Alma Almanac

*Winner of the 2016 Barrow Street Book Prize, selected by Elaine Equi, and published by Barrow Street Press in 2017


Alma Almanac is a stunningly original collection of poems about landscape, place and memory. It is a lyrical scrapbook of skies, weather, stars, myths, recipes, rituals, and spells. From it, one can learn “How to Haunt,” how “To Preserve November,” and even find “Instructions for Assembling a Bento Box Memorial.” In addition to the more traditional poems, the book is “illustrated” with a series of short descriptions of objects, photos, and remembered sounds. These stark fragments, labeled and numbered like catalogue items, give a sense of the poet as curator, arranging, displaying, and creating her own museum of personal effects. Rather than narrating what they’re supposed to mean, I admire the restraint of simply letting these powerful details speak for themselves. I can guarantee this book is very pleasurable to read, as sensual as “the spectrum of apple colors” and as insistent as an audio cassette of a woman’s voice that “whispers the same five words again and again. Promise me you won’t forget.””
“Sarah Ann Winn knows “darkness dilates,/never swallows us whole” and that the weight of memory is not its only force. Alma Almanac is a guidebook for the conditions of its dark dilations; its instructions are accompanied by notes, beatitudes, mix tapes, imaginary figures, and lost wonders. These poems offer orientation by reaching into our desires and our imaginations. These beautiful lyrics slow and expand time, their layered rhythms “unstung/by speed,” and initiate us not into miracle fantasies but into the visionary possible.”
“In Sarah Ann Winn’s Alma Almanac, I am struck by the absolute radiance of these poems. They are at once a documentary and a reverie, with amazing knowledge of, and reverence for, the world they offer the reader. It is a rich world, what Guy Davenport calls “the geography of imagination,” where each thing rhymes with another, where each burden’s echo is a blessing, a surprise, and a delight. Winn has found in the almanac a perfect form for the hybridity of her ambitious, intimate, and moving project.”
“Alma Almanac is a book you’ll want to share with everyone, reading out your favorite passages at breakfast and only barely suppressing the urge to point out images to strangers on the subway. Sarah Ann Winn’s sparkling and melancholy, tender and tough-minded, wistful and generous first full poetry collection is full to bursting with ode and elegy, music and objects—lakes, loons, nebulae, Easter baskets and x-rays, ghosts and government cheese, a moth mistaken for a mother and a mother for a moth, who “will not fly again once you touch her…” That last item may remind you of Elizabeth Bishop’s enigmatic Man-Moth. Now and again, you may sense Bishop’s presence—that rich self-forgetful imagination—in Winn’s “awful but cheerful” glimpses of immensity. But don’t get me wrong! Sarah Winn’s is a new exciting voice, unmistakably her own. I can’t wait to see what she’ll do next!”


Ever After the End Matter

Porkbelly Press, 2019 *Nominated for Elgin Award!


“Some stories are unspeakable,” warns the opening poem of Ever After the End Matter (Porkbelly Press, 2019), and “in retelling…sometimes sisters fragment.” In this chapbook, Sarah Ann Winn offers an exquisitely curated collection of fairy-tale fragments, startling (and sometimes smoldering) scraps and remnants. […] Here artifacts suggest appetites, and with acute lyrical care, poems tell what longing can do to the body.”
“In nineteen exhibits and appendices, Sarah Ann Winn catalogues the fairy tale world. Gretl is diagnosed with bulemia. “Snow White Under Glass” bemoans her “transparent hostage situation.” The tiny witches in a souvenir snow globe “refuse to answer questions” about their tattoos. Come one, come all: this fairy tale hall of mirrors is a delight to wander through.”

Haunting the Last House on Holland Island, Fallen into the Bay

Porkbelly Press, 2016 *nominated for the Elgin Award

Field Guide to Alma Avenue and Frew Drive

Essay Press, 2016, selected by contest judge Krystal Languell (available for free)


Sundress Press, 2015 *runner up for 2014 Sundress chapbook contest


About Place Journal: The More than Human World “Kudzu” and “Ghost Orchid”

Alternating Current Press “Baldwin Apples” *winner, Luminaire Award
*They gave me this shiny medal for my website for this win!

