From Arsenic Lobster Poetry Journal, Issue Forty Spring 2016
Like you, Michael was born and, like you and everything, Michael will die. It’s a terrible predicament really, but what’s the alternative? Perhaps there’s comfort believing death as the same sweet emptiness that existed before you were born. For more information (books, events, photos of literary graves) visit
Nominated Poem Amarillo Catches Fire in the Distance
Nominated Poem Museum of the Departed
Jessica spends an inordinate amount of time balancing her son’s lizard’s need to be warm throughout the winters of Japan with the electric bill and a desire to live ecologically. In the little time left over, Jessica is planning for an artist’s residency at Denali National Park and Preserve this summer, all the while wondering who will stress over the lizard while she’s away.
Nominated Poem The Beginner’s Guide to Endings
From Arsenic Lobster Poetry Journal, Issue Thirty-nine Winter 2015
Tracie was raised on the savannah by a pack of feral gazelles. At a young age, she learned to bend iron bars with naught but her teeth and sheer determination. During her school years, she consistently wowed her teachers and mentors with her ability to dodge skepticism while performing feats of whimsical magic. In adulthood, she has birthed miniscule acrobats who assist her in her day-to-day tasks of smashing the banality of various poverties. In her spare time, she enjoys semaphore, scrimshaw, collecting rejection letters, and working on cars for the love of artistry and craftsmanship, despite her loathing of vehicular landscapes and the smell of ethanol. She resides in a land beyond your reach. Only Ben Frasier knows how to find her.
Nominated Poem Grocery List Divorced from Food
From Arsenic Lobster Poetry Journal, Issue Thirty-eight Summer 2015
Alejandro’s first book of poems, My Earthbound Eye, was published in September 2013. He holds a master’s degree in creative writing from UC Davis and teaches English. Originally from Argentina, Alejandro lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two children. When he’s not writing, Alejandro can be found photographing birds in California’s mountain trails and parks. Find more at
Nominated Poem The Man You Thought I Was
Elaine teaches Spanish, travels, and enjoys line dancing. She hates cheese, but loves pizza, doesn’t eat scrambled eggs unless they’re on Chinese rice or noodles, and laughs at the most inopportune times. For her, writing is a way of making sofrito out of the experiences and varied truths of life. She is not related to Rafael Nadal.
Nominated Poem Equation