Diane Averill has published three full-length books of poems: Branches Doubled Over With Fruit, Beautiful Obstacles and Among Pearls Hatching. Two were finalists for the Oregon Book Award in Poetry. She has been published in several anthologies and many literary magazines around the country. She also has published two chapbooks. Diane is a graduate of the MFA program at the University of Oregon. She taught in the English Department at Clackamas Community College from 1991 until she retired in 2010. She was awarded an Oregon Literary Arts Fellowship.
Susan DeFreitas is a writer, editor and book coach. Her work has appeared in (or is forthcoming from) The Utne Reader, The Nervous Breakdown, Southwestern American Literature, Fourth River, Weber—The Contemporary West and Bayou Magazine, among other publications. She holds an MFA from Pacific University and lives in Portland, Oregon, where she serves as an associate editor with Indigo Editing & Publications and a reader for Tin House Magazine.
Carol Ellis was born in Detroit, Michigan, and currently lives in Portland, Oregon. She’s been around the academic block with her Ph.D. in English from the University of Iowa. Her poems and essays are published in anthologies and journals including ZYZZYVA, Comstock Review, Solstice Literary Magazine, Alehouse Review, White Pelican Review, Coe Review (Special Poetry Issue), California Quarterly, The Whirlwind Review, The Coachella Review, Chest Journal, VoiceCatcher, San Pedro River Review, and in the anthology Just Now: 20 New Portland Poets. Her poetry chapbook, I Want A Job, is being published by Finishing Line Press.
Suzanne Lehman is a Portland, Oregon native. She has been writing creative non-fiction for the past four years, taking classes at the Multnomah Arts Center and the Attic Institute. Writing memoir has allowed her a narrative relationship to her own stories and has helped her come to terms with many of life’s complex choices, including the choice to buy a miniature poodle. She is self-employed as an organizing consultant for residential and small business clients.
Jennifer Liberts Weinberg’s poems have appeared in The Paris Review, Tuesday; An Art Project, and Subtropics. Jennifer received her MFA from Columbia University. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband and three children.
Annie Lighthart began writing poetry after her first visit to an Oregon old-growth forest. Since then, she has continued to write while working as a teacher and mother. Iron String, her first book of poetry, was published this year by Airlie Press. She has taught at Boston College, as a poet in the schools, and for Write Around Portland and OASIS. She holds an MFA in poetry from Vermont College of Fine Arts and now writes from a small green corner of Portland. She can be reached at her website Annie Lighthart.
Tiah Lindner Raphael is a writer, editor and teacher living in Portland, Oregon. When she isn’t playing with words, Tiah can be found dreaming of travel or working in her urban garden. Her poetry has previously appeared or is forthcoming from CutBank Literary Magazine, Ink Node and in an anthology of new Oregon poets published by Cloudbank Books. Visit her online at Passage House.
Mary Mandeville is a fifty-something mother, partner and chiropractor who woke up one morning about five years ago with the unshakable need to write a book. She doesn’t have a fancy MFA, and hasn’t yet been nominated for a Pushcart prize, but she has spent much of the past several years writing like a woman possessed. She participated in the Attic’s year-long Atheneum program. Around work and parenting, she puts words on the page almost every day. Her memoir is in progress. She lives in Portland with her partner and son.
All of Pattie Palmer Baker’s artwork includes her poetry in calligraphic form. Because so many people respond more strongly to the words than the images, in an effort to improve her poetry, she recently participated in workshops taught by several local well-known poets. To her surprise, she soon discovered her motivation to write poems surpassed her desire to create visual artwork. Recently, she started submitting her poems to journals and her work has been accepted in Analeka, VoiceCatcher and Elohi Gadugi. Her poem “50,000 Bumblebees Die” is part of the Unnatural Acts Exhibit at Five Mile Post Gallery.
Penelope Scambly Schott’s verse biography A is for Anne: Mistress Hutchinson Disturbs the Commonwealth received the Oregon Book Award for Poetry. New in 2013 were Lovesong for Dufur and Lillie Was a Goddess, Lillie Was a Whore. Penelope lives in Portland and teaches an annual workshop in Dufur on the east side of Mount Hood.
Willa Schneberg has authored four poetry collections, and received the Oregon Book Award in Poetry for In The Margins of The World. Storytelling In Cambodia is her most recent full-length work. She is currently on the board of Calyx Journal. She has had the pleasure of teaching the workshop “Writing Poetry From the News” to members of the VoiceCatcher community. Rending the Garment is forthcoming from Mudfish/Box Turtle Press, NYC.
