Baptism: On Sinking and Rising

In August of 2017, I compiled and self-published my first book of poetry, Baptism: On Sinking and Rising. It contains 59 poems that have all sprung straight from my heart over the years. I'm quite proud of this work and would love for you to purchase a copy, that the words might speak to your own heart. You can find it in paperback or Kindle format on Amazon, where it has a 5-star rating.  Also be sure to check out Baptism on Goodreads, as well as my interview with Shayla Raquel from September 2017.

Baptism Kindle Cover.jpg

Testimonials for Baptism: On Sinking and Rising

Lutes put her heart on the pages of this collection of poems. [...] Her vulnerability shows in each poem, offering a layered emotional experience. There is depth and honesty conveyed in beautiful terms and imagery.
— Mindy S.
Amy Lutes brings her raw words to life through elegance and grace. Whether of nature or grief, she speaks from the heart, drawing the reader in to her soul.
— Shayla Raquel

Articles for

School is a War Zone, and Our Children are Caught in the Crossfire

“I gathered her into my arms and tried my best not to cry. Because what has the world come to that five-year-olds who are full of all the excitement of going to school and learning new things and making new friends have to also learn how to hunker down underneath desks in a darkened room and hold their tongues so as to minimize their chances of getting shot?”

Cartographie: Mapping my soul’s wanderings

Cartographie was my blog for many years. It wasn’t always called Cartographie; I adopted that name for it in 2015, after importing my blog from Blogger to Squarespace. There was a lot of growth through that blog—a lot of writing growth and human growth and soul growth. So I couldn’t abandon it completely. But when I began my new blog, I knew I needed to start fresh because this was a new adventure. But if you’re interested in sifting through the old blog, you can find it here.

“Death at Sea,” published in Exhale Literary Magazine*

In 2013, I had a poem and photograph published in Exhale Literary Magazine, which was an online literary journal where bereaved parents could share their writings about their experiences with adoption, pregnancy and infant loss, and infertility.

*As of June 2016, Exhale Literary Magazine has merged with its parent publication, Still Standing Magazine. See their statement here. Because of this, and because they chose not to archive all the content from Exhale, my link no longer works and my poem is no longer available on their site. So I am sharing it here instead, in honor of my first non-self-published publication. (Incidentally, “Death at Sea” is included in my poetry collection, Baptism: On Sinking and Rising.)


miscarriage is like
a death at sea 
in the olden days,
when there was no choice but 
to throw the body 
and the 
mourning family would stand at the prow,
watching the body 
watching it 
away into the 
depths of an endless ocean,
knowing they would 
again pass by this way,
knowing there would 
be a neat little plot of land
with a headstone announcing to the world that
                    This Person Lived.

the heartache is similar,
the fear that, 
having no physical reminders,
they will be 


but any person who has 
been a part of someone else,
whether in body 
or in soul ,
can never be forgotten.
our very cells cry out the daily reminder, saying
                     This Person Lived.
our lives become their headstones,
our eyes tell their stories when our lips cannot,
and our hearts pulse with the
memory of their influence,
no matter how