Writer ∙ Essayist ∙ Poet

I’m a Vancouver Island-based writer who’s inspired by landscapes—both interior and exterior.

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My Mother, My Disease, and Me

Doctors told me cystic fibrosis would kill me by age 15. My mom told me I just had allergies. After a childhood of Ayurvedic treatments, I’ve embraced Western medicine as an adult, without abandoning my alternative roots.

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Dancing with Senior Citizens Helped Me Get Over My Ex

In the space of two hours, I must have quick-stepped, waltzed and fox-trotted with a dozen eager guys. The only problem? I’m in my 30s, and most of the men who showed up for that day were senior citizens. They were kind, dapper gents — just not the dance partners I had in mind.”

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An Open Letter to the Hot Canadian Zumba Teacher Who Pulled Me Onstage After My Mother Died.

“Dear Hot Canadian Zumba Teacher,
You didn’t know she’d had a heart attack a thousand miles away in Iowa…”

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01_VerseMap_vonEssenPoetry

I’ve published poems in journals and anthologies across Canada and the United States. Feel free to explore my work.

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About Me

Screen Shot 2016-04-26 at 4.49.08 PMMy essays and poetry have appeared in The Atlantic, The Washington PostMcSweeney’s Internet Tendency, The Rumpus, The Writer, A Verse Map of Vancouver, Quills Canadian Poetry, Sulphur III, and other publications. Learn more.