Jacqueline West, Writer

Bestselling author of The Books of Elsewhere and Dreamers Often Lie

Poetry by Jacqueline West


May 2024

"Mother Bear" in the women in horror anthology MOTHER KNOWS BEST (Ordering Info)

"When the Villagers Come" and "Winter Guest" in Illumen, spring 2024 issue (Ordering Info)

January 2024

"Crone" in Star*Line, Winter 2024 Issue (Listing only available online)

"Finding the Bird Skull in the Backyard" in Eye to the Telescope

December 2023

"Mistletoe" in Pyre Magazine (ordering info)

"Buried Heart" in Crow & Cross Keys

November 2023

"You Have Her Eyes" in Horror Writers Association Poetry Showcase Volume X (ordering info)

"Gossip in Salem" in Under Her Eye: A Women in Horror Poetry Showcase

October 2023

"Blight" in The Crow's Quill Magazine: Historical Horror Issue

"Close to Magic" in Crow & Cross Keys

September 2023

"The Practice" in Crow & Cross Keys

"Scattering" in Carmina Magazine

"Under World" in Carmina Magazine
* Nominated for the 2023 Rhysling Award *

March 2023

"Medusa Love" in Star*Line 46.2 (Contents/Ordering Info)

January 2023

"The Creation" in Eye to the Telescope, Issue 47: Frankenstein

October 2022

"One Eye, Two Eyes" in the Horror Writers Association Poetry Showcase Vol. IX (ordering info)

March 2022

"The Twelfth Dancing Princess Explains" in Enchanted Living, Issue #58: The Fairy Tale Issue (Ordering info)

January 2022

"A Christening" in Dreams & Nightmares (Listing only available online)

November 2021

"Sugar" in the Horror Writers Association's Poetry Showcase, Vol. VIII (Ordering info)

October 2021

"Lost Voice," "Cadaverous Material," and "The Count Loses His Appetite" in Illumen: Autumn 2021 Issue (Ordering info)

July 2021

"For Ophelia, Twenty-Five Years Later" in Liminality, Issue #28 - Summer 2021

March 2021

"Biography" in Liminality, Issue #27 (Spring 2021)

January 2021

"Reasons to Leave the Path" in Star*Line
• Nominated for the 2021 Pushcart Prize •
• Nominated for the 2021 Rhysling Award •

Fall 2020

"Runaway" in Abyss & Apex, Issue 75: 3rd Quarter 2020  

March 2019

"Lady Macbeth's Green Gown" in Liminality, Issue #19 - Spring 2019
• Nominated for the 2020 Rhysling Award •

February 2019

"The Day the Dragons Returned" in Star*Line (Table of contents and purchasing info)

December 2018

"Snow Angel" and "A Lover's Almanac" in Enchanted Living (formerly Faerie Magazine)

February 2018

Candle and Pins: Poems on Superstitions - full-length collection, Alban Lake Publishing

October 2017

"Yanis" reprinted in The Driftless Reader

March 2013

"The Boarding School" in Spellbound - Spring 2013 Changelings and Doppelgangers issue

December 2011

"Black Sheep" - Fantastique Unfettered - December 2011

September 2011

"Buying the Muse" in Ideomancer

"Styx" in Niteblade

June 2011

"Escaping the Dawn" in Cover of Darkness (listing only available online)
• Nominated for a 2012 Rhysling Award •

April 2011

"Sin Eater" in Paper Crow (listing only available online)

December 2010

"Mother-Die" in Stone Telling

October 2010

"Corpselight" in Paper Crow (listing only available online)

July 2010

"One October Night in Baltimore" in Sybil's Garage #7

June 2010

"Seashell" in Enchanted Conversation

May 2010

"To a Friend in Alaska," and "Friday, 3 p.m., British Museum" in The Literary Bohemian

April 2010

"Artemis, in the Kitchen" and "The Evil Eye" in Illumen

March 2010

Cherma - University of Wisconsin, Madison's Parallel Press chapbook series

February 2010

"Early Frost" in Grasslimb

November 2009

"Notre Dame de Paris" in Sugar House Review

October 2009

"Abracadabra" in Goblin Fruit

"After the Trial" in ChiZine

September 2009

"Tiresias on Eighth Avenue" and "Midas" in flashquake

June 2009

"Arsinoe's Letter to her Sister" in Lone Star Stories

April 2009

"Crash," "Ashes," and "Fade Out" in Neon Magazine

"Lethe" in ChiZine

March 2009

"Residue" (Listing only available online) in A cappella Zoo

"The Woman at the Well," "Early Frost," and "Strangers" in Prick of the Spindle

"After Party" in 42opus

January 2009

"Watching the Old Man Clean the Pike" and "Heiligeberge" in Barnwood

"At the Traveling Monet Exhibition" in The Rose & Thorn

"Neurotransmission" and "Venus in Travilla" in ChiZine

October 2008

"Rusalka" in Illumen

"Stranded on the Red Cedar River" in Inkwell Journal, Fall 2008 Issue

"Family Ritual" in Aberrant Dreams

"Doppelgängers" in Goblin Fruit
Includes Jacqueline's reading of the poem

August 2008

"In the Brush Pile" in GlassFire Magazine

"Teenage Atlas, in the Kitchen" and "Life through a Black Net Veil" in Fickle Muses

