Gulf Coast Poet Books

Gulf Coast Poet, Cheryl Batavia, by Stephanie Snow Photography.

Books published by Authors Press. Available at Authors Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Books a Million, the Book Depository, Walmart, and many other online retailers.

Did You Know?

  • Flamingos get their hot pink color from eating shrimp.
  • Dolphins are very friendly and seem to enjoy hanging out with people.
  • Alligators are cold-blooded and lie in the sun to raise their body temperature.

Did You Know?

  • Flamingos are living in the wild in Florida after an absence of 100 years.
  • Burmese pythons are now living in the Florida Everglades, endangering native birds, deer, and alligators.
  • Sea turtles can live more than fifty years.

Did You Know?

  • Florida black bears don’t hibernate in winter like their northern relatives.
  • Skunks are immune to snake venom and love to eat rattlesnakes.
  • Parrotfish have powerful beaks that crush hard coral and turn it into sand.


A World to Discover

Hanging Out with Wild Animals is recommended by the US Review of Books.

Enjoy the poems and beautiful color photos in the Hanging Out with Wild Animals books. All the poems in these books are inspired by my own real-life experiences here in Florida. All of these wonderful animals, and many others live here. Wherever you live, a lot of interesting animals live near you. There is a whole wide world to discover: beaches, mountains, deserts, zoos, parks, or your own back yard. So get out there and meet some animals for yourself! Have a wonderful time exploring the world around you, and observe animals wherever you go. Take a camera along to record and share your adventures.

If you are curious about the animals you read about in the poems or animals you meet, go online to learn more about them. You may be surprised to discover that some animals living near you are endangered.  You can learn about ways to protect animals and their habitats. On the last page of the book, you will find information about how to observe animals safely.

Have fun!

Preserving Wild Animals and their Habitats for Future Generations

As I began writing the Hanging Out with Wild Animals books, I found myself adding my voice in support of efforts to preserve wild animals and their habitats for future generations. Several animals that have made a comeback from near extinction in Florida are celebrated in poems in the Hanging Out with Wild Animals books: alligators, flamingos, wood storks, egrets, bald eagles, Florida black bears, and Key deer. I have also written poems about manatees, gopher tortoises, and Florida scrub-jays, all of them currently endangered.

Invasive species are a major problem in Florida, and I have written about several of them in the Hanging Out with Wild Animals books. Pythons prey on deer and alligators, as well as tropical birds and pets. Everglades rabbits are nearing extinction, eaten by pythons. Alien venomous snakes and lizards have invaded the Everglades. Caimans, iguanas, geckos, and a freshwater bioluminescent jellyfish are other alien animals living in Florida that are featured in the books. Carolina parrots were native to Florida and much of the Southeastern United States, but they have been extinct since 1904. Some thirty alien species of parrots now inhabit Florida and are featured in a poem.

I believe that happiness in life comes from appreciating what you have, not from focusing only on what you wish you had. The world around us and the animals in it are a wonderful gift of nature to be appreciated and enjoyed.


The poetry in Wonders is diverse: limericks, haiku, free verse, rhyming poetry, narrative poems, and poems just for fun. In the preface, you will find background information about the men who inspired the poems. Each chapter of the book is devoted to an individual man.

fullsizeoutput_f41Robert Snyder & Cheryl Batavia under the Banyan Tree, Thomas Edison’s Laboratory, Fort Myers, FL. Photo by Linda Rahimi.

I have experienced the same things that many others have: divorce, death of a spouse, and life as a single parent. At age 65, I met Robert online. We have been together for six very happy years.

From the Preface

“Men have always fascinated and inspired me. I am sure there are some real jerks out there. I’ve heard stories about them from credible sources and seen a few in action, but fortunately for me, all the men I’ve loved have been wonderful human beings.”

New Book!

Life in Inspiring Places


Poems and colorful photographs share memories and impressions of living in places rich in history and natural beauty–The Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, Washington, DC, Miami Beach, and the Florida Gulf Coast. Poems about family and personal perspectives round out the book.

In 2019 I celebrated my 70th birthday. As I have grown older, I have looked back on what I learned from my mother and my grandmother and all the other older people in my life. My experiences have been informed by those who came before me. Now I am the older person looking back on my life and sharing my experiences with younger generations as well as with people whose life experiences may be very different from mine.

