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Brayan Salinas is a young Taos poet well on his way to being a global poet. He recently completed college with honors, published a stunning book of poems called "Close Contact," and next month will be starting his graduate studies at the prestigious -- and extremely selective -- Iowa Writers' Workshop. He is home for the summer getting ready to leave for Iowa in August, and sat down with us to answer a few questions.

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I’m new here. Three years is nothing, as my next-door neighbor says; his family measures their time in Taos by centuries. I don’t want to talk here about what’s happening at Taos Center for the Arts (TCA); there is plenty going on (and you have the old marquee and our website for that).

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Last spring, at the height of some of the most anxiety-ridden moments of the pandemic, my father read a poem to me over the phone. He's 89 this year, and while he's vibrant and healthy I don't take for granted any opportunity to hear his voice -- especially when he's reciting a poem.

The poem, Mary Oliver's Spring, describes the emergence of a black bear from its winter slumber. Oliver writes: "There is only one question: how to love this world."

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Within weeks of occupying her casita as a Wurlitzer artist in residence the summer of 2003, Veronica Golos, a New Yorker (upper west side) said, "I showed up with six boxes of books, no car and the intent to finish my first book. The [Encebado] fire was happening, and they gave us evacuation instructions within weeks of arriving in Taos." Golos was not evacuated and two months into the three-month residency she called her husband David Pérez and said, "we're moving here."

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'Moonglow on Mercy Street" is a collection of 50 poems, most written during 2020, that "comprise a kaleidoscopic palette of tones, moods and styles, in crafting living mythology from the world at large and within," according to their author, John Biscello. 

Arron Shiver was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, 40 some years ago, and spent a great deal of his youth in Taos. Here is where he discovered acting quite early on in life at high school with famed Taos High School drama teacher Nancy Jenkins, and in the rich community theater that has long thrived here. He was married for several years, to artist Anaïs Rumfelt (who appears on our cover with their son, Jackson). He has appeared in many motion pictures and television shows, as well as onstage. He lives in Los Angeles but visits often. His mother, Melody Swann, founder of Cowgirls Design, still lives here, and Jackson Shiver splits his time between LA and Taos.

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Veronica Golos is a founding co-editor of the Taos Journal of International Poetry and Art, former poetry editor for the Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion and core faculty at Tupelo Press' Writers Conferences.