Byrd Baylor has always lived in the Southwest, mainly in Southern Arizona near the Mexican border. She is at home with the southwestern desert cliffs and mesas, rocks and open skies. She is comforted by desert storms. The Tohono O’odham people, previously known as the Papagos, are her neighbors and close friends. She has focused many of her writings on the region’s landscape, peoples, and values. Through her books of rhythmic prose poetry, written primarily for children, she celebrates the beauty of nature and her own feelings of rapport with it.
Byrd has written many books for children. Cinco Puntos Press has published two of her very popular books of Native American legends: And It Is Still That Way and The Way to Make Perfect Mountains. She is well known for such favorites as Amigo, When Clay Sings and The Way to Start A Day.
Her books have been honored with many prestigious children’s book awards, including the Caldecott Award and the Texas Bluebonnet Award. All of her books are full of the places and the peoples that she knows. She thinks of these books as her own kind of private love songs to the place she calls home.