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Kelli Jo Ford

Kelli Jo Ford’s debut, Crooked Hallelujah, will be published by Grove Press in July 2020. She is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including the Paris Review’s Plimpton Prize, a Katherine Bakeless Nason Award at Bread Loaf, a National Artist Fellowship from the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation, and a Dobie Paisano Fellowship. Her fiction has appeared in the Paris Review, VQR, and the Missouri Review, among other places. She is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma.

Author

Illustration by Landis Blair

The Year 2003 Minus 20

Spring 2020 | Fiction

Reney’s bones can feel a fight long before the rest of her wakes to the rising voices and clattering bottles. She is eight, almost nine. Granny and Lula live in a new rent house across the tracks and down a long hill, not so very far. Over there—standing on a chair rolling up balls of dough as Granny’s hearing aids whistle, or lying curled into Granny’s great body napping—is Reney’s best place. But Reney knows that her place is with her mom.

Illustration by Pat Perry

You Will Miss Me When I Burn

Spring 2016 | Fiction

I spent my morning at the Dairy Queen with the loafers and the cattlemen who get their feeding done before first light. It was a sparse crowd—we didn’t know yet what the wind was going to do.