wings, & tail arch above the world. Baby Costas flash metallic violet throats, sip nectar from her fingertips.
3. Dragon Fly Wings She collects fallen nests, bits of wasp, bee combs, & dragon fly wings. She feels altered in a Lower East Side bar, a punk band jams while she sets up for her art show.
4. The Chapel A red mouth blown bowl with holy water casts colors on the floor. The Virgin of Guadalupe opens her tapestry hands. She stitches her prayers with waxed linen in books.
M.J. Iuppa Interview
I’ve been thinking of all the words that have rearranged my life: words like pine– opening its cathedral doors & emerald quiet; hammock– the whispered
conspiracies of sisters overheard in summer’s high fever; shadow– twilight flickering red
through a stained glass window– something left of that fire like a smudge of cloud in lake skies reminds me I work by memory and struggle to perfect a story beneath a calm surface.
This afternoon I took an hour to walk the back fields with a weed stuck in my mouth and a stray cat around my feet. I wanted to improve what I say I can see– the last days of winter, nearly gone in the precision of rain– a month of mud, of ruts, of minerals that smell like rot, like love, that dirty word, telling more than I wanted. To say dark flowers bloom on wallpaper and a wasp preens on the sill names the invisible. I’ve told my versions too many times.
Sudden Vacancies Wondrousâ€“ the mailboxâ€™s mouth falls opens to the dash of honey-colored ants stacking translucent eggs in neat rows. no letter, no postcard, or unexpected check
has held my thoughts such as this.
Joan McNerney White Heat This dry moment we lay in sweat beds. Limp flowers turned into themselves. Lightning scorches skies with hot zigzags. Will it ever rain, when will cicadas be silent? Memories of a white room burning pains…shunts, stains. A bottle bursts filling the sidewalk with rancid beer. Throat of bird swollen, screaming.
David Markson is Dead â€œFrom future transmigrations save my soul.â€?
--D. M. David Markson is dead. The place where he stood is paved with snow. There is an undimmed spot in my head where his novels opened me. Today I am sad and tonight I will be sad. Under the reading lamp is a black pool. I will not read. My mouth is full of old wind. David Markson is dead and his books are moving around in me like fretful memory.
The Two-Prostitute Race The two-prostitute race began. We failed to pick a favorite. The two-prostitute race was held under a sun so hot we thought it was new. By nighttime it was the same old sun, set in its ways, gone. The darkness moved in, cold, bony, relentlessly loving and cruel.
*Before the South* Remembering when grief was small like pockets and hopscotch, she kneels on the lawn – dead with Iowa summer – and prays to a backyard statue of the Virgin Mary. Storms hide in her words (– she’d once thought she was voice, free from body), cutting the crests of waves and affording her the repose of a sea-on-hull lullaby. Before the South, her Hindenburg heart had been strong, but there, cotton became tongue, became the keyhole of his navel, And, still, she remembers the days of her mother hollowing out gourds to store their change. She cries, almost hearing her biography:
- She needed the humidity that put curls in her hair And the Bible under her pillow, allowing her to sleep. But these unsung psalms (Do you love me? Do you still?) work like sex, work like a machineâ€™s arduous breath, allowing her to hold fast to a fraying rope, like when they were mere petals and he climbed the scaffold of her bones, filling the voids with the sound of marbles scattering on cement. But now she recites the names of shipwrecks like catechism, the blitzkrieg of memory wetting the back of her neck and sweeping her along the windblown arch of the sky.
*How to Mark Linen and Silver* see the horizon edge, see how it wavers, see how we walk it and wait for snowmelt while your father, serene, accepts rain in all its forms, recalls japan as an infantry of dirt-clod heartbeats, the steady hum of boots impaling paddy fields, the pulse of a pencil-lipped prayer beating from his pocket. you take down a coffee mug, eyeing the clicking metronome of water against pot as he calls your mother his cherry blossom waving from the shore, the wooden calves of his chair rocking in time with his breath as he revels in the scent of her handkerchief, praying, holding fast to whatâ€™s already lost in time. you leave the sink running for ghost hands.
at the kitchen table, i shape a heart of salt spilled from the shaker.
