Alisha Acquaye is a Brooklyn bred writer and workshop bae who loves cartoons, music, and Afrofuturism. She has been published in Carve Magazine, Teen Vogue, Catapult, GQ, and more places. Alisha is currently writing their first book of poems and essays.
Lisa Argrette Ahmad writes primarily on race, intercultural relationships, and family. Her essays have appeared in The Washington Post, Westchester Review, The Mom Egg, Martha’s Vineyard Magazine, and elsewhere. Ms. Ahmad lives in Larchmont, New York with her husband of more than thirty years.
Ernesto Barbieri’s writing has appeared in The Believer, Midway Journal, Fourteen Hills, Berkeley Fiction Review, and elsewhere. He works as an ICU nurse in New York City, and is a graduate of Hunter College’s MFA–fiction program.
Rajnesh Chakrapani is a poet, translator, and filmmaker and holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. He is the author of The Repetition of Exceptional Weeks (Fomite, 2023) and the chapbook Brown People who Speak English published by Guesthouse Press. He is a winner of a Pen/Heim Translation award. His work is placed in Asymptote, Lana Turner, The Margins, Speculative City, Triquarterly, Literary North, Sequestrum, http://Crevice.ro.
Meghan Maguire Dahn is the author of Domain (Burnside Review Press) and the chapbook Lucid Animal (winner of the Harbor Review Editor’s Prize, 2021). Her work has also appeared or is forthcoming in Boston Review, The Iowa Review, The Cincinnati Review, Denver Quarterly, Small Orange, Bennington Review, Boog City Reader, Blunderbuss, The Journal, Poetry Northwest, Phantom Limb, Beloit Poetry Journal, Gulf Stream, among others. She was selected for the 2017 Best New Poets anthology by Natalie Diaz and she was a winner of the 2014 Discovery/92nd Street Y Poetry Prize (judges: Eduardo Corral, Rosanna Warren, Susan Mitchell, and John Ashbery). She was also a finalist for the Akron Poetry Prize, the Wisconsin Poetry Series’ Brittingham and Felix Pollak Prizes in Poetry, and the Pamet River Prize. She has an MFA from Columbia University’s School of the Arts.
Punk rock, underground art, and social justice are the source code for Derek A. Denckla’s work since his days in DC’s emocore scene. He is currently finishing a book for the musical, Corona Crazy, telling the interwoven stories of four friends experiencing the initial, desperate days of the COVID pandemic. He hosts Inspiration Practice, a podcast interviewing artists about how they remain dedicated to making creative work. His other recent projects include the screenplay Tropical Gothic, awarded Berlinale, cowritten with cinema auteur, Isabel Sandoval. He has attended residencies at Fundación Valparaiso and Mt. Tremper Arts. His work as a curator has included events, installations and exhibitions such Food + Enterprise (part of the Food Book Fair) and FARM CITY for Crossing the Line Festival. He received his MFA from the New School for Social Research; his JD from Fordham University; and his BA from Columbia College, Columbia University. He recently moved from New York City to California where he is now teaching Creative Writing at Los Angeles Film School.
Alisha Dietzman grew up in the American South and Central Europe. She is a PhD candidate in Divinity and a U.S.-UK Fulbright Fellow at the University of St. Andrews writing a thesis examining ethics in contemporary art. She was awarded a 2020 UK Women Poets’ Prize by the Rebecca Swift Foundation. Her poetry has appeared in or is forthcoming from Ploughshares, Denver Quarterly, and Hotel.
Lindsey Drager’s novels have won a John Gardner Fiction Prize and a Shirley Jackson Award and are currently being translated into Spanish and Italian. A 2020 NEA Fellowship recipient in prose, she is an assistant professor at the University of Utah.
