Wednesday, January 23, 2019

2019 Scissortail Biographies

C. D. Albin was born and reared in West Plains, Missouri. He earned a Doctor of Arts in English from the University of Mississippi and has taught for many years at Missouri State University – West Plains. He is the author of the story collection Hard Toward Home (Press 53, 2016), for which he received the 2017 Missouri Author Award in Fiction from the Missouri Library Association. He is also the author of the poetry collection Axe, Fire, Mule (Golden Antelope Press, 2018), and his stories, poems, and reviews have appeared in many periodicals, including Arkansas Review, Cape Rock, Georgia Review, Harvard Review, Natural Bridge, and Slant. His author website is

Dorothy Alexander is a poet, memoirist, storyteller and retired lawyer/judge. She began writing poetry and other creative genres after the loss of her son, Kim Alexander, to HIV/AIDS in 1989. She is the co-founder, along with her life partner, Devey Napier, of a small independent poetry press promoting the work of southwest regional poets. The Oklahoma Center for the Book presented Dorothy with the 2013 Carlile Distinguished Service Award for her services to the Oklahoma literary community.

John Andrews grew up in Sheridan, Arkansas. He is the author of Colin Is Changing His Name (Sibling Rivalry Press) which was a finalist for the 2018 Oklahoma Book Award and the 2015 Moon City Poetry Prize. His poems have appeared in Ninth Letter, Columbia Poetry Review, The Boiler, Redivider, and elsewhere. Along with being nominated for the Pushcart Prize, his poems have also been anthologized in The Queer South: LGBTQ Writers on the American South and Aim For The Head: An Anthology of Zombie Poetry. John holds a B.A. in Writing from the University of Central Arkansas and an M.F.A. from Texas State University where he was named a C.D. Marshall Creative Writing Fellow and served as managing editor for Front Porch Journal. He also served as an Associate Editor for the Cimarron Review at Oklahoma State University. He has taught creative writing and composition at Northern Oklahoma College, Oklahoma State University, and Texas State University. Also, he has taught K-12 students with Arkansas Governor’s SchoolAustin Bat Cave, and  Upward Bound. Currently, he lives in Stillwater, OK, with his husband and works with the Oklahoma State University Honors College as an Academic Counselor. He is also a Ph.D. candidate in English and Creative Writing at Oklahoma State University.

Rilla Askew is the author of four novels, a book of stories, and a collection of creative nonfiction, Most American: Notes from a Wounded Place. She’s a PEN/Faulkner finalist, recipient of the American Book Award, Western Heritage Award, Oklahoma Book Award, and the Willa Award from Women Writing the West. Her novel about the Tulsa Race Riot, Fire in Beulah, received the American Book Award in 2001. Askew’s essays and short fiction have appeared in Tin House, World Literature Today, Nimrod, Prize Stories: The O. Henry Awards, The Daily Beast, and elsewhere. In 2009 Askew received the Arts and Letters Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She teaches creative writing at the University of Oklahoma.

Paul Austin has acted and directed On and Off Broadway, Off-Off Broadway, summer stock, and regional theatres around the nation, as well as acting for television and film. Late Night Conspiracies, a collection of his writings was performed with jazz ensemble at New York’s Ensemble Studio Theatre, where he is a long time member. He has written for and about the theatre in essays, poetry and plays. His work has appeared in such publications as This Land, Sugar Mule, Oklahoma Review, Heinemann Press, and Newport Review. His 2019 collection, Notes On Hard Times will be published by Village Books Press. He’s currently working on three other collections Actors, Mother and Son, and Persons of Influence.

Walter Bargen has published 22 books of poetry. Recent books include:  Days Like This Are Necessary: New & Selected Poems (BkMk Press, 2009), Trouble Behind Glass Doors (BkMk Press, 2013), Perishable Kingdoms (Grito del Lobo Press, 2017), Too Quick for the Living (Moon City Press, 2017), and My Other Mother’s Red Mercedes (Lamar University Press, 2018). His awards include: a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and the William Rockhill Nelson Award. He was appointed the first poet laureate of Missouri (2008-2009).

Roy Beckemeyer is a retired engineer and scientific journal editor who writes poetry and studies the Paleozoic insect fossils of Kansas and Oklahoma. He is a co-editor of Konza Journal and is on the Editorial Board of River City Poetry. He was co-editor of two recent poetry collections: 365 Days: A Poetry Anthology, Vol. 2 (2017, 365 Days Poetry, Kansas City, Missouri), and Kansas Time+Place: An Anthology of Heartland Poetry (2017, Little Balkans Press, Pittsburg, Kansas). His first book of poems, Music I Once Could Dance To (2014, Coal City Press) was a Kansas Notable Book. His second was a book of ekphrastic poems inspired by abstract and surrealist artists’ depictions of angels (Amaneunsis Angel, 2018, Spartan Press). His latest is the newly released Stage Whispers (2018, Meadowlark Books). His work has appeared in a half-dozen or so anthologies as well as in such journals as Beecher’s Magazine, Chiron Review, Coal City Review, Dappled Things, The Ekphrastic Review, Flint Hills Review, I-70 Review, Kansas City Voices, The Light Ekphrastic, The Midwest Quarterly, Mockingheart Review, The North Dakota Quarterly, The Syzygy Poetry Review, Thorny Locust, and Zingara.

