Contributors - Winter 2011
Lisa Marie Basile is the author of an upcoming book of poetry, A Decent Voodoo (Cervena Barva Press) and a chapbook, White Spiders (Gold Wake Press, 2010). She has been published in various journals (Word Riot, elimae, Poets & Artists Magazine, Moon Milk Review, among others) and is the editor of Caper Literary Journal. She is an MFA candidate at The New School in NYC and is a member of The Poetry Brothel.
Richard Burgin - See Staff Bios
Charles Cantalupo is the author of Light the Lights (Red Sea Press: Trenton, 2003), presenting close-ups from points where three continents – North America, Europe, and Africa – collide and join. He is co-translator and co-editor of Who Needs a Story? Contemporary Eritrean Poetry in Tigrinya, Tigre and Arabic (Hdri Publishers: Asmara, 2006). His most recent book is War and Peace in Contemporary Eritrean Poetry (Mkuki na Nyota Publishers: Dar es Salaam, 2009). The writer and director of the documentary, Against All Odds: African Languages and Literatures into the 21st Century (Michigan State University Press & African Books Collective: East Lansing & London, 2007), he is Distinguished Professor of English, Comparative Literature, and African Studies at Penn State.
Rosalia de Castro (Santiago de Compostela, Spain; 1837-1885)
Clearly and strongly gifted from childhood, Rosalia de Castro published her first poems at the age of 12, and her first book--in her native Galician--when she was only 17. It incited the scorn of those who thought Galician the inferior language of a subject people, but raised her at once to heroic status in the eyes of her fellow Galicians, who still celebrate the date when her first volume appeared as a national holiday. Fully bilingual, she published work in Spanish as well, and is considered, like Gustavo Adolfo Becquer, one of the precursors of Modernismo and a prosodic innovator. Her dark, brooding lyrics have had a lasting influence on the literature of Spain as a whole, and of Galicia in particular. She was an important figure in the movement known as the Galician Renaissance, and a champion of the poor and of the rights of women.
Never healthy, and burdened throughout her life by poverty, she nevertheless married a respected academic and historian, and bore 7 children, all of whom died before her and without producing offspring. Her husband persuaded her to publish her works, and edited them himself, fortunately before her death by cancer at the age of 48. Her home is a museum today.
Gregory Djanikian has published five collections of poetry, the latest of which is So I Will Till the Ground (Carnegie Mellon). He directs the undergraduate creative writing program at the University of Pennsylvania.
David Diop was known for his contribution to the Négritude literary movement, and was widely considered one of the most promising French West African poets. Though born in Bordeaux, France in 1927 of a Senegalese father and a Cameroonian mother, he received his primary education in Senegal. He began writing at the age of 15 and his first poems appeared in Présence Africaine. Several of his poems were included in Léopold Sédar Senghor's famous anthology, Anthologie de la nouvelle poésie nègre et malgache (1948), which became a landmark of modern black writing in French. Diop, whose work reflects a hatred of colonial rulers and his hope for an independent Africa, tragically died in a plane crash in 1960. “Celui Qui a tout perdu” is from Coups de pilon, David Diop Présence Africaine Editions, 1973.
Rhina P. Espaillat is Dominican-born and bilingual in English and Spanish. She has published poetry, short stories and essays in both languages, in numerous anthologies and periodicals, as well as in three chapbooks and eight full-length books, most recently Her Place in These Designs. She has also translated in both directions, including work by Saint John of the Cross, Miguel Hernandez, Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, Robert Frost and many others, and is currently working on Spanish translations of poems by Richard Wilbur. Espaillat lives in Newburyport, MA, with her sculptor husband, Alfred Moskowitz.
Alexis Levitin’s - See Staff Bios
Salgado Maranhão won Brazil’s prestigious Prêmio Jabuti in 1999 for his book Mural of the Winds. In addition to nine books of poetry, including The Snake’s Fists, The Kiss of the Beast, Tiger’s Fur, and the very recent (2010) Collected Poetry, he has written song lyrics and made recordings with some of Brazil’s leading jazz and pop musicians. My translations of poems by this stylistically provocative poet have so far appeared in BOMB, Brasil/Brazil, Dirty Goat, Fourth River, Measure, Osiris, Per Contra, Pleiades, Sirena, Spoon River Poetry Review, Subtropics, Turnrow,Words
Without Borders, and Xavier Review.
Rafael Arevalo Martinez (Guatemala City, Guatemala; 1884-1975) Novelist, short-story writer, poet, diplomat, director of the Guatemalan National Library for over twenty years, and Representative before the Pan American Union in Washington D.C., Arevalo Martinez is best remembered for his strange, surrealistic short stories, which were strongly influenced by Nietzsche and by Freudian thought, especially "The Man Who Resembled a Horse," a rich, oblique tale of brutal sexuality.
