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She Named Him Michael is a novel of old wounds and very old wounds, and making an existence in spite of wounds. In this, Rounds has uncovered all of the mystery behind Coleridge’s epic poem, The Ancient Mariner… Clearly, the old mariner Rounds has seen and lived and done things in her life beyond the rest of us. Her courage alone in shaping this story would awe any brave heart. Theologian Malcolm Guite observes of Coleridge’s famous bird, Michael is testament that “the root of human evil lies in acts of needless violence against other species.” And here is Rounds, yanking that weed from the earth.

-- Barrett Warner, Entropy Magazine

She Named Him Michael does not simply illustrate fictional accounts of grief and pain, but invites readers to reflect on their own experiences and emotions. It calls on us to look inwards, to challenge what we see, and to grow.

-- Katya Ellis, Atticus Review

This is the story of a real headless chicken, and his real owners. These events, though, are colored in by Rounds’ imagination. Folk stories are meant to be repeated, but it is up to the teller to make them interesting. With this blend of fact, imagination, and legend, Rounds gives the post poetry, post prose reader a true folk story that can be passed down from reader to reader, gibing each the chance to wonder—did this really happen?

--Kristen Russell, JMWW

World War II has ended and on a farm in the Great Valley of Colorado, the youngest son failed to return from Normandy, leaving the mother tucked in bed with grief and a ticking in her ear. In the fields, the velvetleaf weeds are encroaching on the sugar beets and the oldest son and the wife can barely keep up with the demand of the work. Life changes in a night, when the oldest son fails to cut the head clean off the dinner chicken. When the chicken survives the blow, the wife decides to name him Michael. Soon realizing the fortune that can come from a headless chicken, the oldest son and wife take off for life on the road with the travelling circus’ Tent of Nature’s Mistakes. The rest is history, a strange journey in a world where tigers have three legs and elephants have no ears and chickens have no heads.  

World War II has ended and on a farm in the Great Valley of Colorado, the youngest son failed to return from Normandy, leaving the mother tucked in bed with grief and a ticking in her ear. In the fields, the velvetleaf weeds are encroaching on the sugar beets and the oldest son and the wife can barely keep up with the demand of the work. Life changes in a night, when the oldest son fails to cut the head clean off the dinner chicken. When the chicken survives the blow, the wife decides to name him Michael. Soon realizing the fortune that can come from a headless chicken, the oldest son and wife take off for life on the road with the travelling circus’ Tent of Nature’s Mistakes. The rest is history, a strange journey in a world where tigers have three legs and elephants have no ears and chickens have no heads.