For this month’s mini-challenge with the Canadian Book Review Challenge, I picked up 4 books of poetry. It is so nice to delve into a bit of poetry, given that this is the national poetry month. Thank you Melanie for setting up this challenge. It is very interesting, and I have picked up and read books I wouldn’t have otherwise.
Dionne Brand’s book contains a hypnotic, urgent long poem. It is about the bones of fading cultures and idea, about the living museums of spectacle where these bones are found. At the centre of the book is the narrative of Yasmine, a woman living an underground life, fleeing from past actions and regrets, in a perpetual state of movement. She leads a solitary clandestine life, crossing borders actual and timeless.
Some of the poetry is cold-eyed and cynical. Dionne contemplates the periodic crises of the contemporary world. This is a work of deep engagement, sensuality, and ultimate craft from an essential observer of our time and one of the most accomplished poets writing today. It was a real joy to read her book of poetry.
Dionne Brand’s previous collections of poetry include Land to Light On, winner of the Governor General’s Award and the Trillium Book Award; Thirsty, winner of the Pat Lowther Memorial Award and a finalist for the Trillium Book Award, The Toronto Book Award, and the Griffin Poetry Prize; and Inventory, a finalist for the Pat Lowther Memorial Award and the Governor General’s Award. In 2006, Brand was awarded the prestigious Harbourfront Festival Prize, and in 2009, she was named Toronto’s Poet Laureate.