The Currency of His Light (Turning Plow Press, 2023, i-xviii + 1-126 pp.) ISBN 978-1-7355762-9-9. $22.

AVAILABLE NOW on the shelf or online, Watermark Books & Cafe, Wichita, Kansas, for $20. 

The Currency of His Light Front Cover

  • Roy Beckemeyer is a polymath, with expertise in entomology (dragon flies in particular), aeronautical engineering, painting, and poetry. Always, he has fascinating tales. His latest book of poetry, The Currency of His Light, shows his originality. Each section begins with an epigraph about light. Each poem refracts human stories and lyrical wonder. This poet’s not-to-be-missed book astonishes on every page.

—Denise Low, Kansas Poet Laureate 2007-9, Red Mountain Press Prize winner

  • As with E. E. Cummings, love transports Beckemeyer’s poetry to its rightful place between heaven and earth. The light shines on it, and beauty blooms from the shadows, sparkling with elevated diction, visceral imagery, keen metaphor and “the color of blessing.” Highest recommendations.

—Arlice Davenport, author of Kind of Blue: New Poems.

  • Roy Beckemeyer, in his shining new collection of poetry, explores, questions, laments, and celebrates the mystery and power of light in language, art, spirit, and life. His deep and abiding investigation of the natural world generously gives these poems grounding, heft, and precision so that what’s often beyond words can take flight. This whole book is an ode to wonder, and the kind of wonder we especially need to illuminate our lives right now.

—Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, Poet Laureate of Kansas 2009-13, author of How Time Moves: New and Selected Poems

Inscribed copies are available from the author. Contact royjbeckemeyer[at]gmail[dot]com for further details.  Available now on the shelf or online from Watermark Books & Cafe in Wichita, Kansas. 

Mouth Brimming Over Front Cover

Mouth Brimming Over (Blue Cedar Press, 2019,  i-xiv + 1-122 pp.) ISBN 978-0-9960970-9-3. $15.

  • In Mouth Brimming Over, his finest poetic work to date, Roy Beckemeyer explores the great Whitmanesque themes of the body, the self, the teeming earth, the wide-open horizon. Cosmic expansionism and natural inclusiveness resonate throughout these verses—counterparts to the poet’s clear-eyed vision and bull’s-eye thinking about the world and our place in it. Mouth Brimming Over beautifully demonstrates that a poem thrives as a living organism; it breathes itself well beyond the finite limit of words. We inhale and are blessed.

—Arlice Davenport, Poet and retired Books Page Editor for The Wichita Eagle.

  • Mouth Brimming Over overflows with the music inherent in strong poetry. These poems embrace expansively vibrant travels and tenderly-acute observations, singing all the way. Altogether, this remarkable collection encompasses poems in motion across time and space, botany and engineering, flights and landings, fire and water, earth and body, and the holy and the ordinary. Roy Beckemeyer’s poems amplify the music of being alive and illuminate the dance of being human.

—Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, 2009-13 Kansas Poet Laureate, author of Miriam’s Well

  • Roy Beckemeyer brings a scientist’s eye and a poet’s ear to the page in his latest book.  Whether he’s analyzing the geometry of the Trinity or pouring Whitman into a sonnet, Beckemeyer blends gravity with wit in this elegiac tribute to the permanence of love amid the decay of the natural world.

—Wyatt Townley, Poet Laureate of Kansas Emerita

Available now from Blue Cedar Press or from Watermark Books & Cafe

Stage Whispers Cover with Seal

Stage Whispers (Meadowlark Books, 2018, iv+114 pp.). ISBN: 978-1-7322410-3-9.  $15

