Meet the Poet Who Explores Florida’s Weirdness

Erica Bernhiem is the 2017 winner of Arcturus magazine’s award for poetry. three award-winning poems ,“Sinkholes in Florida,” “Origami Bird with Flapping Wings,” and “Glory Hole Roulette” exude wit and discomfort with a dash of social commentary. I was lucky enough to speak with her about the poetry of ethics and etiquette, as well as her love of advice columns. Chrissy Martin: First of all, congratulations on winning the 2017 Swati Award for Poetry! Can you tell us a bit about yourself and what drew you to poetry? Erica Bernheim: Thank you! I have lived in central Florida since 2008, but spent most of my life prior to that in the Midwest: Ohio, Iowa, and Illinois. Now I teach creative writing at Florida Southern College in Lakeland, and before that I lived in Chicago for about ten years. I don’t clearly recall a time when I wasn’t writing or trying to write, but it wasn’t until about halfway through earning my undergraduate degree that I began writing poetry with sort of to do so. Before that, I was much focused on writing stories, despite my lack of interest in plot and general […]

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