FALL 2014

Meghan Adler is a learning specialist, poetry teacher and poet living in San Francisco. Her poem, “Pre-Elegy for John,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Maureen Aitken’s work has been published in over 10 literary journals, and has won numerous grants and awards. Her story, “In The Red Room,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Barbara Baglietto is a medical graduate from Mexico City, who is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Health Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. She is an advocate for global childhood immunization and is a Shot@Life champion. You can follow her on Twitter at @whyvaccines. Baglietto has also contributed to the newest edition of Exarmed, a study guide for the medical national boards in Mexico. Her piece, “Tale of the Crying Girl Who Never Cries,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Samantha Barrow is a poet, performer, writer and educator. She is the Director of Humanities in Medicine at the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education at The City College of New York and teaches in the Program of Narrative Medicine at Columbia University. She is the author of GRIT and tender membrane (Plan B Press), Jelly (a chapbook, Tiger / Monkey Alliance), and Chap (self published) and has been published in The Ledge Magazine, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Philadelphia City Paper, Off Our Backs, Lesbian Nation, Feminist Review, Edible Vineyard, Moonstone’s Poetry Ink Anthology and Helmet Hair.  Her poem, “Pink Slip” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Ligia Batista completed her Bachelors of arts and sciences with a concentration in neuroscience at Quest University Canada and is currently a Master's candidate at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Her piece, “Maps to Nowhere,” is in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Rachel Betesh, RN, BSN is a clinical nurse with experience in oncology, hospice, and women's reproductive healthcare. She also studied poetry at Brown University. Her poems have been published in The American Journal of Nursing and Apiary Magazine.  Her poem, “Admission Assessment,” is in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Osman Bhatty is a 4th year medical student at the American University of the Caribbean. He developed an interest in the humanities during his undergraduate tenure at Syracuse University. He is a blogger and primary care hopeful. His piece, “Clinical Flashback: A Patient’s Humanity” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Chris Cai is a student at the University of Virginia studying biomedical engineering and anthropology.  Cai’s piece, “A Year with ‘Susan’” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Lauren Catlett is an artist, writer, and editor of the book Shared Doings and Sayings, a collection of stories and artwork by persons with dementia. She is currently a graduate nursing student in the Clinical Nurse Leader program at the University of Virginia. Her poems,“Drawing Dying Hands” and “Thinner,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Lily Chan is a medical student. Her piece, “Believing in Chinese Medicine” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Jason Cheung is a local independent performance artist who advocates on mental health issues, specifically recovery through his dramatic re-telling of his personal story of lived experience. He is involved with the Manitoba Schizophrenia Society and the Mental Health Commission of Canada as a volunteer.  His piece, “The Instruments of Precision,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Claire Constance is a Global Public Health student at the University of Virginia who is interested in medical anthropology and storytelling. Her poem, “Hands,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois’s poems and fictions have appeared in over eight hundred literary magazines in the U.S. and abroad. He has been thrice nominated for the Pushcart Prize. His novel, Two-Headed Dog, is based on his work as a clinical psychologist in a state hospital. His story, “The Piercer,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Katherine Guess is a fourth-year medical student at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. Her piece, “I Need to Tell This Story,” appears in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Doug Hester is an academic anesthesiologist who lives in Nashville, TN. He is currently pursuing an MFA in poetry. His poems, “Infectious,” and “Procurement” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Maureen Hirthler is a physician and an MFA candidate at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Her work has appeared in several journals, most recently in the Yale Journal of Medical Humanities and the University of Oklahoma School of Medicine’s Blood and Thunder. Her piece, “D/D” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Sean P. Kerrigan, MD is a practicing psychiatrist and author who completed his adult residency training at Harvard School of Medicine and a Child and Adolescent Psychiatry fellowship at Stanford Hospital and Clinics. He is currently affiliated with the Elliot Hospital network and Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in New Hampshire where he resides with his family. His story, “Doe,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Sara Hobbs Kohrt is a medical research publications specialist living in Asheville, NC.  She spends her spare time with either a camera or a piece of charcoal in her hand, or exploring the world with her two favorite people. Her artwork, “Things She Cannot Show You” appears in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Ellen LaPointe is a Maine native and current Californian who works in the health care sector.  In addition to narrative nonfiction, she also writes short fiction and poetry.  Her piece, “Last Dance,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Eleanor Levine’s work has appeared in Fiction, The Evergreen Review, The Denver Quarterly, Midway Journal, The Toronto Quarterly, Pank, Dos Passos Review, Hobart, Connotations Press, Monkeybicycle, BlazeVOX, Milk Magazine, Prime Mincer, Happy, Artemis, Penumbra, The Coachella Review, Gertrude, Atticus Review, Artichoke Haircut, Thrice Fiction, Everyday Genius, Barrelhouse, Lunch Ticket Magazine, The NewerYork Press, Downtown Poets (anthology), New York Sex (anthology), The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Blade, Litro Magazine (UK), and Storm Cellar; she has work forthcoming in Barely South Review, Cigale Literary Review and The Literateur (UK). She received her MFA in Creative Writing from Hollins University in Roanoke, VA. Her piece, “John Forbes Nash, Jr.” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Jessica Little is a student who will begin her second year at the University of Virginia School of Medicine in the fall. Little took one year off before medical school and spent three months working in a hospital in Argentina, an experience that was the inspiration for her piece, “Medical Metamorphosis,” which appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Julia McGuinness graduated from Williams College, where she majored in Biology but developed a love for the humanities. She is currently a medical student at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, and plans on a career in medical oncology. Aside from medicine, her passions are classical music, reading, baking, and spending time with her friends and family. Her piece, “An Unexpected Healer,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Sean J Mahoney lives with his wife, her parents, two Uglydolls, and three dogs in Santa Ana, California. He works in geophysics. Sean was out-boozed by Franciscan monks in Ireland and swam with Whale Sharks in Mexico.  He believes that punk rock somehow miraculously survives, that Judas was a way better singer than Jesus, and that diatomaceous earth is a not well known enough gardening marvel. His work can be found in MiPoesias, Muddy River Review, Occupoetry, Poetry Quarterly, Wordgathering, and Pentimento, among others. Sean was diagnosed with Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis in April of 2012. His poem, “Dude, The Stage?” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Talia Malekan is a high school artist at North Shore Hebrew Academy in New York. Her passion for creation and interest in the humanitarian aspect of practicing medicine inspired her work. Her artwork, “Boundlessness” and “Feeling Innervation appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Vaidehi Mujumdar is an aspiring physician interested in the social determinants of health and narrative medicine. She graduated from Dartmouth College with a double major in biology and anthropology modified with ethics. She is Indian-born American, an amateur ethnographer, and strongly believes health and social justice are intrinsically part of the same story. Vaidehi is a certified rape crisis advocate and currently a fellow at HealthCare Chaplaincy Network, an NYC non-profit that integrates spirituality into healthcare. Her writing has been published on Feministe, Brown Girl Magazine, and The Almost Doctor's Channel. Her piece, “The Operation,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

M. Sophia Newman, MPH, is a writer and public health professional. She completed a Master’s in Public Health at the University of Illinois in 2011, as well as health research under a Fulbright fellowship to Bangladesh in 2012-2013. Her piece, “Death of an Old Farmer,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Christine Nichols is a new poet from Stillwater, OK.  Her poem, “Washing with Alzheimer’s” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Ansel Oommen is a freelance writer, gardener, and medical transcriptionist residing in New York City. Discover more at:  His artwork, “Metamorphosis” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Mohamed Osman is an American Board Certified Family Physician and accomplished visual artist.  He is a former United Nations Physician in Africa. To see more of his Art & Medicine, go to His artwork, “Multiple Personality Disorder” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