  • STAGE WHISPERS  was awarded the 2019 Kansas Authors Club Nelson Poetry Book Award, which was created by Raymond and Margaret Nelson – Dr. Raymond Nelson and Margaret Nelson joined KAC in 1979. Both served in various offices, including state president, Raymond from 1984-1986, and Margaret Nelson from 1994-1995. The couple began awarding the Nelson Poetry Book Award in 2002.
  • “In precise language and varied forms . . . Stage Whispers welcomes readers into thoughtful narrative observations that are personal and political, serious and light-hearted. Like the multitude of grasses on the Kansas prairie, these handsomely crafted poems are grounded in nature’s deep richness and beauty yet contemplate Christianity, science, and humanity . . . Dense with images, intimate and honest . . .”
    —Kathryn Kysar, author of Dark Lake and Pretend the World
  • Stage Whispers speaks from on, off, below, and above the stage of life, as well as the stages of lives we travel, showing us how to hear what we have to say to the world and what the world is saying to us . . . Beckemeyer once again shows us the essential nature of listening closely to the music and quiet of everyday rhythms, yearnings, connections, losses, and motions. He writes with originality and precision about the natural world, growing up in the Midwest, old friends and old places that shaped lives, and even the workings of our minds . . . the most powerful cord that threads through this book is love: love for being alive to witness the tilting of seasons and weather, both external and internal, as well as love for the moments and humans that illuminate our days.”
    —Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, 2009-13 Kansas Poet Laureate, and author of Everyday Magic: Fieldnotes on the Mundane and Miraculous
  • “. . . These poems are lean yet muscled with the intense track of a quail hunt, the rise and rustle of prey, the sudden fall to ground . . . savor this collection from a skilled craftsman of modern verse.”
    —Gary Lechliter, author of Off the Beaten Path
  • “Roy Beckemeyer’s Stage Whispers invites us to see the lively currents that underpin our world. His wide-ranging eye examines everything from the microscopic to the cosmic and reports back to us a universe filled with brightness and worthy of our close attention”
    —Skyler Lovelace, poet and artist, Professor of Digital Media and owner of Pixel Time
  • “To hear how a poet like Roy J. Beckemeyer heals unexpected wounds with unexpected beauty, listen to Stage Whispers.”
    —Laura Madeline Wiseman, author of Through a Certain Forest
  • For full text of these appreciations as well as reviews as they are published, link to my “Praise” page.

Available from Meadowlark Books

Or, online or in the store at either of Wichita’s fine independent bookstores, Eight Day Books, or Watermark Books.


Roy Beckemeyer, front cover, 2-22-18

Amanuensis Angel (Spartan Press, 2018, x+58 pp.), a book of ekphrastic poems inspired by depictions of angels by 27 different artists. ISBN 978-1-946642-40-0. $12

  • “…Beckemeyer pushes boundaries and imagination forward. His interpretations of angels—personal, metaphoric—resound and sometimes subvert expectations: ‘We should help them, you know, / the wounded angels of the world.’ Amanuensis Angel is a crucible for Beckemeyer’s mysticism: ‘Gravity bows in defeat / at the seventh level of / heaven.’ Gravity and other forces alter within these pages—well worth the read.” — Tyler Robert Sheldon
  • “an original and stunning blend of ekphrastic poems inspired by angels interpreted by eclectic artists. Riffing off abstract expressionist, symbolist, and surrealist art, Beckemeyer writes a universe of poetry here, showing us the embodied, soulful, and mechanistic angels across space and time…There is an expansive wit and magic in this book, and reading it is like looking through a kaleidoscope of history, art, culture, the sacred and the everyday.” — Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg
  • “…rich poetic craft…sensibility wedding the past to the moment, all applied with…arthroscopic precision…at his masterful best when engaging in an earthy irony, as when Adam casts a knowing eye on a lustful angel, or when the selfsame angel guarding Eden’s gate wryly observes the exiles stumbling forth in naked pride and folly…foreseeing them damned…to the end of their days. Whereas any day spent reading these poems provides a glint of grace.”– Melvin Litton
  • “The[se] poems run the emotional gamut. While the book may use the artistic imagery of angels, the poems aren’t limited to the angelic or celestial. Angels function as apocalyptic heralds, gate-keepers, judges. There’s unbidden humour…’I am a solution to the three-body / problem of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.” Like angels in flight, the poems swoop and swirl through human tragedy and experience…This is a collection worth visiting time and again, as the nuanced relationships between the poems and the inspiring angelic artwork become more dynamic over time.”– April Pameticky
  • For full text of these appreciations as well as reviews as they are published, link to my “Praise” page.

Available online or in the store at either of Wichita’s fine independent bookstores, Eight Day Books, or Watermark Books.

