Arsenic Lobster poetry journal
Issue Twenty-two
Spring 2010
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Gale Acuff
Gale (Mr.) has taught university English classes in the US, China, and the Palestinian West Bank. He has made four trips to China. He is interested in cultural similarities and differences between East and West and finds that he writes and teaches more effectively when he is away from the region (the American South) where he grew up. That is, being geographically distant has helped him to attain some objective yet intimate insight about his childhood experiences, which seem to be his creative preoccupation. His work has been published in Ascent, Ohio Journal, Descant, Adirondack Review, Worcester Review, Maryland Poetry Review, Florida Review, Poem, Santa Barbara Review, and many other journals. He has authored three books of poetry: Buffalo Nickel, The Weight of the World, and The Story of My LivesK.

John Thomas Allen
John is a 26 year old poet living in Albany, NY. Spending the majority of his time working with the homeless at a local shelter run by the Franciscan Friars, he can be found writing or boring his long suffering girlfriend talking about writing. Some of his favorite contemporary poets include Franz Wright, Gregory Orr, Geoffrey Hill, and the dearly departed poet/diarist/rock star Jim Carroll. Always eager to converse with other poets, his inbox is always open at

Arlene Ang
Arlene usually appears in printed material and burning wood. It may indicate hunger or drunkenness in the reader. For tips on how to make pickled Arlene Ang, please visit

Laura E. Bontrager
Laura works as a general go-for at a school library in Memphis: duties include website maintenance, book research, data entry, photography, creating newsletters, editing, answering phones, and licking/stuffing envelopes. Even leading such a glamorous life, she still finds hours to hammer away at her poetry and novels.

Joshua Davis
Joshua lives in Oxford, Mississippi. His favorite fruit is the persimmon. One day, he hopes to go to Copenhagen.

Valerie Fox and Arlene Ang
Valerie and Arlene started plagiarizing each other about six years ago. Not long after, they made honest women out of each other when they started to assign each other's names to things, and to collaborate on a regular basis. They are motivated by the constant fun of their practice, and also the challenge of amusing and confusing their readers. Characters with names like Richard Sanderson, The Rev, and even Bunny Elliot populate both of their heads. They have published collaborative writing in magazines such as Admit 2, Origami Condom, Per Contra and Qarrtsiluni.

Jean Hollander
Like so many American poets (Franz Wright, Charles Simic) Jean was born speaking another language: German. She learned English as a child by reading "The Count of Monte Cristo" in an English translation. She has since published two books of translation from German, as well as a much-praised verse translation of Dante's Commedia and three prize-winning books of her own poetry, as well as hundreds of her poems in many magazines. She has taught English literature (of course) and poetry writing at various universities, colleges, and institutions for many years.

JP Kelleher
JP has set out, on many occasions, to wrap thoughtful gifts for his family and friends. All of these attempts have ended disastrously. He regards the purchase of furniture to be too much of a commitment. He eats a sweet potato nearly every day. He lives and works in Monterrey, Mexico.

Janelle Elyse Kihlstrom
Janelle lives just outside Washington, D.C., where, after earning her writing degree recently, she has continued her day job of transcribing the words of politicians and television pundits, and insists this is more conducive to inspiring poetry than a more appropriate career, although she rarely writes about politics. Her poems and book reviews have appeared or are forthcoming in several journals, including Gargoyle, Wicked Alice, Prick of the Spindle, Lines + Stars, and Eclectica, and her electronic chapbook appeared in a special edition of blossombones. She edits the online journal Melusine.

David Kowalczyk
David lives and writes in Oakfield, New York. He is fond of foggy mornings, Canadian ales, Abby Lee Weid, Thai food, and autumn leaves, though not necessarily in that order. He has had a wide variety of job experiences ranging from circus roustabout to casino croupier to cannery foreman to college English instructor.

Tiffany Krupa
Tiffany lives in New England with her husband, two teenage daughters, and three diverse dogs. She would rather be Stand Up Paddling on most days. Her work has been published in the Albion Review and The Slate.

Saba Razvi
Saba was born in Chicago, raised in Houston, educated in Omaha, Austin, and Los Angeles and now splits her idea of home between suburban Texas and urban Scotland. She seldom knows how to answer the question "Where are you from?" Perhaps writing is a bit like scrying for an answer in the gloss of facts, figures, degrees, and alternative knowledges that she has collected along her somewhat nomadic way in search of an egoless bliss.

Jessica Reidy
Jessica comes from the forests of New Hampshire, and earned her BA in English and Creative Writing at Hollins University in Virginia. She has traveled across Western and Eastern Europe, now settling for an unforseen duration in Ireland. She is a professional gypsy witch writer, with some yoga and bellydancing thrown in for good measure. Her work has appeared in Cargoes and Amaze, Frogpond, Ribbons, The 13th Warrior, and Big Toe Review. She won the Nancy Thorp Poetry Prize in 2008.

Meg Reilly
Meg's loves include but are not limited to headstands, baking, attending childbirths, and meeting people on the train. She teaches Writing and Rhetoric at Columbia College Chicago.

Daniel H Robbins
Daniel did not get the Millennium Falcon for Christmas when he was 5, and his life has gone downhill since. He has work forthcoming at, and has been published in Diagram, storySouth, Birmingham Poetry Review and others. He received his MA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and plans to enter a PhD program in English, largely in order to postpone the repayment of his student loans.

Peter Isaac Schwartz
Peter's poetry has been featured in The Columbia Review, Diagram, and Opium Magazine. When not dreaming of literary conferences he's writing or taking photos or thinking of who he should get for the next issue of DOGZPLOT - where he is art editor. His latest chapbook Old Men, Girls, and Monsters is now on sale at

Steven Teref
Steven is enamored of his iPod and mixing the perfect sonic cocktail. At night, he dreams of listening to the Beatles’ mono and stereo box sets back-to-back. Otherwise, he gazes longingly at them in Best Buy. Of course, he’s doing all of the above instead of setting up readings for his book Assembly, a collection of Novica Tadic translations.

Meghan Tutolo
Meghan has yet to whisper "We're in a recession!" when being asked to Super Size her value meal, but has been laughing at the idea for weeks. She works at AAA, so when she's not busy doing Trip Tiks, she is scouting tour books for vacation spots she'll never be able to afford. The good poems are the ones she thinks about just before she falls asleep, and she can never remember them in the morning.

Alexandra Tyng
Alexandra was born in 1954 in Rome, Italy. She received a B.A. from Harvard University in 1975, and an M.S. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1977. She has had five one-person shows of her landscapes and has participated in many group shows. Her work has been reviewed in ARTnews, The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and the Main Line Times. Two of her works can be seen in the 100 Ways books published by International Artist. Most recently one of her aerial landscapes was included in The Art of Monhegan, the newest in a series of books by Carl Little. Alex is also known for her portraits. She has painted artists, architects, filmmakers, financiers, doctors, psychologists, a judge, and many “ordinary” but nonetheless fascinating people. Her work hangs in such institutions as The Center for Maine Contemporary Art in Rockland, The Federal Courthouse in Philadelphia, F.S.A. New York, Progress Energy, Zurich Kemper, Commerce Bancshares, Tyco International, Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield, The Royal Institute of British Architects, The University of Pennsylvania, several hospitals and many private homes.

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