When I was little, I carried around a pen and notebook. No matter what I did, as a young child starting at about age four, I instinctively knew a poem would find me wherever I went. Without being aware of this process, I developed two passions — writing poetry and traveling — and both influenced the creative trajectory of my life.

My appetite for travel took me to cities as far away as San Francisco, Fez, and Krakow. With pen and notebook in hand and backpack, I recorded expansive views of the Pacific and its surrounding golden hills, my first taste of Moroccan spicy vegetable tagine, and the tintinnabulation of myriad church bells clanging across piazzas throughout Poland. And from those initial sensory experiences, I emerged a poet.

Determined to follow this passion, I pursued a graduate degree in creative writing and hold a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing–Poetry from The New School. While there, I was awarded first place in the 2021 Paul Violi Poetry Prize. During this time, Winning Writers also recognized one of my villanelles, “To Be Continued” with an Honorable Mention in the 2020 Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest for traditional verse.

When not poeming around, I love to peruse endless stacks in used bookstores for an elusive discovery — the serendipitous title, author, edition. I play classical piano, which inspires ideas for poems, and I dream of becoming a concert pianist. Maybe in another life.

Thanks for poeming around,

Judith Lynn Antelman

Photo Credit: Luis Vieira