Alan Berecka earns his keep as a librarian at Del Mar College in Corpus Christi. He wrote a creative thesis at the University of North Texas in 1987. Since then has published four collections of poems, the latest of which is The Hamlet of Stiitville. Among other places, his poetry has appeared in periodicals such as The Texas Review, The American Literary Review, The Christian Century and the anthologies: Oklahoma Poems and Their Poets and the St. Peter’s B-list by Ava Maria Press. In 2017 he was named the first poet laureate of Corpus Christi.

Brett Bourbon has published numerous poems and essays. He was the featured poet in Reunion (Fall, 2015), where poems from a longer poem called Color Boy Against the Gods were published. In addition, he has had poems published in Art News and Artsy. His poetry has been used as the basis of numerous sculptures by the artist Simeen Farhat, and has been displayed in galleries and installations around the world. He is also the author of Finding a Replacement for the Soul: meaning and mind in literature and philosophy (Harvard UP, 2004), as well as numerous essays on philosophy, literature and art in Modern Philology, Common Knowledge, Chicago Review, Philosophy and Literature, and many others. Bourbon received his B.A. from U.C. Berkeley and his Ph.D. from Harvard. He was a professor at Stanford for ten years, and is now an English professor at the University of Dallas. He has received many awards, including a Fulbright to the University of Lisbon, a Mellon Post-Doctoral Fellowship, the Harvard English Scholar award, and the top teaching awards from the University of Dallas and Stanford. 

Paul Bowers teaches writing and literature at Northern Oklahoma College. He is the author of a short story collection, Like Men, Made Various (Lost Horse Press, 2006), and two poetry collections: The Lone, Cautious, Animal Life (Purple Flag Press, 2016) and Occasional Hymns (Turning Plow Press, 2018).

Joey Brown is a poet and prose writer. She's on the verge of completing a new collection of poems titled Content Subject to Change. She's seeking a publisher for her recently completed children's novel: Her Own Little Corner of the World. In the last year, she's read at Scissortail and Chikaskia literary festivals in Oklahoma, Polyphony in Missouri, Langdon Literary Weekend in Texas, and will have made her first appearance at the People's Poetry Festival of Corpus Christi in February 2019.

Julie Chappell is a happily retired Professor of English, living on Lake Keystone in Oklahoma. Her poetry and prose have appeared in a number of anthologies and journals including Revival: Spoken Word from Lollapalooza 94; Agave: A Celebration of Tequila in Story, Song, Poetry, Essay, and Graphic Art; Elegant Rage: A Poetic Tribute to Woody Guthrie; Malpaïs Review; Voices de la Luna; Dragon Poet Review; Red River Review; and Concho River Review, among others. Her poetry collection, Faultlines: One Woman’s Shifting Boundaries, was published by Village Books Press in 2013. Her latest poetry collection, Mad Habits of a Life, will be published by Lamar University Press early in 2019. Scorpion Dreams and Helicopters and Butterflies are in progress.

Village Books Press published Terri Lynn Cummings’ first poetry book, Tales to the Wind, and subsequent chapbooks, An Element Apart and When Distant Hours Call.  Her work appears in Flint Hills Review, Malpais Review, Dragon Poet Review, Red River Review, Illya’s Honey, and elsewhere. She is Assistant Editor and Frequent Contributor to Songs of Eretz Poetry Review. Also, Terri is a Woody Guthrie Poet and a University of Oklahoma Mark Allen Everett Poet. Terri serves on the Film & Literature Advisory Committee of Oklahoma City University. She presents her work at various symposiums and festivals throughout the year. In addition, she hosts the monthly Oklahoma Voices Poetry Series and Open Mic in Oklahoma City. Terri has studied at Creative Writing Institute and holds a B.S. Sociology/Anthropology from Oklahoma State University.

Founder of Concho River Review and member of the Texas Institute of Letters, Terry Dalrymple writes fiction and teaches literature and writing at Angelo State University in San Angelo, TX. His latest book, co-written with Andrew Geyer and Jerry Craven, is Dancing on Barbed Wire, published by Angelina River Press.

Robert L. Dean, Jr. is the author of the poetry collection At the Lake with Heisenberg (Spartan Press, 2018). His work has appeared in Flint Hills Review, I-70 Review, The Ekphrastic Review, Shot Glass, Illya’s Honey, Red River Review, River City Poetry, Heartland! Poetry of Love, Resistance & Solidarity, and the Wichita Broadside Project. He was a quarter-finalist in the 2018 Nimrod Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry. He is event coordinator for Epistrophy: An Afternoon of Poetry and Improvised Music held annually in Wichita, Kansas. He has been a professional musician and worked at The Dallas Morning News. He is a member of The Kansas Authors Club and lives in Augusta, Kansas.

