Contributors – Issue 4

Contributors to Issue 4


Monique Avakian is a performing poet and writer living in New York. She is known for her creative spirit, cross-genre experimentation, and anti-brand stance. Several of Monique’s video poems were showcased in Blue Door Gallery’s Voices Exhibit of 2013. As a filmmaker and video editor, Monique is self-taught, which is no small achievement, given her age. Current projects include: the Choral Poetry Initiative for Multiple Voices; the Neo-Surrealist Books of Lists and Videos; and “Wind in the Mirror,” a book of political poems.

Matthew James Babcock is Professor of English at BYU-Idaho in Rexburg.  His books are Private Fire: Robert Francis’s Ecopoetry and Prose (U. of Delaware Press); Points of Reference (Folded Word); Strange Terrain (Mad Hat Press); Heterodoxologies (Educe Press); Four Tales of Troubled Love (Harvard Square Editions); and Future Perfect (Ferry Street Books, forthcoming 2019).

Jazz musician Bett Butler authored two albums of original songs, Short Stories and Myths and Fables, and was first place winner in the Jazz category of the International Songwriting Competition. Her album American Sampler won the cabaret category of the Independent Music Awards, where she was also a finalist in the Spoken Word with Music category. Her poetry and short fiction have appeared in Weave MagazineFeathertale and Voices de la Luna. Co-owners of recording studio Mandala Music Production in San Antonio, Texas, she and her spouse Joël Dilley create music licensed by HBO, Discovery Channel, and more.

Rita Ciresi is author of the novels Bring Back My Body to MePink Slip, Blue Italian, and Remind Me Again Why I Married You, and three award-winning story collections, Second WifeSometimes I Dream in Italian, and Mother Rocket. She is professor of English at the University of South Florida and fiction editor of 2 Bridges Review. Visit her website at

Elizabeth Cohen is a professor of English at SUNY Plattsburgh and the editor of Saranac Review. She is the author of eight books, five of them poetry, including, most recently, Bird Light (2017) and The Patron Saint of Cauliflower (2018). She lives in upstate New York.

Ashanti Davis writes prose, poetry, scripts, HTML, Python, C++–anything, really–and is finalizing her dual-degree five-year BA/MFA at Hofstra University, where she also earned her BA in Computer Science. She served as Managing Editor and Production Editor for volume 4 of AMP.

Margaret Diehl has published a chapbook of poems, it all stayed open (Red Glass Books, 2011), two novels and a memoir (Men, 1989; Me and You, 1990; and The Boy on the Green Bicycle, 1999, all from Soho Press) as well as poems, articles, and book reviews in many publications. She works as a writer and editor in New York City.

K. Shawn Edgar lives in Oregon. Since receiving a renal transplantation from the galactic Oregon Health and Science University nephrology wizards, the Greater Portland Metropolitan Area is K. Shawn’s ever-present Mother Ship. Bicycles, soluble fiber, and poetry transfusions are ongoing.

Nava Fader attended SUNY Buffalo’s Poetics Program, writing her thesis on Adrienne Rich. She is the author of all the jawing jackdaw (2009) and Hitching Post (2015), both from BlazeVox, and several chapbooks riffing off of Rilke, Sylvia Plath, J.H. Prynne, and others. Recent work has pilfered from Dante, Ovid, and Wikipedia.

John Forbis, originally from Carlisle, Pennsylvania, is an Anglican Benedictine monk of the Order of the Holy Cross, living and working at Holy Cross Monastery in West Park, New York. His return to West Park occurred in July 2016 after 18 years at Mariya uMama weThemba Monastery in Grahamstown, South Africa. His poems have been published in South Africa, the United States and the United Kingdom. He won Third Place in the Dalro Poetry Prize in 2013 for the poem “Only This,” published in New Coin magazine. His work has been anthologized in The Poet’s Quest for God (Eyewear Ltd.), Rhino in a Shrinking World, and To Breathe into Another Voice: A South African Anthology of Jazz Poetry. His first book, Exposures, was published by Aerial Publishing in 2003.

Chapman Hood Frazier is co-founder of The Sunrise Learning Center, an innovative pre-school, and has been a poetry editor for the Dos Passos Review and guest editor for The Hampden Sydney Poetry Review. He has published in a variety of publications, including The Virginia Quarterly ReviewAntietam ReviewThe Cincinnati Poetry ReviewThe South Florida Poetry ReviewThe South Carolina ReviewShenandoah and The Writer’s Chronicle. He is currently working on a collection of interviews with contemporary poets and on a book of poems titled The Lost Book of the Bestiary. He lives in Rice, VA, with his wife, Deborah Carrington.

