My Sisters' Country

My Sisters' Country

by Alexis V. Jackson
My Sisters' Country

My Sisters' Country

by Alexis V. Jackson


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Philadelphia-born, San Diego-based writer Alexis V. Jackson's completely original debut poetry collection MY SISTERS' COUNTRY is out from Kore Press in January 2022. Jackson artfully braids together a multi-vocal chorus of Black women's voices across, over, under, and through time. Included in the vast array of voices are her great-grandmother, Black feminist scholar Hortense Spillers, musical artist Missy Elliott, and the wide-brimmed, white-gloved church ladies of her Philadelphia youth. Jackson bends and breaks forms like the sonnet, pantoum, and zuihitsu and introduces the playlist poem as she explores the makings of Black girlhood and womanhood. Staying true to the beauties, traumas, moans and undoings found there, the poet invites readers to consider the ways Black women, who were once considered countryless property, made country out of and in one another, and asks the questions: What are the consequences? How terrifying and beautiful are they? How terrifying and beautiful is the rebuilding, the renaming, of country? Vast in scope and style, Jackson's collection is deeply influenced by Sonia Sanchez, Nikki Giovanni, rapper Lil' Kim, gospel singers CeCe Winans and the Clark Sisters, actor-singer Jill Scott, as well as her favorite pastor.

"Jackson's scope is limitless. 'Christ is supposed to give me salvation for my soul, / but what about my thighs, and my mouth, and my pancreas,' she writes. This is a book of the body, unbound by convention while creating entirely new ones."—Lynn Melnick

"There are some voices who come along and remind you of the beauty in our vulnerability. They write in a way that doesn't leave us exposed but holds us close as we face the truths of our lives. Alexis Jackson is one such writer."—Candice Benbow

"From Gwendolyn Brooks to June Jordan to the Book of Genesis, Jackson's debut poetry sizzles and samples with mischief. It's gutbucket, daredevil, Double Dutch, next-generation sass."—Yona Harvey

Poetry. Literary Nonfiction. African & African American Studies. Women's Studies. California Interest.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781888553796
Publisher: KORE PRESS
Publication date: 01/31/2022
Pages: 104
Sales rank: 743,235
Product dimensions: 6.09(w) x 9.05(h) x 0.26(d)

About the Author

Alexis V. Jackson is a Philadelphia-born, San Diego-based writer and teacher whose work has appeared in Jubilat, The Amistad, La Libreta, Solstice Literary Magazine, and 805 Lit among others. Jackson earned her MFA from Columbia University's School of the Arts and her BA in English from Messiah University. Erica Hunt selected MY SISTERS' COUNTRY as second- place winner of Kore Press Institute's 2019 Poetry Prize. Jackson lectures in the University of San Diego's English Department, and has taught poetry at Messiah University.

Table of Contents

Dear Mom, 11

Hos and Grandmas and Aunties Be Like 12

When We Prayed 14

Don't Worry Love. 15

Blue-Brown 16

Crooked Room 18

My Sisters' Country 23

The Man And The Me On The Bus 25

Therapy Session Number 1 27

When The Water Comes 28

I Went Inside Myself 31

Blues Club Dance Music Mashup 32

17 Black Church Girl Blues 37

50 Feet of Plastic 38

Jump Rope 39

Fresh Princess Sonnets 41

Some Words Bedevil, But My Self-Care Playlist Lit Tho 44

Themed Zuihitsu: My Fourth Great Grandmother and God and Me 46

Poem for Therapy Session Number 12 51

Some I's are complete liars 52

Why The Next Poem: A Poem of Subtitles 54

If You Can't Be Free, Be A Mystery 55

Currant Vigilante 58

Therapy Session Number 19 60

The Galaxy Eaters 62

It Shouldn't Have To Be True 64

Sequences 66

Eschatology 67

Some People Want It All 69

Family Picture Albums 73

Proverbs 31: A Kind of Pantoum for the Virtuous Woman 74

To the man who asked me to stop saying, "If this doesn't work" 76

Rules for defining BE 79

It is 2017 80

Genisis, Ecdysis, Heaven 81

Sanctuary 82

A Theory of Light: Surviving HIM (Lifetime 2019) 83

Never Read This Aloud. It Has No Tradition. 89

He Is a Black Man and the Wilderness 91

Endnotes 92

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