Susan Cohen ’s most recent book of poems, "A Different Wakeful Animal," won the 2015 David Martinson-Meadowhawk Prize from Red Dragonfly Press and can be ordered here. She was a newspaper reporter, contributing writer to the Washington Post Magazine, and professor at the University of California Graduate School of Journalism before earning an MFA from Pacific University. Her poems appear widely in journals and anthologies, including the Bloomsbury Anthology of Contemporary Jewish American Poetry, and have received numerous honors, including the Rita Dove Poetry Award and the Milton Kessler Poetry Prize.
Poetry

“Jackhammering Limestone” by Erika Meitner

By Susan Cohen
The things that matter to the poet—her own body, her children, a country on the brink of the Trump administration, and the injured planet—all appear to be under siege, just like her eardrums. The poem smacks of catastrophe far beyond the speaker’s self-described “mid-life crisis.”
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Poetry

Poetry Sunday: “Lamentation for the Children,”
by Beverly Burch

By Susan Cohen
  Lamentation for the Children   Children come, bringing bliss and wretchedness. They come ready to be bruised. Chain us with the soft tentacles of their openness. Leave us pierced and threaded, bound for time with thorns, singing behind the palings of love. Like children. Though we are not. Don’t look back, not once, at the trembling in your arms,…
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Poetry

Poetry Sunday: “The Way Back,” by Francine Sterle

By Susan Cohen
Francine Sterle’s “The Way Back” enchanted me from the first time I read it. First, her lush lyricism. Then, the poem’s payoff, an ending that is emotional without being the least bit sentimental. What draws me back again and again, though, is the way she controls breath on the page.
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