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Susan B. A. Somers-Willett

Susan B. A. Somers-Willett is the author of two books of poetry, Quiver and Roam, and a book of criticism, The Cultural Politics of Slam Poetry: Race, Identity, and the Performance of Popular Verse in America. Her honors include the Ann Stanford Poetry Prize and the Robert Frost Foundation Poetry Award. Raised in New Orleans, she teaches English and Creative Writing at Montclair State University in New Jersey.

Author

Women of Troy

Fall 2009 | Poetry

In Women of Troy, poet Susan Somers-Willett and photographer Brenda Ann Kenneally look at the lives of young, working-class women in Troy, New York.

The Cutting Place

Fall 2009 | Poetry

She’s always been a tomboy, Mama Vic says, Mouthy.
Runnin’ the roads. Not comin’ home, and as she speaks

Women of Troy

Fall 2009 | Poetry

You are the country at war and the city ablaze.
You are the flags lining Fourth Street and the singer

A Call to Arms

Fall 2009 | Criticism

Don’t make the mistake of calling her
angel or saint. The tremendous broad crowning
Troy’s war monument grips her sword

Just a Girl

Fall 2009 | Poetry

Billie Jean  Her sister’s water broke this morning and her Cymbalta’s not working and she’s soon to be homeless because those twin nephews are fast on their way but today her ex-lover’s baby mother is going to be at the Flag Day parade [...]

My Natural History

Spring 2006 | Poetry

  This is how my father will tell it:he is a young man, not even twenty, driving down a road in Arizona with my mother and searching for the place where they will park, put their backs to cool June grass, and lie naked together for the first tim [...]

Darwin Strikes a Match

Spring 2006 | Poetry

  Sweet tobacco wafts through the quarterdeck,        around the sweating rungs and under the hatch, while a perfumed woman studies the Captain        to her wicked tattoos. She is rare [...]

First Sex

Spring 2006 | Poetry

  Who would guess that glory would live on a pea plant’s sticky mouth smeared with golden pollen? The monk frees the flowers’ sexes from the calico bonnets and shoos the abbot’s sweet-bottomed bees and with tweezers snips powder f [...]