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bio & contact

photo credit: Jennifer Anne Tucker

I live in the ridges and valleys of central Pennsylvania, where I work on poems, essays, gardens, quilts, and projects exploring regional & reproductive politics. Granddaughter of Appalachian tinkerers and Yiddish-speaking New Yorkers, I’ve worked as a seamstress, server, landscaper, preschool teacher, university writing instructor, produce truck driver, and roadie. Since 2017 I’ve worked as the founding director of Ridgelines Language Arts, a non-profit providing expert language arts instruction outside of academic institutions and to those who are marginalized in my region. Through Ridgelines I also teach poetry workshops in my county’s low-income nursing homes.

My first book, As I Said: A Dissent (Ricochet Editions, 2022), is a collection of long documentary poems concerning abortion, embodiment, justice, and citizenship in U.S. history. I'm also the author of two poetry chapbooks, Real Words for Inside (Gap Riot Press) and Plant Light, Dress Light (dancing girl press). Awarded Bitch Media’s 2018 Writing Fellowship in Sexual Politics, I’ve received residencies and awards from Split this Rock, The Rensing Center, Sundress Academy for the Arts, The Penland School of Crafts, the C.D. Wright Women Writers Conference, and the Ora Lerman Charitable Trust. I hold a BA in American Studies from Smith College and am an alumna of the Williams-Mystic Maritime Studies Program, the AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps, and the MFA Program in Creative Writing at Penn State. Active in efforts to reduce the stigma surrounding abortion, I serve as a Board member of Abortion Conversation Projects and also collaborate with other organizations and activists, including the Abortion Diary Podcast, DOPO, the West Alabama Women’s Center, and All-Options.

Much of my work, both as an artist and an organizer, follows from my interest in U.S. vernacular cultures such as those chronicled by poets C.D. Wright and June Jordan; artists Lonnie Holley and David Wojnarowicz; and the quilters of Gee’s Bend. I’m interested in political and social activities that are improvised and homespun. As a student of maximalism I enjoys artworks, gardens, and activisms that walk the line between precision and chaos. I like to collage postcards and miss the 90s, when coffee shops still had bulletin boards.

From time to time I organize anarchic after-school art classes and summer camps for kids. I live in a village with the musician Kevin Sims, the cats Cricket Akhmatova and Crochet-Ra, and a rotating crew of artist and teacher friends.


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