Maríadelaluz Matus-Mendoza, language educator and sociolinguist, is an Associate Professor of Spanish at Drexel University. She works with Mexican Spanish sociolinguistic variation. Her most recent published article is “Road to Kenny: Migration and Affricate /č/” Southwest Journal of Linguistics, a first tier sociolinguistics journal. She is currently working on a book chapter for an international collaboration originating in Malaysia called Language and Crisis. She has several pending publications on the use of subjunctive in Mexican Spanish and the perception of racism depicted in a postage stamp in Mexico.
Jacqueline Michaud published her debut collection, The Waking Hours: Poems & Translations, in 2007. Her second collection of poems, White Clouds, was published in 2009. Her work has appeared widely in journals and anthologies, including New England Review and Breadloaf Quarterly, Florida Review, American Letters & Commentary, and The Breath of Lips Parted: Voices from the Robert Frost Place. She has translated a large collection of poems by Jacques Prévert, and the work of various Francophone writers, including Jean-F Brierre, Jean Joseph Rabearivelo, and Mohamed Sehaba, among others. A member of the American Literary Translators Association, Michaud received her BA in French Literature from Skidmore College. The poet divides her time between homes in Maryland and Maine.
Michael Palma has published two poetry chapbooks, The Egg Shape and Antibodies, and a full-length collection, A Fortune in Gold (as well as an Internet chapbook, The Ghost of Congress Street: Selected Poems, on The New Formalist Press Web site). This spring he will publish a new collection, Begin in Gladness, and in the fall a chapbook entitled Local Colors. His twelve translations of modern Italian poets include prize-winning volumes of Guido Gozzano and Diego Valeri with Princeton University Press. His fully rhymed translation of Dante’s Inferno was published by Norton in 2002 and reissued as a Norton Critical Edition in 2007. His translation of the poetry of Giovanni Raboni, Every Third Thought, for which he won the Raiziss/de Palchi Translation Fellowship, will be published by Chelsea Editions. Also forthcoming this year are volumes of translations from the poetry of Maurizio Cucchi and Luigi Fontanella.
Manuel Gonzalez Prada (Lima, Peru; 1844-1918)
Son of a wealthy, conservative Spanish family, Gonzalez Prada studied law and from an early age demonstrated an interest in science, progressive thought and liberal politics. He became a strong critic of his own class, a positivist enemy of the Roman Catholic Church, an anarchist and a passionate advocate of working class rights, but nevertheless rejected the Russian Revolution of 1917 and opposed Communism for its rigidity. He served Peru as a politician, literary critic, director of the Peruvian National Library, and a social critic who influenced the intellectual life of his country.
As the first Latin American author to adopt the style that came to be known as Modernismo, Gonzalez Prada anticipated the great Nicaraguan poet Ruben Dario who spread the style throughout the Spanish-speaking world. He also introduced into Spanish numerous poetic forms from other cultures and languages, such as the triolet and the pantoum, and composed essays that revitalized the form and had an enduring influence on future Latin American writers.
For several years, she ran a poetry reading series in her hometown, Great Neck, Long Island. Guests included such luminaries as X.J.Kennedy, Tom Disch, and and David Yezzi. Now she is working on a project called “Poems for the Passerby,” which will place poems on local bulletin boards, much as “Poetry in Motion” placed poems on the subway.
Margaret A. Robinson's chapbook, "Arrangements," poems about breast cancer and love, was published at Finishing Line Press in April 2009. With a manuscript called "Alphabet Rope," she was first runner-up in the recent Mad Poets Joie de Vivre chapbook competition. She teaches in the creative writing program at Widener University and lives in Swarthmore, PA.
Ethel Rohan is the author of the story collection, Cut Through the Bone. A second story collection, Hard to Say, is forthcoming from PANK in 2011. She blogs at ethelrohan.com.
David Slavitt - See Staff Bios
Chrissy Swinko is a writer and performer in Los Angeles. Her work has been seen on stage and in print. She studied writing at Denison University and the i.O. Theater. Her spec script of "The Office" was a semi-finalist in the 12th TV Writer.Com Spec Scriptacular Competition. For more information and/or a personalized 185 joke, please visit www.chrissyswinko.com
Carl-John X Veraja was born in New York and later moved to Fort Myers, Florida where he began a career as a poet and a freelance journalist. His poetry has appeared in multiple international magazines and he has published articles in local southwest Florida news sources. He also has a keen interest in photography, writing songs and promoting local culture.