Archives For Poetry

Happy to have a poem appear in the Fall/Winter 2021 issue of Twelve Mile Review, “Elegy for Pieter Bruegel the Elder with Snow Falling Inside It.” This is new journal and the editors did a great job on this themed issue of long poems. Submission guidelines are here:

Maurice Turcotte hosts an interview series for first poetry book authors. Excited The Nomenclature of Small Things is featured this month! Questions cover process, influences, cover art, and future projects. The archives section of the web site is worth perusing as well. Maurice customizes each interview to the author and book. Link here: Open Alphabet.


It’s been a good month for The Nomenclature of Small Things. Many book award contests are underway, most of which are not limited to first books but to any books of poetry published within a calendar year. I’m grateful for recognition from the following award contests:

2016 Julie Suk Award Longlist for Poetry (Congratulations to Monique Ferrell for her collection Attaversiamo, NYQ Books)

2016 Forward INDIES Book of the Year Award Finalist for Poetry (winner announced June 2017)

2017 Georgia Author of the Year Award Nominee (winner announced June 2017).

Excited to be listed among so many great books!

And thanks to William Doreski for highlighting my book as part of a feature on eleven new poets in Harvard Review Online:

William Doreski, Harvard Review Online, The Nomenclature of Small Things, “Like Wings Unfolding in the Body”: Eleven New Poets




“There were only so many narrative grief poems I could write (and that a reader could stand to read). Some other voice or perspective had to step in to carry the book, and in this case it was science.”

So happy to have the chance to contribute to The Cloudy House, a website devoted to project books and the process of writing them. Thanks to Cynthia Marie Hoffman Studner for coordinating this interview! The Cloudy House website features my interview and dozens of others.


Happy to be the spotlight today at 24PearlStreet blog about poetry, online community, classes, and the process of writing The Nomenclature of Small Things. 24PearlStreet (part of Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center) is a resource that I continue to use and highly recommend! Read the blog entry and more about the programs at 24PearlStreet.

Thanks to Claire Lucille Trévien for creating a video poem of “How to Speak Nineteenth Century!” Lots of lyric leaps captured here from lunar nomenclature to photosynthesis to the chemical formula for water. This is part of a larger project to post a video poem a day featuring UK poets (and a few other writers) during the month of December. I will add the link below to the master list of Claire’s video poems. (The first video is one of Claire’s poems.) I met Claire when she edited a poetry anthology that included my work, and she reviewed my chapbook Tiktaalik, Adieu as well. “How to Speak Nineteenth Century” was originally published in the New England Review, as well as in the chapbook Theories of Rain and the full-length collection, The Nomenclature of Small Things.

Image result for poetry foundation logo

The Poetry Foundation featured “The Birth of Superstition,” from The Nomenclature of Small Things*, as Poem of the Day today. Three other poems went up this week on the Poetry Foundation site as well! Honored and glad to have these up as searchable resources for poetry readers, teachers, and students.

At Forty
The Birth of Superstition
A Brief History of the Passenger Pigeon
How to Move Away

The link to the Poetry Foundation.

*Note that books have temporarily sold out on but are available through Carnegie Mellon at this link: Nomenclature of Small Things

The Birth of Superstition

It’s not hard to imagine: my ancestor—a dry season,
               dust like chalk on her tongue—mixes
                              spit with clay,
traces a river on rock. Next day: rain.
                                                                           Why shouldn’t she believe
               in the power of rock and her own hand?
I carry this need for pattern and rule, to see connections
               where there aren’t necessarily any.
                                                            After my first miscarriage,
I cut out soda, cold cuts.
               After the second, vacuuming and air travel.
After the third—it’s chalk and spit again. I circle rocks,
               swim the icy river.
                                             And when my son is born, he balances
the chemical equation that is this world.
                                                                                          And logic?
Logic is my son’s kite, good so long as you have
               wind, string,
                                             something heavier than hope
                                                                                          to tether you.
Lynn Pedersen, “The Birth of Superstition” from The Nomenclature of Small Things.  Copyright © 2016 by Lynn Pedersen.  Reprinted by permission of Carnegie Mellon University Press.
Source: The Nomenclature of Small Things (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 2016)
decatur book festival 2015nomenclaturecover

I’ll be reading at 1 pm this Saturday, September 3rd, at the Local Poetry Stage at Java Monkey as part of the Decatur Book Festival. Looking forward to reading along with Memye Curtis Tucker, Megan Sexton, Lee Passarella, Lynn Alexander, and Diana Anhalt. Thanks to Dan Veach for organizing!

Java Monkey
425 Church St, Decatur, GA 30030

More information is on the Festival link below.

cell press

Happy to have The Nomenclature of Small Things featured along with Ellen Kombiyil’s Histories of the Future Perfect on the Cell Press blog. Thanks to Jannell McConnell Parsons for the review! “This is a book organized around questions, a constant circling back to what can and can’t be named­ . . .The language of science and the language of grief talk to each other, become each other, in these poems. I loved this book, from the first poem right through to the last, and whether you’re looking for solace or for the landscape of 18th century science, you’ll find it here.”

The poetics of evolution, extinction, space, and time.


I’ll be reading and signing copies of The Nomenclature of Small Things in Columbus, Georgia, on Saturday July 30th, 2016, from 9-Noon with the reading at 10:30. The Columbus State University bookstore address is 900 Broadway. The local Saturday morning market will be happening 9-Noon as well with 200 vendors. Looking forward to seeing everyone!