WHAT ENTERS THE MOUTH
by Sarah Jefferis
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About This Author
Sarah Jefferis is an author, editor, and writing consultant based in Ithaca, New York.
Her first poetry book, Forgetting the Salt was published by Foothills Press in 2008.
Her poems and nonfiction have appeared in Rhino, The Mississippi Review, The American Literary Review, Stone Canoe, Icon, The Hollins Critic, The Patterson Review, and other journals.
She is the winner of the 2014 Stone Canoe poetry prize. Her essay, entitled, “Blood and Chocolate,” appears in an anthology entitled Labor Day: True Birth Stories by Today’s Best Women Writers, FSG (2014). She has been both a poetry fellow and fiction fellow at the Squaw Valley Community of Writers, and the Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts. She holds an M.A. in Literature from Hollins University, an M.F.A. in Poetry from Cornell University and a P.h.D. in English/Creative Writing from SUNY Binghamton.
She is working on completing her first novel, entitled Running After Jesus, and a collection of essays on single motherhood. She is the mother of two beautiful and brilliant daughters. She works as a writing coach at the Office of Academic Diversity Initiatives at Cornell University, and has a private consulting business, Write. Now., at www.sarahjefferis.net.
Praise for "What Enters the Mouth"
“These are fearless poems–a reckoning of the violences of girlhood rendered with grit and clarity. What Enters the Mouth is a brave collection that wrestles with loss and pain, and strides beautifully into a power and wildness of womanhood that refuses to be contained.” – Ansel Elkins, author of Blue Yodel, winner of the 2014 Yale Series of Younger Poets Competition
“Sarah Jefferis is an inventor, a truth teller, a fabricator, a witness. Like Dickinson, she dwells in possibilities. She constructs alternate lives [“I could have been my sister…my mother” or “My other body is the sea.”]. She’s “the other in the room.” If these stances seem contradictory, they are in the service of the deep mysteries of surviving and desiring. This book has a licked clean, all in, unreasonable, unafraid, incendiary, vulnerable and startling reckoning I admire.” – Bruce Smith, author of The Other Lover and Devotions
“At times tender, at times raging, at times both, the poetry of Sarah Jefferis speaks to that which polite society, particularly the polite society of the South, prefers to ignore or demean as unspeakable. Here is a poetry of hunger and the strength to bear it, of love and the courage to live it, of wisdom and the vigilance to question it. Brave is too small a word. A skillful writer, Jefferis has gifted us a beautiful collection crafted with intelligence, wit, and transcendent hope.” – Jose A. Rodriguez, author of House Built on Ashes: A Memoir, and The Shallow End of Sleep