Jeanine Walker

Jeanine Walker is the author of The Two of Them Might Outlast Me (GPP, 2022). She has received fellowships from Artist Trust, Jack Straw Cultural Center, and Wonju, UNESCO City of Literature. Her poems, essays, and translations have found homes in Poetry, Pleiades, Prairie Schooner, HAD, Denver Quarterly, and elsewhere.

2024 Jack Straw Alumni Poetry Series:

“Jeanine Walker’s poems pluck images from a past to tumble them like stones. . . . In this dazzling and haunting collection [The Two of Them Might Outlast Me], a history of trauma and grief reminds us where we have been, but also where we can turn. . . . These poems balance clarity with enigma in ways that are wholly Walker’s own genius.”
—Claudia Rankine

The World Became Heat

The heat sank into us and became us.
Heat wrapped its hands around us. Heat has strong hands.
The world was on fire; the world became heat.
It sank into us and became us.


A world on fire burns as ferociously as a tiger’s snarl.
I’m sorry. It is the best I can come up with. I am heat now; I am fire.

The world, a fist of fire, burns within me and I speak.
The world is a fist of fire: our dictionaries reflect this.


What burns will not be what remains. The future is always uncertain,
but it is hot. What remains will be the fact of burning.

Future people will watch the burning from their windows
and know it is the world.

They will be burning. Inside of them will be fire, but not fists.

2015 Writers Program


Sound Clips
  • Jeanine Walker - Portrait
    Divorce – Jeanine Walker