Ian Ganassi’s poetry, prose and translations have appeared in more than 100 literary magazines, including New American WritingThe Yale Review, and New England Review. Recent news includes poems in Otoliths and forthcoming in Poetry Pacific and Bending Genres.  His poetry collection Mean Numbers was published in 2016. His new collection, True for the Moment, is due out in spring 2019 from MadHat Press. Selections from an ongoing collaboration with a painter can be found at

Nicky Gutierrez is currently a sophomore at Capital University in Bexley, Ohio, majoring in Creative Writing and Religion. He has served for the last two years as poetry editor of Recap, Capital’s literary magazine.

Janis Butler Holm has served as Associate Editor for the film journal Wide Angle. Her prose, poems and performance pieces have appeared in small-press, national and international magazines. Her plays have been produced in the U.S., Canada and the U.K.

Lori Horvitz’s personal essays have appeared in a variety of journals and anthologies, including EpiphanyRedividerChattahoochee ReviewThe GuardianSouth Dakota ReviewSoutheast Review, Entropy and Hotel Amerika. Professor of English at UNC Asheville, Horvitz is the author of the memoir-essay collection, The Girls of Usually (Truman State University Press).

Scott Keeney is the author of four collections of poetry, most recently Walloping Shrug (Some Clouds 2018). His works have appeared in Columbia Poetry ReviewMudlarkNew York QuarterlyPoetry East and other journals.

Stephen C. Middleton is a writer working in London, England. He has had five books published, including A Brave Light (Stride) and Worlds of Pain / Shades of Grace (Poetry Salzburg).  He has been in several anthologies, including Paging Doctor Jazz (Shoestring), From Hepworth’s Garden Out(Shearsman, 2010) and Yesterday’s Music Today (Knives Forks And Spoons, 2015). For several years he was editor of Ostinato, a magazine of jazz and jazz-related poetry, and The Tenormen Press. He has been in many magazines worldwide. He is currently working on projects (prose and poetry) relating to jazz, blues, politics, outsider (folk) art, mountain environments, and long-term illness.

Ben Miller is the author of River Bend Chronicle (Lookout Books). His prose has been featured in Best American EssaysOne StorySouthern ReviewNew England ReviewRaritan, Antioch Review and elsewhere. Chapter 12 of it all melts down to this was recently selected to appear in Best American Experimental Writing 2020 (guest edited by Joyelle McSweeney and Carmen Maria Machad). He is the recipient of creative writing fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University. Dale Williams has exhibited in the New York City area over the past 25 years. He is a 2014 recipient of a fellowship in Printmaking/Drawing/Book Arts from the New York Foundation for the Arts. His most recent one-person show, “America Now Suite,” which re-visioned American history in service of the civic imagination, was held at Gowanus Loft (Brooklyn) in October 2018. In the summer of 2016 he created a suite of site-specific works featured in a group show, “Eutopia,” at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center on Staten Island, NY. His work has been published in BOMBEcotoneInverted SyntaxBat City ReviewHayden’s Ferry Review and other print and on-line journals.

Joseph Milosch graduated from San Diego State University. His poetry has appeared in numerous magazines, including the California Quarterly. He has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and received the Hackney Award for Literature. His two books are The Lost Pilgrimage Poems andLandscape of a Hummingbird.

Tobias Peterson holds an MFA in Poetry from Texas State University. His work has appeared in The Gulf Coast ReviewColdnoonPhantom Drift and elsewhere. He lives Portland, Oregon, and teaches writing at Clark College in Vancouver, Washington.

Derek Pollard is co-author with Derek Henderson of the book Inconsequentia (BlazeVOX Books). His poetry, criticism, and translations have appeared in Best of the NetColorado ReviewDrunken BoatEdgar Allan Poe ReviewPleiades, and Six–Word Memoirs on Love & Heartbreak, among numerous other anthologies and journals. He is Assistant Editor at Interim: A Journal of Poetry & Poetics. More information can be found at:

Thaddeus Rutkowski is the author of six books, most recently Border Crossings, a poetry collection. His novel Haywire won the Asian American Writers Workshop’s members’ choice award, and his book Guess and Check won the Electronic Literature bronze award for multicultural fiction. He received a fiction writing fellowship from the New York Foundation for the Arts.

