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Showing posts from April, 2022

Kevin Irie: The Tantramar Re-Vision

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John James Audubon, Whooping Crane (Sandhill Crane), 1835. Image from Museum of Nebraska Art                      In                     the marsh grass,                      wind                    stirs up some business           I don't know about.                                                           This exciting news about sandhill cranes  taking up residence in the salt marshes between Nova Scotia and New Brunswick sends me back today to Kevin Irie's luminous book of poems, The Tantramar Re-vision (McGill-Queen's, 2021). In these poems, instances of the extraordinary sometimes leap, sometimes slide into a landscape of shifting moods.            Something moves downstream                past thinking of us: Encounters are as likely to be with conundrums and meditative correspondences as with things.           How did it end as                      a small dark brush           sweeping the earth           up into a stillness           like an answer              

COIN OF ANOTHER WORLD: EDINBURGH NOTEBOOK by Valerie Mejer Caso, translated by Michelle Gil-Montero

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Edinburgh Notebook (Action Books) "Poetry -- that catacomb art which refuses to perish with our mortal beings"*  One of the reasons I love poetry is its way of keeping company with grief. This late winter and early spring I've been surging with grief. The catalog of particulars: another dictator pushing the world into war; misguided people trying to bully away a pandemic with trucks and noise; plastics riddling oceans; species vanishing; the earth heating up....Turning to poetry helps to restore my sense that there's more to humanity than collapse and destruction.  It's in this mood I return, again, to Valerie Mejer Caso's  Cuaderno de Edimburgo (Edinburgh Notebook,  in Michelle Gil-Montero's brilliant English). Poems of mysterious power and agitation document a loved brother's death by suicide and give luminous expression to suffering, calling us to confront our own sorrow. Collages by the author and photographs by Barry Shapiro punctuate the poem seq