Lisbeth White

Writing for an Earth Beloved

About the Author

Lisbeth White is an eco-abolitionist writer and ritualist living on S’klallam and Chimacum lands near Port Townsend, WA. As a healer and ritualist, she has been a facilitator of community-based healing justice workshops for social justice organizations nationwide.

She is the author of American Sycamore (Perugia, 2022), winner of the Perugia Press Prize, and co-editor, along with Tamiko Beyer and Destiny Hemphill, of the anthology Poetry as Spellcasting: Poems, Essays, and Prompts for Manifesting Liberation and Reclaiming Power (North Atlantic Books, 2023).

Lisbeth’s writing has appeared in The Rumpus, Kweli, Apogee Lit, Green Mountains Review, Willowherb Review, EcoTheo Review, Split this Rock, and Tahoma Literary Review, amongst other stellar publications.

She has received support for her work from VONA, Artist’s Trust, Tin House, Bread Loaf Environmental Writers Conference, and Blue Mountain Center. She offers support for PGM/BIPOC writers in rural Washington State as a founding member of the Red Thread Writers Collective.

Photo by Sarah Wright Photography

American Sycamore

Winner of 2022 Perugia Press Prize
Finalist for the 2023 First Horizon Book Award
Honorable Mention for the 2023 Eric Hoffer Grand Prize in Poetry

In pursuit of understanding the nuances of belonging and displacement, Lisbeth White travels through mythic, biological, and geological landscapes, attending to the body and its beautiful and terrifying questions. Her journey manifests in a poetic helix of recurring bridges, trees, myths, origins, and awakenings. From the bayou, to Belgium, to Barbados, these poems traverse global terrain while interrogating the dark past/present of America. In American Sycamore, the poet examines the Black diaspora, ancestral reparation, and the sacred feminine, inviting the reader into a deep conversation of seeking and recovery.

“Early in her book American Sycamore, made of poems as formally adventurous and probing and searching as the questions she asks, questions that might never be answered—about family, history, empire, violence, love—Lisbeth White writes, almost as a kind of prayer: ‘the bones the bones know who i am.’ The bones of course are the literal bones—of who came before us, of who loved us before we were born, of who were brutalized in the uncountable, unsayable ways. But the bones are also the poems she has crafted. Which is to say, what music she’s grown from the sorrow.”

— Ross Gay, author of The Book of Delights

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Poetry as Spellcasting: Poems, essays, and prompts for manifesting liberation and reclaiming power

Edited by Tamiko Beyer, Destiny Hemphill & Lisbeth White
North Atlantic Books, May 2023

Written for poets, spellcasters, and social justice witches, Poetry as Spellcasting reveals the ways poetry and ritual can, together, move us toward justice and transformation. It asks: If ritualized violence upholds white supremacy, what ritualized acts of liberation can be activated to subvert and reclaim power?

In essays from a diverse group of contributing poets, organizers, and ritual artists, Poetry as Spellcasting helps readers explore, play, and deepen their creativity and intuition as integral tools for self- and communal healing and social change.

“Reading Poetry As Spellcasting, I kept lighting my altar, kept nourishing my body with fragrant oranges as I dreamt, wandered, and envisioned. This is a book for us, for opening up the creative portals toward liberation, one tender prompt at a time. I felt held by these rituals and poems, felt myself move deeply into spaces of collective care. Alongside contributions from luminaries such as Alexis Pauline Gumbs, Joan Naviyuk Kane, and Ching-In Chen, the editors invoke magic through heart-igniting reflections and vibrational prompts, beautifully reminding us of our woven power: ‘In this new mythology, you are always whole.’”

—Jane Wong, author of How to Not Be Afraid of Everything

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Selected Online Works

 

Lisbeth’s writing has appeared in The Rumpus, Kweli, Apogee Lit, Green Mountains Review, Willowherb Review, EcoTheo Review, Split this Rock, and Tahoma Literary Review, amongst other stellar publications.

Contact Lisbeth

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