Patricia Davis is author of a chapbook of poems, The Water that Broke You (Finishing Line Press, 2014). Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Poet Lore, Smartish Pace, Salt Hill, Quiddity, Adrienne Rich: A Tribute Anthology, Third Coast, Spoon River Poetry Review, the Atlanta Review, and the Potomac Review, and her work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She graduated from Carleton College and taught English in Spain before moving to the DC area and enrolling in the MFA program at American University, while working full-time as communications director at the Guatemala Human Rights Commission. At AU, she edited Folio, America University’s literary journal, and was the recipient of two Lannan Fellowships for poetry. Though her studies at American University focused on poetry, she was in a position to help a colleague at the Guatemala Human Rights Commission write her memoir. In 2002, Orbis Books published the memoir, The Blindfold’s Eyes: My Journey from Torture to Truth, which details the struggles of a US nun, Sister Dianna Ortiz, who worked in Guatemala as a Catholic missionary during the years of the war. Sister Ortiz was abducted and tortured by Guatemalan soldiers. The memoir recounts her struggle to rebuild her life and her faith and hold the perpetrators accountable. The Blindfold’s Eyes won a Best Spiritual Book of the Year Award from Spirituality and Health magazine and Best First-Time Author and Best History/Biography awards from the Catholic Press Association of the United States and Canada.
She has published translations of several Cuban poets’ work and was the first one to bring the work of Francisco de Oraá into English. Her translations of de Oraá’s and other Cuban poets’ work have appeared in Puerto del Sol, the New Laurel Review, and Spoon River Poetry Review. Her translations of Guatemalan and Chilean poets’ work are forthcoming in Beltway Quarterly.
She is also a playwright. Her plays include Alternative Methods, which was produced in the 2010 New York International Fringe Festival, winning a Pick of the Fringe recommendation from New York Theater Review and a Best Director award (Josh Liveright directed). It was also produced at the Capital Fringe Festival and selected for readings at Urban Stages, Georgia College and State University, Catholic University, in collaboration with Theater J, and Busboys and Poets, in Hyattsville, Maryland, as part of the Beltway Drama Series. Cleared, a fifteen-minute play, was selected by Theater Alliance for presentation in the Kennedy Center’s 2013 Page-to-Stage Festival. Her play After the Blood, had a reading at La MaMa Experimental Theatre in New York in January 2015, and her play Digna will be professionally produced in Tucson in 2017, directed by Barclay Goldsmith. She was a recent member of Playwrights’ Arena, a new play initiative developed by the American Voices New Play Institute at Arena Stage. She has published articles in The Nation, Hispanic, Foreign Policy in Focus, Common Dreams, and Counterpunch and has blogged and reviewed plays for HowlRound.