Erik Schurink is an award-winning exhibit designer, poet and sculptor. He has developed dozens of interactive exhibits for Children’s Museums and curated art exhibits for various museums and galleries in the New York area. He is an active member of the Writhing Society. His Cryptozoo (Proteotypes, 2012) is a journal in which he and eleven other writers respond to animalistic images he photographed. His poetry has been featured in 13 Writhing MachinesUpstart: Journal of English Renaissance StudiesAn Oulipolooza, and others. Schurink is Gallery Director for Robert Bly’s Great Mother Conference, and contributing artist to Abecedarium NYC and Galerie de Difformité. He hosts artist salons at his home. He was born in the Netherlands and lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Meredith Stricker is a visual artist and poet working in cross-genre media. She is the author of Our Animal, Omnidawn Open Book Prize; Tenderness Shore, which received the National Poetry Series Award; Alphabet Theater, mixed-media performance poetry from Wesleyan University Press; Mistake, Caketrain Chapbook Award; and Anemochore, selected for the Gloria Anzaldúa chapbook prize from Newfound Press. Her work will appear in the 2019 Best American Experimental Writing anthology from Wesleyan. She is co-director of visual poetry studio, a collaborative that focuses on architecture in Big Sur, California, and projects to bring together artists, writers, musicians and experimental forms.

Lawrence Swan lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. He paints and makes art objects and he writes and does spoken word performances. He was born in Lexington, Kentucky in 1954. He grew up in Palm Beach County, Florida. He attended Cleveland Institute of Art, where he acquired a BFA in painting. He also has an MA in philosophy from Cleveland State University.

Meredith Trede’s Tenement Threnody, persona poems in voices from her New York City childhood, is from Main Street Rag Press (2016). Stephen F. Austin State University Press published Field Theory (2011). A Toadlily Press founder, her chapbook, “Out of the Book,” was in Desire Path. Extensive journal publications include Barrow StreetCortland ReviewFriends JournalWitness and Paris Review. She was granted fellowships at Blue Mountain Center, Ragdale, Saltonstall and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts in Virginia and France, the Nicholson Political Poetry Award and a NYFA travel grant. She serves on the Advisory Committee of Slapering Hol Press.

Daniel Uncapher is the Sparks Fellow at Notre Dame, where he received his MFA. His work has appeared in Chicago Quarterly ReviewTin House OnlineBaltimore Review, Penn Review and many others.

Joanna C. Valente is a human who lives in Brooklyn, New York. They are the author of Sirs & Madams (Aldrich Press, 2014), The Gods Are Dead(Deadly Chaps Press, 2015), Marys of the Sea (ELJ Publications, 2016) & Xenos (Agape Editions, 2016), and is the editor of A Shadow Map: Writing by Survivors of Sexual Assault (CCM, 2017). They received their MFA in writing at Sarah Lawrence College. Joanna is the founder of Yes, Poetry and the managing editor for Civil Coping Mechanisms and Luna Luna Magazine. Some of their writing has appeared in PreludeBUST, Spork Press, The Feminist Wire and elsewhere. Joanna also leads workshops at Brooklyn Poets. / Twitter: @joannasaid / IG: joannacvalente

Megan Wildhood is a creative writer, scuba diver and saxophone player working at a crisis center in Seattle, WA. Her poetry chapbook, Long Division (Finishing Line Press), is about sororal estrangement. She’s currently working on a novel. She wants to connect with readers, activists and weary humans around issues of mental health, challenging dysfunctional systems conflict and defiant hope in these tattered days.

First poetry editor of two pioneer feminist magazines, Aphra and Ms., the poet Yvonne has received several awards including the National Endowment for the Arts (1974, 1984) for poetry and the Leeway Foundation (2003) for fiction (as Yvonne Chism-Peace). Some anthologies featuring her poems are: 161 One-Minute Monologues from Literature (Smith and Kraus), Catholic Girls (Plume/Penguin), Tangled Vines (HBJ), Celebrations: A New Anthology of Black AmericanPoetry (Follett), Pushcart Prize Anthology and We Become New (Bantam). In-progress is a verse memoir, poems of which several appeared in 2018 in Quiet Diamonds (Orchard Street), Bosque Press #8, and the online ’zines Collateral, the WAIF Project, and Voices.