Alien, Correspondent

By Antony Di Nardo

Alien, Correspondent
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This arresting first collection is, in part, a delicately balanced look at Beirut from the perspective of a Westerner who lives and works in that remarkable city. Whether writing about the Middle East or about domestic life, Di Nardo refuses to romanticize; he doesn't moralize ... Read more


Overview

This arresting first collection is, in part, a delicately balanced look at Beirut from the perspective of a Westerner who lives and works in that remarkable city. Whether writing about the Middle East or about domestic life, Di Nardo refuses to romanticize; he doesn't moralize about the causes of perennial conflicts. He is that rare thing: a clear-eyed witness.

Here and there Starbucks coffee cups collide
with service taxis and re-assign the chaos, litter
the brittle landscape of the coast, while the world
command picks through the sands of lawlessness
for just a grain of what remains of itself,
the little air of familiarity defunct, despised and fed
to those on foot like scraps to gutter cats in the shade
of too many parked cars that took the place
of date palms standing on the sidewalks.
Yet no one would ever leave their shift at the wheel,
or turn home in the grim belief life's purpose is that unreal.
(from "Oh the streets of West Beirut")

Antony Di Nardo

Antony Di Nardo was born in Montreal and has lived in southern and northwestern Ontario, Toronto, the Eastern Townships, and Germany. He now lives in Oshawa although he has been teaching in Beirut for the past three years at the International College. His poetry appears widely in journals across Canada and internationally.

Reviews

"Di Nardo never sacrifices the ethical imperative of the witness for the political sermonizing of the social media pundit . .. a unique perspective on violence and its myriad manifestations. " Ð Atef Laouyene, Canadian Literature

"Di Nardo's frustration and pathos is intensified by his love for all sides. His poems intend to sing [Beirut] to redeem its image . .. not all crisis and no pleasure . .. he carries on the sixties for Ômaking love, not war,' and what is wrong with that?" Ð George Elliott Clarke, The Halifax Chronicle-Herald

"It is Di Nardo's recognition of the simple, almost absurd pleasures that lends power to his words. He is not promising anything unrealistic or undeliverable . .. a jolting amalgam of texture, mood, and words . .. " Ð Carolyne Van Der Meer, subTerrain

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