tasha cotter

Photograph by Matt Valentine

Tasha Cotter is the author of the poetry collections Some Churches (Gold Wake Press, 2013), That Bird Your Heart (Finishing Line Press, 2013), and Girl in the Cave (Tree Light Books, 2016). Winner of the 2015 Delphi Poetry Series, her work has appeared in journals such as Contrary Magazine, NANO fiction, and Booth. A contributor to Women in Clothes (Blue Rider Press, 2014), The Poets on Growth Anthology (Math Paper Press, 2015), and the 2017 Poet’s Market (Writer’s Digest Books), she makes her home in Lexington, Kentucky where she works in higher education. You can find her online at www.tashacotter.com.


Praise for girl in the cave

In Girl in the Cave, Tasha Cotter takes the reader through an honest and hauntingly lyric collection of poems that [...] succeed in finding hope in the often overwhelming dissonance in all the possibility and harsh socioeconomic realities of the Bluegrass State. Cotter captures it all with a detailed and considered eye, illuminating truth “as far as the eye can see.”

Tasha Cotter's Girl in the Cave continually surprises. In "Hydrangea," for instance, when she imagines dying and coming back as a decorative shrub, she writes, "When you bury me / watch out: I’ll spread." This book is like that hydrangea. The poems come back as we go about our day. They insist on being reread. 
—Charles Rafferty, author of THE MAN ON THE TOWER

Like the hunter losing his own way in the dark pursuit or the singular thistle swirling up from a crack in a decrepit building, these poems move between light and darkness in pursuit of emotional truth. The speakers in these poems follow and mourn the fissures of their pasts, knowing all the while each split makes a future upthrust possible. Cotter is a master at recreating the trapdoor effect of sudden, deep recollection. Again and again, “[t]ime / cascades like water over the edge, / pooling past the shale and sandstone.” One speaker asks, “Why does memory trigger the body / and defeat the mind?” Girl in the Cave offers a beautiful answer, both haunted and haunting.
—Julie Hensley, author of VIABLE and LANDFALL

In her wise new collection Girl in the Cave, Tasha Cotter show us how “Loss spins its own myth,” as she explores metaphors for retreat and remaking, the primitive wish to escape when “home is a heartache.” Fearless language illuminating a rural landscape suggests a new kind of pastoral and a new kind of female strength and freedom in it, one that draws on both the primitive forces of the wild world and a keen instinct for the entrapments of domesticity, the “noise and anger” of modern life.   
—Lynnell Edwards, author of COVET


Online Publications

A Guide to Getting Away“ in BOAAT Press

Hydrangea” in The Dialogist

Girl as Infidel” in Tahoma Literary Review



Speaking of Marvels: Discovery in Familiar Places

Black Fox Literary Magazine: Recovering History

Tell Tell Poetry: Emotional Mythologies & Destinations of Retreat

Chicago Review of Books: Coming soon!