Tara Flint Taylor



BONE WISHING is available now from Slapering Hot Press. Please click here to purchase:


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A Review of Bone Wishing and Interview with Gregory Luce


Reading from Bone Wishing at Le Moyne College

April 19, 2023 Reading with Linda Pennisi, Patrick Lawler and Tara Flint Taylor

Reading from Bone Wishing at Hudson Valley Writer’s Center

March 26, 2023 A reading from SHP Chapbook Contest Winner, Tara Flint Taylor with Ann Lauinger & T.Q. Tran

Poetry Reading with Linda Tomol Pennisi, Patrick Lawler and David Lloyd

Bone Wishing Debut Reading


Please join the Slapering Hol Press co-editors as they welcome the 2022 chapbook winner, Tara Flint Taylor, IN PERSON for the annual Sanger-Stewart Memorial Reading. She will be joined by Broadstone poet Ann Lauinger for a reading and Q&A about the process of putting together a first collection. Tara & Ann will be reading live, in-person at HVWC. There will also be a viewing of a pre-recorded reading by Tara’s mentor, T.Q. Tran.

Tara Flint Taylor’s work has appeared in Poet Lore, River Styx, Poetry Quarterly, North American Review, Nimrod, The Spoon River Poetry Review, Inkwell Journal, and elsewhere. Her awards include second place in the 2011 River Styx International Poetry Contest as well as finalist in the 2011 Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry and 2018 James Hearst Poetry Prize. She is a graduate of Le Moyne College where she earned her BA, and of North Carolina State University, where she earned her MFA. Tara is the recipient of the John LaHey Award in Writing, the Newhouse Writing Award, and the Brenda Smart Poetry Prize. Originally from Syracuse, New York, she lives in Portland, Oregon with her spouse, painter Joshua Flint.

Ann Lauinger’s three books of poetry are Persuasions of Fall (University of Utah Press, 2004), winner of the Agha Shahid Ali Prize in Poetry, Against Butterflies (Little Red Tree Publishing, 2013), and Dime Saint, Nickel Devil (Broadstone Books, 2022). Her poems have appeared in publications from Alimentum to Zone 3, including The Cumberland River Review, Georgia Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, Parnassus, The Same, SmartishPace, and The Southern Poetry Review. Translations from Italian, French, and Latin have appeared in The Massachusetts Review, Levania, and Transference and are forthcoming in an anthology from Shanghai University Press. Her work has also been anthologized in Decomposition, The Bedford Introduction to Literature, Poetry Daily Essentials, 2007, In a Fine Frenzy: PoetsRespond to Shakespeare, A Slant of Light, and Short Flights. She has been featured on Poetry Daily, Verse Daily, and Martha Stewart Living Radio. Professor Emerita of literature at Sarah Lawrence College, she lives in Ossining, NY.

Born in Vietnam, T.Q. Tran graduated from UC Berkeley and has traveled all seven continents including science support deployments to Antarctica. Her poems appear in Nimrod International Journal and Cincinnati Review. She currently lives in Portland, OR with her two sons and is working on a hybrid manuscript.

Tara Flint Taylor’s Bone Wishing names the shapes of grief: “a dark umbrella shaken / after hard rain,” an “iron anchor on the desert floor, the “empty pot on the stove tinged pink.” Then, with nothing but the gritty clarity of her eye and voice, Taylor goes about the hard work of «mak[ing] some makeshift / shelter for [the] self.» From the ruins emerges the indelible shelter of this profound and deeply felt collection.

—Linda Tomol Pennisi, author of The Burning Boat

Elegiacal, these poems ride on their images: salt water, sea glass, blood- red borscht. I admire their diction and shifting focus, though the speaker remains haunted throughout by a sister’s illness and the sorrow of loss. She looks back through the shadows of memory, past piles of broken china and “ruinous light,” through the undersea sediment of thousand-year-old plants into the eyes of her younger self, which are filled with wonder and grief at “the shock of ordinary things.” This is a fine first collection.

—Joseph Millar, author of Dark Harvest, New and Selected Poems



I will be signing books, giving away wishbones with every book purchased, and eating lots of snacks with Andrea Deeken, my pressmate who will be selling and signing her own, MOTHER KINGDOM.