David Pineles is a third year medical student at the New York University School of Medicine.  He is originally from New Jersey and has a passion for medicine.  He is an avid sports fan, especially of the New York Rangers. He will be applying into internal medicine residency next year.  His piece, “Strength and Courage” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Lea Povozhaev is a doctoral graduate of Kent State University (summer 2014) in Rhetoric and Composition. She will teach writing at Lake Erie College as a part-time instructor in the fall. Her paper, “The Rhetoric of Addiction,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Julie Rea is a graduate of the City College M.F.A. Creative Writing Program and the N.Y.U. School of Law. Her work has been published by Atonal Apples, The Promethean, and Thoughtsmith and has been read by Abington Theatre. She lives in the Philadelphia area with a couple of cats and writes about life in a wheelchair and many other intriguing things. Her piece, “Numb” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Pooja Reddy is a fourth year medical student at Emory University. She Graduated from the University of Virginia in 2011 with a degree in Economics and plans to pursue a residency in Pediatrics. Her piece, “A Selfless Goodbye,” appears in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Holly Schechter teaches English Literature and Writing at Stuyvesant High School in New York City.  She also serves on the Mount Sinai Medical Advisory Board and works actively to fundraise for Mount Sinai Orthopaedic Spine Research. Her piece, “Genealogy” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Brian Sou is a student at the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education. He strives to become a compassionate primary care physician working with underserved communities both clinically and through health policy changes. His piece, “A Student’s Moment in NYC’s Most Famous Hospital,” appears in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Gerard Spiniello has been a practicing Physician Assistant at a Boston Harvard teaching hospital for the past 30 years.  He coauthored The Patients Little Instruction Book (Quality Medical Publishing, 1997).  His piece, “The Goses,” appears in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Kate Steger works in global health and development. She also lends camera, communications and cooking support to her brother's documentary film productions the most recent of which, Stage Four: A Love Story, chronicles the blossoming of their parents' relationship while their mother was dying of breast cancer. The trailer can be seen at Her poem, “The Four Stages of Grief,” appeared in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Veronica Tomasic, PhD, JD, practices community law in the New Haven, CT area. She is a scholar of literature, painting, and psychoanalytic theory. Tomasic is a member of Yale University's Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics and has published on end-of-life issues in the law and as they are represented in literature and painting. Her piece, “In the Far Canada of a Hospital Room,” appears in the Fall 2014 Intima.

Wesley Usher is a licensed mental health counselor and multi-disciplinary artist. Her piece, “Eros Dancing,” and artwork “A Bridge Across the River Thames” appear in the Fall 2014 Intima.


Hena Ahmed is a second year M.D. candidate at Harvard Medical School with interests in neuroscience, global health, and visual arts. Her artwork, "Neurodiscovery in the Deep Blue" and "A Priceless Gift" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Anna Rita Amboziak graduated from the Warsaw International Studies in Psychology (WISP), Faculty of Psychology, University of Warsaw, Poland. Her Field Notes article "One Thousand and One Diagnoses" appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

John C. Berens, M.D., is a graduate of the Baylor College of Medicine. He is doing his residency in
combined Internal Medicine-Pediatrics at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. His work, "Healing Hands" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

David Brame is a Professor of Visual Communication at Ryerson University in Toronto Ontario. His artwork, "Locutus," appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Judith Cohen is a writer and college professor, seven years past her own breast cancer diagnosis. She teaches in an adult education program where adult life experiences are central. Publications include “Late for School: Stories of Transformation in an Adult Education Program,” Journal of Transformative Education, “Python,” I Thought My Father Was God, National Story Project, Paul Auster, Ed. Henry Holt, New York, 2001, as well as a novel Seasons (The Permanent Press of Sag Harbor, New York, l984). Cohen's short fiction has appeared in The North American Review, New Letters, High Plains Literary Review,  and Sojourner; reviews and articles have appeared in The Christian Science Monitor, The Dallas-Times Herald, The Boston Herald, The Boston Review, and The Women's Review of Books. Her work "Resisting Breast Cancer: Two Stories," which she did with artist Sarah Sutro, appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Rachel Conrad studied Health and Society at the University of Pennsylvania. She is a third year medical student at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. She spends her time outside the hospital doing yoga and eating sushi. Her piece "Heart Failure" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Tim Cunningham is an emergency nurse, clown and doctoral candidate at the Mailman School of Public Health in the Department of Population and Family Health. He has worked in emergency settings internationally and in Virginia, Washington DC and New York. Cunningham also is director of the humanitarian relief group, Clowns Without Borders USA. He is interested in the power of narrative to bridge health, laughter and holistic healing practices. His essay, "A Good Night Out," was shortlisted  in the 2013 Intima Essay contest and appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Lara Devgan, MD, MPH is a plastic & reconstructive surgeon at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan. Her piece, "What Does a Doctor Look Like?" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.
Benjamin Drum is a student in University of Washington's MD/PhD program. With dual undergraduate degrees in Neurobiology and Creative Writing,  Drum has long been interested in the artistic and creative side of science and uses his writing to explore the human face of medicine. His poem "Bypass," which won the 2013 Intima Essay Contest, appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Josephine Ensign teaches health policy and narrative medicine at the University of Washington in Seattle.  Her fiction piece, "Steps to Footcare," appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Joseph Eveld has a B.A. in English from Northeastern University, and a M.F.A. in Creative Writing, Fiction from Boston University. His work has been featured in Northeastern's Spectrum Literary Arts Magazine, and he was a finalist in Glimmer Train Magazine's Short Story Award for New Writers. He is also a bone cancer survivor, thirteen years post-treatment for osteosarcoma. His poem "Cisplatin at 11:15"  appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Erica Fletcher graduated from the University of Houston with a B.S. in Anthropology and Sociology and a B.S. in Psychology. She is now a third year Ph.D student in Medical Humanities with a concentration in social medicine and narratives of illness at the University of Texas Medical Branch. Her Field Notes article "Viola Strings and Other Troubles: Mentoring a Medical Student's Artistic Endeavors" appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Chris Frank is an associate professor in the Department of Medicine, Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario. He is a family physician with additional training in care of the elderly and works in geriatric rehabilitation and palliative care at St. Mary's of the Lake Hospital. His article "Tell Me a Story: Using Narrative History with Older Patients" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.  

Frankie and the Desmosomes is a rock band composed of Andrew Tritter, CJ De Ochoa, Brian Gilcrease, and John Berens, all of whom are medical students in the Baylor College of Medicine Class of 2014. Their song, "Living Gift" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Karen George, author of Into the Heartland (Finishing Line Press, 2011) and Inner Passage (Red Bird Chapbooks, 2014), has work published in Memoir, Tupelo Press 30/30 Website, Louisville Review, Wind, Border Crossing, Permafrost, and Still. She has been awarded grants from The Kentucky Foundation for Women and The Kentucky Arts Council. She holds an MFA in Writing from Spalding University, and reviews poetry at Poetry Matters: Her poem "Ode to Color" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Konstantina Georganta studied English Literature at the Universities of Athens and Glasgow. She is the author of Conversing Identities: Encounters Between British, Irish and Greek Poetry, 1922—1952 (Rodopi publishers, 2012). She has published articles on T. S. Eliot, William Plomer, Lefteris Poulios, Elias Lagios, Gazmend Kapllani, home and displacement, migrant narratives, contemporary poetry, Greek Modernism and beat poetics. She lives and works in Athens and contributes pieces to Levga magazine. Her poem, "Breast Unit," appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima..

