TC Tolbert

TC Tolbert often identifies as a trans and genderqueer feminist, collaborator, dancer, and poet but really s/he’s just a human in love with humans doing human things.

TC earned his MFA in Poetry from the University of Arizona in 2005 and is currently Core Faculty in the Low Residency MFA Program at Oregon State University – Cascades. S/he is a nationally certified EMT and in the summer, s/he leads wilderness trips for Outward Bound. TC was selected as Tucson’s Poet Laureate in 2017.

TC’s first full-length collection, Gephyromania, was published by Ahsahta Press in 2014. Gephyromania was selected as one of the top poetry books of 2014 by Entropy and was listed by Eileen Myles as one of her favorites for 2014 in The Gay and Lesbian Review.

TC is also the author of four chapbooks: Conditions/Conditioning(a collaborative chapbook with Jen Hofer, New Lights Press 2014) I: Not He: Not I (Pity Milk Press 2014), spirare (Belladonna* chaplet 2012), and territories of folding (Kore Press 2011). TC was awarded the New Works Artist Grant by the Tucson Pima Arts Council in 2014, the Arizona Commission on the Arts Individual Artist Award in 2012, and a residency at Byrdcliffe. His work won the Arizona Statewide Poetry Competition in 2010, chosen by Linda Russo. His work has been anthologized in The Volta Book of Poets (Sidebrow 2015), The Force of What’s Possible: Writers on Accessibility and the Avant-Garde (Nightboat 2015), The Queer South: LGBTQ Writers on the American South (Sibling Rivalry 2014), and Hick Poetics (Lost Roads 2015). His poems can be found in Everyday Genius, Volt, The Volta, The Pinch, Drunken Boat, Shampoo, A Trunk of Delirium, jubilat, and EOAGH.

TC is co-editor, along with Trace Peterson, of Troubling the Line: Trans and Genderqueer Poetry & Poetics (Nightboat Books 2013) the first anthology of its kind and a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Anthology. The book features the work of 55 trans and genderqueer poets as well as a poetic statement by each author describing the relationship between the author’s experience of the body and their experience of writing poetry.

Creator and director of Made for Flight, a youth empowerment project that utilizes creative writing and kite building to create a living memorial commemorating transgender people who were murdered in the previous year. TC is available for workshops and presentations.

In addition to his ongoing collaboration with Movement Salon, a compositional improvisation group in Tucson, s/he is an Associate Editor with The Feminist Wire. In 2014, TC was honored as one of the “Trans 100” – a list of Trans Change-Makers sponsored by GLAAD and Lambda Legal. In 2015, TC was selected as one of the New American Poets by the Poetry Society of America. S/he agrees with both Gloria Anzaldúa, Voyager, there are no bridges, one builds them as one walks, and John Cage, it’s lighter than you think.




Curriculum Vitae    Workshops Available