March 20th Reading


Slapering Hol Press Presents:

2021 Chapbook Winner Andrea Deeken & Tara Flint Taylor (via Zoom & in person)
March 20 @ 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm East Coast time

Join the SHP co-editors and Advisory Committee on Zoom as they welcome our 2021 Chapbook contest winner, Andrea Deeken (Mother Kingdom, 2022) and her mentor, Tara Flint Taylor. The poets will read from their newly published work and answer questions about publication and being emerging poets.

NB: This reading will take place in person and on Zoom. All audience members must show proof of vaccination, and must wear a mask at all times. Tickets must be purchased in advance. No walk-ins, space is limited. Please visit our covid policy page before attending any of our in person events. Thank you for helping to keep our community safe.

Andrea Deeken was born in rural Missouri. She has a BA in English from Drake University and an MS in Writing and Publishing from Portland State University. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in The Bear Deluxe, Beltway Poetry Quarterly, The Blue Mountain Review, Spoon River Poetry Review, Valley Voices, and elsewhere. She received an Honorable Mention in the 2019 Spoon River Poetry Review Editors’ Prize Contest and second place in the 2020 Blue Mountain Review LGBTQ Chapbook Contest. A former book editor, she has worked for the Multnomah County Library for fifteen years. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her wife and daughter. Mother Kingdom is her debut chapbook.

Tara Flint Taylor’s work can be found in Poet Lore, River Styx, Poetry Quarterly, North American Review, Nimrod, The Spoon River Poetry Review, The Grove Review, Inkwell Journal, wordriver literary review, and elsewhere. Tara was awarded second place in the 2011 River Styx International Poetry Contest. She was a finalist in 2018 for the James Hearst Poetry Prize, the 2014 River Styx International Poetry Contest, the Inkwell Poetry Contest, and the 2011 Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry.


Red in the toilet bowl red on the white sheets
red roses my least favorite in white vases
in my painted white room. Red beets, red cabbage,
red meat in borscht poured in the cracked white bowl
I eat every sour meal in for weeks.

I was forty when I had an abortion. Pregnant for the
first time in my long sex life, shocked at what my body
had done to me. Red garden dahlia, cold white marble table
red clots white thighs white padded cotton.

I’ve never been someone who wished for much,
then this unwanted gift at the doorstep of my stomach
I didn’t know how to refuse. How do you turn down
the invitation every girl wants to the party. You
stay home sick you cry you think to yourself.
So many women believe to be a woman is to suffer.
Who am I to tell them they’re wrong.

My husband asks, what’s this—an empty pot
on the stove tinged pink. It’s my abortion borscht, I tell him.
And I laugh. Not because it’s funny. It’s not funny, nothing is
funny it’s just those words feel like a rock
I’m trying to swallow and I’m laughing cuz
I’m outta my fucking mind with pregnancy hormones.
People laugh at funerals. They cry at weddings, at births.

I was knowingly pregnant for twelve days. For twelve days
I didn’t move, didn’t eat, couldn’t keep anything down.
This was the week Dr. Christine Blasey Ford gave her
testimony, the week every woman I know clung to her
self. The week I heard Ruth Bader Ginsberg say
The decision whether or not to bear a child is central to a
woman’s life, her wellbeing and dignity. It is a decision she must
make for herself.

Herself. Herself under white crescent fingernails herself red
cheeked and red eyed herself barely
ready for this blood
metal awake life.


Published in North American Review, Spring 2019

Ordinary Things

My sister falls
asleep with the lights

on, fully dressed. I take
the recycling to the curb

count bottles under a streetlamp.
Almost summer, but first comes

the anniversary of your death—
iron anchor on the desert floor.

I had been reading Murakami
when you disappeared. I pushed it aside, never

picked it up again.

There’s a difference between drowning
in salt water and drowning

in fresh water— a rock pressed to my throat when
I learned how you died. I was a child for a second

time and I couldn’t stop— the tantrum
of not being okay, of not knowing

what could happen next.
Somehow you settle

into it. The shock of
ordinary things, the dull

business of errands and taxes
standing in line at the post office,

too bright, too loud, the rain—coming
out into the rain, out

of the grocery store next
arms full with a paper bag

raining so hard it turns to
pulp in my hands.


Published in North American Review, Spring 2019