Apeiron Review Issue 6 “My 95” and “3 photos”

Bitterzoet Magazine “Seven Reasons to Sew Shirts for Swans”

Bodega “Magritte, at Night”

The Boiler “Haunting Holland Island, a ghost centro,” “Revising Holland Island”

Bone Bouquet “Dot & Bo Age in Oak,” “Dot & Bo Go Stable Chic”

Cider Press Review “To Preserve November”

Cleaver “A Brief Glossary of Ireland for the American Tourist Trying to Cram Thousands of Years of History into a Ten Day Tour”

Conium Review “Appendix U” *runner up, Flash Fiction Contest, judged by Ashley Farmer

Dirty Chai “Dot & Bo in the Floating Farmhouse,” “Dot and Bo Build a Minaret”

District Lit “New Project to Digitize 10,000 Sci-Fi Zines”

Escarp “Hollow Wasps”

The Fem “Glinda Watches the Wizard of OZ”

Flycatcher: a Journal of Native Imagination “Alma” *nominated for Pushcart Prize

Found Poetry Review Bowietry David Bowie Tribute issue: “Best of” parts 1-6 *Appeared in the 2017 Rhysling anthology

FreezeRay “The Moving Castle Falls in Love with Baba Yaga’s Cottage” *also audio!

Gingerbread House “Appendix Bread”

Glass Poetry’s Poets Resist “All the While Watching”

The Good Men Project “Floats,” “Glinda Leaves OZ,” “Glinda Meets the Tow Truck Driver” (reprints)

Winter themed issue of Halcyon “Snowy Day, Icy Roads”

Memory issue of Halfway Down the Stairs “Delayed Exposure, Close to Home”

Heron Tree “Cranesbill”

Hobart “Tim Gunn Advises Wallace Stevens in the Project Runway Workroom,” “Self Portrait as Julia Child’s Canard a l’Orange,” “Half Off at the Night Market”

Sacred Words issue of Ilanot Review “Mandala”

Journal of Compressed Creative Arts “Holland Island Ghost Walk” *Appeared on the Wigleaf Longlist 2017

Lines + Stars “Appendix I”

Lowestoft Chronicle June 2014 – “Gait”

Lunch Ticket “Our Lady of the Highways”

Massachusetts Review “From the Wind Up Cathedral”

Menacing Hedge “Glinda Enters Chadd’s Ford,” Glinda Enters Narnia,” “Glinda Takes Off Her Makeup,” “Glinda Enters the Ring Cycle,” “Glinda Enters Kansas,” Glinda Enters the Chocolate Factory”

Classic Lit on the Side issue of Midnight Circus “We Decide to Adopt”

Mipoesias “Hand Stitched”

Museum of Americana “Glinda Tours the Tiny House” and “Glinda the Good Witch Arrives in Stars Hollow”

Nashville Review “Glinda and Miss Havisham Discuss Alternatives,” “Glinda and the Astronomer Talk About Marriage,” “Glinda Leaves Oz”

New Flash Fiction Review “Nocturne”

Nottingham Review “Storm Loss”

Passages North “Appendix Crimson” and “Color Therapy with Rothko’s Lab”

Pidgeonholes “The Body Analog” *Honorable mention, The Body contest, judged by Roy G. Guzmán

Pioneertown “Spring Errata”

Portland Review “Gertrude Stein’s Poodle” and “Ezra Pound at the Pound”

Prime Number “Boxwood Fox Hunt” *Winner of the September 2017 Prime Number Magazine Flash Fiction Contest, Judged by Kathleen McGookey

Quail Bell “Appendix H” and “Appendix K” (reprint)

Quarterly West “Appendix O,” “Appendix Q,” “Appendix R”

Radar Poetry “Dot & Bo in the Cobbler’s Den,” “Dot & Bo in Space,” “Dot & Bo Try Mid-Century Classic,” “Dot & Bo: Fever Dream,” “Dot Is Inspired to Travel,” “Dot & Bo: Yard Sale” *Winners of the 2016 Conniston Prize, chosen by Gabrielle Calvocoressi

Rappahannock Review “Cento for the Last House on Holland Island, Fallen into the Bay”

Really System “Rolling Acres Mall, Abandoned” and “Suburban Thaw”

RHINO “Appendix P”

Right Hand Pointing – “Arizona” and “Seven”

Silver Birch Me as a Child themed series – “Dirt Road Delirium”

Southern Women’s Review “Last House Water Lore”

Storm Cellar “Introducing the Midwest Amazon”

Switchback – “Appendix N”

SWWiM “How to Reach the Moon by Folding”

Talking Writing “The Grimm Forest Open Air Museum”

Three Drops from a Cauldron “Kitsune”

Thrice Fiction “How to Make Love Without Feeling”

Tupelo Quarterly “Field Guide to Alma Avenue and Frew Drive” *finalist, Prose Open Contest, 2015

Whale Road Review “Glinda Tries Travel Via Tornado”

Winged: New Writing on Bees “Yard Classifieds”