Issue Nineteen Contributors


Kristina Marie Darling is the author of over twenty books of poetry, most recently DARK HORSE (C&R Press, 2017). Her awards include two Yaddo residencies, a Hawthornden Castle Fellowship, an Edward F. Albee Foundation Fellowship, and multiple residencies at the American Academy in Rome, as well as grants from the Whiting Foundation and Harvard University's Kittredge Fund.  She has published creative work in New American Writing, Nimrod, The Mid-American Review, Poetry International, Passages North, and many other magazines.  Her critical essays appear in The Gettysburg Review, Agni, The Iowa Review, The Los Angeles Review of Books, The Literary Review, and elsewhere. She is Editor-in-Chief of Tupelo Quarterly and Grants Specialist at Black Ocean.     

Merridawn Duckler is a poet, playwright from Portland, Oregon. Recent poetry: TAB (nominated Best of the Net), Really SystemRivet Journal. Forthcoming: The OffingNerve Lantern, Blue Lyra, Whistling Shade, Free State Review. Runner-up Arizona Poetry Center, judge Farid Matuk. Finalist: Center for Book Arts, Tupelo Press, Sozoplo Fiction Fellowship, Oregon Play Prize. Fellowships/awards: Writers@Work, NEA, Yaddo, Squaw Valley, SLS St. Petersburg, Russia, Southampton Poetry Conference. Editor at Narrative and international philosophy journal Evental Aesthetics

Melissa Eleftherion grew up in Brooklyn. A high school dropout, she went on to earn an MFA in Poetry from Mills College and an MLIS from San Jose State University. She is the author of huminsect, prism maps, Pigtail Duty, the leaves the leaves, green glass asterisms, and several other chapbooks. Her first full-length collection, field guide to autobiography is forthcoming from H_NGM_N Books. Melissa lives in Mendocino County where she works as Teen Librarian, teaches creative writing & manages the Poetry Center Chapbook Exchange. More of her work can be found at

Nicole Fournier's passion for photography was first expressed during a 4th grade trip to Washington DC, when she snuck away from her group to photograph a spiral staircase. Many years later, Nicole honed her skills at William Paterson University by obtaining a B.F.A. degree in Graphic Design (alongside a minor in Photography) graduating Cum Laude.Currently residing in Los Angeles, Nicole Fournier enjoys pursuing her art and photography career. Please visit her website for further information about her upcoming shows at

Amy Lee Heinlen holds an MFA in Creative Writing program from Chatham University where her manuscript received the Best Thesis in Poetry award. Her poem, “Light, Blue,” was awarded the 2016 Laurie Mansell Reich Academy of American Poets prize. Her poetry and reviews have appeared in Pittsburgh City Paper, Pretty Owl Poetry, Pittsburgh Poetry Review, Olentangy Review, Mom Egg Review, Coal Hill Review, and elsewhere. An academic librarian, she lives and works in Pittsburgh, PA.

Marissa Higgins is a poet and essayist based in Washington, DC. Her poetry, which explores word economy, femininity, and the closet, also appears in Apogee and Bone Bouquet. Her nonfiction appears, or is forthcoming, in the Washington Post, Salon, Pacific Standard, Vice, and elsewhere. 

 A native of Los Angeles, Kathryn Hindenlang (Katie) earned her Bachelor's in Rhetoric and Creative Writing at UC Berkeley, where she was named the recipient of the Ina Coolbrinth Memorial Poetry Prize, the Emily Chamberlain Cook Prize, and selected to be the Commencement Speaker. Afterwards, she was awarded a Factory Hollow Press scholarship to attend the Juniper Summer Writing Institute at UMass Amherst. She later became a University Fellow at Washington University's MFA program in St. Louis. Her poems have appeared in and won awards and prizes from Spoon River Poetry Review, Berkeley Poetry Review, DISQUIET International, Wag's Revue, and the New York Foundation for the Arts, to name a few. She was finalisted by CALYX and has received additional scholarships for national and international conferences. Her poems and nonfiction are forthcoming from Apogee Journal, and others. Kathryn works/has worked as a copywriter (she was the first writer ever to be hired by Google worldwide during her years in San Francisco), editor, branding and publications consultant, higher education writing/editing specialist, and medical writer/editor, among other roles.

Michele Leavitt, a poet and essayist, is also a high school dropout, hepatitis C survivor, adoptee, and former trial attorney. Her essays appear most recently in Guernica and Catapult. Poems appear most recently, or are forthcoming, in North American Review, Gravel, Hermeneutic Chaos, and Cleaver. She's the author of the Kindle Singles memoir Walk Away.  

Minadora Macheret is a graduate student at Kansas State University, where she received the Graduate Poetry Award and a Seaton Fellowship. Her poems also recently received the International Sigma Tau Delta Convention Isabel Sparks' Poetry Prize. Her work is forthcoming in Tinderbox Poetry Journal, Connotation Press, and others. It has appeared in Thank You For Swallowing, Sugared Water, Love Me, Love my Belly, and others. She live ls in Manhattan, KS, with her dog, Aki, and teaches bilingual poetry workshops to children through 4-H.

Sarah Nichols is the East Coast editor for Thank You for Swallowing, and is the author of two chapbooks, Edie (Whispering): Poems From Grey Gardens (dancing girl press, 2015) and The Country of No (Finishing Line Press, 2012). Her work has also appeared in Noble Gas/Qtrly, Yellow Chair Review, and The RS 500. She was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2015. 

Malka Older is a writer, aid worker, and PhD candidate studying governance and disasters. Her writing can be found at Leveler,, Bengal Lights, Sundog Lit, Capricious, Reservoir, in the poetry anthology My Cruel Invention, and in Chasing Misery, an anthology of writing by female aid workers. Her science fiction political thriller Infomocracy is the first full-length novel from, and the sequel Null States will be published in 2017.

Mar Von Zellen is a Prague-based writer who’s had poetry published in places like Big Bridge Press, Pretty Owl Poetry, Open Field, Redheaded Stepchild, Sweet Tree Review, Gargoyle Magazine, and others. She was the Editor-in-Chief of The Alligator, an online literary magazine, for two years, and worked for Sundress Publications as an Editorial Assistant. She has two fat and elderly cats.