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Spring 2016


The Amish quilts featured in the spring 2016 issue are from the University of Southern Indiana’s Morton Quilt collection, a part of the greater USI Art Collection. The Morton’s (Judy Laval ’73 and the late Thomas R. Morton of Newburgh, Indiana) began this collection about thirty years ago. It was borne out of their annual visits to the Daviess County Quilt Auction and the eventual friendships that developed with members of the Southern Indiana Amish community.


Kaveh Akbar founded and edits Divedapper, a home for dialogues with the most vital voices in contemporary poetry. His poems have appeared recently in American Poetry Review, Narrative, Boston Review, Prairie Schooner, PBS NewsHour, and elsewhere. Previously, he ran The Quirk, a for-charity print literary journal. He has also served as poetry editor for BOOTH. Akbar’s chapbook, Portrait of the Alcoholic, will be out in January with Sibling Rivalry Press.

Oliver Bendorf is the author of The Spectral Wilderness (Kent State University Press, 2015), selected by Mark Doty for the Wick Poetry Prize and named a Split This Rock Spectacular Book of 2015. He has published writing and comics in Alaska Quarterly Review, Best New Poets, Blackbird, Indiana Review, Ninth Letter, The Rumpus, Transgender Studies Quarterly, Troubling the Line: Trans and Genderqueer Poetry and Poetics, and elsewhere. Bendorf lives in Washington, DC, where he co-founded the Mount Pleasant Poetry Project.

Traci Brimhall is the author of Our Lady of the Ruins (W.W. Norton), Rookery (Southern Illinois University Press), and the forthcoming Saudade (Copper Canyon). Her poems have appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry, The New Republic, and Best American Poetry. She lives in Manhattan, KS, and teaches at Kansas State University.

Gabrielle Calvocoressi is the author of Rocket Fantastic (forthcoming), Apocalyptic Swing(2009), and The Last Time I Saw Amelia Earhart (2005), all from Persea Books. Her poems have been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Boston Review, Poetry, and other journals. She has been the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships including The Paris Review’s Bernard F. Conners Prize; a Rona Jaffe Woman Writers Award; a Stegner Fellowship and Jones Lectureship from Stanford University; a Civitella di Ranieri fellowship; and Lannan Foundation Residency Fellowship in Marfa, Texas. Calvoccoressi is the senior poetry editor at Los Angeles Review of Books and teaches at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Leila Chatti is a Tunisian-American poet and received her MFA in poetry from North Carolina State University. The recipient of fellowships from Dickinson House and Quest Writers Conference and awards from Narrative Magazine, Nimrod Journal, the Gregory O’Donoghue International Poetry Prize, and the Academy of American Poets, her work appears or is forthcoming in Best New Poets 2015, Narrative, North American Review, The Missouri Review, Indiana Review, and elsewhere.

Chen Chen is the author of When I Grow Up I Want to Be a List of Further Possibilities, winner of the A. Poulin, Jr. Poetry Prize (BOA Editions, Ltd; spring 2017). His work has previously appeared in two chapbooks and publications such as Poetry, The Massachusetts Review, and The Best American Poetry. Chen is a PhD candidate in English and creative writing at Texas Tech University.

Tiana Clark is the author of the forthcoming chapbook Equilibrium, selected by Afaa Michael Weaver for the 2016 Frost Place Chapbook Competition sponsored by Bull City Press. She is the winner of the 2016 Academy of American Poets Prize and the 2015 Rattle Poetry Prize. She is currently an MFA candidate in poetry at Vanderbilt University where she serves as the poetry editor for Nashville Review. Her writing has appeared in or is forthcoming from Rattle, Best New Poets 2015, Crab Orchard Review, The Adroit Journal, Muzzle Magazine, Thrush, The Offing, and elsewhere.

Stephen Dobyns is the author of more than thirty-five novels and poetry collections, includingIs Fat Bob Dead Yet?, published in September 2015; The Burn Palace; The Church of Dead Girls; Cold Dog Soup; Cemetery Nights; and Winter’s Journey. He has also published two books of essays on poetry. Among his honors are a Melville Cane Award; Pushcart Prizes; a 1983 National Poetry Series selection for Black Dog, Red Dog: Poems; three National Endowment for the Arts fellowships; and a Guggenheim Fellowship. His new book of poetry, The Day’s Last Light Reddens the Leaves of the Copper Beech, will be published by BOA in September 2016.

Peter Grandbois is the author of seven previous books including, most recently, The Girl on the Swing (Wordcraft of Oregon, 2015). His poems, stories, and essays have previously appeared in such journals as The Kenyon Review, The Gettysburg Review, Boulevard, Prairie Schooner, The Denver Quarterly, New Orleans Review, Zone 3, and DIAGRAM, among many others. His plays have been performed in St. Louis, Columbus, Los Angeles, and New York. Grandbois is senior editor at Boulevard magazine and teaches at Denison University in Ohio.

