Indie Rock candidly focuses on a queer poet/musician’s life in Newfoundland, and his personal struggles with addiction, OCD, and trauma. This intelligent and punchy collection is steeped in musicality and the geographies and cadences of Newfoundland. With an astute attention to form, rhythm, and aesthetics, Joe Bishop tells an honest and contemporary coming-of-age story about an artist alienated from, but fascinated by, the world he inhabits. Readers dealing with gri... [READ MORE]
Sonja Ruth Greckol’s Monitoring Station enters a slipstream of space and planetary language, circling time, embodying loss and longing, generating and regenerating in a faltering climate. Orbiting through a mother’s death, a grandbaby’s birth, and a pandemic summer, these poems loop and fragment in expansive and empathetic ways. The title poem locates a settler voice revisiting Treaties 6 and 7 and the Métis lands of her Alberta childhood, while the ... [READ MORE]
In there’s more, Uchechukwu Peter Umezurike takes on the rich concepts of home and belonging: home lost and regained, home created with others and with the land, home as “anywhere we find something to love.” Giving voice to the experiences of migrant and other marginalized citizens whose lives society tends to overlook, this collection challenges the oppressive systems that alienate us from one another and the land. Carefully built lyric meditations combi... [READ MORE]
Kasia Van Schaik’s debut story collection follows the journey of Charlotte Ferrier, a child of divorce raised by a single mother in a small town in British Columbia after moving from South Africa. Mother and daughter wait out the end of a bad year in a Mexican hotel; a friendship is tested as forest fires demolish Charlotte’s town; a childhood friend disappears while travelling through Europe; and a girl on the beach examines the memories of dying jellyfish. Th... [READ MORE]
You Might Be Sorry You Read This is a stunning debut, revealing how breaking silences and reconciling identity can refine anger into something both useful and beautiful. A poetic memoir that looks unflinchingly at childhood trauma (both incestuous rape and surviving exposure in extreme cold), it also tells the story of coming to terms with a hidden Indigenous identity when the poet discovered her Métis heritage at age 38. This collection is a journey of pain, belongin... [READ MORE]
This poignant debut by Gavin Bradley explores the emotional toll of different kinds of separation: from a partner, a previously held sense of self, or a home and the people left behind. The main narrative describes the deterioration of a long-term relationship, interweaving poems dealing with the loneliness of immigration and the anxiety of separation from Northern Ireland, the poet’s homeland. These personal poems enter their stories through a variety of characters ... [READ MORE]
Arborophobia, the latest collection by award-winning poet Nancy Holmes, is a poetic spiritual reckoning. Its elegies, litanies, and indictments concern wonder, guilt, and grief about the journey of human life and the state of the natural world. When a child attempts suicide and western North America burns and the creep of mortality closes in, is spiritual and emotional solace possible or even desirable? Answers abound in measured, texturally intimate, and often surprising ... [READ MORE]
Gospel Drunk follows a speaker’s journey to find clarity and identity as he contemplates his Catholic upbringing and struggles with loneliness and alcohol addiction. Sharp, intoxicating imagery and a minimalist aesthetic combine in these poems to explore some of our darkest and strongest belief systems, dismantling them with wit and wisdom. Poignant boyhood memories of hockey coaches as “dragons in suits” collide with critiques of “the broken bicycl... [READ MORE]
Micheline Maylor’s The Bad Wife is an intimate, first-hand account of how to ruin a marriage. This is a story of divorce, love, and what should have been, told in a brave and unflinching voice. Pulling the reader into a startling web of sensuality, guilt, resentment, and pleasure, this collection asks: what if you set off a bomb in your own house? What if you lose love and destroy everything you ever knew? These poems have a disarming immediacy, full of surprising im... [READ MORE]
Deriving is a feminist exploration of the creation of life, of family, and of words themselves. Delisle asks: How does past infertility colour the experience of new motherhood? How do historical voices echo in the present? How does language impact our ways of being in the world? These poems embrace the rich material of mothering with unapologetic honesty, confronting the experiences that some would keep hidden. Fear, anger, envy mix with joy and ultimately hope, as Delisle... [READ MORE]
“I returned to the same respiratory therapist for my annual checkup. I told her that her words to me, ‘You look good for your age,’ had inspired a book. ‘Wow!’ she said. ‘You wrote a whole book about that?’ ‘Twenty-nine kick-ass writers wrote it,’ I said. She gave me a thumbs up.” From the Preface
This is a book about women and ageism. There are twenty-nine contributing writers, ranging in age from th... [READ MORE]
You lie awake,
this patchwork guilt.