Richard Dixon is a retired high-school Special Education teacher and tennis coach. His poetry and non-fiction has been published in Dragon Poet Review, Crosstimbers, Westview, Red River Review, Red Earth Forum, Walt’s Corner of the Long Islander, HARD CRACKERS, 3 Woody Guthrie anthologies (2011, 2013 and 2017), as well as Clash By Night, a anthology of poems related to the breakthrough 1979 album by the Clash, London Calling. Richard has been a featured reader at Full Circle Bookstore, the Depot in Norman, OK, the Benedict St. Marketplace and Lunch Box in Shawnee, OK, Scissortail Creative Writing Festival in Ada, OK, Chikaskia Literary Festival in Tonkawa, OK. and the annual Woody Guthrie readings in Oklahoma City, Okemah and Tulsa, OK.

Michael Dooley, aka Woodstok Farley, is an assistant professor at Tarleton State University—Stephenville, Texas. Having migrated from south Florida to Texas, Michael remains more comfortable in sandals than boots. His fiction reflects a deep yearning to return to the seacoast. The first chapter of a novella, As the Wave Rose, was published in the online literary journal Cybersoleil, and is among the many stories set in south Florida that will become an episodic collection entitled Surf, Swamp, and Stone. Recently, Michael has begun working on a collection set in his adoptive state of Texas. His first story is entitled “Picasso Hangin’ at the Water Stop Saloon.”

Chris Ellery is a widely-published poet, author of five poetry collections, most recently Canticles of the Body and Elder Tree. He has received the X.J. Kennedy Award for Creative Nonfiction, the Dora and Alexander Raynes Prize for Poetry, and the Betsy Colquitt Award. A member of the Texas Institute of Letters, Ellery teaches literature, creative writing, and film criticism at Angelo State University.

Bill Endres received a master’s degree from the University of New Hampshire in Creative Writing, studying poetry with Charles Simic. To support himself, he has worked in Antarctica and taught English in Japan. Bill returned to graduate school and received a Ph.D. in Rhetoric, Composition & Linguistics from Arizona State University. Currently, he teaches at the University of Oklahoma, specializing in medieval manuscripts, visual rhetoric, and the digital humanities. Using a range of advanced imaging technologies, he digitized the eighth-century St. Chad Gospels, an illuminated manuscript residing at Lichfield Cathedral, England. Through a twist of fate, Bill taught an Intro to Poetry course in the fall of 2018. To demonstrate to students that poetry knows no boundaries when it comes to subjects and the human condition, he began writing poetry again, working with students to understand poetry from the inside (by writing it) and from the outside (by reading and studying it). Bill has published in journals such as The And Review and Artful Dodge.

Alan Gann facilitates writing workshops for under-served youth at Texans Can Academy, and wrote DaVerse Works, Big Thought’s performance poetry curriculum. A multiple Pushcart and Best-of-the-Net nominee, Alan is the author of 2 volumes of poetry: That’s Entertainment: Field Notes on Love, Politics, and Movie Musicals (Lamar University Literary Press 2018), and Adventures of the Clumsy Juggler (Ink Brush Press 2015). His nonexistent spare time is spent outdoors: biking, birding, and trying to capture some of that outdoor experience in photographs.

Andrew Geyer’s latest book is the hybrid story cycle Dancing on Barbed Wire, co-authored with Jerry Craven and Terry Dalrymple, and edited by Tom Mack. Geyer is also the co-author of Parallel Hours, an alternative history/sci fi novel; and Texas 5X5, another hybrid story cycle from which one of his stories won the Spur Award for short fiction from the Western Writers of America. He co-edited the composite anthology A Shared Voice, also with Tom Mack. Geyer’s individually authored books are Dixie Fish, a novel; Siren Songs from the Heart of Austin, a story cycle; Meeting the Dead, a novel; and Whispers in Dust and Bone, a story cycle that won the silver medal for short fiction in the Foreword Magazine Book of the Year Awards and a Spur Award for short fiction. A member of the Texas Institute of Letters, Geyer currently serves as English Department Chair at the University of South Carolina Aiken.

Wayne Lee Gay grew up on a farm outside of Lindsay, Oklahoma. He holds degrees in music history and musicology from Baylor University and the University of Iowa, and the doctorate in creative writing from the University of North Texas. He currently teaches in the English Department of the University of Texas at Arlington, writes fiction, and regularly contributes reviews of classical music concerts, operas, and musical theater to the Theater Jones arts website and He is a past winner of the Saints and Sinners LGBT literary festival first prize for fiction, the Frank O'Connor Prize for Short Fiction, and the David Saunders award for creative nonfiction, and he was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for criticism for 1989. His work has appeared in numerous literary journals and anthologies, including descant, Cream City Review, Best Gay Stories 2011, and The Weight of Addition anthology of Texas poets.