Lisa Gruenberg is a physician and writer living in Boston.  She began writing in 2004, when her elderly father began to have nightmares and flashbacks about the past.  She earned by MFA in creative writing from Lesley University in 2007.  Her short story, "Keiskamma", won a Massachusetts Cultural Council Fellowship in 2012. Her non-fiction piece, "Yom Kippur," appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Tony Guerra graduated with his Doctor of Pharmacy from the University of Maryland in Baltimore, Maryland and his Bachelor of Arts in English from Iowa State University and has been a practicing pharmacist for 15 years. His writing has been featured in student literary magazines, and he has read his poetry in Spanish and English at the Des Moines WOW! Wonder of Words Latino Writers Forum. He has self-published Prepharmacy: Getting into Pharmacy School without Drowning in Debt and Drug Names Decoded: How to Study Pharmacology. He lives in Ankeny, Iowa, with his wife Mindy and triplet daughters Brielle, Rianne, and Teagan. He teaches at Des Moines Area Community College as a chair and instructor of the pharmacy technician program and also teaches health science anatomy, organic chemistry, and biochemistry. His essay "There Will Be No Problems" appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Richard B. Hovey, PhD is Associate Professor of the Division of Oral Health and Society, Faculty of Dentistry, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. His essay "'Where the word break off, no thing may be' Testimony, Research and Hermeneutics" appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Sarah Joyce is writer with a background in Fine Arts (Visual Arts, Art History and Curating) who has read work at writers' festivals in Canada.  Her poem "Fanny (Your Monster)" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

H. Lee Kagan is an internist who practices and teaches in Los Angeles. He is an Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine at the Keck-USC School of Medicine. He is a contributing writer for Discover Magazine. His work has also appeared in the New York Times Magazine. "Ready or Not" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Lauren Kascak  is a graduate of Columbia University’s Master’s Program in Narrative Medicine. She is
currently pursuing a career in medicine while developing and aligning her intellectual interests in narrative,
global health, bioethics, and integrative medicine. Her non-fiction piece, "Wanna Play Doctor?" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Emily Lackey is an MFA student at the University of New Hampshire. She is currently working on a collection of short stories set in Okinawa, Japan. Her piece "Caretaking" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.
Priscilla Mainardi, a registered nurse, attended the University of Pennsylvania and Rutgers University, where she received an MFA in creative writing.  Her work appears in Crack the Spine, The Writing Disorder,, and the Narrative Medicine journals Pulse and Blood and Thunder, among others.  Mainardi joined the Intima editorial board in 2015. Her short story, "Pretending Not to Know," appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Peter Palmieri is a board-certified pediatrician who, after practicing in a variety of settings for over 18 years, is currently enrolled in an Academic General Pediatrics fellowship at the University of Texas, Southwestern in Dallas.  He is the author of Suffer the Children: Flaws, Foibles, Fallacies and the Grave Shortcomings of Pediatric Care, and a medical suspense novel titled, The Art of Forgetting.  His fiction piece, "Absolution," appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Trisha Paul is a senior at the University of Michigan who will be attending medical school in the fall. She blogs about her experiences in the fields of literature and medicine at Her work "I Will Wear My Heart Upon My Sleeve" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Barbara Pilvin is a reference librarian at the Free Library of Philadelphia, where she works in the Social Science and History Department helping students and others doing research in history and genealogy. She also teaches computer classes and is active in various library and information organizations as well as health-related support, advocacy, and information organizations. Her essay, "The Best There Is (?)," which was shortlisted for the 2013 Intima Essay contest, appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Angelica Recierdo is a nursing student at Northeastern University with a flair for writing. She straddles two worlds, one of sterile precision and one of creative construction. She toys with practicing phlebotomy or mapping sentences in her spare time. Her non-fiction article, "Coming Out of the Medical Closet" appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Susan Sample is a program associate in the Division of Medical Ethics and Humanities at the University of Utah School of Medicine where she teaches reflective writing.  She is also a doctoral candidate in communication and researches physicians' narratives about caring for patients at the end of life. Her poetry chapbook, Terrible Grace, was published by Finishing Line Press. Her poem, "Indigo," appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

 Khanjan Shah is a third-year internal medicine resident at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio. She will serve as chief medical resident for the upcoming academic year. Her non-fiction piece, "Medicine Versus Surgery," appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Colin Siu is a first year medical student at the University of Alberta in Canada. Writing is an outlet for him to explore the humanism of medicine and to ask the age-old question of what makes a good doctor. His essay, "Snapshot" was shortlisted for the 2013 Intima Essay contest and appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Emily Sorg's work has appeared in The Journal for Medical Humanities, Issues Magazine, The Brown Literary Review, The Catalyst, Clerestory, and Literal Latte. Currently a third year medical student at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, she is a recipient of the William Carlos Williams Poetry Award, Kim Ann Arstark Memorial Award for Poetry, and was named a 2009-2010 Royce Fellow at Brown University. Prior to medical school, she spent time working for 826 National, a nonprofit literacy organization that supports a network of writing and tutoring centers across the country, and facilitating creative writing workshops for inmates at a state prison. She received her B.A. in nonfiction writing from Brown University in 2010. Her poem, "Post-Call," appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Jennifer Stella is a doctor and a writer, or a writer and a doctor. During medical school in San Francisco, she pursued an MFA in poetry at Brooklyn College. Her poetry and prose have appeared in The Drunken Boat, Switched-on Gutenberg, The Brooklyn Review, The Examined Life Journal, and others. She also blogs for Primary Care Progress and KevinMD. Jennifer is currently a resident physician in primary care/social medicine at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, NY. Her pieces, "On Love and Medicine," "Open Heart, Open Book," and "Letter to a 93-year-old cadaver who died," appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Steve Street, a well-known supporter of adjunct faculty rights and a leader of several organizations working on behalf of adjuncts, died in 2014 from cancer. He was 56. Street taught writing and literature as an adjunct at several colleges since 1980. Street was part of the New Faculty Majority, the Coalition of Contingent Academic Labor, and the United University Professions, the faculty union at the State University of New York. Street also wrote about the precarious situation for adjuncts in several publications, including Inside Higher Ed. His non-fiction article, "Hey Hey Hey Hey" appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Sarah Sutro is an artist and writer whose work has been shown and collected in the United States and internationally, including the library at Museum of Modern Art in NYC, the Johnson Museum at Cornell, the Harvard University Museums, the Boston Public Library Collection of Prints and Drawings, the Boston Athenaeum, Boston Globe, School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Sackner Archive of Concrete and Visual Poetry. Awards include a Pollock Krasner Grant, Finalist for the Robert Frost Poetry Award, and residency at the American Academy in Rome. Her art work can be seen at and in her book, Colors, Passages through Art, Asia and Nature about the use and discovery of natural inks. Her writing has appeared in Bangkok Blondes, The International Journal-Humanities & Social Sciences, Bangkok Big Chili, Art NE, Design Spirit, Coping Magazine and American Arts Quarterly. "Resisting Breast Cancer-Two Stories," which she did with Judith Cohen, appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Rachel Tanner is a college student and a patient advocate from Huntsville, Alabama. Her non-fiction piece, "Sick, Lonely, Brave," appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Natalie Uy is currently a second year medical student at Baylor College of Medicine. She graduated from Stanford University with a B.S. in Biology and a B.A. in Art Practice. In addition to medicine, art has also been a lifelong passion. Her main mediums are painting, printmaking, and photography. Her work "Systole Diastole" appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Indu Voruganti is a recent graduate of the Master of Science Program in Narrative Medicine at Columbia University. She is also an alumna of Brown University where she studied Biology. Indu hopes to combine her interests in science and narrative medicine in her future career. She will begin medical school this fall. Her non-fiction article,  "The Memory Tree," appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Keenan Whitesides graduated from Duke University in 2015 and is in a neurological residency program at Emory University. Her Field Notes piece, "The Choice," appeared in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Susan Wigoda is an attorney in the Office of the Cook County Public Guardian in the Child Protection Division in Chicago, Illinois.  Ms. Wigoda has been a student of creative non-fiction at the Story Studio in Chicago, Illinois for four years. Her piece, "Wednesdays and Sundays," appears in the Spring 2014 Intima.

