Jessica Tanck

Jessica Tanck is the author of Winter Here (UGA Press, 2024), winner of the 2022 Georgia Poetry Prize. A graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s MFA program. Her work has appeared in The Adroit JournalAlaska Quarterly ReviewBeloit Poetry JournalBlackbirdColorado ReviewDIAGRAMGulf CoastKenyon ReviewThe Los Angeles ReviewMeridianNew Ohio ReviewNinth Letter, and others. 

Jess lives and writes in Salt Lake City, where she is a Vice Presidential Fellow and Ph.D. student in English Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Utah. She serves as the Editor of Quarterly West

Poet's Website

Samson et Dalila, Op. 47 

I would wonder over it often: the welt
on my teacher's throat. My hand cupped
round the neck of my cello, hollow

I hugged to me. So thin the music 
stand, so thin what kept the din of strings 
from the electric weather

of my blood. In profile my teacher's
tucked hair, frown, perpetual bruise.
Horsehair on metal, purr torn from a gate

thrown open—and to what? 
Only when she lifted her violin to play
would I understand the mark—

how close she held the carved thing
to tear its music out.

--from The Cincinnati Review, 20.2 (