Lyman Grant is the author of five books and one chapbook of poems.  His most recent book is Old Men on Tuesday Morning (Alamo Bay Press, 2017).  His poems have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies.  Recently retired after forty years at Austin Community College, where he served as Dean of Arts and Humanities, Lyman now lives in Harrisonburg, Virginia and has recently taught at Eastern Mennonite University.  A new book, 2018:  Found Poems and Weather Reports, will be published this year. 

William Peter Grasso’s novels explore the concept, "change one thing…and watch what happens." Focusing on the WW2 era and beyond, they weave actual people and historical events into a seamless and entertaining narrative with the imagined. His novels--which now number twelve published works, with the thirteenth due shortly--have spent several years in the Amazon Top 100 for Alternative History and War. A lifelong student of history, Grasso served in the US Army and is retired from the aircraft maintenance industry. These days, he confines his aviation activities to building and flying radio-controlled aircraft.

Simon Han's debut novel is forthcoming from Riverhead Books. His short stories and essays have appeared in The Atlantic, The Iowa Review, Guernica, Fence, and Electric Literature's Recommended Reading. He has received fellowships and scholarships from MacDowell, the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, and the Sewanee Writers' Conference. He grew up in Texas and currently resides in Tulsa, where he is a Tulsa Artist Fellow. 

Michelle Hartman’s fourth book, Wanton Disarray, will be released early in 2019, from Old Seventy Creek press. Along with her other works, Irony and Irreverence, Disenchanted and Disgruntled, & Lost Journal of My Second Trip to Purgatory, it is available on Amazon. Hartman’s work can be found online, in multiple journals here, and various countries overseas. She is the former editor of Red River Review and holds a BS degree in Political Science, Pre-Law from Texas Wesleyan University and a Paralegal Cert. from Tarrant County College. She was recently named a Distinguished Alumni by Tarrant County College.  

Brandon Hobson is the author of Where The Dead Sit Talking, which was a finalist for the 2018 National Book Award. He’s also the author of the books Deep Ellum and Desolation of Avenues Untold. He has won a Pushcart Prize, and his stories and essays have appeared in such places as The Believer, Conjunctions, NOON, The Paris Review Daily, Publisher’s Weekly, and elsewhere. He teaches at Northern Oklahoma College and is an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation Tribe of Oklahoma.

Ann Howells, of Dallas, Texas, edited Illya’s Honey eighteen years. Her books are: Under a Lone Star (Village Books, 2016) and a D/FW anthology she edited, Cattlemen & Cadillacs (Dallas Poets Community, 2016). Her chapbook, Softly Beating Wings (Blackbead, 2017), was published as winner of the William D. Barney Chapbook Contest. Her latest collection, So Long As We Speak Their Names, a series of poems centered around watermen on the Chesapeake Bay, will be released in spring from Bowen Books. Recent work has appeared in Chiron Review, I-70 Review, Paddock Review, San Pedro River Review, and The Langdon Review.

Dr. Emily Blackshear Hull directs the Deep Roots: Oklahoma Authors Oral History Project for the Oklahoma State University Library and serves as an interviewer for other oral history projects including the Inductees of the Oklahoma Women’s Hall of Fame and the Spotlighting Oklahoma series. Emily produces and co-hosts the Dear Oklahoma podcast, a collaboration with KOSU radio and the Center for Poets and Writers at OSU-Tulsa. She occasionally publishes poetry and currently works as food editor for the New Territory Magazine

Markham Johnson won the Pablo Neruda Prize from Nimrod with a series of poems about the Tulsa Race Massacre, and his first book of poetry, Collecting the Light, was published by the University Press of Florida. He holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts, and his poems have been published widely in journals such as Nine MileThis LandArt Focus MagazineCoal Hill Review, and Cimarron Review. His chapbook, Starlings, Grackles, Redwings, was selected for publication by Philip Levine.

Hank Jones backpacked the world in his youth hoping to find a poet within until poverty prompted him to accept a job at Tarleton State University, his alma mater. He planned to stay a year or two and get back on the road. Eighteen years later, he is an assistant professor at the same university. To keep his creative spirit alive, and to hone his facility with the written word, he enrolled in the Red Earth MFA program at Oklahoma City University. His poetry has been published in Cybersoleil: A Literary JournalVoices de la LunaDragon Poet Review, the Concho River Review, and Red River Review. He contributed two poems to The Great American Wise Ass Poetry Anthology from Lamar University Literary Press and has a poem in the Stone Renga Anthology from Tale Feathers Press.

Paul Juhasz writes poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction. He has read at dozens of conferences and festivals across the country, and his work has appeared in bioStories, Red River Review, and Ain’t Gonna Be Treated This Way. His mock journal, Fulfillment: Diary of an Amazonian Picker, chronicling his seven-month term as a Picker at an Amazon Fulfillment Center, has been published in abridged form in The Langdon Review of the Arts in Texas and is currently being serialized in Voices de la Luna. He is currently enrolled in the Red Earth MFA program.     

