Signs of Life


Winner of an EVVY Merit Award, a CAL Award finalist, and 4 of 5 stars from the Writers Digest judges.

“Sometimes when we meet a person or read a poem, inexplicably the doors to our hearts fling open and we are more alive. The only thing better than reading these poems in a quiet space would be to have them read to us by Valerie. Lyrical, reverent, and giddy with paradox, this collection is fearless, an invitation to engage more wholly in the world.” – Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer, Author of “The Less I Hold” and “The Miracle Already Happening”

  • If you would like your book signed, please provide instructions in the “order notes” field during checkout.
  • If you prefer to pay by check, please contact Val directly.
  • Val also accepts payment through Venmo (@valerie-szarek and
  • This website is set up to handle shipping only within the United States, if you require shipping to another country please contact us.


What readers say about Signs of Life:

Valerie Szarek is an enchanted and enchanting poet – her poems materialize as a shamanic path through a fevered dream, magnificent star songs rising from her many eyes, her many lives. She is a woman who walks in beauty creating stone and feather word altars, marking the way toward the light.

Valerie Haugen

These unusual image pairings awaken the reader to color, place, sound and animal. Valerie allows herself to dip and swim into other than ordinary consciousness and takes the reader along with her. She also addresses the more earthly subjects of body and addiction with a compelling honesty. There is not a person out there who won’t find at least one telling, a telling of their own in this chapbook.

Debbi Brody

Experiencing Val’s poetry is both an act of discovery and remembrance. Her work is deceptively familiar and easy at times, but once you settle in and you think you know where the path will take you, she tickles you with unexpected humor, dazzles you with breathtaking imagery, or delivers a profound revelation that leaves you inspired and empowered. The texture and weight of her word choices stimulate and soothe.
When I read her work, I feel that I am both privy to her search for authenticity and communion with the sacred, and reintroduced to my own. A patient and articulate observer who shares her hard-won wisdom without guile or shame for the road she has traveled, Valerie Szarek is truly a poet who walks seamlessly between the worlds, and reminds us the path is available to us as well.

Trinity DemaskSinger-songwriter & Producer/co-host of Stage C

Val Szarek’s "Signs of Life" creates a compelling literary landscape where pain trickles down the ragged mountain to fill a rounded riverbed of hope. From deep within an internal wilderness, Val builds us enchanted castles as hard and real as mortared stone and heals us with the magic of connecting hearts.

M. D. FriedmanPoet & Founding editor of Liquid Light Press

Val’s work has a rich intensity that I love. She delves into the rawness of human nature, stretching beyond edges. Her interwoven, natural images are rugged and real while exquisitely beautiful. I experience her explorations as healing and brave.

Laureli Conley Shimayo