Tess Taylor

Tess Taylor

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 10 best books of poetry of 2016 by The New York Times. Taylor’s work has appeared in The Atlantic, The Kenyon ReviewPoetry, 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 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 the Anne Spencer Poet-in-Residence at Randolph College. In spring 2020 she will publish two books of poems: Last West, part of Dorothea Lange: Words & Pictures, at the MoMA, and Rift Zone, from Red Hen Press.  She grew up and lives again in El Cerrito, California.



But will anyone teach   
the new intelligence to miss
the apricot trees   

that bloomed each spring
along these tracks?
Or the way afternoons 

blazed with creosote
& ponderosa?
Spring evenings flare

with orange pixels
in the bay-scented valley—
where in the algorithm

will they account for
the rippling ponies
that roamed outside Fremont?

When the robots have souls,
will they feel longing? 
When they feel longing,

will they write poems?

Tess Taylor