Abayomi Animashaun is a Nigerian emigre, whose poems have appeared in several print and online journals, including Cerise Press, Diode, 5 A.M., and African American Review. His poetry collection, The Giving of Pears, is available through Black Lawrence Press. His website is www.abayomianimashaun.com.
Melanie Braverman is the author of RED (Perugia Press, 2002), winner of the Publishing Triangle Audre Lorde Poetry Award. Recent work has appeared in Poetry, American Poetry Review, and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. She is Poet-in-Residence at Brandeis University. The poems appearing here are from a book-length narrative of prose poems called The World With Us In It.
Jeff Friedmans fifth collection of poetry, Working in Flour, has recently been published by Carnegie Mellon University Press. His poems, mini stories, and translations have appeared in many literary magazines, including American Poetry Review, Poetry, 5 AM, Agni Online, Poetry International, Prairie Schooner, Antioch Review, Quick Fiction, Nighttrain, The 2River View, North American Review, Boulevard, and The New Republic. A contributing editor to Natural Bridge, he teaches at Keene State College in New Hampshire. This issue contains his poetry and his translations (with Dzvinia Orlowsky) of MieczysławJastrun.
Mieczysław Jastrun was born as Mojsze Agatstein in 1903 in Korolowka, Austria-Hungary (now Ukraine) and died in 1983 in Warsaw, Poland. A lyric poet and essayist of Jewish origin, he published a dozen volumes of poetry most often on the subjects of philosophy and morality between the two World Wars and is considered to be one of the most important Polish poets of this time period. He also translated French, Russian, German poetry into Polish. His work is included in Postwar Polish Poetry: An Anthology selected and edited by Czesław Miłosz. His work is translated by Dzvinia Orlowsky and Jeff Friedman from the original Polish in this issue.
A Founding Editor of Four Way Books and Pushcart Prize recipient, Dzvinia Orlowsky is the author of four poetry collections published by Carnegie Mellon University Press including her most recent, Convertible Night, Flurry of Stones, co-recipient of the 2010 Sheila Motton Book Award. Her first collection, A Handful of Bees, was reissued in 2008 as a Carnegie Mellon Classic Contemporary and her translation from the Ukrainian of Alexander Dovzhenkos novella, The Enchanted Desna, was published by House Between Water Press in 2006. She currently teaches at the Solstice Low-Residency MFA in Creative Writing Program of Pine Manor College Her new collection, Silvertone is forthcoming from CMUP in 2013; poems from this collection are in this issue, as are her translations (with Jeff Friedman) of MieczysławJastrun.
Gregory Orr is the author of ten previous collections of poetry. His chapbook, The City of Poetry will be published by Sarabande Books in the summer of 2012. Among his other volumes are: How Beautiful the Beloved(Copper Canyon Press, 2009), Concerning the Book that is the Body of the Beloved (Copper Canyon, 2005), The Caged Owl: New and Selected Poems (Copper Canyon Press, 2002), Orpheus and Eurydice, City of Salt (Finalist, LA Times Poetry Prize), We Must Make a Kingdom of It, The Red House, Gathering the Bones Together, and Burning the Empty Nests. He is also the author of a memoir, The Blessing (Council Oak Books, 2002), which was chosen by Publishers Weekly as one of the fifty best non-fiction books of 2002. His personal essay on his experiences as a volunteer in the Civil Rights Movement, Return to Hayneville, appeared in the VQR and was subsequently reprinted in Best Essays of 2009, Best Creative Non-fiction 2009, and Pushcart Prizes. In addition he is the author of Poetry as Survival (University of Georgia Press, 2002), a consideration of the existential function of the personal lyric. His personal essay was chosen to be broadcast on National Public Radios This I Believe series in the spring of 2006. He has been the recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, and an Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He is a Professor of English at the University of Virginia, where he has taught since 1975 and was the founder and first director of its MFA Program in Writing. He lives with his wife the painter Trisha Orr, and his two daughters in Charlottesville, Virginia. He is interviewed in this issue by Mary Ellen Redmond.
Mary Ellen Redmond is entering her 18th year teaching English on Cape Cod, MA. In June 2011, she earned her MFA in Writing and Literature from the Bennington Writing Seminars. She was a regional finalist for 2011 Cape Cod Cultural Centers poetry contest, as well as a 2010 finalist for the NCTE Poet of the Year Contest. A former member of the Cape Cod Poetry Slam Team, her poems have been published in A Sense of Place, An Anthology of Cape Women Writers; World of Water, World of Sand: A Cape Cod Collection of Poetry, Fiction and Memoir; Capewomenonline; The Larcom, Primetime, and Sahara. Her non-fiction articles have appeared in Cape Cod Travel Guide and Cape Cod Life Magazine. Her interview with Gregory Orr is published in this issue.