poetry, prose & story
"I think when you look back at yourself as a young coyote, it’s really hard not to say, I was so scruffy. I made so many mistakes. I was not strong enough and my bite was weak. This judgement is held secretly, privately, especially in today’s robust trauma-porn wilds, where everyone has such a neatly laid story of depravity stacked up into victory. As a coyote, you don’t want to be a part of that narrative, even though it’s true. You don’t want to brand your identity as the pup in the woods alone, even though solitude is your thing.
This is partially genetics. Coyotes are unique in canine evolution that they roll alone or in packs. Really, either one will do. Sure, some of us have pre-dispositions. Quick to snarl, all of us screaming howlers. We’ll distract you by remarking on your lesser attributes, then sneak around with your egg in our mouths. But we know our people, our kin, the ones that we belong to. We are kind to them, loyal, but don’t let that make you think we are dog-like. We’ll eat a puppy given the chance."
Coyote Story, Atticus Review, 2020
I am a writer, playwright and educator residing on occupied Coast Miwok land amongst the tallest and quietest trees in the world, exactly nine miles and seven fence posts away from the ocean. My nonfiction essay 'The Falcon's Cry' was a finalist for Best of The Net in 2020 and I've been nominated for a Pushcart Prize in fiction by Atticus Review for 'Coyote Story.' My work appears or is forthcoming in Passages North, Pithead Chapel, Hobart, Inflectionsist Review, Under a Warm Green Linden, The Normal School, Barren Magazine, Lunch Ticket and elsewhere.
My book of poetry, 'Instructions for an Animal Body' (Moon Tide Press, 2021) and my audio micro-chap 'My Fingers are Whales and others stories of Cetology' (Moonchild Press, 2021) are available here. My first play, Beautiful Monsters, is being produced by the wonderfully creative Left Edge Theater and running at the Luther Burbank Center for the Arts in the summer of 2021.
I have had many past lives, some that I can tell you about here. For years, I was a union organizer for healthcare workers across California and founded the first abortion doula project in the Bay Area. I went on to train as a death midwife, volunteered as a raptor handler while falling in love with a very pretty falcon, and witnessed one hundred babies being born. Now, I am a mother to one perfect cat, two spoiled yet emotionally bereft dogs, and a beautiful human child who is the recipient of my life long love letter (a work still in progress). I am fortunate enough to create a home with my love, painter Gage Opdenbrouw. I enjoy collecting knives, not cooking, and eating very many mochi donuts.
I write story because I want to find a sense of recognition and commonalities over the ugly parts of myself with you, my reader. I am fascinated by trauma, wounds, grief and the places where construct begins to fade and we step into a body that is more beast than human. I am looking at my own violence. My own complicity. In that search, everything ends up feeling resonate, achy, longed after, together. You and me, I think we are pretty. I only started sharing my writings in 2020, just before the world titled sideways. It still makes me queasy but I do it because I think vulnerability is my thing. I think you like it, too.
"The fog pressed us in, formed a room that glowed from the inside out. There was an owl, a badger, two deer. Everything in fog is peripheral. Fog is love, if that’s not obvious. The way you can walk next to a badger with your ankles showing. And love is attention, we know this because we study the body movement of Tarkovsky listening to poetry."
~ excerpt from the Fog Bank, found in Instructions for my Animal Body
Welcome to my website, take a look around. Feel free to reach out regarding reviews, collaborations and readings. My aim this year is to bring poetry into the rural places that I live; barns, farms, river floats, redwood groves, and little places along the backroads.