Rift Zone by Tess Taylor
Poetry by Tess Taylor
An evocative excavation of a deeply fractured landscape, at once vast and granular, startlingly observant and relentlessly curious
Rift Zone, Taylor’s anticipated third book, traces literal and metaphoric fault lines— rifts between past and present, childhood and adulthood, what is and what was. Circling Taylor’s hometown— an ordinary California suburb lying along the Hayward fault— these poems unearth strata that include a Spanish landgrant, a bloody land grab, gun violence, valley girls, strip malls, redwood trees, and the painful history of Japanese internment.
Taylor’s ambitious and masterful poems read her home state’s historic violence against our world’s current unsteadinesses—mass eviction, housing crises, deportation, inequality. They also ponder what it means to try to bring up children along these rifts. What emerges is a powerful core sample of America at the brink—American elegy equally tuned to maternal and to geologic time. At once sorrowful and furious, tender and fierce, Rift Zone is startingly observant, relentlessly curious—a fearsome tremor of a book.
PRAISE FOR RIFT ZONE
“In Rift Zone, Tess Taylor’s brilliant third collection, we encounter a magisterial range of subjects, from the geologic to the civic to the intimately personal. This book is a confident poetic engagement with the vital issues of our time, including the disastrous consequences of human activity on our climate, and its effect on the public and private spheres. Rooted in the shifting California landscape, this elegiac yet hopeful book is a necessary addition to the corpus of work dedicated to grieving the world as we know it.” —Ada Limón, Bright Dead Things
“The poet for our moment.”
—Ilya Kaminsky, author of Deaf Republic
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Tess Taylor's chapbook, The Misremembered World, was selected by Eavan Boland for the Poetry Society of America’s inaugural chapbook fellowship. The San Francisco Chronicle called her first book, The Forage House, “stunning,” and it was a finalist for the Believer Poetry Award. Her second book, Work & Days, was called “our moment’s Georgic” by critic Stephanie Burt and named one of the ten best books of poetry of 2016 by The New York Times. Taylor’s work has appeared in The Atlantic, The Kenyon Review, Poetry, Tin House, The Times Literary Supplement, CNN, and The New York Times among others, and she’s received awards and fellowships from MacDowell, Headlands Center for the Arts, and The International Center for Jefferson Studies. Among other things, Taylor is the on-air poetry reviewer for NPR’s All Things Considered. She served as Distinguished Fulbright US Scholar at the Seamus Heaney Centre in Queen’s University in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and was most recently Anne Spencer Writer in Residence at Randolph College. She grew up and lives again in El Cerrito, California.
PUB DATE: April 7, 2020
SIZE: 6 in x 9 in
EXTENT: 112pp tentative