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Emily Skaja (pronounced SKAY-juh) was born and raised in rural Illinois. Her first book, BRUTE, won the Walt Whitman Award from the Academy of American Poets and will be published by Graywolf in April of 2019. Emily is a graduate of the MFA program at Purdue University and a current PhD candidate in Creative Writing and Literature at the University of Cincinnati, where she was a Taft Summer Research Fellow and also earned a certificate in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Emily’s poems have been published in Best New Poets, Blackbird, Crazyhorse, FIELD, and Gulf Coast, among other journals. She is the Poetry Co-Editor of Southern Indiana Review.