Remorse, a code
you live by; distress calls
for someone to blame.
Following the deaths of her Mennonite grandparents, Angeline Schellenberg began exploring their influence on her life. Her elegiac love letter to them articulates her grief against the backdrop of their involuntary emigration. She artfully captures the immigrant ... [READ MORE]
In the arena, she shot cigarettes and coins
from her trusting husband’s hand. Some women
wished she would miss.
—from “Little Sure Shot”
Kat Cameron’s poetry illuminates the unsung perspectives of the women of the West, creating a compelling narrative that reflects the poet’s own struggles with sorrow. She conjures ghosts and weaves together insights on loss, memory, and the impacts of boom and bust.
... [READ MORE]
Social Justice Poetry
Spoken-word poet Valerie Mason-John unsettles readers with potent images of ongoing trauma from slavery and colonization. Her narratives range from the beginnings of the African Diaspora to the story of a stowaway on the Windrush, from racism and sexism in Trump’s America to the wide impact of the Me Too movement. Stories of entrapment, sexual assault, addictive behaviours, and rave culture are told and contrasted to the strengthening and ... [READ MORE]
There is beauty
in the teacup
or beaded purses
too small to carry
anything but anger.
— from “Inheritance”
Marita Dachsel’s third poetry collection explores parenthood, love, and the grief of losing those both close and distant. In the tradition of Karen Solie and Suzanne Buffam, and with a touch of Canadian Gothic, Dachsel’s poetic skills unfold in a varie... [READ MORE]
The late sun falls slowly into the afternoon of your eyes, and there
it pauses as one might pause to take a breath —from “Lost”
Nothing Is But You and I, the breathtaking final volume in the Apostrophes series, reveals poet E.D. Blodgett at his most accomplished. Lyrical grace meets exquisite technique as Blodgett fathoms intimacy, knowledge, and being. The poems allow us to listen to one side of an intimate conversation; yet despite th... [READ MORE]
In this collection, E. Alex Pierce enters the territory of memory embedded in landscape where “language tied to the land” evokes the cadence of tidal rivers and creates a fluid world. She traces the fragmented childhood beginnings that lead to the formation of a young artist who moves from music, through theatre, to poetry. The passionate relationships and complex juxtapositions of art and performance that form an artist’s life find voice here in the symp... [READ MORE]
The verb esperar means to wait. It also means to hope.—“The Past Was a Small Notebook, Much Scribbled-Upon”, Cora Siré
Waiting, that most human of experiences, saturates all of our lives. We spend part of each day waiting—for birth, death, appointments, acceptance, forgiveness, redemption. This collection of thirty-two personal essays is as much about hope as it is about waiting. Featuring literary voices from the renowned to the e... [READ MORE]
Alice Major observes the comedy and the tragedy of this human-dominated moment on Earth. Major’s most persistent question—“Where do we fit in the universe?”—is made more urgent by the ecological calamity of human-driven climate change. Her poetry leads us to question human hierarchies, loyalties, and consciousness, and challenges us to find some humility in our overblown sense of our cosmic significance.
Now, welcome to the Anthro... [READ MORE]
Rain Shadow is a collection of poetry that explores the fraught relationship between the natural world and humans yearning to connect with something greater than themselves. The poems range through destabilized lives and landscapes, fathoming presence and absence, transformation and oblivion. They outline the major questions of our time as the poet crisscrosses western Canada and the Pacific Northwest. Witty, playful, serious, and heartsore, Rain Shadow seeks to understand... [READ MORE]