Jane Zhao is a student in the Narrative Medicine program at Columbia University. Her piece, "Fortitude and Patience," appears the Spring 2014 Intima.


FALL 2013

Marilyn Arenas is a practicing nurse at New York Presbyterian Hospital and a graduate student in the Narrative Medicine Program at Columbia University. Her poem "Limbless" appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Timothy Brennan is a Fellow in Addiction Medicine at St. Luke's and Roosevelt Hospitals (Columbia), a Fellow in Medical Ethics at Harvard Medical School, and a Clinical Instructor in Pediatrics at Weil Cornell.  His non-fiction work "To Shred, or Not" appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Candice Carnes is a writer and caregiver, who earned her BFA in creative writing from Goddard College. She is the recipient of the 2009 Leo Love Merit Scholarship (fiction), and the 2011 Spirit of Goddard Scholarship (essay). Her work has appeared inAdobe Walls, Raphael's Village, Apeiron Review, Fiction on the Web, Mused, R.kv.r.y, and Pulse: Voices from the Heart of Medicine. "Pandora's Box," which appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima, is an excerpt from her memoir, An Incomplete Case Study of the Petrified Woman, about her own traumatic, nearly fatal illness. Read more of her work at

Rosie Garland, who was born in London, England to a runaway teenager,has always been a cuckoo in the nest. She has five solo collections of poetry, and sings in cult gothic band, The March Violets. Her first novel, The Palace of Curiosities, was published in 2013 by HarperCollins. Her poem,"The Ghost of You," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Thomas Gibbs is an obstetrician-gynecologist practicing in Orlando, Florida. His Gettysburg Review essay, "Moved On," was listed as a notable essay in the 2012 Best American Essays.  "Magic Hands" appeared in the anthology, Becoming a Doctor, edited by Lee Gutkind of Creative Nonfiction.  His essays have appeared in Kenyon Review online, The Florida Review, Brevity and Zone 3, Blood and Thunder; Musings on the Art of Medicine.  Other publications include creative non-fiction and poetry in The Dos Pasos Review, The Healing Muse, Stone Canoe, Hospital Drive, Etude, and The Yale Journal for Humanities in Medicine. His non-fiction work, "The Paint Blistered Doll," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.     

Philip Glennie is a Ph.D. in English whose research focuses on concepts of palliation and painkillers in early twentieth-century literature. His writing is heavily inspired by his mother, who has worked in a palliative nursing role for over 25 years. His story, "Gloved," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima

Ann Etta Green is a professor of English at Saint Joseph's University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where she teaches courses in literature and medicine, service learning, race, class and gender, and writing. Her work of non-fiction, "The ICU and You," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Khalil Harbie is a medical student. His artwork, "The Art of Anatomy," which originally appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima, is an anatomy reflection: a drawing of dissecting the human body in his first year of training.

Laura Hinton is a poet, writer and Professor of English at the City College of New York.  She is the author of a poetry book, Sisyphus My Love (To Record a Dream in a Bathtub), (BlazeVox Books), and a critical book, The Perverse Gaze of Sympathy: Sadomasochistic Sentiments from Clarissa to Rescue 911 (SUNY Press).  She is the co-editor of the essay collection (with Cynthia Hogue), We Who Love to Be Astonished: Experimental Women's Writing and Performance Poetics (University of Alabama Press) and a special issue on poet's theater in Postmodern Culture (with co-editor Heidi Bean).  Her work has appeared in numerous books and journals including Contemporary Literature, Postmodern Culture, and The Journal of the Academy of American Poets, as well as Feminist Studies, Bird Dog, and Poetic Voices without Borders. She lives in New York City. Her work of non-fiction,"Caretaker," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Jen Karetnick is the author of three poetry collections. A poet, writer and educator, she lives with her husband, a neurologist, in Miami Shores. She works as the Creative Writing Director at Miami Arts Charter School and is a freelance food-travel critic and writer. Her poems, "Aphasia" and "Dances with Pills," appear in the Fall 2013 Intima. 

Leatha Kendrick, who is the author of three volumes of poetry, leads workshops in poetry and life writing at the Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning, a community literary center in Lexington, Kentucky. Her fiction, poetry and essays appear widely in journals and anthologies, including The Southern Poetry Anthology, Volume III: Contemporary Appalachia; What Comes Down to Us Twenty-Five Contemporary Kentucky Poets; Listen Here: Women Writing in Appalachia, and I to I: Life Writing by Kentucky Feminists.  Two of her books of poetry, Science in Your Own Back Yard and Second Opinion, are indexed in NYU's Literature, Arts, and Medicine database. Her poem, "In the Botanical Garden at Golden Gate Park," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Carrie Katz is San Francisco-based interdisciplinary artist and writer whose work renegotiates personal authenticity within social structures. Katz holds an M.A. in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University and an MFA in New Genres from the San Francisco Art Institute. Sesh Mudumbai (MD,MS) has had a long-standing interest in exploring the intersections between art and medicine. In the past, he was a member of performance collective in New York City. As a practicing anesthesiologist at the VA Palo Alto HCS/Stanford University, Mudumbai deals with issues related to sedation and general anesthesia. Their multimedia piece, "The In-between: Binding/Unbinding," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima
Catherine Klatzker is a writer whose work has appeared in Emry’s Journal, Tiferet Journal, Lime Hawk Journal, and in mental health anthologies from In Fact Books and Lime Hawk Literary Arts Collective. She was a Ragdale Foundation writing resident and won Tiferet Journal’s 2014 first prize in nonfiction. Klatzker is a recently retired Pediatric Intensive Care RN from Children's Hospital Los Angeles. Her work of non-fiction, "Range of Vision," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima; her piece, “What We See When We See Each Other” is in the Spring 2015 Intima. Read more of her work at

