Clare Beams
Contributor History

Clare Beams
Clare Beams’s novel, The Illness Lesson (Doubleday), was a New York Times Editor’s Choice and was longlisted for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize; her story collection, We Show What We Have Learned (Lookout Books), won the Bard Fiction Prize and was a finalist for the New York Public Library’s Young Lions Fiction Award and the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize. Her new novel will be published by Doubleday in 2024. She lives in Pittsburgh and teaches at the Randolph MFA program. 



In Print

Vol. 80
Ways of Water
Spring 2023
Edited by Bradford Morrow


September 20, 2023
The Rachel stands tuned  
            to multiplicities, 
aslant in a territory of longing,
            where she becomes foreign.

            What has she found?
She listens, acknowledges another sound,
            diffuse, multiple,  
pulsing thought, oscillations, whisperings,
            never only one.
September 13, 2023
I had yet to discover the source of that star, it came and it passed but from where it sprang and then fell to fading remained a mystery. In cycling its light lent its powers to coloring my tablecloth a lighter shade, relieving pigment from its duty to darken, except for those spots where I placed my bottles and cups, shielding only parts of the piece from fading, threads left closer to their original hues hewed to others abandoned as wraiths to their fates, a darker ring the mark of those who stayed behind.
September 6, 2023
Where the trees blackened, I saw,

Quickly, three deer lean into goldenness.

It seems, although wildfires rage

Out of control, this world remembers

Some portion of its first purposes:

Superfluous beauty