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Poetry. It's not every book of poetry that includes an Ode to Body Armor. But then, it's not every poet whose experience in academia includes a stint at the police academy. The poems of Sarah Cortez are tough-minded, verbally supple, and often deeply, even explicitly, erotic. And all the fifty poems collected here display her many facets: the street smarts and cool analytic eye of a law-enforcement officer, the unique sensibility and bilingual vocabulary of a proud Mexican American, the linguistic dexterity of a Latin teacher, and the frank sensuality of a strong and spirited woman. Surveying fellow officers, friends, criminals, lovers, strangers, and family, Cortez has learned that a bulletproof vest may -- with luck -- protect the body, but protecting the heart from harm is a more mysterious affair. HOW TO UNDRESS A COP is her debut collection and winner of the PEN Texas Literary Award for Poetry.