*Devotional* are you the girl, she asks, the girl bearing blood red fruit, the girl with windowpane palms, sharp hips on green bicycle, ponytail like a chrysalis? she decides so, grazes my body like an arrow tipped with sleep. this is how we clawed our way into one another.
she began writing of waterfalls, of the bloom of human machinery, and of how we both knew what it was like to wake silent and laced into ourselves.
but now i lie woven with photo fibers – here she poses on the hood of an abandoned car, pinching a stem of lilac between tiny fingernails, smiling an eternity – and i realize the only thing relentless here is memory, but memory was never love, was never a stutter of history, was never a white-birch-wanderer. i want to tell her that when i breathe in his sun-warmed hair, there are no lemons, only coincidence and salted clover, but i hear it’s all citrus where she is, the desert of thirteen colors, the desert that’s only a cemetery if i imagine it to be one.
РОЗА И ЛИРА Зачем душою простодушной, Зашла ты в смутный лиры мир, Зачем душою откровенной, Вновь льёшься ты строкою лир. Сей мир сверкающий обман, Внутри о, мерзкий холодок, Вдали дымится лишь туман, Ся жизнь лишь души рывок. Вновь плачет истинная лира, Во мраке ханжества и лжи, Найти где правду сего мира, О сути бренной расскажи. Разлад, неправда, только ложь, Везде порука круговая, Ты правду боле не тревожь, Живи, внутри всю боль скрывая. Ты в люде правду не буди, С душою ангельской чистой, Ты миру больше не гуди, О правде, истине святой.
John Tustin The Performance It was Ray Charles recording the Atlantic singles. It was James Brown live at the Apollo. It was Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison. It was Bob Dylan going electric at the Newport Folk Festival. It was that capsule of giddy time that should never end but does. The hummingbird suspended and you hear the buzz of the wings. The thrown deck of cards floats in the room like underwater and each number and suit is in focus. It was something
flawless. Time demanded it had to end, and so you stood up and dressed self-consciously before your mirror, part of society again. I was dizzy. It was enthralling to see you like that and I thought I could hold that moment supple in my eye forever. I can, but all performances must close. No performance will match the before, during and after of that day. Although we didn’t even get to perform our greatest hits. They haven’t been written. I have these melodies
in my head but can’t get them out, can’t put them down, they are vague, they jumble and fade even as they come. They need your mouth to sing them. I need your mouth. I need the rest of you. It was Neil Young & Crazy Horse at Madison Square Garden and a sublime twenty minute version of Cortez the Killer. It was Howlin Wolf and Willie Dixon in some Chicago nightclub drenched in sweat, in talent. It was Van Morrison’s twenty song encore. It was Jimi Hendrix doing the beautifully impossible. I feel small moments;
taste your ear, feel your hand on me, see your eyes that sweep me up like I am a child. Your navel in the halflight, your shirt coming down on it like a theater curtain. The air a swirl of thread and mist, my heart emerging from its darkness. It was Bob Pentecostal at the Warfield theater. It was Robert Johnson, fingers flailing after his deal with the Devil. It was Cream waving goodbye.
Shaindel Beers After a drawing by Mercedes Comellas Ricart, 13, during the Spanish Civil War
The plane drops a single black tear of a bomb that tears a hole in the mountains. The station bell is mute next to the air raid sirens, and we run, leaving our bags at the station. Papá reaches for me; Mamá reaches for Pilar, and we run, never quite grasping hands, never quite touching. It is a ghost train, light grey and see-through because we never got on. I didn’t finish the tracks because I never learned where they would go.
After drawings by recipients of the AFSC feeding program in post WWI Europe
The women who cook for us are friendly giants, like the wife in Jack and the Beanstalk. They stir giant pots, ladle soup into bowls. The counters in the kitchen are stacked high with rolls. Essen, essen! they say. These might be the only words they know in our language. QuĂ¤kerspeisung. This means they are here to feed us. We write poems about the milk they bring. Each child receives two cups a day and daily puts on weight that way. They are to feed us first, but I have made a drawing of my father eating. When he thought no one was looking, he put down his spoon, his roll. He picked his soup bowl up and licked it like a dog. Thick soup is so good after a war. I did not want to embarrass him, so I drew his eyes looking overâ€” there. But what of their husbands, these women? Are they the giants who would make bread of our bones?
After Martija’s Watercolor, Croatia
There are things that can happen that you can’t draw. A soldier ripping off the baby’s diaper and slamming him into the wall because it will be easier if the baby cannot cry. Your mother without a head. You paint splotches. Green and blue are peaceful. That was before. Now, everything is red. The red mixed with the green becomes a sickening brown. The brown that seeped from between your legs when the soldier was done with you.