Jennifer Kidney is an adjunct assistant professor for the College of Professional and Continuing Studies at the University of Oklahoma. She has a B.A. with Highest Honors in English from Oberlin College and an M.Phil. and Ph.D. in English Language and Literature from Yale University. She is the author of six books of poetry; her most recent collection, Road Work Ahead, was published by Village Books Press in 2012.  Her poetry has appeared in numerous journals and little magazines, including Sugar Mule, Crosstimbers, Picking Up the Tempo, Kudzu, The Seattle Review, Malpais Review, The Bellingham Review, Dragon Poet Review, as well as in several anthologies, including Lamar University Literary Press's Great American Wise Ass Poetry Anthology and Unlocking the Word: An Anthology of Found Poetry. She has done poetry readings all across Oklahoma as well as in Texas, Wyoming, Ohio, Michigan, and at the Spoleto Festival in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2005. She has been nominated for Oklahoma Poet Laureate three times—by the Oklahoma Library Association in 2006 and by the Jim Lucas-Checotah Public Library in 2008, when she was one of three finalists for the distinction, and again in 2016 by the Jim Lucas-Checotah Public Library. She is the secretary of the Cleveland County Audubon Society, for which she hosts an annual Bird Poetry Reading, and she serves on the Norman Animal Welfare Center Oversight Committee.  She has won awards for her poetry, technical writing, teaching, and brownie baking. She lives in Norman with her dog, Barry White, and her cats, Marvin Gaye and Priscilla Presley.

A born and bred Oklahoman, Heather L. Levy is a graduate of Oklahoma City University's Red Earth MFA program. Readers can find her most recent and forthcoming work in numerous journals, including Nailed Magazine, Crab Fat Magazine, Prick of the Spindle, and Dragon Poet Review. She also authored a nonfiction series on human sexuality, including “Welcome to the Dungeon: BDSM in the Bible Belt,” for Literati Press. She recently had the honor of teaching through the Ralph Ellison Foundation. When not caring for two kids and three cats, she’s working on her fourth novel, The Blood Wells.    

Sharon Edge Martin has been published in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine, Family Circle, Malpais Review, Oklahoma Today, Outside, True West, and in the Woody Guthrie anthologies, Elegant Rage and Ain’t Going to be Treated This Way.  Her work is included in Michael Bugeja’s The Art and Craft of Poetry, and she has been a regular contributor to the Oklahoma Observer for more than ten years. She is the author of a picture book, Froggy Bottom Blues. Her first full-length book of poetry is Not a Prodigal, published by Village Books Press. Martin hosts a monthly poetry reading at Tidewater Winery, Drumright, Oklahoma.

Bill McCloud is an adjunct professor of American History at Rogers State University. In December, 2017, his poetry book, The Smell of the Light: Vietnam, 1968-1969, published by Balkan Press, was #1 on The Oklahoman's "Oklahoma Bestsellers" list. All of his Vietnam papers have been purchased by Harvard University. His poems are taught as part of the curriculum in both English and American History classes at the University School of Milwaukee, WI, a private college preparatory school. One of his poems was chosen to be posted inside a Tulsa Transit city bus, and he was selected as both a 2017 and 2018 Woody Guthrie Poet. In addition to dozens of poems published in literary journals, he writes two new poems a month for a weekly newspaper in Hattiesburg, MS. He has been inducted into the Northern Oklahoma College Alumni Hall of Fame.      

Julia McConnell is a poet and a librarian living in Oklahoma City. Her chapbook, Against the Blue was published by Finishing Line Press in 2016. Her work has appeared in THIS LAND, All Roads Will Lead You Home, Blood and Thunder, Oklahoma Poems… and Their Poets, and many anthologies. She has a Masters in Library and Information Science from the University of Oklahoma and a B.A in English.

A graduate of St. John's College and of the George Mason University MFA Program, Gary Worth Moody has worked as a forest fire fighter, a farrier, a cowboy, and building a town for coal miners in Siberia’s Kuzbass Region. His poems have appeared in myriad journals on both sides of the Atlantic, and in the anthologies, Cabin Fever: Poets at Joaquin Miller’s Cabin, 1984-2001(Word Works Press) and Weaving the Terrain (Dos Gatos Press). He is the author of Hazards of Grace (Red Mountain Press, 2012), Occoquan (Red Mountain Press, 2015) shortlisted for the international Rubery Book Award in poetry. Gary’s 3rd manuscript, The Burnings, is forthcoming in 2019 from 3: A Taos Press. He is currently in the final assembly of a 4th manuscript entitled Lolita, the Bird, and the Black-Tongued Dog.
A falconer, Gary lives in Santa Fe with the artist and writer, Oriana Rodman, Handsome the Dachshund, Gus the Blacktongued Dog, and Plague, a male red-tail hawk.

