Welcome to the bestiary. We're proud to introduce the results of our fauna challenge, the companion to Issue 57's flora challenge. We invite you to explore 40 striking poems inhabited by creatures of all varieties—humans as well as our fellow fauna.

They're a diverse lot, featuring Persian, experimental, tercet ghazals, qasidas—even the elusive free verse species makes an appearance—not to mention Liùsaidh's riddle. We hope you enjoy the lively denizens of these poems and their birdsong of rhyme & refrain. Fittingly, we round out the Fauna challenge issue with a review of New Zealand poet Mary Cresswell's sparkling new collection, Fish Stories.

Holly Jensen, Editor, July 2016


Siham Karami
The Year of the Dragon, To the Buzz, Porcupine, Purrrr, Cricket Heart

Michele Waering
The Chimps, The Pavilion Cat

Karla Linn Merrifield
 Self-Portrait at Casa Encantada

Brian Koester
The Shadows Listen

Freya Jackson
Adventures in Shaving, The Duckpond

D. Russel Micnhimer
Ghazal #59 Heart Blood, Ghazal #58

David Jalajel
The Fruit Bats, qasida #29, qasida #32

 Suzanne Niedzielska
A Maze By Design

Nels Hanson
Dogs, The Butterfly, Hummingbird

Lee Nash
Emptying the Mermaid's Purse

David Subacchi
Grey Squirrel, Magpie, Rats

Jan Zlotnik Schmidt
Light Falls/Words Fall

William Dennis
Most Marvelous Animal in the World, You Know Humanity, A Lesson We All Have To Learn

Erika Glass
Tying--Without a Pause

Lisa Fusch Krause

Kevin Frederick Smith
Ghazal of Humanity

Laura M. Kaminski
Shades of Yellow

Ed Shacklee
Gazelle Ghazal

Linda Umans
Possum Homage

M. Shayne Bell
My Father's Horse

Suzanne Herschell

Riddles for the Raven

Ann Howells
On the Day You Were Born I, On the Day You Were Born II


Fish Stories and Living Weather
Holly Jensen reviews Mary Cresswell's Fish Stories

Does it help to be grounded when you're already on shaky ground? New Zealand poet Mary Cresswell's stellar collection is built of brink and aftermath. Her lively poems are concrete and rooted in this (off-kilter) world and our fractured ecosystems... [READ MORE]