Arsenic Lobster poetry journal Issue Forty-two
Winter 2016
Bruce Alford
Bruce is extremely allergic to grass pollen, so he spends most of his life indoors admiring the chenille tassels on his Royal Fringe Ottoman and writing poetry. Occasionally, he looks out the window and sneezes and remembers catching alligators, snakes, frogs and turtles when he was a kid. He lives in Tangipahoa Parish, in Southeast Louisiana which is less than an hour’s drive from New Orleans. He was assistant professor of creative writing at the University of South Alabama in Mobile for more than a decade. His office looked and smelled like a library from the Victorian era. Some of his favorite books are Moby Dick, the King James Bible, and his Cambridge edition of The Complete Works of Shakespeare. He also enjoys Tarzan and Doctor Who. When he is not at home reading or writing, he is at the health club helping his personal training clients look and feel fabulous. He loves icy protein shakes and peanut butter straight from the jar. It’s better that way.

Alessandra Bava
Alessandra loves old books, confessional poems, pop surrealism, street art and whipped cream in no specific order. When she is not poeming or translating, she is writing the biography of a contemporary American poet.

Ann Howells
Ann eats, drinks, and breaths poetry. She writes, she submits, she reads, she edits, and she attends every poetry festival and conference she can. The running joke is that if you slow to forty as you swing past her house on the way to conference, she’ll jump in the car with her suitcase. Her publications are Black Crow in Flight (Main Street Rag), Under a Lone Star (Village Books Press), Letters for My Daughter (Flutter Press), and Cattlemen & Cadillacs, which she edited (Dallas Poets Community Press).

George Kalamaras
George, former Poet Laureate of Indiana (2014-2016), is the author of fifteen books of poetry, eight of which are full-length, including Kingdom of Throat-Stuck Luck, winner of the Elixir Press Poetry Prize (2011) and The Mining Camps of the Mouth (2012), winner of the New Michigan Press Prize. He is Professor of English at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, where he has taught since 1990.

Sharon Kennedy-Nolle
A graduate of Vassar College, Sharon's interest in history and traveling inform her creative work. Exploring the wild, unbidden parts of the earth has always served as a key source of inspiration. Her poetry has appeared in The Dickinson Review and The Syracuse Review, among others. Her dissertation was published as Writing Reconstruction: Race, Gender, and Citizenship in the Postbellum South (University of North Carolina Press, 2015).

Donald Raymond
Donald was born in Uzbekistan in 1841, the only son of itinerant Monrovian yak farmers … … while that may not be entirely believable, he is still trying to convince himself he works as an accountant at a casino, and once sold lightbulbs for a living. They really need to warn kids about this stuff in high school. They spend like six months teaching them about drugs, and since his dad was a meth chemist, that was six months wasted in his opinion.

Catori Sarmiento
Catori is an author who has contributed fiction to Nothing. No One. Nowhere by Virgogrey Press, The Citron Review, Brick Rhetoric, Foliate Oak Magazine, and Crossed Out Magazine. She has also contributed non-fiction to Her Kind and This Boundless World and several academic essays published by Student Pulse. She also has had poetry published by Poetry Wall, Cactus Heart Press, and The Dead Flowers Poetry Rag. Professionally, She is an English and Writing Professor in Tokyo, Japan.

Christina Seymour
Christina does not believe in auras unless you do, in which case hers has three dominant colors: robin egg blue, identified unanimously by her first-ever poetry students; orange, noted by her good poet-friend at the Blue Moose Café; and lavender, read by her inner-most self in the center of a leaf-storm. Her poetry appears in her chapbook, Flowers Around Your Soft Throat (Structo), and several journals:

Stacy Skolnik
Stacy is a poet and educator living in Brooklyn, NY. She is on the editorial staff for Montez Press and received her MFA from Brooklyn College. Her poetry and criticism has been published in the Adirondack Review, KGB Bar Lit Magazine, Josephine Quarterly, and SALT. Feminism and Contemporary Art, among other magazines and journals.

Armin Tolentino
Armin has worked as a sushi chef, package handler, and a security guard for a Vanilla Ice show many years after the performer’s heyday when he may have actually required securing from fans. He received his MFA at Rutgers University in Newark and also gained about 25lbs thanks to the many fantastic Portuguese bakeries in the Ironbound. His work has appeared in Blue Earth Review, Mason’s Road, Underground Voices, and The Raven Chronicles.

Nancy Morgan Barnes
Nancy has been painting and a member of the Fine Arts community for over forty years. She is a graduate of Indiana University, and is married to Artist and I.U. Professor Emeritus of Fine Arts, Robert Barnes. Together the couple has two grown daughters.

She has exhibited her paintings in Italy and throughout the United States. One of her most recent solo exhibitions was held at Sonya Zaks Gallery in Chicago. She has also exhibited at The Painting Center in NYC, and Wright State University Art Gallery in Dayton, OH. Besides her dedication to her work as a painter and mother, she taught Art, first at Depauw University for nine years then at I.U. for ten.

After retiring from academia at Indiana University in 2000, Morgan Barnes and her husband relocated from Southern Indiana to the coast of central Maine where they bought an old sea captain’s house. She also lives and paints in Central Italy where she and Robert acquired an ancient farmhouse nearly thirty years ago. Visit her website at