ROBIN CHAPMAN grew up in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, the hometown of these poems, and now lives, gardens, paints, and writes in Madison, Wisconsin. She is author of nine books of poetry, most recently Dappled Things (Paris: Revue K), a collaboration pairing 23 of her poems and Peter Miller’s photogravures, and One Hundred White Pelicans (Tebot Bach), poems of climate change. Retired from teaching at University of Wisconsin-Madison, she helps organize the UW-Madison Chaos and Complex Systems Seminar.

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Born and raised in New York City, RONNIE HESS came west for graduate study (MA, History) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A career in broadcast journalism followed with travels around Europe for CBS News. She was a Knight Fellow (PJP) at Stanford University in 1978-79. Hess writes frequently on food and travel and is the author of a culinary travel guide, Eat Smart in France, as well as a poetry chapbook, Whole Cloth. She drinks only French champagne and has a particular fondness for dark chocolate.

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ELICIA EPSTEIN is an aspiring journalist from Massachusetts. She studies Studio Art at Pomona College in California and has just finished a semester of photography at the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in Maine. She is currently a regular contributor to The American Guide.

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ALLISON GASKINS is the author of several books, including 31 Days of Prayer for My Child. She lives in Falls Church, Virginia, with her husband and five children. Allison works for Mantle Music and Art House America. She writes from a pink chair next to an open window.

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Based in Eindhoven, The Netherlands, HEATHER GATLEY has been writing about her experiences for family and friends all of her life. This is her first attempt to go public. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Aberystwyth University, Wales, and has taught all over the world since training in London 35 years ago. Gatley still likes the idea of the countryside and growing things, but seems to be allergic to weeding.

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PHIL JACOBSEN has worked in Antarctica, on and off, since 2002. In Antarctica he has been a dishwasher, a gas station attendant for military planes and, most recently, a communications technician. He has written for Salon.com, was a weekly columnist for the Salt Lake City Weekly, and he owns a 25-pound cat named Mr. Evans.

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Based in Port Townsend, Washington, CHERYL MERRILL has had essays appear in Fourth Genre, Pilgrimage, Seems, South Loop Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Adventum and Isotope. “Singing Like Yma Sumac” was selected for Best of Brevity, Creative Nonfiction #27, and Short Takes: Model Essays for Composition. “Trunk,” was chosen for Special Mention in Pushcart 2008. She’s currently working on a book, Larger than Life: Living in the Shadows of Elephants.

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GAIL SEGAL is a writer and filmmaker living in New York City. Her most recent collection of poems, “The Discreet Charm of Prime Numbers,” is just out from Finishing Line Press. She holds an MFA from Warren Wilson College and at this moment is at work finishing a narrative short, filmed in the Arabian Desert. She’ll travel almost anywhere, but her favorite perch is the wide sill of her living room window.

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JENNY SHANK‘s first novel, The Ringer, won the High Plains Book Award in fiction and was a finalist for the MPIBA award. Her fiction, essays, satire, and reviews appear in The Atlantic, The Guardian, McSweeney’s, The McSweeney’s Book of Politics and Musicals, The Onion, Poets & Writers, Bust, Prairie Schooner, Alaska Quarterly Review, and Five Chapters. She lives in Boulder, Colorado, with her husband, daughter, and son, and they still haven’t managed to fix their flood-damaged basement.

A Note from our Editors — Issue 18, our Annual Prizes, Submission Calls & more!   Read