Contributors  July 2013 | issue 451

CHRIS DOUGHERTY learned to take pictures from his father, a combat photographer in Vietnam. He lives in Seattle, Washington.

Brian Doyle is the editor of Portland magazine at the University of Portland in Oregon. His A Book of Uncommon Prayer will be published next month by Sorin Books, and his whopping novel starring, no kidding, a pine marten will be published in April 2015 by St. Martin’s Press.

Rachel J. Elliott has a large extended family that, like the von Trapps in The Sound of Music, will break into song on almost any occasion. When not working in The Sun’s editorial office, she can often be found singing in her car or improvising Broadway-style tunes with friends. She lives in Carrboro, North Carolina.

BILL EMORY lives in Charlottesville, Virginia, with a thirteen-year-old chocolate Lab: her Dogness, Sophia D.B. Emory.

PASH GALBAVY is a photographer, dancer, performance artist, and mask maker, as well as an assistant in her husband’s computer-consulting business. She lives in Sedona, Arizona.

ROSS GAY is the author of the poetry volumes Against Which and Bringing the Shovel Down and is an associate professor of creative writing at Indiana University Bloomington. He also works with the Bloomington Community Orchard, which is volunteer run and publicly owned. He is currently writing a book about African American farming.

JACK GILBERT authored five books of poetry before his death in November 2012 at the age of eighty-seven. “All Jack ever wanted to know,” says poet Linda Gregg, with whom he lived for many years, “was that he was awake ­— that the trees in bloom were almond trees — and to walk down the road to get breakfast. He never cared if he was poor or had to sleep on a park bench.”

KATTI GRAY is a journalist whose work has been published in The Washington Post, Newsday, Essence, and Ebony, and online at She divides her time between her beloved hometown of Little Rock, Arkansas, and Monticello, New York.

ANGELO MERENDINO is the last of eleven children and says he was fortunate to grow up in a house full of love. His photographs have been published in The New York Times and USA Today and on the websites of The Huffington Post, CNN, and The New Yorker. He lives in Cleveland, Ohio.

YEHOSHUA NOVEMBER is the author of the poetry collection God’s Optimism, which was a finalist for the 2010 Los Angeles Times Book Prize in poetry. He teaches writing at Rutgers University and Touro College and lives with his wife and five children in Teaneck, New Jersey.

LOU SWENSON’s love for photography began with the Kodak Pony 135 his mother gave him when he left for the Korean War. He lives in Dolores, a no-stoplight town in southwestern Colorado.

Mark Townsend is a photographer who lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Anita Vizireanu is from Romania and is studying photojournalism at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio.

Lloyd Wolf is a photographer who lives in Arlington, Virginia.

CHRISTIAN ZWAHLEN lives in Rochester, New York, with his wife and children. His writing has appeared in Open City and Stone Canoe, and he is currently at work on a novel and a collection of short stories. He spent this spring coaching his son’s little-league team, the Green Machine.

On the Cover

JERRY GAY lives in Everett, Washington, and is the author of Seeing Reality. He took this month’s cover photograph in 1997. While driving through Texas, he saw a man sitting on his front porch and stopped to talk. The man said he was originally from Little Rock, Arkansas, was seventy-eight years old, and had picked cotton for most of his life.