Signed Chapbook: “The Whetting Stone”


A uniquely dark work, The Whetting Stone contains few poems that have been published before. Asked why, Taylor Mali says, “in both of the books of poetry I published after Rebecca’s death I tried to include a few poems about her. But they were always so unlike the rest of the manuscript that they couldn’t stay in. I’ve known for a decade that all my poems about Rebecca would need to be published in a collection by themselves.” Winner of the 2017 Rattle Chapbook Prize, The Whetting Stone is that collection. Readers familiar with Mali as a poetry slam champion, spoken word artist, or vocal advocate of teachers will clearly recognize an artist trying to wrestle all aspects of his craft into service as he contends with a new role, that of a widower who needs “no more reminders of love’s limits (from “Nightly Prayers to the Same Old Ghosts”).