Rochelle Hurt is the author of two poetry collections: In Which I Play the Runaway (2016), winner of the Barrow Street Book Prize, and The Rusted City, published in the Marie Alexander Series from White Pine Press (2014). Her work has been included in Best New Poets 2013, and she’s been awarded literary prizes from Crab Orchard Review, Arts & Letters, Hunger Mountain, and Poetry International. Her poetry, fiction, and nonfiction have appeared in journals like Crazyhorse, Black Warrior Review, and The Southeast Review. She is a PhD student at the University of Cincinnati and assistant editor for the Cincinnati Review.

Rodney Jones is the prize-winning author of eleven books of poems. Village Prodigies, his new book, combines techniques of fiction and poetry, and is forthcoming in spring 2017 from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Christopher Kempf is the author of Late in the Empire of Men, which won the Levis Prize in Poetry from Four Way Books and is forthcoming in March 2017. Recipient of a 2015 National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and a Wallace Stegner Fellowship in poetry from Stanford University, he is currently a PhD student in English literature at the University of Chicago. His academic writing is forthcoming in Modernism/ modernity, and his poetry and essays have appeared in The Gettysburg Review, Gulf Coast, The Kenyon Review Online, and The New Republic, among other places. Kempf received his MFA from Cornell University.

Steve Kistulentz is the author of Little Black Daydream (University of Akron Press, 2013) and The Luckless Age (Red Hen Press, 2011), winner of the Benjamin Saltman Award. His poetry, fiction and nonfiction has appeared in the Antioch Review, Black Warrior Review, Crab Orchard Review, Mississippi Review, New England Review, New Letters, Quarterly West and many others. Kistulentz directs the graduate program in creative writing at Saint Leo University in Florida, and lives in the Tampa area with his family.

Peter LaBerge the author of the chapbook Hook (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2015), recently included on the American Library Association’s Over the Rainbow List. His work appears in Beloit Poetry Journal, Best New Poets 2014, Colorado Review, Indiana Review, Iowa Review, and Pleiades, among others. He is the recipient of a fellowship from the Bucknell University Stadler Center for Poetry, and the founder and editor-in-chief of The Adroit Journal. He lives in Philadelphia, where he is an undergraduate student at the University of Pennsylvania.

Yael Massen is an MFA student in poetry at Indiana University and nonfiction editor of Indiana Review. Her work can be found in Mid-American Review, Tupelo Quarterly, The Ilanot Review, Columbia: A Journal of Art and Literature Online, and Ninth Letter Online. A recipient of the 2016 Vera Meyer Strube Academy of American Poets Award and the 2016 Kraft-Kinsey Award from the Kinsey Institute, she has also received support from The Yiddish Book Center, The National Society of Arts and Letters (Bloomington), Middlebury Summer Language School, and The Borns Jewish Studies Program.

Adrian Matejka a is the author of The Devil’s Garden (Alice James Books, 2003) and Mixology (Penguin, 2009), which was a winner of the National Poetry Series. His most recent book, The Big Smoke (Penguin, 2013), was awarded the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award and was a finalist for the National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize. Matejka is the Ruth Lilly Professor/Poet-in-Residence at Indiana University in Bloomington.

Matthew Minicucci is the author of two collections of poetry: Translation (Kent State University Press, 2015), chosen by Jane Hirshfield for the 2014 Wick Poetry Prize, and Small Gods, forthcoming from New Issues Press in 2017. His work has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, including Best New Poets 2014, Poetry Daily, and Verse Daily, among others. Minicucci currently teaches writing at the University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign.

Jenny Molberg’s debut collection, Marvels of the Invisible, won the 2014 Berkshire Prize and is forthcoming from Tupelo Press in 2016. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in The Missouri Review, North American Review, Copper Nickel, The New Guard, Mississippi Review, The Adroit Journal, Smartish Pace, Zone 3, Best New Poets, and elsewhere. Molberg holds an MFA from American University and a PhD from the University of North Texas. She currently teaches at the University of Central Missouri and is co-editor of Pleiades.

Jessica Poli is the author of the chapbooks Alexia (Sixth Finch), Glassland (JMWW), and The Egg Mistress (Gold Line Press). Her work has appeared in Caketrain, Sixth Finch, Sonora Review, and elsewhere. A recent graduate of the Syracuse University MFA program, Poli lives in Syracuse, NY, where she edits Birdfeast and works on a farm.

Isaac Pressnell’s work has appeared in Best American Experimental Writing 2015, Hotel Amerika, Indiana Review, Mid-American Review, Ninth Letter, and many other publications.