Xujun Eberlein is an immigrant writer who has lived half a life each on two sides of the globe. Recipient of the artist fellowship in fiction/creative nonfiction from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a fiction scholarship from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and a Goldfarb Nonfiction Fellowship from VCCA, Xujun is the author of a story collection, Apologies Forthcoming, and an essayist who has been noted in Best American Essays. Her work can be found in AGNI, American Literary Review, Brevity, Michigan Quarterly Review, New England Review, Prism International, Stand, Walrus, and elsewhere. She holds a PhD in Transportation Science from MIT and an MFA in Creative Nonfiction Writing from Emerson College, and currently teaches creative nonfiction courses at GrubStreet.org.
Nikki Ervice is a writer and professional dancer from Homer, Alaska. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Colorado Review, Washington Square Review, Nashville Review, and elsewhere. She is a 2023 MFA candidate at Brooklyn College.
Serkan Görkemli’s short fiction has appeared in Ploughshares, Epiphany, Joyland, Foglifter, and Chelsea Station. His book Grassroots Literacies: Lesbian and Gay Activism and the Internet in Turkey (SUNY Press, 2014) won the 2015 CCCC Lavender Rhetorics Book Award. Originally from Turkey, he has a PhD in English from Purdue University and is an associate professor at the University of Connecticut in Stamford.
Gabriel Gudding is a poet, essayist, and translator from Norwegian and Spanish. The Coordinator of Creative Writing at Illinois State University, he is the author of the books Literature for Nonhumans (Ahsahta, 2015), Rhode Island Notebook (Dalkey Archive Press, 2007), and A Defense of Poetry (Pitt, 2002), which won the Starrett Prize. His poetry and essays have been translated into many languages. He has translated two books by Norwegian poet Gunnar Wærness: Friends with Everyone is forthcoming with Action Books, while Touch Jesus was published bilingually by Forlaget Oktober in 2021.
Jerry Harp’s books of poems include Creature (2003), Gatherings (2004), and Spirit Under Construction (2017). His book For us, What Music? The Life and Poetry of Donald Justice was published in 2010. His reviews appear in American Book Review. He teaches at Lewis & Clark College.
Sarah Heston began a series of sleazy poems about childhood racism and adult sexuality in Los Angeles after years focused on completing her memoir about a daughter-father relationship built on apocalyptic end-of-days scenarios in California. Her nonfiction has appeared in Tin House, The Iowa Review, American Literary Review, and Hotel Amerika. Her scholarly work on memoir and magic can be found in Los Angeles Review of Books, ASAP/Journal, and Assay: A Journal of Nonfiction Studies. She has an MFA in poetry from UC Irvine and a PhD in nonfiction from the University of Missouri.
Preeminent poet and teacher Donald Justice (1925–2004) won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1980. His contributor’s note in The Iowa Review’s issue 1/1 (Winter 1970) reads: “Donald Justice, who taught for many years in the Writers Workshop at The University of Iowa, now lives and teaches in Syracuse. His most recent book of poems is Night Light, available from Wesleyan. His poems in this issue are from a new group to be published first by The Stone Wall Press in Iowa City."
Christopher Kempf is the author of the poetry collections What Though the Field Be Lost (LSU, 2021) and Late in the Empire of Men (Four Way, 2017), as well as of the scholarly book Craft Class: The Writing Workshop in American Culture (Johns Hopkins, 2022). Recipient of a Pushcart Prize, an NEA Fellowship, and a Wallace Stegner Fellowship from Stanford University, he teaches in the MFA program at the University of Illinois.
Donald Platt’s seventh book of poetry, One Illuminated Letter of Being, was published by Red Mountain Press in 2020. His sixth and fifth books are respectively Man Praying (Free Verse Editions/Parlor Press, 2017) and Tornadoesque (Cavankerry Press, 2016). His poems have appeared in The New Republic, Nation, Poetry, Yale Review, American Poetry Review, Kenyon Review, Georgia Review, Ploughshares, Southwest Review, Tin House, Southern Review, and Paris Review as well as in Best American Poetry 2000, 2006, and 2015. He is a recipient of two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and three Pushcart Prizes. He teaches in Purdue University’s MFA Program.
