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poet

Tess Taylor

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Tess Taylor

Tess Taylor is the author of The Forage House (Red Hen Press, 2013) and Work and Days, forthcoming from Red Hen Press in April 2016. She has received fellowships from Amherst College, the American Antiquarian Society, the Headlands Center for the Arts, and the MacDowell Colony. She also served as the 2010–2011 Amy Clampitt Fellow in Lenox, Massachusetts. Taylor is on the board of the National Book Critics Circle and reviews poetry for NPR’s All Things Considered. She is a professor of English and creative writing at Whittier College and lives in El Cerrito, California.

by this poet

poem

We unstave the winter’s tangle.
Sad tomatoes, sullen sky.

We unplay the summer’s blight.
Rotted on the vine, black fruit

swings free of strings that bound it.
In the compost, ghost melon; in the fields

grotesque extruded peppers.
We prod half-thawed mucky things. 

In the

2
poem

My parents kissing in a kitchen.
In her loop-eyed dress my mother—

enormous in her belly, I loom.
In a commune in Fort Greene

she typed and typed her dissertation.
Upstairs a woman practiced primal screams,

a wild-haired painter mourned his dying wife.
My parents

poem

How again today our patron star
whose ancient vista is the long view

turns its wide brightness now and here:
Below, we loll outdoors, sing & make fire.

We build no henge
but after our swim, linger

by the pond. Dapples flicker
pine trunks by the water.

Buzz & hum