"Antigone, at the Mall" in Oddlands

July 2008

"Candle and Pins" (Listing only available online) in The Willows

"Lakeside" (Sound file) in Rose & Thorn
Jacqueline's reading of her Pushcart Prize-nominated poem, published by The Rose and Thorn Literary E-zine in their Winter 2005 issue

"Armaros" in Oddlands

May 2008

"All in a Row" and "Eggshells" (Listing only) in Mythic Delirium Issue 18

April 2008

"The Calendar of the Dead" in Strange Horizons

March 2008

"Stratford on Avon" in flashquake

January 2008

"Groundskeeper at Heptonstall" in St. Ann's Review

November 2007

"Bread" and "When the Cows Attack" in Heartlands

April 2007

"Obituary Clipping, in an Envelope" (Print only) in Briar Cliff Review
• Nominated for a 2007 Pushcart Prize •

March 2007

"Afternoon Burial, 1931" in Prairie Poetry

November 2006

“Poem – for Michele Murray” in Barnwood

October 2006

“What Tools” in Chizine

September 2006

“Little Ten Fingers” in Prairie Poetry

April 2006

“The Putting Away" and “March Thaw" (Listing only available online) in Pebble Lake Review

March 2006

“Without Rain at Trafalgar” (PDF format) in Poetry Midwest

“Scarecrow” (Listing only available online) in Not One of Us

January 2006

“Lakeside” in The Rose and Thorn
• Nominated for a 2006 Pushcart Prize •

December 2005

“Anachronism under King’s Cross” in flashquake

August 2005

“Life through a Black Net Veil” in The Pedestal Magazine

June 2005

“Banshee” in Mytholog

May 2005

“Daughter to Mother” in Children, Churches and Daddies

April 2005

“Two Travelers” in Children, Churches and Daddies

March 2005

“Archive” in Hidden Oak

January 2005

“Strike” in Poetry Motel

“In the Brush Pile…” in Barbaric Yawp

Candle and Pins by Jacqueline West

Buy a copy of Candle and Pins from or direct from Hiraeth Publishing

Candle and Pins

The poems of “Candle and Pins” are inspired by familiar—and some unfamiliar—superstitions, ranging from love charms to burial practices, parsley seeds to the evil eye. Like superstitions themselves, these poems explore the terrain where magic and everyday life intertwine, and where beauty, horror, fear, and belief combine in ways both new and ageless.

- Selected for the preliminary ballot of the 2018 Bram Stoker Awards
- Nominated for the 2018 Elgin Award

"...Eerie and beautifully shivery, like the unexpected caress of a gentle finger on the nape of your neck when you’re alone in the room. I caught myself going “ooh” in out-loud admiration several times during the course of the read, occasionally needing to pause and just sit and reflect and let things sink in. Artful, evocative, clever, gorgeous. Highly recommended!"

- The Horror Fiction Review

 "The poems in Candle and Pins breathed life into each superstition which, in turn, added an extra dimension to the entire collection... If you love dark poetry, Candle and Pins is a lovely collection to check out."

- Book Den

 "Fears and superstition...make for some beautiful and haunting poetry."

- True Review

 "This is a great bit of horror poetry... Very happy that I came across this collection."

- book.happy

Cherma by Jacqueline West

Buy a copy of Cherma


Poetry chapbook published by the University of Wisconsin's Parallel Press.

Jacqueline West draws inspiration from the names, local records, and family stories of a small group of Bohemian immigrants who settled in western Wisconsin's Pierce County in the late 1800s. Known as the Cherma settlement, it was named after the village of Dolní Cermná in the modern-day Czech Republic. West presents a compelling picture of the lives, relationships, and hardships experienced by these immigrants.

Cherma is a 2012 Eric Hoffer Book Award Finalist

West uses pictorial language, helping us into the settlers' experiences: "waiting roots shriveled like finger bones" "the silent curve of her spine / rolling down toward the floor like a broken hill." She never intrudes herself into the stories, making sure not to break the illusions of this world she has created. Anyone who enjoys novels, history and/or the intersection of these two in historical fiction would enjoy these lovely poems. I was reminded especially of Louise Erdrich.

- Sarah Busse,

By weaving fragile imagery into the stark tones of these narrative poems, West reveals a multitude of vulnerabilities hidden below her characters' steely resolves. Her careful attention to nuanced detail elevates specific events to universal experience and underscores the gains and losses of a people who have sacrificed much for their admission into American society.

- Rose & Thorn Journal

An engrossing speculation into the ordinary lives of rural Americans, highly recommended to anyone who loves fine poetry.

- Midwest Book Review


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© Jacqueline West