Joanne Godley lives in Mexico City, having emigrated from the U.S. a year ago in search of more ease. She is a physician, writer, poet, and a third-year MFA candidate in Poetry at Pacific University. She is a Meter Keeper in the Poetry Witch Community and an Anaphora Arts fellow in both poetry and fiction. Godley’s poetry has been published or is forthcoming in TheBellevue Literary Review, Mantis, Light, FIYAH, Pratik, The Account, among others. She was twice nominated for a Pushcart prize. Her prose has been published in The Massachusetts Review, TheKenyon Review online, Juked, and Memoir, among others. She has received support from VONA, the Kenyon Writer’s Workshop, the Bread Loaf Writers Conference, the Martha’s Vineyard Institute for Creative Writing, among others. Her first poetry chapbook, Picking Scabs from the Body History, features poems of witness and resistance. Her second poetry chapbook, forthcoming with Black Sunflowers Press, is an insider’s view of the fascinating and disturbing world of American medicine from the unique perspective of a Black woman physician. She describes the poems as insightful, revelatory, and, perhaps, controversial.
Joanne Godley's courageous and bold poems awaken my body and teach my mind of the numerous truths that are often forgotten or purposely swept under the rug in our world. Whether she's writing about the questionable treatment of being an African-American woman physician, how Black lives matter, or about how the Black race handles ashy skin to her mostly caucasian audience who are unaware of such things, it's always fascinating to read or hear what she has written next.
Besides all of her wonderful achievements in poetry and creative writing over the years, she has a most beautiful and loving heart. It's a holy moment to hear her read poems aloud with a captivating voice that only Joanne possesses. It's such a meaningful and humbling experience to hear her articulate her poems each time we have crossed paths over the past six years in poetry workshops or a poetry writing group. Whenever she's present I know I'm going to hear something worthy of being known, and so I'd better pay closer attention not to miss a word.