Last Chance for the Tarzan Holler: Poems Background

Last Chance for the Tarzan Holler: Poems Background

Last Chance for the Tarzan Holler was the sixth collection of poetry published by American writer Thylias Moss in 1998. Moss was born in 1954 in Cleveland, Ohio to parents of mixed racial identities. Her childhood included instances of witnessing violence and sexual assault, which would leave a profound impact upon Moss. Her African-American identity also provoked racism in her predominantly white high school. This time, however, was incredibly productive for Moss as she began to turn her attention to poetry. After graduating high school, Moss studied at Oberlin College and received an M.A. from the University of New Hampshire.

Moss' first work of poetry, Hosiery Seems on a Bowlegged Woman" appeared in 1983, followed by Pyramid of Bone in 1989. During the 1980s she also wrote several plays, and in 1993 she accepted a position at the University of Michigan. In 1995 she received a Guggenheim Fellowship for Creative Arts and the following year she was awarded a prestigious MacArthur Fellowship.

Last Chance for Tarzan Hollow was published in 1997. The featured poems are often lengthy and expansive, covering a vast terrain of subject matter, including racial identity, sexuality, and gender. Moss' imagery is stark and vivid, and her language incredibly descriptive. Her tone is at once playful, while also interrogative and discerning. For such a talented work, it is no surprise that the book was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Moss has since published three works of poetry, an autobiography, and a novel, New Kiss Horizon, released in 2017.

Update this section!

You can help us out by revising, improving and updating this section.

Update this section

After you claim a section you’ll have 24 hours to send in a draft. An editor will review the submission and either publish your submission or provide feedback.

Cite this page