Sarah Kennedy is the author of seven books of poetry and the upcoming novel, The Altarpiece, the first in a series of historical mysteries. Recipient of NEA, Virginia Commission for the Arts, and Virginia Commission for the Humanities grants, she is a professor of English at Mary Baldwin College. Please visit her site at www.mbc.edu/sarahkennedy
"I'm surprised not only by Sarah Kennedy's astonishing technical skills—I've read all her books with delight—but by the array of voices and personalities she brings to The Gold Thread, all in the service of providing a lyrical survey of violence, mysticism, insanity, empire, and powerful communion with God. Populated by an array of historical martyrs, wild-eyed seers, and female mystics—by the questionably sane and those who see all too clearly where we're headed—these poems make my head spin, always describing not merely our shared past, but our harrowing present of violence, evangelism, and unstable empire. I already know this will be one of the best books I'll read this year."
"With a range that extends from Pompeii's destruction to modern-day America's extremes of faith and folly, Sarah Kennedy regards human experience, especially women's lives, with a gaze alert to injustice and a voice that's unmistakable. History-haunted, justly angry, or ecstatic, Kennedy's poems express with equal force a martyr's searing judgment, a shunned pilgrim's religious fervor, or a woman's forebodings over news reports of war. In tracing how intense belief may enrich or distort what we behold, The Gold Thread offers outcast saints, women accused of witchcraft, and other visionaries, troubled yet far-seeing, in poems that are urgent, eloquent, and unforgettable."