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Katherine E. Standefer

Katherine E. Standefer’s debut book, Lightning Flowers (Little, Brown & Co., 2020), was shortlisted for the 2018 J. Anthony Lukas Work-in-Progress Award from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University. Her work appears in The Best American Essays 2016 and won the 2015 Iowa Review Award in Nonfiction. She is a Fall 2018 Logan Nonfiction Fellow at the Carey Institute for Global Good and teaches nonfiction in Ashland University’s Low-Residency MFA. 



Winter 2018 | Essays

The diggers have been gone less than a year. In the grown-over patches on the slope of Mpama South, emptied anchovy tins rust in the dirt beside strips of tarp, thick plastic jugs, and waxy cartons of mango juice squeezed flat at the waist. Over them grows a lace of cherry tomatoes: some hard and green, some red and ready for plucking.