Ellen Kolton, MPH, is a former journalist and a patient advocate at the Boston Medical Center and a member of its Ethics Committee, for which she coordinates and reports on its consults. Her non-fiction, "Ethics Consult—To Tell or Not to Tell," and "What Does A Patient Advocate Do?" appear in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Karen Loeb often writes about China and adoption, and some of that work can be found in the anthology Shifting Balance Sheets (Wising Up Press). She has taught creative writing for many years at the U. of Wisconsin Eau Claire. Her poem, "The Chairs," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Dan Luftig is a medical student at the University of Virginia planning to pursue a residency in Emergency Medicine.  His non-clinical interests include Medical Education Development and Narrative Medicine. His field notes entitled, "Paradoxical Wishes,"appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Rebecca A. McAteer is an M.D. and Arts in Medicine fellow at the Georgetown University School of Medicine. Her non-fiction, "Resisting the Vortex: Thoughts on Narrative Medicine and Dying Well," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Casey Means is a medical student at Stanford and an active member of the medical humanities community, having been a Humanities section editor of the student-run medical humanities journal, a teaching assistant for the medical school's Creative Writing course, and a co-organizer of Stanford's 2011 medical humanities symposium, Medicine & the Muse. Her work of non-fiction, "My First Patient," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Woods Nash is a lecturer in philosophy at the University of Tennessee, where he teaches bioethics and other courses in applied ethics. His research is in the medical humanities, and he has published articles on Walker Percy and Cormac McCarthy. His poems have appeared in Journal of Medical Humanities, Louisville Review, Heartland Review, Journal of Progressive Human Services, and others. His poems, "Beneath a Sycamore: Autism Revisited" and "Close to the Flowers: Notes from a Tanzanian Orphanage," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Mohamed Osman is a physician and visual artist. He is a certified family physician, the owner of Primary Care of St. Pauls in St. Pauls, North Carolina, and affiliated with South Eastern Hospital in Lumberton, North Carolina. His artwork "Migraine Headache" originally appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Sadaf Qureshi is a medical student at Georgetown University.  His non-fiction work,"Incompatible With Life," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Annie Robinson received a Master of Science in Narrative Medicine at Columbia University in 2014
and did her undergraduate work at NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. Robinson is the
Assistant Director of the Center for Narrative Practice, and a Recovery Coach with Eating Disorder
Recovery Specialists. As a coordinator and full-spectrum doula for The Doula Project in NYC, she
provides compassionate care for women during experiences of abortion, miscarriage, and fetal loss. She
curates two oral narratives projects, On the Road to Recovered: Voices from the Eating Disorder
Recovery Community and Inside Stories: Medical Student Experiences. She teaches narrative medicine
to OB-GYN residents at Bellevue Hospital and is co-founder of NYC-based wellness community Pause,
Breathe, and Connect. Her field notes, "Witness," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Alma Robles is working on a memoir regarding her experiences with Hodgkins Lymphoma and its aftermath. Her non-fiction, "Gifts in a 24-Hour Period" appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Kelley Shinn is a graduate of the Hollins University Creative Writing program, and has taught courses on creative writing and narratives in medicine at various universities in Virginia.  In 2006, she was the winner of the Melanie Hook-Rice Novel-in-Progress Award.  Excerpts from her upcoming memoir, Devilstrip, a reflection on her experience of losing her legs at the age of sixteen and decades later communing with landmine survivors in Bosnia-Herzegovina, were nominated for a Best American Essay and multiple Pushcart Prizes.  Shinn currently teaches at the University of Akron.  Her work of non-fiction, "A Crippled Cassandra," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.  

Amir Adam Tarsha is a medical student at the University of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine, who hopes to specialize in psychiatry. He received his B.S. in psychology and liberal arts from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and his M.S. in clinical bioethics from Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Tarsha's poetry and prose have been featured in two journals in Madison, WI. His poem "DNR" appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Rebecca Tsevat has an M.S. in Narrative Medicine from Columbia University and is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis, where she majored in Biology and English literature. She is attending Columbia University Medical School and hopes to situate her work at the intersections of literature, medicine, science, and public health. Her academic paper, "Looking for Representation: Illness, Race, and the Complications of Justice in Philadelphia" appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Tom Whayne is a retired drama teacher who has been writing all of his adult life. He returned to the craft of writing poetry after his long time partner fell and suffered a traumatic brain injury when she was 86 years Whayne's first published poem appeared in Still Point Arts Quarterly.  His poems, "Rehab" and "I Kiss You" appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.

Kristin Camitta Zimet is Editor of The Sow's Ear Poetry Review and author of a full length poetry collection, Take in My Arms the Dark. Her poems, "Intensive Care" and "The Caregiver," appeared in the Fall 2013 Intima.


Rachael Allen is an artist and researcher in Newcastle upon Tyne (UK). She exhibits artwork nationwide and internationally, achieves artwork commissions, and is artist-in-residence at Newcastle, Northumbria and Durham University anatomy labs; orchestrating various projects exploring the role of visual art in medical pedagogy, whilst also situating her practice within the Medical Humanities nationwide. "Picturing Diagnosis" and "Narratives of Medical Miniatures," two Field Notes essays, which appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima, trace the development of her work.

Elsa Asher, M.S., Narrative Medicine, Columbia University, is a writer, educator, and doula. She works at the intersection of birth, medicine, ritual, and narrative. Her poem, "Maroon" appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima. 

Tina Benigno and Allan Peterkin are joint authors of “Revisiting Written Submissions as Part of the Medical School Application: Paying Attention to Narrative Competence Admission Policies,” a paper examining written narratives in medical school admission decisions. Ms. Benigno, at the time of writing, was taking premedical, non-degree courses and participating in an independent placement with Dr. Peterkin at the University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. She has since applied to medical school. Dr. Peterkin is Associate Professor, Psychiatry and Family Medicine, and heads the Program in Health, Arts, and Humanities, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Lauren Boehm is a medical scribe in an emergency department in Ithaca, NY. Her piece, "Cura Personalis: Notes from a Medical Scribe" appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima.

Donna Bulseco, M.S., Narrative Medicine, Columbia University, has worked at Women’s Wear Daily, W and Self, and InStyle. She has written on health for the New York Times and Next Avenue. Bulseco is currently Managing Editor of Intima. "Witnessing Myself" appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima

Albert Howard Carter, III, Ph.D., is adjunct professor of Social Medicine at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a part-time massage therapist at the N. C. Cancer Hospital. His latest book is Clowns and Jokers Can Heal Us: Comedy and Medicine. His short story "Burr's Sore," which appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima, explores the variety of framing narratives patients employ.

Richard Chisolm is an Emmy award-winning documentary filmmaker and cinematographer with thirty years of production experience. He recently directed and shot “Cafeteria Man,” a feature documentary on school food reform currently in national festival circulation. Based in Baltimore, he has shot films and television programs on a wide variety of subjects in the US and abroad. Deeply committed to the value of real stories and the adventures of real people His piece, "Communion," which appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima

Emmanuelle Descours, author of "Health Narratives in Healing," which appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima, is a student at Stephen F. Austin State University graduating in May 2013. She plans on attending graduate school for health communication next year and aims to become a pediatric patient advocate.

Renua Giwa-Amu is a Nigerian artist studying at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Her artwork "Elmer," appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima, is dedicated to her sister.

Kim Gledhill is a graphic designer, artist and mother who has written a book called Seeing in the Dark, which is about her experiences of having had premonitions throughout her life and overcoming the challenges of MS. Excerpts from the book, including "32 New Words" and "Swan Dive," as well as the painting "Dream of Lost Opportunity," appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima.

Julia Hyman is a student at Harvard University. "Over the Summer," appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima, is a narrative about working in registration in an Emergency Department.

Shreya Jalali, M.S., Narrative Medicine at Columbia University, is currently researching the intersection of literature and clinical practice, particularly the construction of meaning through narrative in cross-cultural medical contexts. She is the author of "Bypass" and "Meanings in Motion," which appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima.

Susan Kaplan is a Clinical Psychologist and mother of premature twins who resides in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is associated with the Stanford Medical Humanities program. Her work has been published in Cell2Soul, the Yale Journal for Humanities in Medicine, and Exceptional Parent. Her twins are a source of inspiration for her creative writing, including "Survivors."

Jesse Koskey is a 2nd year medical student at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. Her piece "Anonymous" was written for a medical school assignment to attend an open Alcoholics Anonymous meeting. 

Zohar Ledermann and Nicole Marcomimi are joint authors of "How Quickly Do We Forget." Zohar Lederman is a medical intern in a univerity affiliated hospital in Europe. Next year he will embark on a bioethics PhD program at the National University of Singapore. Nicole Marcomini is a third year medical student. 

Amrapali Maitra is a third-year MD/PhD student in Anthropology at Stanford University. She obtained her BA from Harvard University in History and Literature. She is passionate about using narrative engagement to understand and untangle complex forms of suffering like violence against women. "The Quietest Thing" is a non-fiction piece draws from fieldwork in Dhaka, Bangladesh from July-August of 2012. 

Lana Malekan is a Columbia University undergraduate and graduate student, having received her BA in Neuroscience and MS in Narrative Medicine. She will earn her MD from New York Medical College in May of 2018. Her short story "Blindfolded and Immutable" appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima.

