Tympanum

Janisse Ray is the author of five books of literary nonfiction as well as a volume of eco-poetry. Her first book, the best-selling Ecology of a Cracker Childhood (Milkweed Editions, 1999), is a memoir about growing up on a junkyard in the ruined longleaf pine ecosystem of the Southeast. It was a New York Times Notable Book and was chosen by the Georgia Center for the Book as a “Book All Georgians Should Read.” Ray holds an MFA from the University of Montana, where later she was the William Kittredge Distinguished Visiting Writer for 2014. She is a 2015 inductee into the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame, and she won the 2017 Southern Environmental Law Center Award in journalism for her piece on coal ash, published in The Bitter Southerner: “From Ashes Such as These, What Can Rise?” In 2019 Ray was given the Georgia Author of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award from the Georgia Writers Association. 

Rethink It

Jim Peterson is the author of five poetry collections, three chapbooks, and a novel; his newest collection, Original Face, was released by Gunpowder Press in October 2015. Peterson’s poems have appeared widely in such journals as Poetry, Shenandoah, Poetry Northwest, Prairie Schooner, South Dakota Review, and Cave Wall. He lives with his charismatic corgi, Mama Kilya, in Lynchburg, Virginia.

Lightning Bugs and the Pleiades & My Segment on the NewsHour

Coleman Barks, professor emeritus at the University of Georgia, has since 1977 collaborated with various scholars of the Persian language (most notably, John Moyne) to bring over into American free verse the poetry of the thirteenth-century mystic Jelaluddin Rumi. This work has resulted in twenty-one volumes, including the bestselling Essential Rumi in 1995. He has also published eight volumes of his own poetry, including Hummingbird Sleep: Poems 2009–2011 (2012) and Winter Sky: Poems 1968–2008 (2008), both from the University of Georgia Press. 

The Family Price

Jim Daniels is the author of numerous poetry books, including the forthcoming The Middle Ages (Red Mountain Press, 2018), Rowling Inland (Wayne State University Press, 2017), and Street Calligraphy (Steel Toe Books, 2017). A native of Detroit, Daniels is the Thomas Stockham Baker University Professor of English at Carnegie Mellon University.

Cadaver, Speak

Marianne Boruch’s ten poetry collections include the recent title The Anti-Grief (Copper Canyon Press, 2019). She was a Fulbright Senior Scholar in Australia last year at the University of Canberra’s International Poetry Studies Institute, observing the astonishing wildlife to write a book-length sequence, a neo-ancient/medieval bestiary, which is forthcoming from Copper Canyon. The poems in this issue are a part of that collection.

Witnessing

Mary Hood, 2014 inductee to the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame, is the author of the novel Familiar Heat (1995) and the short-story collections And Venus Is Blue (1986) and How Far She Went (1984). A new collection of stories, A Clear View of the Southern Sky, is forthcoming from the University of South Carolina Press in 2015.

Drunk Girl in Stilettos

Lee Martin, who teaches in the MFA program at Ohio State University, is the author of five novels, including the Pulitzer Prize finalist The Bright Forever (Shaye Areheart Books, 2005). His most recent book is a story collection, The Mutual UFO Network (Dzanc Books, 2018).

Saving the Appearances: John Ford’s Rescripting of the American Mythos

David Bosworth’s two most recent books, historical studies of cultural change, are The Demise of Virtue in Virtual America: The Moral Origins of the Great Recession (Front Porch Republic, 2014) and Conscientious Thinking: Making Sense in an Age of Idiot Savants (University of Georgia Press, 2017). A resident of Seattle, he is a professor in (and the former director of) the University of Washington’s creative-writing program.

Dream Dancing

Paul Zimmer lives on a farm in southwestern Wisconsin. In the fifteen years since his retirement from a long career in university publishing, he has published two books each of poetry and essay-memoir. His first novel, The Mysteries of Soldiers Grove, is forthcoming from Permanent Press in early 2015, when he will be eighty years old—which surely makes him, he believes, one of the oldest first novelists ever.