Or living as you once described to me before you died. The pool’s water bluer than an imagined sky. This day falling into maples. One willow a dress that finally fits. A body’s gorgeous caterpillars moving slowly toward a mountain. The mountain falling away. It once held secrets you thought you needed to know. Is this how the world works?
Whatever’s lost returns.
The way water and light
and air return.
gods you summoned
I still pray to.
chapbook, One Day I Am a Field, written during the Covid pandemic after her husband’s death, is forthcoming in 2022 with Glass Lyre Press. For the 2020 virtual AWP, she co-moderated an interactive discussion, “Writing Through Grief & Loss: The Intersection of Social and Personal Grief During Covid.” In October 2021, she co-taught a workshop, “Poetry & Aging: Does What We Have to Say Matter?” at the virtual Caesura Poetry Festival and Retreat.
Her second full-length collection of poems, Walking Toward Cranes, won The Kithara Book Prize (Glass Lyre Press, 2017). Her manuscript in-circulation was a finalist with White Pine Press, Trio House, and Barrow Street. She was the 2011 Montgomery County Poet Laureate, judged by poet Chris Bursk.
Small-McKinney’s poems have appeared in numerous journals, for example, American Poetry Review, Anomaly, Baltimore Review, Connotation Press, Construction, The Cortland Review, Ilanot Review, Indianapolis Review, Inflectionist Review, Literary Mama, Pedestal Magazine, Persimmon Tree, Philadelphia Stories, Tiferet, and SWWIM. Her poems have been translated into Korean (Cross-Communications Press) and Romanian (Olimpia Iacob). They also appear in a number of anthologies, for example, Plague Papers, edited by Robbi Nester and Cati Porter (Poemelon), and 101 Jewish Poems for the Third Millennium, edited by Matthew E. Silverman and Nancy Naomi Carlson (Ashland Poetry Press).
Small-McKinney’s book reviews have appeared in journals such as Prairie Schooner and Matter. She has also been a guest editor for Pedestal Magazine and preliminary judge for the 2016 Bucks County Poetry Laureate Contest. She resides in Philadelphia, and has a degree in Clinical Neuropsychology from Drexel University and an MFA in Poetry from Drew University.
Author’s website: https://www.amysmallmckinney.com/about