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Sarah P. Strong is a nimble explorer of visible and invisible boundaries, and each of their poems is part of a quest toward wonder and re-envisioning, a quest to go beyond, as the best poems do, the “edge of thinking.”
— Mary Szybist, author of Incarnadine, winner of the National Book Award
This dynamic, multi-dimensional and supple collection engages with historic patterns of struggle, privilege, blindness, and above all, empathy. The themes of environmental ruin and the effect and plight of humans on this planet feel urgent rather than gloomy in these poems, a feat Strong pulls off by getting past and present and disparate places and experiences to resonate and chime. There’s something idealistic in this, an alertness and interconnectedness that reads in a sense as hope. The Mouth of Earth is impressive work—coherent and varied, thoughtful and full of lovely things.
— Daisy Fried, author of My Brother is Getting Arrested Again, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award
This beautiful collection is wise as it is candid, offering deftly woven lyrical gifts to the reader even as it reminds us of what we’ve done to the earth. These poems like divining rods find healing waters in the dust bowls of our toughest landscapes, intertwining parenthood, history, the body, and contemporary ecological and political concerns. . . . These poems are at once tender and incisive; they cut straight to the heart.
— Jennifer Givhan, author of Rosa’s Einstein and Girl with Death Mask
Passionately (but never stridently) devoted to ecological thematics, these poems constitute a vivid geography of concerns and commitments, all the while maintaining high artistic standards and uttermost sensitivity to matters of craft.
— Donald Revell, professor of English, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Ecological in its concern and wisely tender in regard to the people and history who brought the planet to such an endangered state . . . Sarah Strong’s book is driven by their love of the earth and wish to understand how and why our civilization has found itself at this critically dangerous juncture.
— Sasha Steensen, author of House of Deer: Poems and professor of English at Colorado State University
In Sarah P. Strong’s compelling The Mouth of Earth, the earth-made dust, water’s lack, and the fire that conquers, are the main characters. The power in Strong’s book is evident in the way in which I felt reading these poems, that I too was situated in the remnant elements, where dryness is only succeeded by the thirst it brings. People often say that a book is ahead of its time, and Strong’s book may be such a book.
— Claudia Keelan, Barrick Distinguished Scholar at University of Nevada, Las Vegas