Judith Roney is an award-wining poet and writer.
She is the author of According to the Gospel of Haunted Women (ELJ Publications, 2015), Bless the Wayward Boy, (Honorable Mention, Two Sylvias Press), Waiting for Rain (Finalist, Two Sylvias Press 2017), and Field Guide for A Human (Runner-Up, Gambling the Aisle 2015 Chapbook Contest). Her poems and other writing have appeared in many anthologies, most recently in the UK’s Shooter Magazine’s “City” themed anthology, as she “poetically takes the pulse of Orlando following last year’s nightclub shootings in “<80 BPM.”
Roney, who has an affinity for the marginalized, the abused, and “the other,” writes much of her work to channel those who cannot speak for themselves.
She is a researcher, scholar, and writer of the witch, witchcraft, herbalism, the occult, and British Isles folklore.
“My nest I’ve built out of what others throw away: Coat hangers, shoelaces, and tinsel.”
From “Bird in a Brick House”
“I always love a good metaphor — carefully drawn images that I can read and reread and find deeper and deeper meaning. Judith Roney uses metaphor beautifully in “Bird in a Brick House,” and then emotionally the poem takes me even farther.
Maybe it’s just my affinity to birds, but this poem is a metaphor I can feel: the feathers at the nape of the neck, the want to fly away, and all those feelings we don’t put into words, we don’t even speak. Birds become family becomes reality.”
She has been nominated for a Pushcart and received the 2015 Pioneer Prize, as well as awards from Two Sylvia Press, Gambling the Aisle, Sinkhole, Prism Review, the University of Central Florida, and Anne Arundel College.
Roney was born “of lake water” in the great city of Chicago, alongside Lake Michigan. The only child of a single mother, she spent much of her childhood at the lakeshore or roaming the marbled halls of The Field Museum, The Museum of Science, or The Art Institute, all with massive limestone Greek-revival exteriors.
After earning a degree in art history, Roney raised her son before moving to Florida where she returned to college. She first earned a nursing degree, then dual majors in cultural anthropology and English before entering graduate school, where she earned a Master of Fine Arts degree. After attending the same PhD program, Texts and Technology, twice, Roney made the decision to cease researching mandated subjects such as digital editing for databases, and design and development for texts and technology, to make time for scholarly research of the history of housewifery, domestic abuse, witchcraft, marginalized groups (especially ghosts), and folklore of the British Isles.
In the past, Roney has worked with french-fries, fine diamonds, grandfather clocks, gasoline, lumber, corporate mail delivery, music boxes, doorknobs, pizza, computer repair & tech support, at-risk patients, and orchids.
Currently, she is a lecturer creative writing at the University of Central Florida, is a staff poetry reader for The Florida Review, a Special Poetry Consultant for Aquifer, The Florida Review’s online journal, and a poetry reader for Fayetteville State University’s Glint Literary Magazine. She is also a teaching artist for The Poetry Barn.
She lives on a semi-sleepy island off the east coast of Florida, where she maintains a somewhat-orderly jungle with her husband (a handsome but cantankerous direct descendent of William the Conquerer), two adored Labradors, and three cats, Maximillian, Sasha, and Lilibet.
Admittedly she still plays with dolls, believes in ghosts, and speaks often to dead folk.
A devoted admirer of Queen Elizabeth II, she wrote a letter explaining her admiration and association of the queen with her own long-dead grandmother, and was honored toy receive a letter in response. A kitten rescued from an alley in February of 2019 has been named Lilibet, the queen’s childhood nickname, and now resides in her own “palace” with cushy pillows and sunny spots where she bird watches.