Micaela Mascialino, M.S., Narrative Medicine, Columbia University, is the author of "Metastatic." She is a poet with an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College.

Kee MacFarlane is a social worker, a writer and a cancer patient intent upon becoming a cancer survivor at the Moores Cancer Center at UCSD in San Diego. Writing about the transformative effects of cancer, through poems like "Cut it Out" has been a very healing form of therapy.

Katarina Doan-Thu Nguyen is a student at the University of Virginia School of Medicine and former volunteer for the Pregnancy Centers of Central Virginia. As she grows into her role as a clinician, she hopes to treat all of her patients with the care and admiration they richly deserve. “Nails” is a story of growing respect and understanding—in essence how the patient redefines the academic knowledge and preconceptions in the course of her care. 

Chris Osmond PhD, author of "Dithering," is assistant professor of Leadership and Educational Studies at Reich College of Education, Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina. He teaches Social Foundations of Education to future teachers. His research focuses on the use of the humanities ("narrative pedagogy") with teachers, nurses, social workers, and other caring professionals to protect against burnout and help them thrive in their vocations.

Kendra Peterson, M.D. is a Neurologist at the Palo Alto, California VA. She is a member of the Pegasus Writers at Stanford, a group of physicians who write creatively. Her poem "Overwhelmed" appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima.

Gillian Pidcock, M.S., Narrative Medicine, Columbia University has a background in radiation oncology. "See No Evil" is a memoir-in-progress about a month the author spent embedded in a UK hospital where her elderly parents, separated for many years, were patients after being rushed to the ER within hours of each other. 

Jane Ratcliffe, author of "Shelter," holds an MFA from Columbia University. Her short stories have appeared in the New England Review and The Sun. Her novel, The Free Fall (Henry Holt), was selected by the New York Public Library as one of the most notable books of the year. A nonfiction piece of hers is included in Lost and Found: Stories from New York, edited by Thomas Beller. She has also written for numerous magazines and websites including Vogue, The Huffington Post, Vh-1, Interview, Guernica and Tricycle.

Blake Rosenthal, author of "Truth Disclosure in Medical Settings," is third year student at Harvard University majoring in the History of Science. She is an aspiring physician.

R. Tyler Spradley, Ph.D. in Organizational Communication from Texas A&M, is an assistant professor at Stephen F. Austin State University and the author of "Referral, No Referral." While his primary research agenda centers on the communicative constitution of organizing, materiality and discourse in organizational research, and high reliability organizations, he is personally motivated to write both therapeutic and theoretical works related to his personal illness narrative with chronic pain.
Nancy Stephan is the author of "The Truth About Butterflies: A Memoir," which earned the Atlanta resident a 2012 Georgia Author of the Year Award. In November 2012, she published her first collection of poetry entitled, "A Gary Girl's Guide to Good." She holds a master’s degree in creative writing from Kennesaw State University and is the Writing Center supervisor at Georgia Perimeter College in Atlanta. Her piece, "Of Birds and Mice", appears in the Intima. 

Anne-Laure Talbot is in her final year of MD/PhD training at the University of Virginia School of Medicine. Her goals are to become a pediatric hematologist/oncologist and use storytelling and journaling to help her patients understand their illnesses and play an active role in their healing. Her piece, "The Lady in Pink," is a first person account of her meeting with a severely demented nursing home during her Geriatric Medicine clerkship.

Elizabeth Titus is a writer living in Weston, CT and NYC. She holds two master's degrees from the University of Pennsylvania. She is the author of "The Note," a reflection piece on the meaning of a note left beside her dying husband's bed by a radiologist. 

VyVy Trinh is a medical student at the Warren Alpert Medical School at Brown University. She wrote "Zodiac" for a friend who has since passed from metastatic colorectal cancer, leaving behind "a wife whose courage is radiant."

Nikhil Wadhwani, M.S., Narrative Medicine, Columbia University, is an alumnus of Sarah Lawrence College and a former editor at Intima: A Journal of Narrative Medicine. Wadhwani, who lives in San Francisco, currently teaches with 826 Valencia, an education non-profit for elementary and high school students. His work “Ganpati’s Garden” appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima.

Meaghan Wang is a freshman at USC, majoring in cultural anthropology. Living in California and being exposed to a vast array of people and cultures, she has always had a passion for understanding the great diversity that exists in our world. Writing allows her to make sense of and further investigate her experiences and surroundings. She wrote "My Grandpa" after a summer trip to Taipei as an outlet for her conflicted feelings about her grandfather's rapid physical and mental deterioration and as a contemplation on "the inescapable future of life."

Zach Williamson is a medical student at the Florida State University College of Medicine. Outside of medicine his interests include biking, backpacking, and playing the drums. He is the author of "The Man from Sierra Leone," a case presentation turned to verse.

Emily Yuan, M.S., Narrative Medicine, Columbia University, wrote "Room 915," about a homeless man with an extended hospital stay, as a part of her coursework in Narrative Medicine. She is passionate about lending a voice to marginalized and disadvantaged populations.

Paula Zimlicki is a published poet and a writer who specializes in medical topics. She most often writes poetry from the point of view of her experiences as a patient. Her poems "In and Out" and "In the Womb" appeared in the Spring 2013 Intima.


FALL 2012

Tavis Apramian is a Founding Partner in the Narrative Medicine Initiative at the University of Western Ontario. His paper, “Tracking the Professionalization of Medical Students Using Blog Posts About Death” appeared in the Fall 2012 issue. “The analysis of medical blogs works to tease apart the emotional experiences of individual physicians and students from the politicized public posture that a physician is required to assume and thus can help identify ways that physicians process and present their experiences.”

 Janell Ball has spent the last two years working on a community health project at a homeless shelter for women and children in Atlanta, GA. The project is a garden for mental wellness initiative that includes nutrition, cooking, mental health activities and gardening techniques. She is affiliated with Emory University Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing and Community Advanced Practice Nurses. “Lamentations of Cancer” is a poem about the experience of the author's mother's brain cancer and the ongoing battle the family faced. 

 Elaine Benton was born with Gaucher, a rare inherited disease, for which there is no cure. At age 44, she was diagnosed with Parkinson’s, so now battles two diseases. In 2011 she wrote a collection of poems about living with Gaucher and Parkinson's. It was therapeutic in a cathartic sense, writing from personal experience with stark honesty and humor, giving a fresh perspective from the patient’s view. “Narrative medicine is an important tool for understanding a patient’s entire story, not medical facts alone, but realizing the link between physical and emotional issues,” she says. “Poetic Therapy” appears in the Fall 2012 issue.

Kristy Byrd works at Virginia Commonwealth University as an Assistant Professor. Her research interests include health communication and media studies. Her non-fiction piece, “Emergency Care and Loss” appeared in the Fall 2012 issue.

Albert Howard Carter, III, Ph.D., is adjunct professor of Social Medicine at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His latest book is Clowns and Jokers Can Heal Us: Comedy and Medicine from University of California Press. His website is The kernel of his fictional story, "The Lethal Joke" was given to the author by a nurse, from her actual experience as a beginning clinician. This expanded version illustrates the power of humorous stories to connect across differences in culture, age, and health status.  In “Make Me Whole,” the framing story describes a pivot in the early career of a woman surgeon. Within this, a story fragment of a dream becomes revised. 

