Elana Dykewomon

Activist, Author, Teacher

Check out Elana’s new and forthcoming work:


Order Now! You can get Elana's new work from
Sinister Wisdom or A Midsummer Night's Press. Get your copy today!

If you were my home
I would be your garden

If I was your garden I would want you
to cultivate me to plant water weed harvest
and like I promised I would feed you

You can always eat what straggles up or
what’s gone to seed but nothing will be
as sweet as the taste of the womon
you tended purposefully
© Elana Dykewomon

Elana Dykewomon contemplates war, class, race, community, love,
relationships, and change in the mythic, historic East Bay. Whew!

Now Available from Bywater Books and your local Independent Book Seller!
5 1/2 x 8 1/2 | 320 pp
Trade Paper US $14.95 | CAN $16.50
978-1-932859-69-0 CUSA

NEW! Also available as an Ebook: $12.94

Risk is also available from Indiebound:
Barnes and Noble

Milk and Honey - A Celebration of Jewish Lesbian Poetry
edited by Julie R. Enszer
A Midsummer Night's Press

Elana's new poem "An Eastern/Western Country Song" is included along with the work of many wonderful poets - get your copy today

"Living "Anyway:" Stories of Access" essay, Journal of Lesbian Studies, Vol. 18(1), 2014

"In Search of the Fabled Fat Woman" essay, Journal of Fat Studies, Vol. 3(1), 2014

A new poem, “simple truths,” is included in Sinister Wisdom #83 - Identity and Desire - http://www.sinisterwisdom.org/

Rain & Thunder has reprinted Elana's essay "Walking on the Moon”, as well as “Are We Ready to Throw Our Weight Around? Fat Studies and Political Activism”
that she co-authored with Deb Burgard, Esther Rothblum, and Pattie Thomas -

"Are Lesbians Going Extinct?" is the subject of
Trivia: Voices of Feminism, Issue 10 and 11.

Elana's essay, "Who Says We're Extinct?" and
"Walking on the Moon" are included with many terrific writers.

Moon Creek Road available directly from
Elana Dykewomon!

$15 per autographed copy (includes postage)
bookstore/bulk discounts available!

email the Author

"I can truthfully say that yours is a name I always
watch for on the list of new books. Finding a new
collection by [Dykewomon] is a guaranteed boost." –
Dorothy Allison

Nominated for 2003 Stonewall Award

Recent Publications

“Seeking Welcome,” in Love, Castro Street, edited by Katherine Forrest and Jim Van Buskirk, Alyson, Spring 2007

“Foreword” and three poems in What I Want From YouVoices of East Bay Lesbian Poets, edited by Linda Zeiser and Trena Machado, Raw Art Press, 2006

Elana has an on Lesbian Community in the new issue of the Journal of Lesbian Studies (Vol. 9, Numbers 1 & 2, 2005): "Lesbian Quarters: On Building Space, Identity, Institutional Memory and Resources."

Get it at your local independent bookstore or

“The Body Politic — Meditations on Identity,” in This Bridge We Call Home – Radical Visions for Transformation, edited by Gloria Anzaldúa and Anaouise Keating, Routledge (www.routledge-ny. com), 2002.

“My Mother and the Wars,” in
Bridges – A Journal for Jewish Feminists and Our Friends (www.bridgesjournal.org), edited by Clare Kinberg, Vol. 9, No. 2, Eugene, Oregon, 2002

"What Love Is," in
Best Lesbian Love Stories 2003, edited by Angela Brown, Alyson (www.alyson.com), 2003

"Changing the World," in
Journal of Lesbian Studies, Volume 5, Number 3, edited by Nanette Gartrell, M.D. and Ester Rothblum, PhD, Harrington Park Press (www.HaworthPress.com), December, 2001

Previous Work

Beyond the Pale
republished by Raincoast Books.

Beyond the Pale, an historical novel. Press Gang, Vancouver, B.C., Spring 1997. 1998 Lambda Literary Assoc. Award (The Lammy), Best Lesbian Novel; 1998 Publishers’ Triangle Award (The Ferro-Grumley), Best Lesbian Fiction; German translation: Sarahs Töchter, Krug & Schadenberg, Berlin,1999; UK edition: Onlywomen Press, London, 2000.

More information and covers of Beyond the Pale

Nothing Will Be As Sweet As The Taste, selected poems. Onlywomen Press, London, August 1995.

Riverfinger Women, a novel (under Elana Nachman). Daughters, Inc., 1974; republished by Naiad Press in 1992 with a new Afterword. German trans.: Frauen aus dem Fluss, Amazonen Frauenverlag, West Berlin, 1977.

They Will Know Me By My Teeth, short stories and poetry.Megaera, 1976. OP

Fragments from Lesbos, poetry. Diaspora Distribution, 1981. OP


1987– 1995, Sinister Wisdom, an international lesbian-feminist journal of literature, art and politics, Oakland, CA

1980-85, Diaspora Distribution, a distribution and publishing company, Langlois, OR

1980-82, Bandon Historical Society Press, Bandon, OR

1973-77, The Women’s Film Co-op Catalog, Northampton, MA

1973-74, The Women’s Journal, Northampton, MA

1971, Rainbow Grease, a literary and art journal, Cummington Community of Art, Cummington, MA

1971, BOX, a literary and art journal, California Institute of Art, Valencia, CA.

