Since 1987, due to a spinal cord tumor and surgery, Maren O. Mitchell has had chronic pain, termed “central pain.” For years, through trial and error, she searched for ways to live a sane and full life again. For over twenty years now, without relying on drugs, she has been accomplishing her goal.
One of the methods Maren found for coping has been through writing. Her poetry appears in The Comstock Review, Slant: A Journal of Poetry, Still: The Journal, Tar River Poetry, The Pedestal Magazine, Poetry East, POEM, The Crafty Poet II: A Portable Workshop, Hotel Amerika, Chiron Review, The World Is Charged: Poetic Engagements with Gerard Manley Hopkins, Iodine Poetry Journal, The Lake (UK), The South Carolina Review, Appalachian Heritage, Southern Humanities Review, The Classical Outlook, Town Creek Poetry, The Journal of Kentucky Studies, Skive (AU), Appalachian Journal, Red Clay Reader, Volume 4, The Arts Journal, and the anthologies Negative Capability Press Anthology of Georgia Poetry, Sunrise from Blue Thunder, Echoes Across the Blue Ridge, Nurturing Paws, and The Southern Poetry Anthologies, Vol. V: Georgia & Vol. VII: North Carolina.
Work is forthcoming in Chiron Review, Poetry East, POEM and Hotel Amerika.
Two poems have been nominated by Pushcart contributing editors for the Pushcart Prize. Her poem “Not the Poem” won 1st Place Award for Excellence in Poetry from the Georgia Poetry Society.
Maren reads at several different poetry venues each month. She has taught poetry at Blue Ridge Community College, Flat Rock, NC, and catalogued at the Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site. Another way of dealing with her pain is through the Japanese art of paper folding. By teaching, she shares her knowledge of origami.
A native of North Carolina, in her childhood she lived in Bordeaux, France, and Kaiserslautern, Germany. After moving throughout the southeast U.S., Maren now lives with her husband in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Georgia on the edge of a national forest.