Alison C. Rollins works as a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Department of English at Colorado College. She also serves as faculty for Pacific Northwest College of Art’s Low-Residency MFA. She is a 2019 NEA Literature fellow. Her poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, The New York Times Magazine, The Poetry Review, and elsewhere. A Cave Canem and Callaloo fellow, she is also a 2016 recipient of the Poetry Foundation’s Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Fellowship. In 2018, she was the recipient of a Rona Jaffe Writers’ Award and in 2020 the winner of a Pushcart Prize. Her debut poetry collection, Library of Small Catastrophes, is a 2020 Hurston/Wright Foundation Legacy Award nominee.
Samyak Shertok’s poems appear in Blackbird, Cincinnati Review, Colorado Review, Gettysburg Review, New England Review, Shenandoah, Waxwing, and elsewhere. A finalist for the National Poetry Series and the Jake Adam York Prize, he is a recipient of fellowships from Aspen Words, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown. His work has received the Robert and Adele Schiff Award for Poetry, the Tucson Festival of Books Literary Award for Poetry, and an AWP Intro Journals Award.
Kenneth Tanemura has an MFA in Creative Writing from Purdue University and a PhD in Second Language Studies from Purdue. His writing has appeared in Cha: An Asian Literary Journal, The Chicago Quarterly Review, Crab Orchard Review, Willow Springs, and elsewhere. He is currently working on a collection of short stories.
Pallavi Wakharkar is a writer from Phoenix, Arizona. She received the 2018 Aspen Words Emerging Writer Fellowship in fiction, the 2020 Under-30 Scholarship to attend the Mendocino Coast Writers’ Conference, and the 2021 Peter Taylor Scholarship to attend the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. Her work has appeared in Joyland Magazine and elsewhere. She lives in Nashville, Tennessee, where she is an MFA student in fiction at Vanderbilt University. She is at work on a novel and story collection.
Gunnar Wærness (born 1971) is a Norwegian poet, translator, critic, visual artist, cabaret performer, and a recipient of Norway’s most prestigious honors for his poetry. Wærness made his debut in 1999 with the poetry collection Kongesplint, for which he was awarded the Tarjei Vesaas First Book Prize. He has since published six acclaimed collections of poetry, the latest being his selected poems and artwork, Å skrive er å be om for mye (To Write Is to Ask for Too Much). In 2010 he edited an anthology of modern poetry from around the world, Verden finnes ikke på kartet (The World Is Not Found on the Map) with Pedro Carmona-Alvarez. He translates from Russian, English, and Bulgarian, and has translated American poets Eileen Myles, Alice Notley, Terrence Hayes, Sharon Olds, and CAConrad (his translation of CAConrad’s The Book of Frank was published på norsk as Boka til Frank in 2016). His book Venn med alle, from which this poem is taken, was published by Forlage Oktober in 2018 and is forthcoming in English with Action Books under the title Friends with Everyone in translation by Gabriel Gudding.
Michaela Django Walsh is an Assistant Professor of Ethnic Studies at Bowling Green State University. Her creative writing and research focuses on the U.S.-Mexico border and transnational productions of belonging. She has been published in Critical Ethnic Studies, Chiricú Journal: Latina/o Literatures, Arts, and Cultures, Communication Review, The Iowa Journal of Cultural Studies, Another Chicago Magazine, New Letters, and Anthropology and Humanism.
Jonathan Wei is an artist focusing on race, war, and displacement. He is the Founding Artistic Director of The Telling Project. His work has been published in The Village Voice, The Iowa Review, Prism International, and others, and staged at Lincoln Center, the Guthrie Theater, and the Library of Congress. He is a 2019 Interchange Arts Fellow, and his fiction and nonfiction has won awards from Boulevard, Glimmer Train, and Nimrod International. He is a recipient of a Congressional Commendation, and has received support from the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, among others.
Michael M. Weinstein is a Helen Zell Creative Writing Fellow in Poetry at the University of Michigan. His writing has appeared in The New Yorker, Boston Review, The Kenyon Review, The Los Angeles Review of Books, Conjunctions, and elsewhere. He is currently at work on a nonfiction book about the social dimensions of transgender experience.