I have learned from my children and my students over the years, and I continue to learn from everyone I meet. I also enjoy learning about people from different times and places from books, movies, and the internet. You are never too old to learn something new!


Prequel & Excerpts

You can find the Prequel to Life in Inspiring Places
on the “Childhood in Small Towns” page of this website. You can also read poems from the book at “Excerpts, Life in Inspiring Places.”


  1. When we continue to do something we don’t feel that we are getting aged. Aging is related to physical body not with mind. This has been proved by your activities.
    Nice to hear that you use your time productively by reading books, watching movies etc.,

    Wonderful post.πŸ‘Œ

    Liked by 4 people


  2. Thank you, Murali. for your kind comments. Physically, getting older is not always fun, but getting older does have some positive aspects. Publishing a book of poetry is something I have wanted to do since I was eight years old. Since my children are grown and I am retired, I have had time to do it. There are still a few things on my bucket list!

    Stay safe and keep writing!

    Liked by 2 people


  3. Beautiful site. I live in south Florida and have seen the invasive species taking over. It is a shame.
    Like you I’m passing on the lessons I have learned to younger generations. Stay safe.

    Liked by 2 people


    1. Thank you, Chief, for reading and commenting. It is so sad what withholding water from the Everglades has done. Many species are greatly reduced in numbers. Dangerous snakes and venomous reptiles now live there, threatening native species even further. Releasing the water from Lake Okeechobee into rivers has had disastrous consequences for our state. Death of many marine animals, some endangered, is so heartbreaking!

      The terrible red tide from the release of polluted water from Lake Okeechobee caused me to become so ill that we sold our house near Manasota Beach and bought a house further inland in Charlotte County. Where in South Florida do you live?

      I am glad that some people care about these issues and want to do something about them.

      Take care.


      Liked by 1 person


  4. Cheryl,
    when i see the wonderful extraordinary cover pictures i want to look at more photos.
    I imagine that these illustrated books are very good objects to look at.
    How beautiful our world is !!!
    I hope you are coping with life as it is at the moment and are keeping well.
    πŸ™‚ Rosie πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person


    1. Thank you, Rosie, for your kind comments about my books. I chose the photos, but great designers in Canada and California made the books beautiful. I have a display of my books with family members who inspired the books on the wall in the hallway.

      I have done some painting and will continue to try, but I am never very happy with my work. It must be a source of great satisfaction to you to have done so many beautiful paintings. I look forwrd to seeing more of them.

      Take care.


      Liked by 1 person


  5. Hi Cheryl,

    I am a an admirer of writers and happens I dreamt to be. Hehe! Hopefully, I can get your books in the future.

    It’s great to read your thoughts here too. I appreciate your love of animals. Sad that some of them are rare nowadays because of human carelessness. I learned that animals are part of us. Humans & all living creatures are one in the ecosystem of life. Lost some of them will also lessen each creatures span of life.

    Love that you are proud of your age. It’s a privilege to grow older. Because in this stages of life you become wiser. Thank you for sharing your wisdom in the world. True, learning everyday is for everyone.

    More happy years to you & with your love of your life. All the best both of you.

    GOD bless,

    Liked by 2 people


    1. Misae, thank you for your beautiful message and good wishes. I wish you happiness and success and a long, healthy life. From what I have seen, you are already a writer. I look forward to reading more of what you write.

      It will be up to us, especially the younger generations, to preserve and protect the environment and animals. The world will be a much less pleasant place if we fail.

      I think it is almost a miracle that I have found happiness at this stage of my life after being alone for so long after the death of my husband. I am grateful.

      Learning should be lifelong. I would like to think it is true that I have gained some wisdom, but I assure you that sometimes I am proof of the old saying, “There’s no fool like an old fool!” (:

      Take care.


      Liked by 1 person


  6. You are SO inspiring! By firstly being open with your challenges you draw in special people towards you. Then you share your thoughts on learning and growing. Evolving and finding happiness – not far away, but right there, where you are doing something with love. Lovely blog post, yes age is a number, me at 60+ am also evolving learning new things, new hobbies:)

    Liked by 1 person


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