Friday, March 14, 2014


My sister Abigail has a book of dark timeless everyday magic poetry out in the world. Her collection won the 2013 Lena-Miles Wever Todd Poetry Prize, and the gorgeous volume is available through Amazon among other means: Sylph.

March 2014: Sylph in Hand
Photo by Sarah Cloud Peterson

"In her first collection of poems, Abigail Cloud draws inspiration from nineteenth-century European Romantic ballets, which often portrayed scorned females as mystical spirits such as sylphs, shades, and wilis. ... For Cloud, the dark gravity that holds these enchanters to the earth is the same as our own and thus these demons are as everyday as air."

Her poem collection makes me think of a sorceress's jewel coffer: motifs coil like glinting chains, vanishing and resurfacing in the chest; words shimmer like gems with ominous powers. "This malevolent aunt-smoke stalks into the party, takes a drop too much whisky, and drizzles invective into your cradle..."

The cover features delicate garment art by Louise Richardson. It's a detail of a piece called Tatting.

Abigail is also in The American Poetry Review for March/April 2014. You can read one of her pieces online: The Everyday Demon Experiences Burnout.

She asked me last summer to take author photos. An honor and a pleasure; my lenses have loved her for years. It is a creative high to see one of our choices on the back of a book, and a nicely designed book at that. It just looks so good there -- better than my snapshot conveys.

March 2014: Sylph Back
Photo by Sarah Cloud Peterson

Here she is again. She has upcoming readings in Findlay and Bowling Green, Ohio; at Siena Heights in Michigan; and in Central Missouri.

Flyer Image via Professor Dave Essinger


  1. We are so proud of both of you girls. You amaze me, and I don't know why, because your artistic and creative talents have always been apparent in so many ways.

  2. Ooh, I'll have to go get a copy :)