Arsenic Lobster poetry journal
Issue Ten
Spring 2006
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Laura Bontrager
Laura lives in Memphis, TN, and works as a behavioral aide with a five year old boy who has autism. She daydreams about being a radio DJ, a Secret Service agent, or Martha Stewart (minus the jail time), but she loves her current work and wouldn't change a thing. Although her literary credits are few, she has read The Sound and the Fury by Faulkner and even loved it. (No lie.)

Mark Gaudet
Mark was first published at the age of 15. A lover of free verse, his two major influences are Charles Bukowski and William Carlos Williams. His poetry has appeared in journals in the US, Europe, and Canada, including the hold, Magpie's Nest, Talväipivänseisaus Specials, 3Cup Morning, Zygote in My Coffee, Children, Churches and Daddies, Remark, S.S.O. Press, Tamafyhr Mountain Poetry, The Beat, Thieves Jargon, Unlikely 2.0, Smokebox, and LitVision Magazine.

L. Kelly
L. Kelly lives (or something like it) in Baltimore where she works an uneventful job and spends uneventful weekends and uneventful holidays imagining she's a pretentious snob who writes.

Michael Paul Ladanyi
Michael has seen his poetry, interviews and book reviews published worldwide. Two publishers even nominated him for the Pushcart Prize in 2004. Suckers. He thinks he has seen 7 or 8 of his chaps and a full poetry collection published. His friends keep telling him to Google himself to find out. He really doesn't give a shit. He writes in a self-taught, self-dubbed style he thinks of as Natural Bohemian Dadaism. It's the Hungarian in him. He has served as a poetry editor for various magazines too many times to make it fun anymore, and has published a mag or two of his own, one of which is still online, Adagio Verse Quarterly

He writes full-time, feels pain every day from a debilitating back injury he suffered five years ago, drinks too much, takes morphine and methadone for pain, and loathes doctors and the government. He reads and listens to everyone that is worth a shit, and makes a hellavu lot of fun of those that are not. Really. He is married to a beautiful woman, truly, and is the father of two amazing daughters. Hell, makes it all worth it.

John McCormick
John, from Superior, WI, spends his time alternating between making sandwiches for a corporation and teaching college students how to write college papers. He wishes he could still play soccer but knows his future lies in bocce balls.

Benjamin Pealer
Benjamin is a soldier, a sophist, and a recovering truant who has had a sole poem published (prior to this) in the New England Writer's Anthology. He studied with Maurice Kenny and has strong connections to Pittsburgh, Vermont and Northern New York. He currently works for Uncle Sam in Baton Rouge.

Maj Ragain
Maj was born on a Saturday morning, September 15, 1940, in Olney, a small farming community in southeastern Illinois. Father, a carpenter; mother, a homemaker. The poem, a thing made of language on hand, in and by hand. Wood, food, cloth, paper, that long tradition. Raised on Vernor lake, north of Onley, marriage of heaven and water, fishing the skylights. Education, the paved road out of town. Phd, Kent State University, 1990. Poetry, that dirt road winding back home, corn tassel, fencerows, the last light fading in the top branches of a century oak. Poetry, that slip knot, bridging solitude and community, a way to offer one's longing to the world. Maj has taught at Kent State University in Ohio, off and on since 1969. A wife: LuAnn Csernotta. Two children: Sean Kelly and Megan Ryan. A Hungry Ghost Surrenders His Tackle Box is Maj's fifth collection of poems. He travels widely in Kent and ties his small boat to the back porch railing, 322 East Grant Street.

Nanette Rayman-Rivera
Nanette was born in Boston and now lives in New York. She's an actress as well as a writer and has performed in off-off Broadway plays, independent films and was a waitress four times on All My Children. She really wanted to be a violinist, but never could afford lessons or the violin. She is published in numerous literary journals including The Berkeley Fiction Review, The Worcester Review and The Pittsburgh Quarterly. An excerpt from her memoir will be published in Dragon Fire in March.

Thomas Reynolds
Thomas teaches at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park, Kansas, and has published poems in various print and online journals, including New Delta Review, Alabama Literary Review, Aethlon-The Journal of Sport Literature, The MacGuffin, The Cape Rock, Flint Hills Review, Falling Star Magazine, Ariga, American Western Magazine, 3rd Muse Poetry Journal, Strange Horizons, Combat, The Green Tricycle, Muscadine Lines-A Southern Journal, Farsight Magazine, Miller's Pond Poetry Magazine, and Prairie Poetry.

Sampson Starkweather
Sampson lives in Chappaqua, NY and works as an editor for a science textbook publishing company. He has a little machine in the back of his throat that allows him to say anything. His poems are recently published or forthcoming in: Gargoyle, Asheville Poetry Review, Redivider, Lumina, Roanoke Review, and Main Street Rag.

Treasure Williams
A native of Meridian, Mississippi, Treasure is a woman who counts her lips as her greatest feature. She misses Hammer pants and wishes the computers would hurry up and take over the world. On Sundays, she frets over her salvation until that first beer. Then she frets over her diminishing beer stash. Right now she is a wandering minstrel of an adjunct instructor, teaching at four separate schools. Treasure has received an MFA from The University of Memphis’s Creative Writing program. The selected poems are from her poetry manuscript, resurrecting remains.

Nancy Morgan Barnes
Nancy has been painting and a member of the Fine Arts community for over thirty 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

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