NOTE: Because a number of the QR Code links to the angel art that inspired the ekphrastic poems in Amanuensis Angel have disappeared into Internet oblivion, I am providing some downloadable files here to insure that you can still enjoy the book without having to search the web for the specific works of art:

  • Small Picture Handout 7.5 by 9.5 – This is a pdf file you can print back to back on 8.5 by 11 inch paper, trim to 7.5 by 9.5 inches, fold, and insert into your book for quick reference. The images are small, but will give you a good feel for the work that inspired the poems. Best printed in color on slick paper using a good quality printer.
  • Indices of Artists – Titles – First lines – Another pdf file that when printed can be used as an insert into your book that provides alphabetized indices of Artists, Poem Titles, and Poem first lines.
  • Amanuensis Angel Without Poems – A Powerpoint file containing images of the art work in the same order as it appears in the book. Not for reproduction. Please use only when reading the book for ease of reference. Thank you.


Front Cover Small file

Kansas Time+Place: An Anthology of Heartland Poetry (Little Balkans Press, 2017, xiv+218 pp.) is a collection of 160 poems by 86 authors edited by Roy J. Beckemeyer and Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg. ISBN 978-0-9824549-6-1. $20

  • “Throughout these poems run the appreciation of silence, reverence for what outsiders perceive as “nothingness,” and the timelessness of prairie life, its ancient fossils found alongside abandoned demolition derby cars and plastic cups. Here, ‘Nothing is lost, but so many things have to be found.’  Memory is a powerful force in Kansas.   In Kansas, there is always another story to tell.” — Anita Skeen

Available online or in the store at Wichita’s fine independent bookstore, Watermark Books.


Front Cover 365 Days Vol 2

365 Days: A Poetry Anthology, Volume 2 (365 Days Poetry, 2018, xii+116 pp.) is the 2nd collection of poetry (76 poems from 18 poets) from the Facebook Closed Poetry Group 365 Poems in 365 Days. Edited by Roy Beckemeyer, James Benger, Dan Pohl, and Diane Wahto. Cover Photo and book and cover layout and design by Roy Beckemeyer. ISBN 978-1-986723-10-7. $10

  • “…an illustration of conviction and community coming together and creating something exquisite in both its ambition and content…a tremendous amount of creative energy…Poems pastoral, micro, narrative, absurd, and intimate play over the pages in a perfect concerto of how a year of one’s own life passes: with highs and lows, sighs and bellows.” — Jeanette Powers
  • “…a delightful read full of great moments from established and emerging poets…among the many bright spots in this collection…Paul Koniecki (‘Carry the sun in your arms to a safe house / and leave it in an unmade bed of pillows and down, other / minor celestial objects, and soft music from a turntable in the / corner of another room’).” — Shawn Pavey

Available online from Watermark Books.


365 Days Front Cover Image

365 Days: A Poetry Anthology (365 Days Poetry, 2016, xii+138 pp.) is a collection of 100 poems by 21 authors, all of whom participated in a challenge to write a poem a day for a year. Edited by Roy J. Beckemeyer, James Benger, Dan Pohl, and Diane Wahto. ISBN 978-1-5349059-6-2. $10

  • “…these poems invite us to glimpse the shifting, extraordinary world in the seemingly still moments of the ordinary.” — Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg
  • “…sharing its voice for all of the right reasons, offering humanity, letting people know that they’re not alone, even on their darkest days.” — John Dorsey

Available online from Watermark Books.



Music I Once Could Dance To (Coal City Press, 2014, 100 pp.) was a 2015 Kansas Notable Book. ISBN 978-0-9795844-8-0. $10

  • “…a strong visual sense, astute storytelling technique and attunements to the rhythms of the natural world. Beckemeyer creates a remembered music…that leads to quiet epiphanies and delights…What stands out in these rich, resonant poems is the care of craft…crisp lexicon and vibrant images…At his best, Beckemeyer rises to aesthetic heights that reflect the rich heritage of the Plains…” — Arlice Davenport, Wichita Eagle.
  • “Roy Beckemeyer’s poems are like prairie stones, washed by storm, and carved by wind and time. Each is different. Each is formed by the experiences of a lifetime.” —Al Ortolani
  • Beckemeyer’s poetry moves with the surety of the practised dancer who not only knows the steps but truly feels the music…full of surprising variations on its theme. Music I Once Could Dance To is a masterful first book.” — Bill Sheldon
  • For full text of these appreciations as well as reviews as they are published, link to my “Praise” page.

Available online or in the store at Wichita’s fine independent bookstore, Watermark Books.