Selected Fiction

“Dinoflagellates,” in Hot & Bothered 3, Vancouver, 2001.

“Grace,” in
Augenblicke, Krug & Schadenberg, Berlin, 1999.

“Knaydle and the Librarian,” in
Friday the Rabbi Wore Lace, Cleis Press, 1998.

“Prologue,” in
Transfer 71, Spring 1996.

“My Grandmother’s Plates,” in
Speaking for Ourselves — Short Stories by Jewish Lesbians, Crossing Press, Freedom, CA, 1990.

“Manna from Heaven,” in
The Tribe of Dina, Beacon, 1989.

“Staking Claims,” in
Common Lives/Lesbian Lives, #17, Fall 1985.

“The Mezzuzah Maker,” in
Common Lives/Lesbian Lives #8, 1983.


“Butch resisting the pressure to change gender,” Sojourner, Boston, April 2000.

“Passing for Not Unusual” and three other poems,
Not for the Academy, Lilian Mohin, ed., Onlywomen Press, London, 1999.

“When to Answer,”
Zyzzyva, Vol. X, No. 2, Summer, 1994.

“A Law of Physics,”
Bridges, Vol. 4, #1, Eugene, OR, 1994.

“New England Cemetery” and “diving, i kiss,”
Lesbian Culture: An Anthology, Julia Penelope & Susan Wolfe, eds., Crossing Press, Freedom, CA, 1993.

“The Census Taker Interviews the 20th Century” and “The Vilde Chaya and Civilization,”
Bridges, Vol. 3, #1, Seattle, WA, 1992.

“learning to breathe,”
Shadow on a Tightrope (anthology), Aunt Lute, SF, CA 1990.

“I had a dream…” and “Even My Eyes Become Mouths,”
Naming the Waves — Contemporary Lesbian Poetry, Crossing Press, Freedom, CA, 1990.

Essays, Introductions, Anthologies

“A Manifesto, A Genealogy, A Cause — Found Treasures,” essay/review, Bridges, Vol. 5, No. 2, Eugene, OR, 1995.

“Introduction” to
Belly Songs, poems by Susan Stinson, Orogeny Press, Northampton, MA, 1993.

Lesbian Culture: An Anthology, Julia Penelope & Susan Wolfe, eds., Crossing Press, Freedom, CA, 1993.

“The Ex-patriot and Her Name” (essay),
InVersions — Writing by Dykes, Queers & Lesbians, Press Gang, Vancouver, Canada, 1991.

“The Fourth Daughter’s 400 Questions” (essay),
Nice Jewish Girls — A Lesbian Anthology, Beacon Press, 1989.

“Traveling Fat” (essay),
Out the Other Side — Contemporary Lesbian Writing, Virago Press, London, England, 1989.

“from Riverfinger Women” (novel excerpt),
The Woman Who Lost Her Names — Selected Writings by American Jewish Women, Harper & Row, 1980.


My Grandmother Play, one act, staged by Luna Sea Productions, SF, July, 2000.

A section from Beyond the Pale adapted for stage by Helen Mintz as part of her one-woman show “Secret Melodies: Jewish Women’s Stories,” which she has been performing in the Pacific Northwest and Canada since 1994.

Readings and Workshops

Throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe since 1971, including over seventy readings and panel presentations since the publication of Beyond the Pale (one, from a Jewish Women Writers reading at Barnard in October, 2000, is archived at Columbia University’s Fathom website).

Papers presented at the 1988 National Women’s Studies Conference in Minneapolis, 1988 3rd International Feminist Bookfair, 1990 4th International Feminist Bookfair. Day-long writing workshops given in Barcelona, San Francisco, Michigan Women’s Music Festival. Writers’ Coordinator: 1st West Coast Lesbian Festival, 1992.

Periodicals and Journals

From 1971 to the present, poetry, short stories, essays and interviews have appeared in these publications among others:

Epoch (Cornell University)
Native Dancer (Reed College)
Assembling (ed. by Richard Kostelanetz and Henry Korn)
Black Maria
Open Places (Stephens College)
The Woman’s Journal(Northampton, MA)
Diana’s BiMonthly
Shameless Hussy Review
Chomo-Uri (Univ. of Mass.)
(SF State Univ.)
Amazones D’Hier – Lesbiennes D’Aujourd’Hui
Big Deal
Amazon Quarterly
Common Lives/Lesbian Lives
Feminist Bookstore News
Sinister Wisdom, Bridges
Women’s Cancer Center Resource Newsletter


Residency, Soapstone Writers’ Retreat, OR, March, 2001.

Residency, Norcroft Writers’ Retreat, Lutsen, MN, summer, 1996,’97, 2002.

Residency, Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, Taos, NM, 1995.

Residency, Cottages at Hedgebrooke, Langley, WA 98260, 1993.

Listed in Contemporary Lesbian Writers of the United States: A Bio-Bibliographical Critical Sourcebook, 1992.

Panel presentation included in transcripts of 1990 4th International Feminist Bookfair in Barcelona.

Residency, Cummington Community of Art, Cummington, MA, 1971.

Contact Elana Dykewomon for readings,
spoken word performances or lectures.