Photo by Cheryl Thornburg
I grew up in Nürnberg, Germany, not far from the castle, reading fairy-tales and playing in World War II ruins. After graduating from a Lutheran girls high school, I studied at Georgetown University College of Arts and Sciences, which had until shortly before been a Catholic boys college. I graduated 10th in my class with a B.A. in English and Philosophy and I am a member of Phi Beta Kappa.
While at Georgetown University I studied with poet Roland Flint, former poet laureate of Maryland, with whom I remained friends until his death in 2001. I also befriended late science fiction writer Roger Zelazny and his family, whose acquaintance I first made as their private ballroom dance teacher in the 1980s.
I have published short stories and poetry, several books of poems and novels, and some other not easily categorized books. Some of my publications were under former names, Beate Goldman and Beate Murray. Please see my bibliography. Several of my published short stories were nominated for a Pushcart Prize. I won my first poetry prize in 1983 and my latest two poetry prizes in 2018, with a handful of other prizes in between. In 2017 I was named poet laureate of Silver City, a position I share with co-poet laureate Jack Crocker. As part of my poet laureate activities, I orchestrate a monthly reading series, "Just Words," with featured readers and open mic.
When necessary, I have supported myself with administrative work and I have spent many years teaching ballroom dance and competing professionally in the American Rhythm division. I have taught ballroom dance at the Aurora Community College, Metro State College and The University of Northern Colorado, as well as privately at Have Dance Will Travel (which I co-owned with Johann Murray) in Santa Fe, and at Booth’s Dancesport Ballroom in Denver, Colorado. I have also taught Argentine Tango, "Writing in A Woman's Voice," and "Mastering the Written Word: 50 Tips for Editing and Proofreading" at Colorado Free University.
I facilitated one of several critique groups of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers for over two years. I was also a member of the International Women’s Writing Guild. From 2006 to 2009, I was fiction editor of Moondance, a woman’s literary ezine. For a time I orchestrated the Glass Woman Prize to celebrate other women's voices. I funded the prize with ten percent of my personal income. For a time I had no income, and stopped. When I resumed receiving income, I changed my celebration of other women's voices to the blog Writing In A Woman's Voice where I post poetry and prose written by women or in a woman's voice. On the full moon, and occasionally additionally on the day following the full moon when ten percent of my income permit, I give a small prize to a poem or story posted there during the preceding moon cycle.
Currently an enchanted resident of Silver City, New Mexico, Land of Enchantment, I previously lived in lovely North Vancouver, Canada for a few years and in beautiful Colorado for almost two decades. I have also lived in Chinchilla and Red Lion, Pennsylvania, in Washington, D.C. and surrounding areas, in Glasserchoo, Ireland, and in Roma, Lesotho.
I am in love with life and would choose samsara over nirvana any day. Even if we are indeed all illusions, then let's make this the best and most beautiful and compassionate illusion possible.