Where Space Bends


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Photo by Charlene McLaughlin

Anique Sara Taylor‘s fierce wind-whipped poems pull me, drag me, shake me and make me see–seasons, oceans, stars, buds set to burst and “the universe of a single cell.” They make me feel–the joy of a deer tick tunneling in, “the wound of a new poem,” my own “nerves of scraped glass.”  She has the gift of reminding us we are alive in all our senses, and then beyond our senses, far beyond, into prayer and into the void. “Abandoning all illusion of safety, / it is today again.”
Alicia OstrikerAuthor of  The Volcano and After: Selected and New Poems 2002-2019
Former Chancellor of Academy of American Poets
Former New York State Poet Laureate

“Maybe // this time / I will tell you as much as you can bear,” Anique Sara Taylor states, speaking as much to herself as to her readers, recognizing that she feels “Naked without my shawl of words.” In poems written in “the curved alphabet of wild phlox,” Taylor views our longings and vulnerabilities through “the unmendable beauty” of nature, reckoning “We sleep / alone so many years” toward some deeper understanding of our lives. If “Our fragile ribbons / unravel,” they do so toward “a version of Paradise / that forgives us everything we’ve ever done.” If I quote so often here from these poems, it’s because Where Space Bends is filled with such memorable and musical phrasings, and with such moving wisdom. I recommend this book to anyone who possesses a heart capable of hurt, ears that open to secret frequencies, and a tongue that savors each word spun so slowly in the mouth.
Michael Waters, Author of Caw, Dean of Discipline, and Celestial Joyride

She writes: “the bones of my hand tucked underneath my skull”. She writes: “I rush to the shower to scrub // with rose soap, / as water all around me turns to tears”. The poems here sound with utter depth and emotional resonance, singing even as they weep. Such work is a devotion, an articulation so strange and precise that I close the book knowing I’ve encountered a breathprint so unique and singular that the poems, even as they carry loss, renew me. I fall in love with World again and again, and am astonished by the chance to Be. What a profound gift this is.
Aracelis Girmay, Author of The Black Maria and Kingdom Animalia

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Anique Sara Taylor’s chapbook Civil Twilight is Winner of the 2022 Blue Light Poetry Prize. Her full-length poetry book Where Space Bends was published May 2020. A Pushcart Prize nominee, work has appeared in Rattle, Common Ground Review, Adanna, St. Mark’s Poetry Project: The World, Stillwater Review, Earth’s Daughters, Cover Magazine, The National Poetry Magazine of the Lower East Side among others, and widely anthologized. Her first chapbook Poems, is published by Unimproved Editions Press.

She’s co-authored works for HBO, Scholastic, Simon & Schuster and a three-act play performed by Playwrights Horizons and Williamstown Playhouse. Her Holocaust poem “The Train” was 2019 finalist in Charter Oak’s Award for Best Historical Poem. Where Space Bends in earlier chapbook form was chosen Finalist by both Minerva Rising and Blue Light Press in 2014 Chapbook Competitions. In 2015 Under the Ice Moon was chosen Finalist by Blue Light Press.

 She holds a Poetry MFA (Drew University), Literature Diplôme (The Sorbonne, Paris), Painting BFA (Highest Honors/Pratt), Drawing MFA (Pratt Institute) and a Master of Divinity Degree. She studied Literature at Antioch College, Poetry at St. Mark’s Poetry Project with Alice Notley, then Bernadette Mayer. She’s been a regular at Wallson Glass Poem-making Sessions with Geoffrey Nutter.

She teaches/taught Creative Writing for Benedictine Hospital’s Oncology Support Program, the Phoenicia Poetry Workshop, Bard LLI and Writers in the Mountains.