Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

Remembering Eleanor

Eleanor Ross Taylor is memorialized in a Washington Post obituary and in an essay in Shenandoah

January 12, 2012 There have been surprisingly few tributes to Eleanor Ross Taylor in the national media during the two weeks since her death: The New York Times, often considered the newspaper of record for books in the United States, still hasn’t published a single line about her loss, which would be a shocking omission but for the Gray Lady’s undeniable bias against poetry. So it’s all the more worth noting the coverage of Taylor’s life and literary significance in both The Washington Post and Shenandoah:

From the obituary in The Washington Post:

“Over the years, many times I would say to poems, ‘Go away, I don’t have time now,’ ” Mrs. Taylor said in 1997. “But that was part laziness. If you really want to write, you can. I did keep the house scrubbed and waxed and that sort of thing.”

From an essay by Elizabeth Meade Howard in Shenandoah:

One afternoon at Eleanor’s for tea, among them was a young woman eager to launch her writing career. Eleanor, demure in her gray cashmere cardigan, commented just above a whisper: ‘We start our careers, then sex becomes the most powerful thing in your life and you get married. It confuses everything.’ She passed the chocolate cookies to silence.