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poet

Thylias Moss

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Thylias Moss was born in Cleveland, Ohio, on February 27, 1954. She received a BA from Oberlin College in 1981 and an MA from the University of New Hampshire in 1983.

She is the author of several poetry collections, including Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code: New & Selected Poems (Persea Books, 2016), Tokyo Butter: A Search for Forms of Deidre (Persea Books, 2006), Last Chance for the Tarzan Holler (Persea Books, 1998), and Hosiery Seams on a Bowlegged Woman (Cleveland State University Poetry Center, 1983).

The poet Linda Gregerson writes, “Thylias Moss has never been a poet of easy comforts…. With fury and exhilarating velocity, she heads straight into the maelstrom. She excoriates; she sings.”

Moss has received fellowships and awards from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Library of Congress, the MacArthur Foundation, and the Whiting Foundation, among others. She has previously taught at Phillips Andover Academy, the University of New Hampshire, and Brandeis University. She currently serves as a professor emerita at the University of Michigan, and she lives in Michigan.


Bibliography

Poetry
Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code: New & Selected Poems (Persea Books, 2016)
Tokyo Butter: A Search for Forms of Deidre (Persea Books, 2006)
Slave Moth: A Narrative in Verse (Persea Books, 2004)
Last Chance for the Tarzan Holler (Persea Books, 1998)
Small Congregations: New and Selected Poems (Ecco Press, 1993)
Rainbow Remnants in Rock Bottom Ghetto Sky (Persea Books, 1991)
At Redbones (Cleveland State University Poetry Center, 1990)
Pyramid of Bone (University Press of Virginia, 1989)
Hosiery Seams on a Bowlegged Woman (Cleveland State University Poetry Center, 1983)

Prose
Tale of a Sky-Blue Dress (Bard, 1998)

multimedia

Poetry Breaks: Thylias Moss Reads "All Is Not Lost..."

Poetry Breaks: Thylias Moss Reads "All Is Not Lost When Dreams Are"

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by this poet

poem

A young black girl stopped by the woods,
so young she knew only one man: Jim Crow
but she wasn’t allowed to call him Mister.
The woods were his and she respected his boundaries
even in the absences of fence.
Of course she delighted in the filling up
of his woods, she so accustomed to

poem
Snow White was nude at her wedding, she's so white
the gown seemed to disappear when she put it on.

Put me beside her and the proximity is good
for a study of chiaroscuro, not much else.

Her name aggravates me most, as if I need to be told
what's white and what isn't.

Judging strictly by appearance there's a
poem
This did not happen



although I have memories of it:
a doctor unwrapping a tutu 
so I knew I was in a hospital
but one unlike any other
practicing strange medicine 
but this strangeness has been effective


A hospital for dancers?




I was in pink,
sequined

I had been in a street,
an alley and

I was left