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The Last Time as We Are

4.32  ·  Rating Details ·  204 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
You don't need a classroom to be a teacher, and you don't need to be a teacher to help someone learn a lesson. Taylor Mali's poetry explores this truth in entertaining and plainspoken ways because "the last thing this world needs is another poem" ("The Call to What We Know"). Whether discussing the language of love or the love of language, the poems contained in The Last T ...more
Hardcover, 113 pages
Published August 1st 2009 by Write Bloody Publishing (first published May 30th 2009)
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Ronnie Stephens
Dec 25, 2014 Ronnie Stephens rated it it was amazing
Taylor Mali has long been one of my favorite poets because he never apologizes for his overwhelming desire to be the best at everything he does. Often described as the "villain" of the slam community, Mali has an attention to detail and craft that is unmatched by most performance poets. I was so excited to see this collection on the Write Bloody Publishing site that I ordered a hardback copy before it was even released. The first time I read it, it took a day. Since then, I've read it at least a ...more
C. Derick
Aug 05, 2015 C. Derick rated it really liked it
Mali is a didactic poet par excellence. I became familiar with his work during the def poetry jam and his valorization of teachers led me into the public school classroom for several years. Mali's work is often hyperbolic and highly emotive, and many of his earlier poems worked significantly better in performance than on the page. However, in the last ten years, without losing any of the performative or didactic power, Mali's poetry has become more readable on the page--the cues not relying as m ...more
Apr 07, 2011 C rated it really liked it
There are a lot of cool poems in here, even if he is a bit samey with certain phrasing. He's really original in others, I don't read a whole lot of funny poetry and there are funny parts.

His best funny poem you can watch here if you're thinking about getting the book (available on Kindle, as a book of poetry, means you'll always get a semi-favorable review) it's called "I'll Fight You For the Library" :
Vicki Sherbert
Nov 01, 2014 Vicki Sherbert rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
Poetry stays with us long after we read it. From this collection "The Ocean Inside, or, Why One Teacup Fell and Not the Other" reminds me of the need to fill the empty places with what sustains me. "Miracle Workers" articulates common yet unique moments in the lives of teachers . Mali captures the essence of lived experiences with his honest humor and heartfelt wonderings.
Jun 12, 2013 Kemlo rated it liked it
Shelves: poetry
Enjoying seeing Taylor Mali at a Capital Center for the Arts school series event and was inspired to buy this book afterwards. Although I don't agree with all of his ideas about teaching (as presented in some of this poems), I like his sense of humor.
Feb 09, 2016 Kendall rated it liked it
This collection was largely disappointing for me. At times, too rhyme-y. At others, too preachy. I'm fine with a conversational voice in poetry, but Mali misses the mark more than he hits it in "The Last Time as We Are".
Nov 25, 2012 Joe rated it really liked it

I think Mali's poetry is best performed aloud,and this collection is no exception. Some of the wording is overdone, but most shows brilliance.
Troy Ketch
Dec 14, 2013 Troy Ketch rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
I really enjoyed these poems. They are focused on story and, for the most part, easy to understand. Many of them are about teaching; I like those the best. Thank you, Melanie Cameron.
A 3 star pic but 4 in the moment. Especially when you can call Mali's passion to mind. The next time I reread I'll likely stop back by and give it a star bump.
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Taylor Mali is a former teacher and classically trained actor who now makes his living as a professional poet. One of the original poets to appear on the HBO series Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry, he is a veteran of the poetry slam and the author of What Learning Leaves and several spoken word CDs and DVDs. He lives and writes in New York City. For more information, visit ...more
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