Richard Cassidy is a medical student at the University of Florida College of Medicine. His Field Notes, “Too Close to Home” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

 Nina Collins, a former literary agent, is a graduate of the Narrative Medicine program at Columbia University. Her piece, "Graduations" appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

Lorri Danzig is a writer whose creative non-fiction essays have been published in Thin Threads anthologies. Her poems have been published in Caduceus, Moments of the Soul, and The Little Red Tree 2010 International Poetry Prize Anthology. Her interviews with Elders are found in The Nurse's Role in Promoting Optimal Health of Older Adults: Thriving in the Wisdom Years (F.A. Davis, 2012) She is a certified teacher of the Age-ing to Sage-ing® program for Elders and a Spiritual Care volunteer for The Connecticut Hospice. Within a two-year period Lorri Danzig found herself first a caregiver for her father and then a patient herself. Her two poems in the Fall 2012 issue, “The Gurney” and "Meningioma" reflect a hospital experience.

 Gregory P. Fagan works in Clinical Research and Development for Genzyme (a Sanofi company) in the Bio-statistics group within the rare disease division. His undergraduate work is in Sociology and Medical Anthropology and graduate studies in Statistics and Business. He has always had an interest in the role of story telling in medicine. “Dextrocardia” is a true story of a relative of the author's who has been living with a pacemaker since age 8.

 Joseph Featherall earned a degree in Mechanical Engineering from RIT. He is currently completing the post-baccaulauriate pre-medical program at Columbia University. His Field Notes, “A Spanish Lesson” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima

Tracey Ferdinand holds a master’s degree in Africana Women’s Studies from Clark Atlanta University and a bachelor’s degree in English from Ursinus College. She is proud to be a member of the National Women’s Studies Association. “ A Womanist Narrative Medicine: Utilizing Alice Walker’s Novel Meridian in the Training of Medical Professionals” explores the applicability of a womanist narrative medicine. The research builds upon the work of Rita Charon. It argues that the close reading of Meridian informs medical students of the epistemological privileges of the oppressed. The research poses the following questions. What are the parameters of a womanist narrative medicine? What is peculiar about the structure and content of Alice Walker’s novel Meridian and its importance in the training of medical professionals? It concludes by arguing that the rigorous study of Meridian can encourage culturally competent, compassionate, and attentive care.

Kim Gledhill is a graphic designer, artist and mother who has written a book called Seeing in the Dark, which is about her experiences of having had premonitions throughout my life and overcoming the challenges of MS. Two non-fiction pieces “Tangible Evidence” and “Stark Like Alex Katz” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

Erica Griffith graduated from MIT in 2010 with a B.S. in Brain and Cognitive Sciences and currently performs neuropsychology research at the Columbia University Medical Center. Her academic paper, “Psychedelics in Psychotherapy” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.  About it, she wrote: “LSD-mediated psychotherapy can provide a uniquely illuminating lens for examining the importance of narrative constructions in healing. The singularly intense nature of this kind of therapeutic endeavor forces both the patient and the physician to pay close attention to facets of experience that are easily sidelined in the increasingly empirical world of patient care. Contextual factors like the setting, the relationship between physician and patient, and the internal constructs that define the patient's reality and self, must all be carefully considered in order to pursue a safe and successful therapeutic session.”

Laurie Gunst was a student in the Narrative Medicine program at Columbia University from 2009-2011. She has a doctorate in history from Harvard University and has published two previous books of nonfiction: "Born Fi' Dead" (Henry Holt, 1995) about Jamaica and its gangs, and "Off-White: A Memoir" (Soho, 2005) Her non-fiction piece, “Miss July” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

 Sarah Gurley-Green is a patient advocate, writer and doctoral student in the interdisciplinary program at Lesley University. Her non-fiction piece “The Lilac House” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

Monique Hedmann is a public health professional and pre-medical student at Columbia University. She coordinates public health programs for urban-dwelling older adults and children, and aspires to become a geriatrician. Her non-fiction piece “Ms. Johnson” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

Lawrence Hergott is Professor of Medicine at the University of Colorado Denver. His essays and poems have been published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, Annals of Internal Medicine, the Canadian Medical Association Journal, and elsewhere. His photography can be found in the New England Journal of Medicine. “The Journey Through the Forest” is a non-fiction essay about courage in medical practice.

 Lainie Holman is a pediatric physiatrist in Ohio. Her non-fiction piece “On Call” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

Catherine Jenkins is a PhD Candidate in Communication and Culture at Ryerson-York Universities in Toronto, Canada, completing her dissertation on patient-practitioner communication. She has over a decade of experience working in medical education through the Standardized Patient Program at the University of Toronto. About her piece,“Aberrant Decoding: Dementia and the Collision of Television with Reality” which appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima, she noted: “Television’s ubiquitous nature makes it easy to forget that the conventions and decoding of any medium are learned. For dementia sufferers, a twin-phased aberrant decoding, at the levels of both television and memory, can lead to increased confusion, overlapping perceptions between media and reality, and even delusional events. Using an interdisciplinary approach, this essay offers brief explanations of television semiotics, as well as theories on the physiology and psychology of memory and dementia. The elderly television audience is examined through published studies and interviews, as well as personal narrative about the author’s mother.”

Laurel Jessup is a recent graduate of Columbia's Nurse Midwife Program. She is passionate about the work that she does and looking forward to a long career working with women across their lifespans. “Cartographer” is a poem describing a young mother exploring her newborn in the first hour after birth. 

Dr. Yo-El Ju specializes in sleep medicine. She sees patients at the Washington University Multidisciplinary Sleep Center. Dr. Ju received a B.A. from Harvard College, followed by an MD from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York in 2005. She completed a residency in Neurology at Barnes-Jewish Hospital, followed by clinical and research fellowships at Washington University in Sleep Medicine. She joined the faculty after training and is currently an assistant professor. “Bird in the Hand,” a work of fiction written with Elisabeth Sharp McKetta, appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

Jerold Lundgren is studying neuroscience and behavior at Columbia University. Additionally, he is completing the pre-medical curriculum and hopes to attend medical school following the completion of his undergraduate degree. His field notes, “A Spanish Lesson” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

 Sarah McCuskee is a senior at Harvard College, studying Literature with a secondary field in Global Health & Health Policy. She plans to attend medical school after graduation, but also to bring a passion for literature, which she sees as an engaged mode of listening to others, with into the clinic and particularly into the global health arena. Her academic paper, “Esther/Other: A View Through The Bell Jar of Sexuality, Power and Mental Illness” was originally written as the final paper for a Harvard course called "Literature and Medicine," taught by Prof. Karen Thornber, in the spring of 2011. The author wishes to thank Prof. Thornber and John Kim, the teaching fellow for the course, for their guidance and meticulous comments on the manuscript.

 Elisabeth Sharp McKetta has published her writing in Real Simple, Anderbo, bosque, Tattoo Highway, and many others. She has received awards for her prose on several occasions and served as a featured writer and storyteller at many events. Elisabeth received degrees in literature from Harvard, Georgetown, and the University of Texas. Her Ph.D dissertation explores how writers use myth and fairy tales to mill personal narratives into storytelling. She lives in Boise, ID, where she works as a freelance writer and educator. “Bird in the Hand” is a work of fiction written with Dr. Yo-El Ju that appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

 Jonathan Mayer is affiliated with Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and is a published playwright. “I Don’t Feel the Same Anymore” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

 Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu is consulting professor in the Stanford School of Medicine and faculty in the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity at Stanford and Fielding Graduate University. In his non-fiction piece, “Following You, Together in Cancer” the author's two friends, a couple, go through their terminal illnesses together.

Melissa Rodriguez graduated from Barnard College with a BA in Psychology in 2010, and since then has worked as a research assistant. Currently, she is pursuing an MA in Clinical Psychology at Teacher's College, Columbia University. Her non-fiction piece, “Loca” is about coping and growing up with a mother suffering from breast cancer and mental illness and its effect on the author's life and professional goals.