B.E. Scully writes tales dark and strange, drinks red wine and murky beer, cooks, reads, studies, and believes in the golden key. Scully lives in a haunted red house that lacks a foundation in the misty woods of Oregon with a variety of human and animal companions. Published work, interviews and odd scribblings can be found at B.E. Scully.
Elizabeth Stoessl lives and writes in Portland, Oregon. She was formerly a librarian with the Arlington County, Virginia public libraries, where during some of her career she functioned as a human search-engine before the advent of Google or Wikipedia. Her work has appeared in Beloit Poetry Journal, Borderlands, Crab Creek Review, Illuminations, Persimmon Tree and other journals, and is forthcoming in Measure and Passager. Several of her poems were included in an anthology titled Unsilenced: The Spirit of Women.
Linda Strever’s poetry collection, Against My Dreams, was released in fall 2013. Her poetry credits include CALYX Journal, Adanna, Beloit Poetry Journal, Nimrod, Spoon River Poetry Review, Crab Creek Review and others. Winner of the Lois Cranston Memorial Poetry Prize, her work has been a finalist for the New Issues Poetry Prize, the Levis Poetry Prize and the Ohio State University Press Award in Poetry. She has an MFA from Brooklyn College.
Jenna Thompson lives and writes in Northeast Portland.
Valerie Wagner lives and writes in Vancouver, Washington. She has had a long and diverse career as a registered nurse. She writes short stories, flash fiction and memoir. This is her first personal essay.
Jessica Zisa is a writer and avid reader with a strong passion for medieval literature and gender studies. After dancing several years as a professional ballet dancer, she recently completed her Bachelor of Arts at Marylhurst University in English Literature and Writing. She lives in Portland, and currently works as a freelance writer and social media coordinator. You can find out more at Jessica Zisa.
Sarah Fagan received a Bachelor of Arts in Fine Arts and English Literature from a liberal arts college outside of Boston. She worked as an editor for a New England arts magazine before relocating to Portland, Oregon in 2009. There she decided to concentrate on her own making, and attended a post baccalaureate program at the Oregon College of Art and Craft where she studied bookbinding, printmaking and painting. In Portland Sarah has developed a traveling curriculum of art classes that she teaches to children at schools, libraries and other venues. As a painter she is represented by Portland’s Blackfish Gallery.
Kendall Madden is a Vancouver, Washington ceramic sculptor compelled by the human figure in all its manifestations. From empathetic portraits to odes to the feminine form to fanciful teapots, Kendall’s pieces speak in a vibrant visual language, sharing stories of the human condition: longing, uncertainty, rumination, vitality, whimsy and hope. Kendall works from her tiny home studio, inspired by the rippling of Salmon Creek passing just outside her window.
Katie Todd came back to painting as a postpartum depressed mother. Her paintings stayed done, unlike diapers. They were an immediate accomplishment, and helped her reconnect with herself. She paints her sky, water and landscapes to give her a sense of open space that doesn’t exist in or around her urban homestead in Portland, Oregon. She discovered other people like them too.
Jillian Briglia was born and raised in Portland, Oregon, and currently attends Lincoln High School as a full IB junior. When not writing poetry and short stories, she enjoys acting in the school plays, making short films, burning CDs for her friends, playing soccer, and daydreaming. Jillian created Lincoln’s very first Creative Writing Club this year, and attends Feminist Club on a regular basis. She is quite overjoyed at the opportunity to be published again, and if you were to ask her what she wanted to be when she grew up, chances are she would respond with a brief, “Cinematographer/director/novelist/professor.”
Kate LeBlanc is a freshman at Lincoln High School. This poem was inspired by the Fremont bridge, which is near the school she attended for 11 years. In her free time Kate enjoys singing, acting, reading, playing lacrosse, cooking, and playing with her two labradoodles.
Sophia Mautz is a sophomore at Lincoln High School. She is a unit captain on the Constitution Team, has founded a Poetry Club at Lincoln, and is on the Polaris dance studio junior company. She loves to travel and make bricolage art work. Poetry has brought her closer to her own life and helped her in ways she can’t begin to name.
Sheila Panyam loves to read and write. Her passion for writing began way before she started kindergarten. In fifth grade she wrote, directed and produced a play called “A Great Soul” for the Beaverton Human Rights Advisory Commission and won an award. She is currently a freshman at Lincoln High School in Portland. Apart from reading and writing, she also enjoys paleontology and playing guitar.