Jennifer Jackson Berry

Jennifer Jackson Berry (Poetry) | Pittsburgh, PA

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Jennifer Jackson Berry is the author of The Feeder (YesYes Books, 2016). Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in journals such as Booth, Harpur Palate, Poet Lore, and Whiskey Island, among others. Her work has also been featured online at Verse Daily, on Prosody (a public radio show on NPR affiliate WESA-FM featuring the work of national writers), and in various anthologies including Political Punch: Contemporary Poems on the Politics of Identity (Sundress Publications, 2016); Like a Girl: Perspectives on Feminine Identity (Lucid Moose Lit, 2015); and We Will Be Shelter (Write Bloody Publishing, 2014). She is the Editor of Pittsburgh Poetry Review and an Assistant Editor for WomenArts Quarterly Journal. She lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


The Feeder (Yes Yes Books, 2016). Poetry.


  • When I Was a Girl (Sundress Publications, 2014). Poetry.
  • Nothing But Candy (Liquid Paper Press, 2003). Poetry.

Blurbs, Press & Reviews

In The Feeder, Jennifer Jackson Berry gives us what we crave. In an authentic, incisive voice, she instructs: “…don’t swat the wasp./ Let it happen. Let the sting happen.” And the sting does happen in these slicing poems of the body in delight and distress—poems of the fat girl speaking, poems of infertility, of sex and more sex, of debilitating loss. Berry delivers what so many others only strive for: the devouring of what’s gone bad and the opening up of each remaining body to see it glisten.”
—Jan Beatty, author of Jackknife: New and Selected Poems

“I want to save you,” Jennifer Jackson Berry writes, “but I’m afraid I’m carrying you like a bruise.” The Feeder is a book that believes we save ourselves by showing our bruises, by finding beauty in telling our stories. Berry confronts desire and its repercussions, looking at bodies that don’t often get aestheticized, and looking at sexuality that is both “an offering, a threat.” These poems analyze the discourse always swirling around women’s bodies: “I’m supposed to tell/ everyone I’m dieting,” says “Fat Girl at Weight Watchers Meeting,” but “I bite the food & he’ll love me,” says the speaker in “What the Feeder Says to Me.” Complicating this compelling discourse on desire are poems about a miscarriage, infertility, and marriage—and uniting it is Berry’s poetic voice which braves the silencing taboos of our culture and dares to witness.
— James Allen Hall, author of I Liked You Better Before I Knew You So Well

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