new zealand electronic poetry centre


Tapa Notebooks


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Full text of Terese Svoboda's Tapa Notebook [PDF: 3MB]

A Guggenheim fellow, Terese Svoboda is the author of 19 books, including eight books of poetry. Theatrix is forthcoming in 2021. Professor Harriman's Steam Air-Ship (Eyewear) is her most recent. Anything That Burns You: A Portrait of Lola Ridge, Radical Poet (Schaffner Press) appeared in paper in 2018, and Great American Desert (Mad Creek), stories about climate from prehistoric times to the future, was published in 2019. She has won the Bobst Prize in fiction, the Iowa Prize for poetry, an NEH grant for translation, the Graywolf Nonfiction Prize, a Jerome Foundation prize for video, the O. Henry award for the short story, a Bobst Prize for the novel, and a Pushcart Prize for the essay. She is a three time winner of the New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship, and has been awarded Headlands, James Merrill, Hawthornden, Yaddo, McDowell, and Bellagio residencies. Her opera WET premiered at L.A.'s Disney Hall in 2005. She has taught at Williams, Columbia School of the Arts, William and Mary, San Francisco State, Bennington, Sarah Lawrence, New School, Fairleigh Dickinson, Davidson, the Universities of Tampa, Miami and Hawaii, as well as in St. Petersburg, Tbilisi, and Nairobi for the Summer Literary Seminars.

After videoing Terese reading and talking at Lake Kaniere in Westland and at the Westland District Library in Hokitika in May 2018, nzepc presented her with a Tapa Notebook.

Terese writes:

I loved having the notebook but found it intimidating to think that my notes would be enchaliced in Special Collections! Since it was an exceptionally busy year of travel—from Hokitika to Tblisi, Georgia—I decided to divide the book between the two locations. The tour through New Zealand was occasioned by the launch of the paperback edition of Anything That Burns You: A Portrait of Lola Ridge, Radical Poet, in an effort to apprise the New Zealand literatti of Ridge's marvelous poems set in their country. Tblisi was the location for a teaching gig for the Summer Literary Seminars. I had worked for them before, twice in Nairobi, and once in St. Petersburg. The students were often graduate students or retirees or wanderers, including Tusiata Avia in Russia. A country at the crossroads of war and wine, Georgia impressed me with its astonishing mountains, and the nearly overpowering presence of Russia pressing on its borders.


Terese Svoboda
Photo credit: Leslie Daniels


Last updated 12 August, 2019