After 16 year-old Kristina’s drawing of herself on a beach in Hawaii, Croatia
I will walk the beach and be mysterious in my red dress, red comb in my hair; two thin, gold necklaces encircling my neck. I will carry yellow flowers every day. Something they will say is different about that girl. Is it her blue eyes? They will not see that the war has covered me with a shawl of sorrow. That I stay outside so buildings will not fall on me. That I don’t have a husband because I don’t want him to make war on me. On my family. Like my father did, turning the guns right at Zemunik, just another sergeant following orders.
Jeannine Hall Gailey
A Dream of Dragons
You were flying in circles outside my window, yowling into the air. Blue blood dribbled from your mouth, and your claws were broken. Why canâ€™t I lead you to the right song, the right garden? Where the butterflies left their cocoons on the grass. Where there seemed to be silence. When you told me you felt wrong, I should have believed. I keep spinning in the green air, faces in the trees. I should have found a light to lead us home, should have followed the glow of the peony lantern. One more basket to fill, one more path to abandon. I will leave your clothing in a woven basket, I will cover myself in feathers so you will not recognize me. If you sing to the pines, for a few days I will answer, then no more.
I must marry the king of the spirit world, I must leave you behind however you howl.
Inari Speaks You have forgotten that once I was a woman, not a fox â€“ once a guardian of grain, of children and swords, now all of my statues have pointed ears and tails. I came down from the cold mountains to feed you each spring. Yes, it was my voice that brought the shoots of rice, the winds of my breath that stirred them in the sun. I had an army of foxes that did my bidding, their ghost muzzles in your dreams, stirring. Leave behind your charms, your flowers at my shrines on the sides of roads. Dress stone foxes in red scarves and ask them about your marriages, your dead sons â€“ they will answer as stone answers. Even now I fade in your memories, my figure dimming in the lights of your cities. Whatever you once received from me, I can no longer give you. I will sleep in the snow until once again you resurrect me.  Inari is a deity in Japan who is often represented with stone fox statues.
The Fox-Wife Dreams My husband says, canâ€™t trust foxes, their eyes like geodes. The wind brings red fur in my window, and the smell of them clings to my sheets. At the shrine of Inari, he rescued me. I see in his face he will leave me, the fox tail beneath my bed clothes betraying. He swears he didnâ€™t know I was kitsune, though my sharp glances were everywhere, jumping when the dogs bayed. The brown silk robes of my youth, the smell of smashed leaves underfoot wherever I walked. The curl beneath the bedsheets. Foxfire, foxflare, foxfur. Our noses were flames in the forests. The light of torn paper lanterns is never true, the moonlight uneven. He always praised my face, the narrow nose, high cheekbones, close-set eyes. My hair red even when I brushed it darker. Come sleep with me, he asked, even after. Stay with me. Far away, a fox barking at good fortune. Faithful, faithful, the vixen snaps at his ankles. The taste of rust in the mouths of our charmed children.
(This poem first appeared in The Pebble Lake Review 2006)
The Note the Fox-Wife Leaves Him You didn’t know I was happier in the dirt before this terrible skin, its senses, before the dread of waking every day to me, to you. This isn’t what I knew before, the air and light. Heavier, and darker than I expected, not just the body, my mind – remembrances hang in the trees like ghosts, every glen a graveyard. You don’t know what satisfies – maybe my heart was hungrier than this. And when I leave you behind whatever I become next will be better. I know it. Don’t come looking for me, I don’t want to be found. The next life for me must, must be what I’ve hoped for. I shed claws and wings once already; don’t think it won’t be easier to shed this, where the cling and thrum of gristle and blood grow so faint I forget them. (first appeared in Rhino 2008)
Shaindel Beers’ poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies. She is an instructor of English at Blue Mountain Community College in Pendleton, Oregon, in Eastern Oregon’s high desert and serves as Poetry Editor of Contrary (www.contrarymagazine.com). Find her online at http://shaindelbeers.com. Roza Bekniyazova resides in Russia. Harry Calhoun is a widely published poet, article and essay writer. Check out his online chapbook Dogwalking Poems, his trade paperback, I knew Bukowski like you knew a rare leaf, and the recently published The Black Dog and the Road. Not to mention his chapbook, Something Real. He’s had recent publications in Chiron Review, Chiaroscuro, Orange Room Review, The Centrifugal Eye, Bird’s Eye reView, Abbey, Monongahela Review and many others. He is the editor of Pig in a Poke magazine. Find out more at http://harrycalhoun.net. Mark DeCarteret's work has appeared in the anthologies American Poetry: The Next Generation (Carnegie Mellon Press), Brevity & Echo: Short Short Stories by Emerson College Alums (Rose Metal Press), New Pony: Collaborations & Responses (Horse Less Press), Places of Passage: Contemporary Catholic Poetry (Story Line Press),Thus Spake the Corpse: An Exquisite Corpse Reader (Black Sparrow Press) and Under the Legislature of Stars—62 New Hampshire Poets (Oyster River Press) which he also co-edited. In 2009 he was selected as the seventh Poet Laureate of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. You can check out his Postcard Project at pplp.org. Joan Alcus Dupre is Assistant Professor of English at Queensborough
