Sara Pirkle

Sara Pirkle

Senior Instructor
Associate Director of Creative Writing


  • PhD in English, concentration in Creative Writing, Georgia State University, 2014
  • MFA in Creative Writing, Georgia College & State University, 2004

Research Areas

  • Creative Writing
  • Contemporary Poetry
  • 20th-Century American and British Literature


Sara Pirkle is a Southern poet, an identical twin, a breast cancer survivor, and a board game enthusiast. Her first full-length collection of poetry, The Disappearing Act, won the Adrienne Bond Award for Poetry and was published by Mercer University Press in 2018. In 2019, she was nominated for Georgia Author of the Year in Poetry, and in 2022 she was shortlisted for the Oxford Poetry Prize. She also dabbles in songwriting and co-wrote a song on Remy Le Boeuf’s album, Architecture of Storms, which was nominated for a 2023 GRAMMY in the Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album category.

Her poems have been nominated for the Pushcart Prize five times, the Best of the Net Anthology twice, and the Independent Best American Poetry Award. She has published in dozens of literary journals under the name Sara Pirkle Hughes, including Rattle, Reed, Rosebud, TAB, Atlanta Review, Emrys, and Atticus Review, among others. She has received writing fellowships/residencies from The Anderson Center, I-Park Foundation, Millay Arts, and The Hambidge Center for Creative Arts and Sciences.

Selected Publications


The Disappearing Act (winner of the Adrienne Bond Award for Poetry), Mercer University Press, 2018.

Recent Short Fiction and Creative Nonfiction

“Someone Special.” Burningword Literary Journal. Issue 107, p. 8-9. July 2023.

“His Hands.” Blue Earth Review. Issue 29, p. 33-34. Fall 2022. (2022 Dog Daze Flash Creative Nonfiction Contest Runner-Up).

Coin Toss.Months to Years, p. 6-9, Spring 2021.

Word Problems.” Chestnut Review, Vol. 2.3, p. 5-18. Winter 2021. (Winner, First Place in Short Fiction, 2020 Stubborn Writers Contest).

“The Stained Glass Windmill.” Wraparound South. Winter/Spring 2018.

“How to Lose it All at Once.” Entropy. 4 Dec. 2017.

“The Stranger’s Hand.” Cat on a Leash Review vol 2.1. Nov. 2017.

“When the Doctor Says Cancer.” The Healing Muse vol. 17.1 (2017): 44-45.

Recent Poems

“Whisper My Name and You Might Hear Sorry.” Redactions: Poetry & Poetics. Forthcoming

“What’s Left” and “When He Said We’d Still Be Friends.” Rosebud Issue 72. Forthcoming.

“Ironing My Father’s Clothes.” ONE ART. Forthcoming.

“At What Point Does Regret End?” Nelle. Forthcoming.

“Dancing with the Red Devil.” Oxford Poetry. (Shortlisted for the 2022 Oxford Poetry Prize). Forthcoming.

“The New World” and “This Year’s Wife.” Drunk Monkeys. Forthcoming.

To Find Out What the World Is.” Birdcoat Quarterly. Issue 15. October 2023.

“Sixteen Rounds of Chemo.” Boudin (The McNeese Review online) June ’23 All Poetry Edition. June 21, 2023.

Weighing the Options.Delta Poetry Review. vol. 5, Issue 14 (Summer 2023). (nominated for a 2024 Pushcart Prize)

“Poetry at Dawn,” “Needles,” and “In Praise of Hangovers.” New Croton Review. (Spring 2023): 58-60.

Some Other Man.Halfway Down the Stairs: “Strange Bedfellows” Issue. March 2023.

“Done.” James Dickey Review. vol. 38 (2022) 76-77.

Stanzas for the End of It.Whale Road Review. Issue 29. Winter 2022.

The Problem with Metaphors.” Evocations Review. Issue 3.2 (Nov. 2022).

“Not Prometheus.” Eclectica Magazine. Vol.26.4 (Oct./Nov. 2022).

The First Man I Slept with After My Husband.” Atticus Review. Spring 2022. (2023 Pushcart Prize nominee and 2023 Best of the Net Anthology nominee).

Fairy Tale Ending,” Susurrus. Winter 2021.

Each Morning that May,” One Sentence Poems. 30 July 2021.

Why I Didn’t Say No.The West Review. Issue 3, Winter 2020.

The Point of It Being.” Evocations Review. Sept. 2020.

“Sestina for the Repressed,” “Teenagers Making Out in Rose Hill Cemetery,” and “The Morning After My Bilateral Mastectomy.” Hole in the Head Review. Issue 3, August 2020.

A Simile for His Voice.Treehouse. Issue 15, Spring 2020.

The Speed of Light.” Unlost Journal. Issue 16, Feb. 2019.

Text Message.” Eclectica Magazine. vol. 22.3, Jul/Aug 2018.

“The Perfect Communist.” HCE Review. vol. 2, Issue 2 p. 60, Feb. 2018.

How Quickly the Body Forgives,” “The Fire Next Door” (nominated for a Pushcart Prize), and “The Red Devil.” One Sentence Poems. June 2017.