John Graves Morris, Professor of English at Cameron University, is the author of Noise and Stories (Plain View Press, 2008), and he is looking for a publisher for a second collection, Unwritten Histories.  His poems have appeared in The Chariton Review, The Concho River Review, The Red Earth Review, the Red River Review, and elsewhere.  He lives in Lawton, but would like to be granted a second tenure at East Central University since he has appeared so often at the Scissortail Festival.

Chris Murphy received his MFA from The University of Arkansas and currently teaches creative writing at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. He also serves as a fiction editor for Nimrod International. He's had work published at Gulf Coast (online), This Land, The Jellyfish Review, and decomP, among others

Tom Murphy is the People’s Poetry Festival-Corpus Christi committee chair. Murphy’s books & CDs: American History (Slough Press, 2017), co-edited Stone Renga (Tail Feather, 2017), chapbook, Horizon to Horizon (Strike Syndicate, 2015), CDs “Live from Del Mar College” (BOW Productions, 2015), and “Slams from the Pit” (BOW Productions, 2014). Murphy has also been named the 2020 Writer-In-Residence for the Langdon Review.

Benjamin Myers is a former Poet Laureate of Oklahoma and is the author of three books of poetry: Elegy for Trains (Village Books Press, 2010), Lapse Americana (New York Quarterly Books, 2013), and Black Sunday (Lamar University Press, 2019). His poems have appeared in The Yale Review, Rattle, Image, Nimrod, The Cimarron Review and many other publications. He has written essays and reviews for Oklahoma Today, First Things, World Literature Today, and other academic and popular journals. Myers teaches literature and creative writing at Oklahoma Baptist University, where he is the Crouch-Mathis Professor of Literature.

Vivian Finley Nida’s hometown serves as winter quarters for several circuses, thus the title of her first book of poetry, From Circus Town, USA, accepted for publication by Village Books Press. Her work appears in Conclave 2018: The Trickster’s Song, Dragon Poet Review, Illya’s Honey, Songs of Eretz Poetry Review, and elsewhere. Vivian is a Teacher/Consultant with the University of Oklahoma’s Oklahoma Writing Project, a Mark Allen Everett Poetry Series poet, a Woody Guthrie poet, Frequent Contributor to Songs of Eretz Poetry Review, and a member of the advisory committee of Oklahoma City University’s Center for Interpersonal Studies through Film and Literature. A retired English and Creative Writing teacher, she holds a B.A. in English and M.S. in Secondary Education from Oklahoma State University. 

Brady Peterson was born in Ft. Sill, Oklahoma in the shadow of the second World War. Brady currently lives in Belton, Texas where he once built houses and taught rhetoric. His most significant accomplishment, if one can call it that, was to help raise five daughters. He is the author of Glued to the Earth, Between Stations, Dust, From an Upstairs Window, and García Lorca Is Somewhere in Produce.

Colin Pope lives in Stillwater. His first poetry collection, Why I Didn’t Go to Your Funeral, is forthcoming in 2019 from Tolsun Books. It was a finalist for the Press 53 Award and a semifinalist for the Sundress Open Reading Period, and his manuscriptPrayer Book for an American God was named a finalist for the 2018 Louise Bogan Award and the 2019 St. Lawrence Award. Colin’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in SlateRattle, Ninth Letter, The Cortland Review, Denver Quarterly, and Best New Poets,among others, and he’s the recipient of two Academy of American Poets prizes. He is a PhD candidate at Oklahoma State University and serves on the editorial staffs of Cimarron Review and Nimrod International.

Jason Poudrier is a 2018 Pat Tillman ScholarHe is a novelist, essayist, poet, and Purple Heart recipient of the Iraq War. He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in English Education at the University of Oklahoma and is an instructor with Cameron University. He serves as the director of events for Military Experience & the Artsand is an award-winning author of two poetry collections, Red Fields (Mongrel Empire Press, 2012) and the chapbook In the Rubble at Our Feet (Rose Rock Press, 2011). His poems have recently appeared in World Literature Today and Blue Streak. His fiction has been listed as a finalist for the New Plains Review Sherman Chaddlesone Flash Fiction contest, semifinalist for American Short Fiction’s American Short(er) Fiction contest, and honorable mention for Proud to Be: Writing by American Warriors, Volume 6

Dr. Randy Prus is a professor of English and Humanities at Southeastern Oklahoma State University in Durant, OK. His most recent collection is On the Cusp of Memory, a series of sonnets on the landscape of the region, with illustrations by his son Ethan.

The poems, reviews, and essays of Carol Coffee Reposa have appeared or are forthcoming in The Atlanta Review, The Evansville Review, The Texas Observer, Southwestern American Literature, The Valparaiso Review, and other journals and anthologies. Author of four books of poetry – At the Border: Winter Lights, The Green Room, Facts of Life, and Underground Musicians – Reposa was a finalist in The Malahat Review Long Poem Contest (1988), winner of the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center Poetry Contest (1992), and  winner of the San Antonio Public Library Arts & Letters Award (2015). She also has received four Pushcart Prize nominations in addition to three Fulbright-Hays Fellowships for study in Russia, Peru, Ecuador, and Mexico. A member of the Texas Institute of Letters and of the editorial staff at Voices de la Luna, she has been named 2018 Texas Poet Laureate.

