As a writing teacher and scholar, I am interested in the practice of writing across environments and genres. My interests in place-based writing also include ecopoetics and the emerging field of creative writing sudies. As a poet, my work encounters themes of place, loss, and environmental destruction. On this page, you will find a brief biography of my creative work and links to sample poems available online. For more information about my creative writing, visit my poetry website: madisonpjones.com/poet.
I am the author of the poetry collections Losing the Dog (Salmon Poetry, forthcoming) and Reflections on the Dark Water (Solomon & George, 2016). My poems have appeared in journals such as North American Review, Prairie Schooner, Michigan Quarterly Review, Shenandoah, The Greensboro Review, and in anthologies including Mountains Piled upon Mountains: Appalachian Nature Writing in the Anthropocene. I was the recipient of the Robert Mount, Jr. College Poetry Prize from the Academy of American Poets and a Literary Award from the F. Scott & Zelda Fitzgerald Museum, among other awards. I regularly review poetry collections and have written for Kenyon Review Online, Birmingham Poetry Review, storySouth, The Journal, and elsewhere. I was the writer-in-residence at Wolfe Cottage in Spring 2020 as part of an award from the Fairhope Center for Writing Arts.
Sample Poems Available Online
From Losing the Dog
It doesn't take long to discover that, beneath the stately and ordered surface of these poems, a wild energy sizzles. Readers of these delightfully surprising lines will, like the "blue knuckled" sparrows Jones writes about, walk a kind of poetic high wire, "a hundred thousand volts / coursing like fire" through our hands. Jones writes wonderfully about the natural world, about place and loss, but his poems, despite their loving specificity, never stop tallying "the weights of distant elsewheres." A terrific collection. —Davis McCombs, author of Lore
- “Driving Home from the Psychiatric Hospital.” Prairie Schooner. Summer 2019 (Vol. 93, Num. 2).
- “Pastoral.” Crab Orchard Review. Fall 2018 (Vol. 23, Iss. 2).
- “Bon Voyage.” Valparaiso Poetry Review. Fall/Winter 2018-19 (Vol. 20, Iss. 1).
- “Nocturne.” Michigan Quarterly Review. Fall 2017 (Vol. 56, Iss. 4).
- “High Rise.” Shenandoah. Spring 2017 (Vol. 66, Iss. 2).
- “Prescribed Burn.” Shenandoah. Spring 2017 (Vol. 66, Iss. 2).
- "Silver Springs" and "Elsewhere." About Place. October 2017 (Vol. 4, Iss. 4).
- "Witnessing Nature" (essay discussing my poem "Sunfall With Bat House") Open Spaces: North American Review Online, March 2019.
From Reflections on the Dark Water
Reflections on the Dark Water concerns itself with memory and myth, how the bridge between the two-how the line where they intersect-is the irrevocable location of history. Jones crosses that bridge, that line over and again in poems that view the past in order to make sense of the present. This is a book that wants to separate "truth from chaff."—Jericho Brown, author of The Tradition
- "Nostos.” Cumberland River Review. Winter 2014 (Vol. 3, Iss. 1).
- “The Bicycle.” Painted Bride Quarterly. Fall 2014 (Vol. 90).
- “Nocturne in an Empty Field.” Cumberland River Review. April 2014 (Vol. 3, Iss. 2).
- “One-Man Renga in Late June, Lee County.” Canary: A Literary Journal of the Environmental Crisis. Summer 2015 (Vol. 29).