Community College of the City University of New York, where she teaches courses in fiction, poetry, drama, pop culture and composition. A graduate of New York University, she received her Ph.D. from the CUNY Graduate Center, specializing in Modern and Postmodern literature. Her book, Fighting Fathers/Saving Sons: The Struggle for Life and Art in Paul Auster's New York Trilogy was published in 2009 by VDM Verlag. Amylia Grace edits tinfoildresses and teaches English at Madison Area Technical College. Her first chapbookWhat Remains is set to be released in 2011 from recycled karma press. Carol Lynn Grellas is a four-time Pushcart nominee and 2010 nominee for Best of the Net. She is the author of four chapbooks, Breakfast in Winter (Flutter Press 2010) Litany of Finger Prayers (Pudding House Press 2009) Object of Desire (Finishing Line Press 2008), A Thousand Tiny Sorrows (March Street Press 2010) and two electronic chaps: Desired Things (Goldwake Press 2009) To the Children (Victorian Violet Press 2010). Her collection, The Epistemology of an Odd Girl will be forthcoming from Diminuendo Press. Carol Lynn enjoys serving on the editorial panel for Triggerfish Critical Review. She lives in El Dorado Hills, California with her family and a tiny blind dog named Ginger who sleeps in the bathtub. Jeannine Hall Gailey is a Seattle-area writer. Her first book, Becoming the Villainess, was published by Steel Toe Books, and poems from the book were featured on NPR's The Writer's Alamanac, Verse Daily, and appeared in 2007's The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror. Her second book, She Returns to the Floating World, is forthcoming from Kitsune Books in July of 2011. She volunteers with Crab Creek Review and teaches part-time at National University's MFA program. Her web site: www.webbish6.com.
Alexandra Isacson lives and works in the Phoenix area. Her work appears or is forthcoming in Grey Sparrow Journal, >kill author, PANK, Dogzplot, Right Hand Pointing, and other places. One of her poems was nominated for Best of the Net. Visit her at alexandraisacson.com M.J.Iuppa lives on a small farm near the shores of Lake Ontario. Her most recent chapbook is As the Crows Flies (Foothills Publishing 2008) and second full length collection, Within Reach, Cherry Grove Collections (2010). She is Writer-in-Residence and Director of the Arts Minor Program at St. John Fisher College, Rochester, NY. Joan McNerney’s poetry has been included in numerous literary magazines such as Seven Circle Press, Dinner with the Muse, Blueline, 63 channels, Spectrum, and three Bright Spring Press Anthologies. Four of her books have been published by fine literary presses. She has performed at the National Arts Club, Borders Bookstore, McNay Art Institute and other distinguished venues. A recent reading was sponsored by the American Academy of Poetry. Her latest title is Having Lunch with the Sky, A.P.D., Albany, New York. COREY MESLER has published in numerous journals and anthologies. He has published four novels, Talk: A Novel in Dialogue (2002), We Are Billion-Year-Old Carbon (2006), The Ballad of the Two Tom Mores (2010) and Following Richard Brautigan (2010), a full length poetry collection, Some Identity Problems (2008), and a book of short stories, Listen: 29 Short Conversations (2009). He has also published a dozen chapbooks of both poetry and prose. He has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize numerous times, and two of his poems have been chosen for Garrison Keillor’s Writer’s Almanac. He also claims to have written, “The
Martian Hop.” With his wife, he runs Burke’s Book Store, one of the country’s oldest (1875) and best independent bookstores. He can be found at www.coreymesler.com. Karissa Morton is currently finishing the last semester of her BA in English while diving headfirst into the MFA application process and working as a writing tutor and nanny. Her rare free time is devoted to her boyfriend and four cats. Her poetry can be found in over two dozen places, both online and in print, including PANK, The Susquehanna Review, and Up the Staircase. John Tustin's work has appeared in Nefarious Ballerina, Poem, Straylight, Studio One and Thirteen Myna Birds, and will appear in The Homestead Review and online in The Medulla Review.