Sally Rhoades was published in Unlocking the Word, An Anthology of Found Poetry, edited by Jonas Zdanys published by Lamar University Literary Press. Her poem, “Crazy Brave” was featured in Rensselearville Library’s National Poetry Month poem-a day project. Segments of her new play, My Utica, were invited to the annual writer’s forum at the BBC (Barrow, Bedford & Commerce) in NYC. She traveled to Berlin and near Barcelona for Dance conferences this past year. She will perform at University Settlement in NYC in Rachel Thorne Germond’sPerformance Collage #3: Safety Dance, February 14th, 15th and 16th, 2019. Her work has appeared in Misfit Magazine, Dragon Poet’s Review, 2, Elegant Rage, a poetic tribute honoring the centennial of Woody Guthrie, the Highwatermark Salo[o]n performance series by Stockpot flats, Up the River, by Albany Poets and in Peerglass, an anthology of Hudson Valley peer groups.

Rob Roensch's first book, a collection of stories titled The Wildflowers of Baltimore, was published by Salt. He has published fiction in Epoch, Green Mountains Review, and American Short Fiction. He teaches at Oklahoma City University.

Molly Sizer is a retired sociologist living in southwest Oklahoma. She holds two degrees in Sociology (B.A., 1976, University of Arkansas, and PhD, 1989, University of Georgia). Molly spent seven years working as a rural sociologist for U. S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service in Washington, D.C. and nine years as rural and family sociologist in the Dale Bumper’s College of Agriculture, Food and Life Sciences at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. Molly and her Good Husband (an Arkansas blueberry and Christmas tree farmer) walked more than a thousand miles along or around the Continental Divide from southwest New Mexico into Colorado. After his death, she landed next to the Wichita Mountains in rural southwest Oklahoma, an area she recognized from her sociological research on local labor markets as being exceptional. She is currently a student in the Creative Writing program at Cameron University, a substitute teacher for middle-school students in Lawton, and a volunteer at the Wichita Mountain Wildlife Refuge. Her poems have been published in Westview Journal of Western Oklahoma and presented at the 2018 Woody Guthrie Poetry Readings.

Christopher Stephen Soden received his MFA in Poetry from Vermont College of Fine Arts in January of 2005. He teaches craft, theory, genre and literature. He writes poetry, plays, literary, film and theatre critique for and EdgeDallas. Christopher’s poetry collection, Closer, was released by Rebel Satori Press on June 14th, 2011. He received a Full Fellowship to Lambda Literary's Retreat for Emerging LGBT Voices in August 2010. His performance piece: Queer Anarchy received The Dallas Voice's Award for Best Stage Performance. Water and A Christmas Wish were staged at Bishop Arts and Every Day is Christmas. In Heaven at Nouveau 47. Other honors include: Distinguished Poets of Dallas, Poetry Society of America's Poetry in Motion Series, Founding Member, President and President Emeritus of The Dallas Poets Community. His work has appeared in: Rattle, The Cortland Review, 1111, Typishly, F(r)iction, G & L Review, Chelsea Station, Glitterwolf, Collective Brightness, A Face to Meet the Faces, Resilience, Ganymede Poets: One, Gay City 2, The Café Review, The Texas Observer, Sentence, Borderlands, Off the Rocks, The James White Review, The New Writer, Velvet Mafia, Poetry Super Highway, Gertrude, Touch of Eros, Gents, Bad Boys and Barbarians, Windy City Times, ArLiJo, Best Texas Writing 2.

Don Stinson is the author of Flatline Horizon, published in late 2018 by Mongrel Empire Press. He is currently at work on a new manuscript, tentatively titled Black Dog. His poems have appeared in Concho River Review, Midwest Quarterly, and numerous other journals. Don holds a Ph.D. in English from Oklahoma State University. He lives with his wife Pamela in Tonkawa, where he teaches at Northern Oklahoma College, and is one of the hosts for the annual Chikaskia Literary Festival. 

