poems by Emily McGiffin
ISBN 1-897141-66-1, 9781897141663
Subduction Zone is a book of meditations on empire — the desires and agendas of empire, and empire’s detritus. From a sweeping panorama of imperial landscapes both classical and modern, it carries us into the troubled natural beauty of the Philippines. Its third and final sequence brings Canadians home, to the manifestations of global technocracy in northwest BC. | | Whether contemplating rain forests in the Visayan Islands or Edward Burtynsky’s photographs, these poems gaze unflinchingly at the exploitation and upheaval that define several millennia of global politics. Their questions are both urgent and intricate. Who are we individually, collectively, in this era of looming ecological collapse? How do we acknowledge the blood on our hands yet bear witness to the beauty that remains? Pteropod is a collection of great integrity and ambition: trenchant, political, shot through with ravishing eroticism and tenderness. Emily McGiffin is poised to become one of the major voices in Canadian poetry.
During the five years that Emily McGiffin lived in northwest BC, she became proficient in the fine art of firewood splitting. She holds an MSc from the University of London and has worked and studied in Italy, Sierra Leone and the Philippines. Her poetry, essays, reviews and journalistic articles, widely published in magazines across Canada, have most recently appeared in Arc Poetry Magazine and Contemporary Verse 2. Between Dusk and Night, her first poetry collection, was a finalist for the Raymond Souster Award and the Canadian Authors’ Association Poetry Prize. She currently lives in Toronto where she is a PhD student at York University.
NEWS: Emily McGiffin’s Subduction Zone has been nominated for the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment’s Environmental Creative Writing Book Award. The mission of ASLE is to inspire and promote intellectual work in the environmental humanities and arts. Nominees of this year’s book award will be received at a June 2015 conference at the University of Idaho, in Moscow, Idaho. The judges for the book award were Ross Gay, Scott Knickerbocker and Joni Tevis. Here is an endorsement of Subduction Zone by one of the judges:
“McGiffin’s poetry startles and provokes, even as it pleases and draws me in. Impressively, she takes on subject matter as immense as empire— its power over us yet vulnerability to self-destruction— and makes it vivid, personal and immediate.”
Congratulations, Emily, from Pedlar Press.
How You Were Born
short fiction by Kate Cayley
ISBN 1-897141-65-3, 9781897141656
15 October 2014 release
How You Were Born is a collection of stories that investigate the bizarre, the tragi-comic and the unbelievable elements that run through human lives. An aging academic becomes convinced that he is haunted by his double. Two children believe their neighbours are war criminals in hiding. A dwarf in a circus dreams of a perfect wedding. An eleven-year-old girl becomes obsessed with the acrobat who visits her small town. Two women fall in love over a painting of the apocalypse. A group of siblings put their senile Holocaust survivor father into institutional care, while failing to notice that he is reliving the past. Each story examines, from a different angle, the difficult business of love, loyalty and memory. With elegance and restraint, in spare language, these narratives run the gamut from realistic to uncanny, from ordinary epiphanies to extremities of experience. Settings range from present-day Toronto, to small town Ontario in 1914, to West Virginia in 1967, characters ranging from the very young to the very old, the manifestly unhinged to the ostensibly sane. These are dark stories in which light finds a foothold, and in which connections, frequently missed or mislaid, offer redemption.
Kate Cayley’s poetry and short stories have appeared in literary magazines across the country. Her play, After Akhmatova, was produced by Tarragon Theatre, where she is a playwright-in-residence, and a young adult novel, The Hangman in the Mirror, was published by Annick Press in 2011. Last year Brick Books published her first poetry collection, When This World Comes to an End. How You Were Born is Cayley’s first collection of short fiction.
Stan Dragland is a talented, prolific, critically acclaimed and widely respected author who recently wrote Deep Too, a book full of penis jokes, a feminist text that rises above stereotype and traditional roles, and the either/or choices they so often involve, offering a funny and biting look at male strut and competition. Literary critic, editor, novelist, poet, born and raised in Alberta, Dragland studied at the University of Alberta, where he received a BA and MA, and earned a PhD from Queen’s University. He retired from teaching in 1999 and now lives in St. John’s NL.
trade paper, 192 pages, $22
cover art by Sarah Hillock
design by Beth Oberholtzer
printed in Canada by Coach House Printing, Toronto