Stephanie Deal grew up in Los Angeles during the 1980s. "My father was full blooded Native-American: Tohono O'odham, and I have never laid eyes upon him. My mother is a gentle woman who never deserved to be treated as the world saw fit. I learned to read for the first time when I was ten years old; I took to it like a fish to water. Books are one of my greatest joys, followed only by my husband and my children. I have made many mistakes in my life, and for it I have suffered. But I have survived and persevered, and am better for that suffering. I write about a number of topics, but closest to my heart is the topic of surviving domestic violence." Stephanie is currently attending college to become a teacher. This is her first publication.
Caroline Malone was born and lives in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains in East Tennessee. Her forthcoming poetry collection Dark Roots explores the meaning of family, heritage, and identity.
Frannie McMillan’s poetry has appeared in or is forthcoming from The Coachella Review, Broken Bridge Review, Front Range, and others. She is currently at work on her first chapbook, A Map of Beautiful Things.
oral lore was decanted,
the sediment disturbed, distributed,
by hasty men.
Until, women, who were uninvited,
came anyway, respirate,
aerating the narrative....
Georgia Dennison was born in Plymouth, Massachusetts and now resides in Montana where she is an MFA candidate and writing instructor at the University of Montana. She hosts the Second Wind Reading Series and is a poetry editor for Cutbank Literary magazine. Her work has appeared in Pacifica Literary Review.
Lauren McKenzie Reed received her MFA in Creative Writing from West Virginia University, where she taught for six years. She also has an MA in TESOL and, in addition to teaching and publishing, she has studied and worked in several countries, including Australia, Hong Kong, China, Ukraine, Mali, and Germany.
Jessica (Tyner) Mehta is a Cherokee poet and novelist. She’s the author of seven collections of poetry including the forthcoming Savagery, the forthcoming Constellations of My Body, the forthcoming Drag Me Through the Mess, as well as Secret-Telling Bones, Orygun, What Makes an Always, and The Last Exotic Petting Zoo as well as the novel The Wrong Kind of Indian. She’s been awarded numerous poet-in-residencies posts, including positions at Hosking Houses Trust and Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in Stratford-Upon-Avon, England, Paris Lit Up in France, and the Acequia Madre House in Santa Fe, NM. Jessica is the recipient of a Barbara Deming Memorial Fund in Poetry. She is the owner of a multi-award winning writing services business, MehtaFor, and is the founder of the Get it Ohm! karma yoga movement. Visit Jessica’s author site at www.jessicatynermehta.com.
"My mother tells me that my emotions are fast and fleeting, altering the constants of calm and content that she understands to be me. I slam doors and I cry, I harm with intention, and I fragment myself to stay intact.
In South Carolina, the South, my home, humid summer days meander endlessly on, and thunderstorms fragment time. Tablespoon raindrops wash away all memories of the day’s existence before the rain, and a cool calm settles as the storm passes...."
Since writing this piece, Cumi Ikeda has moved from the Pacific Northwest to Pittsburgh, where she feels a bit more at home with the rain. There, she teaches nonfiction and wonders about poetry. "