Susan Sturman joined the faculty of Del Mar College in Corpus Christi, Texas as Professor of Cello and Double Bass in 1989 after earning her Bachelor of Music from Baldwin-Wallace University Conservatory of Music and her Master of Music from Northwestern University. She performs frequently as a recitalist, chamber musician, and orchestral player and has worked with a variety of groups including the Corpus Christi Chamber Players, Current Evolution (Cello and Percussion Duo), the Aurora Piano Trio, the Islander String Quartet, the Islander Chamber Players, the Ohio Chamber Orchestra, the Cleveland Ballet Orchestra, and the Corpus Christi Symphony Orchestra where she has served as Principal Cellist since 2004. In 2016 Susan completed a 200-hour yoga teacher-training course and is now a Registered Yoga Teacher certified through the Yoga Alliance. She enjoys incorporating yoga principles into her playing and teaching. Find out more at

Larry D. Thomas, a member of the Texas Institute of Letters and the 2008 Texas Poet Laureate, has published several critically acclaimed and award-winning collections of poetry. His collection, As If Light Actually Matters: New & Selected Poems, received a 2015 Writers’ League of Texas Book Awards Finalist citation. Among the literary journals in which his work has recently appeared are Louisiana LiteratureArkansas Review: A Journal of Delta Studies, CallalooSan Pedro River Review, Southwestern American LiteratureThe Oklahoma Review, and Right Hand Pointing. His latest collection is Boiling it Down: The Electronic Poetry Chapbooks of Larry D. Thomas (Blue Horse Press, 2019).

Ron Wallace is an Oklahoma native of Scots-Irish, Choctaw, Cherokee and Osage descent. He is currently an adjunct instructor of English at Southeastern Oklahoma State University, in Durant, Oklahoma, and is the author of eight books of poetry - four which have been finalists in the Oklahoma Book Awards. His latest finalist, Renegade and Other Poems, was the 2018 winner of the Oklahoma Book Award. Wallace has been a “Pushcart Prize” nominee and has recently been published in Oklahoma Today, San Pedro River Review, Red River Review, Concho River Review,Red Earth Review, Oklahoma Humanities Magazine, Borderlands, and a number of other magazines and journals.

Sarah Webb is the former poetry and fiction editor of Crosstimbers, a multicultural, interdisciplinary journal from the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma. Her poetry collection Red Riding Hood's Sister was published 2018 by Virtual Artists Collective. Her earlier collection Black (Virtual Artists Collective, 2013) was a finalist for the Oklahoma Book Award and for the Writers' League of Texas Book Award. She leads workshops in writing for self-exploration and is co-leader of an ongoing writing group for Zen and Writing. 

Poet/performer Ann Weisman has published three books of poetry: Open Air (riverrun press); eye imagine:  performances on paper(renegade/Point Riders Press); and Playing the Messages Twice (Rose Rock Press), a Finalist for the 2002 Oklahoma Book Award in Poetry.  She collaborated with musicians to produce a CD, Double Leo, Aries Moon. Her recent readings or performances include the Woodie Guthrie Festival in Tulsa, St. John’s College in Santa Fe, and Re-union at Living Arts of Tulsa. She has numerous publications including Broomweed Journal, Dialogue through Poetry 2001 Anthology, CutBank, and Chariton Review. She was awarded first place in the 1971 Nimrod Poetry Contest and an honorable mention in the 2018 Friends of the (Tulsa) Library Creative Writing Contest as well as other honors in the years between. She is pleased to include a poem by Alice Price (1928-2009), Tulsa poet/artist and sorely missed friend, in her program.

Cullen Whisenhunt is a graduate student with the Red Earth Creative Writing MFA program at Oklahoma City University and a Developmental Reading and Writing instructor at Murray State College in Tishomingo, OK. His work has appeared in Red Earth Review, Dragon Poet Review, Red River Review, Manzano Mountain Review, and Walls: a Poets Speak Anthology. 

Although Dan Wilcox once worked as a dishwasher & as a short-order cook, he has never driven a cab, or played professional baseball. For most of his career he worked as bureaucrat & wrote poetry. He 
currently organizes poetry events in Albany, NY & is an active member of Veterans For Peace.  You can read his Blog at

Clarence Wolfshohl has been active in the small press as writer and publisher for nearly fifty years.  He has published poetry and non-fiction in many journals, both print and online, including Red River Review, San Pedro River Review, Agave, Cape Rock, and New Letters.  More recently he has published the e-chapbook Scattering Ashes (Virtual Artists Collective, 2016),  the chapbook Holy Toledo (El Grito del Lobo Press, 2017), and Queries and Wonderments (El Grito del Lobo Press, 2017).  Wolfshohl lives in the suburbs of Toledo, Missouri, with his dog and cat.

John M. Yozzo is a retired professor of English residing in Tulsa.  He spends his golden years biking, kayaking, & farm-handing. Yozzo has authored Only Wonder (2017) and the forthcoming Echoes & Omens from Village Books Press.

Rachel Yubeta is a Ph.D. candidate in literature at the University of Dallas, where she is working on a dissertation that focuses on modern approaches to alleviating suffering through linguistic means. She received her B.A. in English from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, and her M.A. in English from the University of Dallas, where her thesis traced the making of the soul in the poetry of George Herbert. She has given talks on the link between description and argument and on the various ways in which we find the world through language.  Her poem “Sexton’s Consorting with Angles While I Watch the Sun Rise’ was published in Nerve Cowboy. She published a handful of poems in The Baylorian while an undergrad at UMHB. Her poetry is often a thinking through and exploration of the difficulties that attend to our seeing, naming, and describing the world. 

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