 Sara Rodriguez’s Field Notes, “What Happens Next” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

 Marjorie Sadin is a survivor of a mental illness, and a poet. She has published poetry nationally as well as four books in print. She lives and reads her work in the Washington DC area, where she tutors learning disabled students.  Her poem, “Diary of Psychiatric Meds Taken by Patient MS” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

 Lorenzo R. Sewanan is an MD/PhD student at Yale Medical School. He completed his degree in Physics and Engineering (with a minor in writing) at Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut. His favorite quote is from “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” by T.S. Eliot: "Do I dare disturb the universe? In a minute there is time for decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse." His poem, "The Physician Bears Witness" seeks to capture the dynamic role of the physician to the patient, as scientist, teacher, and fellow human being.

Dr. Adar Tamar is a practicing family physician, director of a Clalit Health Services clinic, Haifa and Western Galilee District; The Ruth and Bruce Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology. Her Field Notes, “Discovering a Patient: What’s In A Name” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

 Paul M Wangenheim MD, DMH is Program Director of Medical Humanities and Bioethics at Saint Barnabas Medical Center, Livingston, NJ. His piece, “Narrative Art and the Doctor-Patient Relationship: Francisco Goya and Robert Pope” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima. He notes: “Artists offer first person narratives in the form of self-portraits. Francisco Goya and Robert Pope are artists from widely disparate backgrounds. They both produced moving first-person illness narratives in self-portraits with their physicians. These paintings tell different stories of the relationship of a patient and their doctor in a way that only narrative art can achieve.”

Kenneth Weinberg is a doctor in Urgent Care in Brooklyn who also does house calls. He is on the board of Physicians for a National Health Program, advocating to get Single Payer, Universal Health Care instituted in the U.S. Dr. Weinberg continues to be involved in the Program in Narrative Medicine at Columbia University as well as doing photography in NYC and near his home in Old Chatham, NY. His non-fiction “Little Nowhere of the Mind” appeared in the Fall 2012 Intima.

Stephanie Yarnell attends the University of Florida, College of Medicine and is a national leader for the AMSA supported Humanistic Elective in Alternative Medicine, Activism, and Reflective Transformation (HEART). Her Field Notes “Things I Learned about Myself on My Surgery Clerkship” is a brief self-reflection on the author's experience as a third year medical student.


 Kristy Byrd is on the faculty of Virginia Commonwealth University and has a personal and academic interest in medical narrative and medical education. Her piece, “Sciatica Sucks” appeared in the Spring 2012 issue.

George Estreich is the author of Textbook Illustrations of the Human Body, a collection of poems and winner of Cloudbank Books' Gorsline Prize; and The Shape of the Eye, a memoir about raising a daughter with Down syndrome just published by SMU Press. He lives in Oregon with his family. His piece, “Board Games” appeared in the Spring 2012 issue.

Alessia Minicozzi is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, currently conducting research on various aspects of medicine. Her piece, “Concierge Medicine” appeared in the Spring 2012 issue.

Daniel Soeffing holds a B.A. from American University, a J.D. from the University of Maryland, and an M.B.E. from the University of Pennsylvania. His piece, "Unplanned Cesarean Sections and Their Effects on Lactation," appeared in the Spring 2012 issue.

Aimee Burke Valeras, Ph.D., LICSW works as a social worker with the Dartmouth Family Medicine Residency at a community health center for uninsured and underinsured people. She received her undergraduate and Masters of Social Work degrees from Boston College and her Doctorate in social work from Arizona State University. She lives in Concord, NH and enjoys hiking, drinking coffee, writing, and being with her family. “The Appearance of Choice” is a fiction piece about a woman’s reflection of the centrality of her breasts to her identity, sexuality, maternity, and femininity, as she weighs the consequences of her decision about breast cancer treatment.


FALL 2011

Jennifer Adaeze Anyaegbunam is the Founding Editor of Intima. She attended Harvard College where she studied Visual & Environmental Studies and Health Policy and  received a M.S. in Narrative Medicine at Columbia before starting medical school at the University of Virginia. She is exploring the intersection between medicine and media as a medical producer for the Dr. Oz Show and is returning to UVA to earn her MD in 2016.  As an aspiring physician-writer and journalist, she will use her training in Narrative Medicine to explore the synergy between the two fields.  Her poem, “When He Found Out” and academic paper, “Media Analysis: My Brother Has Autism” appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.

Nita (Bhavnit) Bhatia attended Harvard College where she studied Social/Medical Anthropology and wrote her senior honors thesis on the lived experience of Indian women with vitiligo. She is interested in the social impact of skin disease, as well as the overarching role cultural context plays in how patients and their social networks experience illness. Bhatia is currently completing her MD at Rush University in Chicago, IL. She will begin her internship in Internal Medicine in Oakland, CA in June 2015, followed by her Dermatology residency at Henry Ford. Her academic paper, Medicine and Cultural Competency: What Anthropology Can Teach Us appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.

Matthew Kevin Clair is an artist raised by a family of physicians. Learn more about him at His fiction, “In Their Hearts” appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.

Mario de la Cruz, who is one of the founding editors at Intima, holds an M.S. in Narrative Medicine from Columbia University. He completed his undergraduate studies in Sociology at Arizona State University and has developed multiple HIV/AIDS prevention programs and sexual health education programs for both healthcare institutions and non-profit organizations, with emphasis on at-risk youth groups. Mario is also a contributing author to the book, The Uncharted Path from Clinic-Based to Community-Based Research. His current work is in exploring visual, oral and performance based narratives. His Field Notes, “Approaching New Horizons” appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.

Dana Gage, M.D., M.S., Narrative Medicine, Columbia University, was one of the founding editors of Intima. Her story “Nightwatch” and Field Notes “My Year in Narrative Medicine” appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.

Susan Hannah is an Associate Director at Bristol-Myers Squibb. She participated in a Narrative Medicine workshop which explored the theme of  "hearing the voice of the patient in all that we do.” Her field notes, “Voices” appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.

Psychotherapist Lynn Lawrence, MS, MSW is a graduate of Columbia University’s Narrative Medicine Program. Currently she is co-editing the first book on Narrative Social Work written and edited by social workers, for Columbia University Press. Her poem, “Apachetas” appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.

Sneha Mantri is a graduate of the Narrative Medicine Master's program (2011) and a neurology resident at the University of Virginia. Her interests within Narrative Medicine include the imaginative education of the physician and the incorporation of narrative techniques into medical frameworks. She also writes short stories and is currently working on a series of tales set in Depression-era Appalachia. She was Managing Editor of the Intima from Spring 2012 through Spring 2013. Her non-fiction, “On Call” and academic paper, Bodily Prisons: A Look at Illness in Dickens’ Little Dorrit” appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.

Mary Murray is a training professional in the pharmaceutical industry and writes as much as possible with a young child at home! Her non-fiction, “Cigarette” appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.

Emma Rivera’s poem, “Mi Jardin My Garden” appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima. She continues to live on in the hearts and minds of those who knew her.

Jesus A. Rivera is a learning and development professional with over 20 years of training and project management experience. Rivera designs and implements learning programs used by investigative clinical staff worldwide. His goal is to apply the principles and goals of Narrative Medicine to clinical trials, enriching the relationship between clinicians and patients.  He enjoys expressing his creative side through the arts such as writing, painting, drawing, sculpture and photography. His artwork appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.

Chris Salib is a graduate of the Narrative Medicine program and is in pursuit of a career in medicine. His poems, “Emergency Room Curtains” and “Nursing the Same Wound” appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.

Caroline Randall Williams is a Harvard graduate with a degree in English. As writer, she is interested in the narrative exploration of the biological, emotional and spiritual elements of womanhood. Her poem, “Want/Change” appeared in the Fall 2011 Intima.