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About this poet

Born in 1951 in Forrest City, Arkansas, Patricia Spears Jones earned her BA at Rhodes College in 1973 and her MFA from Vermont College.

Spears Jones is the author of three collections of poetry, The Weather That Kills (Coffee House Press, 1995), Femme du Monde (Tia Chucha Press, 2006), and Painkiller (2010), as well as two limited edition chapbooks, Mythologizing Always (Telephone Books, 1981) and repuestas! (*Belladonna, 2007).

She has been the recipient of numerous awards, including fellowships and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, the Goethe Institute, and the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference.

A resident of New York City since the 1970s, Spears Jones currently serves as Fellow of the Black Earth Institute and the Poetry Project at St. Marks Church, and is also a contributing editor at BOMB Magazine. She has taught at Cave Canem, Parsons School of Design, The New School, Sarah Lawrence College, and Naropa University.

A pillow in the city

Patricia Spears Jones

Ghostly falls from the fifteenth floor
Feathers leaking/ the pillow speaking

How the sleeper's nightly pounding
Made the pillow yelp and moan

Poor sleeper heard these comments
Angered threw said pillow into

An ugly summer night's air

The pillow had little choice
The sleeper's fists. The sleeper's mouth

Not kind, not soft, always angry
The sleeper always angry—even

Dreaming the sleeper could not
Stop rage, so the bed was a battlefield
The pillow, an enemy. And now

Said enemy slowly plunges towards
The courtyard deflated, a feral squirrel

Watches the fall, moves on towards
The overflowing garbage bins, nose open
Time to feast.

Copyright © 2013 by Patricia Spears Jones. Used with permission of the author.

Patricia Spears Jones

Patricia Spears Jones

Born in 1951 in Forrest City, Arkansas, Patricia Spears Jones earned her BA at Rhodes College in 1973 and her MFA from Vermont College.

Spears Jones is the author of three collections of poetry, The Weather That Kills (Coffee House Press, 1995), Femme du Monde (Tia Chucha Press, 2006), and Painkiller (2010), as well as two limited edition chapbooks, Mythologizing Always (Telephone Books, 1981) and repuestas! (*Belladonna, 2007).