Actually they were extremely small debauches; they rarely went beyond too much lager in the adjacent city of Zenith, or the smiles of a factory girl parading the sordid back avenues, but to Martin, with his pride in taut strength, his joy in a clear brain, they afterward seemed tragic.
The Martin Arrowsmith who had been supercilious toward Pickerbaugh and old Dr. Winters had for Rouncefield and Angus Duer and the other keen taut specialists of the clinic only the respect of the poor and uncertain for the rich and shrewd.
He had never looked so well, so taut and erect, as in khaki.
Once he thought he was talking to Leora, but it proved to be a voice, sexless and intolerant, which said "Number pleeeeeze" with a taut alertness impossible to anyone so indolent as Leora.
By this time it was six o’clock of a fine wide August morning, and as he ceased his swift work, as taut nerves slackened, he looked out of his lofty window and was conscious of the world below: bright roofs, jubilant towers, and a high-decked Sound steamer swaggering up the glossy river.
He blundered into the effect of phage on the mutation of bacterial species—very beautiful, very delicate—and after plodding months when he had been a sane citizen, an almost good husband, an excellent bridge-player, and a rotten workman, he knew again the happiness of high taut insanity.
But Martin was at once a scholar who made osmotic pressure determinations almost interesting, a taut swift man whom she could fancy running or making love, and a lonely youngster who naively believed that here in her soft security she was still the girl who had sat with him by the lagoon, still the courageous woman who had come to him in a drunken room at Blackwater.
There are no more uses of "taut" in the book.
Show samples from other sources
She pulls up her shirt to expose the pale, taut skin of her stomach, marred by a tangle of gouges.
Sabaa Tahir -- An Ember in the Ashes
Four small tents had been set up, too, poles straight and strings taut.
Laurie Halse Anderson -- The Impossible Knife of Memory