Karen Rigby is the author of Chinoiserie (Ahsahta Press, 2012). She has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Vermont Studio Center. Her poems have been published in Field, Black Warrior Review, Washington Square, and jubilat

Wesley Rothman’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Copper Nickel, Crab Orchard Review, Harvard Review, Mississippi Review, New England Review, Prairie Schooner, Vinyl, Waxwing, the Poets on Growth anthology, and The Golden Shovel Anthology, among other venues. His criticism has appeared in American Microreviews and Interviews, Boston Review, Callaloo, and Rain Taxi Review of Books. Rothman has taught writing and cultural literatures throughout Boston, and is now pursuing a PhD at The Catholic University of America.

sam sax is a 2015 NEA fellow and finalist for The Ruth Lilly Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation. He’s a poetry fellow at The Michener Center for Writers where he serves as the editor-in-chief of Bat City Review. He’s the two time Bay Area Grand Slam Champion and author of the chapbooks A Guide to Undressing Your Monsters (Button Poetry, 2014); sad boy / detective (Black Lawrence Press, 2015); and All The Rage (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2016). sax’s poems are forthcoming in American Poetry Review, Boston Review, Ploughshares, PEN Poetry Series, Poetry, and other journals.

Steven D. Schroeder’s second book, The Royal Nonesuch (Spark Wheel Press, 2013), won the 2014 Devil’s Kitchen Reading Award from Southern Illinois University. His poetry is recently available or forthcoming in Crazyhorse, Crab Orchard Review, and The Laurel Review. Schroeder serves as board member, reading series co-director, and contributing editor for River Styx magazine in St. Louis.

Michael Waters is the author and editor of numerous books of poetry, including BOA titles Celestial Joyride (2016); Gospel Night; Darling Vulgarity, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize; and Parthenopi: New and Selected Poems, finalist for the Paterson Poetry Prize. The recipient of five Pushcart Prizes and multiple fellowships, Waters currently teaches at Monmouth University and in the Drew University MFA program. Waters lives with his wife, poet Mihaela Moscaliuc,
in Ocean, New Jersey.


"A Word with Michael Waters"


A writer and filmmaker, Elizabeth Bull holds an MFA in fiction from The New School, and her work has appeared in Gulf Coast, H.O.W. Journal, Los Angeles Review of Books, Third Coast, and other journals. Bull has also written and directed several films, and has received fellowships from UCLA, Rotary International, and the Fulbright Commission. Originally from Northern California, she currently lives in Brooklyn and is working on a novel.

Christine Sneed’s fourth book, the story collection The Virginity of Famous Men, will be out in September 2016 from Bloomsbury. Her previous books are the novels Little Known Facts and Paris, He Said, along with the story collection Portraits of a Few of the People I’ve Made Cry. Sneed teaches part-time for the graduate writing program at Northwestern University and lives in Evanston, IL.

Dario Sulzman was raised in upstate New York, and received his MFA in creative writing from Florida State University. His work has appeared in Gulfstream, Potomac Review, and The Massachusetts Review, among other journals, and his essay, “Conflict” was the winner of the 2015 Iron Horse Literary Review Trifecta contest in creative nonfiction. Sulzman is currently pursuing a PhD in creative writing and English at the University of Cincinnati.

Alexander Weinstein is the director of The Martha’s Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing and the author of the short story collection Children of the New World (Picador 2016). His fiction and translations have appeared in Cream City Review, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Notre-Dame Review, Pleiades, PRISM International, World Literature Today, and other journals. He is the recipient of a Sustainable Arts Foundation Award, and his fiction has been awarded the Lamar York, Gail Crump, Hamlin Garland, and New Millennium Prize. His stories appear in the anthologies 2013 New Stories from the Midwest, and the 2014 and 2015 Lascaux Prize Stories. He is an associate professor of creative writing and a freelance editor, and leads fiction workshops in the United States and Europe.


Amy Collini’s work has appeared in Slice, Redivider, Indiana Review, Baltimore Review, Tahoma Literary Review, Isthmus and elsewhere. She lives in central Ohio with her husband and two young sons, where she is at work on a memoir.

Carol Smith is a Seattle writer whose work led the anthology The Best Creative Nonfiction (W. W. Norton & Company, 2007). Her poetry, fiction, and essays have appeared, or are forthcoming, in Signs of Life, Mississippi Review, Pooled Ink, The New Guard, Hippocampus Magazine, Oberon Poetry, The Florida Review, and Travelers’ Tales (to Go). She was selected as a finalist for the 2015 Prime Number Magazine Awards for creative nonfiction, for the 2015 Arts & Letters fiction prize, and for Arcadia’s 2015 nonfiction contest. Smith is currently at work on a novel.