Maya Clubine | 2023 Vallum Chapbook Award Winner

Vallum is so pleased to congratulate Maya Clubine as the winner of this year’s award for her chapbook Life Cycle of a Mayfly, which will be published in the fall alongside a new chapbook by Karen Solie!

About Life Cycle of a Mayfly

Maya Clubine’s careful poetry avoids the easy delineation of beginning, middle, end. Rather, cycles of birth and death overlap. As the narrator says goodbye to her father, the trout are laying eggs. There is no neat separation between earth and sky, father and daughter, object and water. Stories hang on hooks, stars land in riverbeds. A father dies like a fish retreating: “you have already slipped beneath the surface.” Everything in nature has its own volition. Lessons carry between generations, like a fly that knows it must rise before it falls. As Clubine’s descriptions and phrases repeat, language itself takes on the cycle. In Clubine’s vision of the Credit River, time is both suspended and unceasing. A fishing line tugs the world towards the future, towards what will pass.


“I stand knee-deep in waders worn through several
lifetimes. A tern emerges from the clouds.
And for a time it seems that I belong
to all past seasons on this river’s edge”


Photo by Bruce Jeffrey

Maya Clubine is a writer and artist from the Canadian East Coast. She is an MFA candidate at the University of St. Thomas (TX) where she received a Scanlan Fellowship. Maya has published in Rattle, The Literary Review of Canada, Modern Age, The South Shore Review, and Ekstasis, among others. She is a member of the Common Milkweed Collective. She can be found at