Tarpaulin Sky Literary Magazine

News & Notes

Happenings at Tarpaulin Sky Press.

We Miss Mark Baumer So Much

On January 20, 2017, Mark achieved the 100-day milestone of his barefoot walk across the United States to raise awareness of climate change. He made it from Rhode Island to Florida. On January 21, a little after noon, he was killed when a SUV crossed into the shoulder of the road. He was wearing a reflective orange safety vest.


Indeterminate Texts & Images

which may or may not be twice- or thrice-listed in other genres. Please don't freak out.



People send us books. We review them.

Marty Cain’s “Kids of the Black Hole” reviewed by Evan Gray

“[H]ybrid coat of feathers and fur … bathed in punk rock, metal, old skate ramps, and the gym shower, as well as the toxic landscape of memory that is both lichen-drenched and cut with light. Night terrors shimmer off the page with each long line, each breath, each shift in the wet dirt.” — Evan Gray on Kids of the Black Hole by Marty Cain.


Reading Guides

Writers with suggestions for books other than their own.



Which we define loosely.

from Gender/Genre by Erin Bertram

“On the door hangs a sign, sometimes plastic, sometimes bearing the smudges of printer ink, & often with a line drawn neatly down the middle: he? on the left, she? on the right, & me, standing straight, stiff as a board, standing upright between them.”

In Memoriam: Tom Raworth, by Martin Corless-Smith

“I knew Tom for about 20 years. Or ten minutes.  It’s odd to say knew, instead of know. I’ll say know. He was as open and opaque when I first met him at a reading in DC as when I last saw him at his flat in Hove. Like a pond of fish—an elegant electric-fast consciousness that withdrew if you delved too deep. It was as if he was saying, I’m right here, it’s all right here. What you get is what you see.”

Piper J. Daniels, “Sirens”

An exceptional essay on demons, mental illness, self-harm, and suicide, which we’re publishing just in time for Christmas. “If human life is an oath, then suicide for me was like an oath recited backwards, a protest against the physical body that gave entrance to that first strange and violent ghost and all that followed,” writes Piper J. Daniels.



is to Billy Collins as love is to domestic violence.

Five Poems by Kirsten Kaschock

“Take this frackwaste voice you wish / I’d use 4 truth instead of dare. You’ll want // to salt&bury it, so it don’t rise, but where’s / your shovel? Where’s the body?” Kirsten Kaschock’s manuscript, Numbness, the Practice was semifinalist for the 2017 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prizes.



of which poets should read more.

Bridget Brewer, excerpt from “Beasts of Revelation”

“A flash of lightning from outside the cave, a brief illumination: snake heads, so many snake heads, swaying inches from the tip of her nose. ‘Emmeline,’ the heads say together in a language not legible above ground.  ‘O crooked, ugly Emmeline: you are blessed.’” — from Bridget Brewer’s Beasts of Revelation, semifinalist for the 2017 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prizes.

Fiction by Garett Strickland: “Gills”

“we weren’t so stupid. we’d done our reading, even there in school. we knew of the deformities. we’d seen the portraits in our history book – the habsburgs with their horrible lips, their jaws. mental retardation, et cetera. we knew, we knew. but that wasn’t what we were doing.”

Sandy Florian, The Chair

“Having climbed all five thousand stairs of the towering high-rise, OUR AUTHOR, in a red state of rage, erupts wildly into the room, and there, seeing that he was late to the conference, seeing that there were already so many authors at the table already, a million authors with a billion inflections, OUR AUTHOR thinks to himself that to pose even a single assertion, to converse with even a single poet, simply would not do….” Excerpts from Sandy Florian’s prose manuscript, The Chair, a finalist for the 2015 TS Book Prize.



with humans, primarily.

Pauline Oliveros interviewed by Betsey Biggs

“Pauline Oliveros has been described as a musician, a composer, a performer, a philosopher, an educator, an accessibility designer and the godmother of electronic music, and she has been actively making boundary-dissolving music for more than half a century….”



If you have to ask, then you would do well to find out.