Words "don't hold the world," writes Michael Kenyon in LAMB, "because we/ absorb the shallow fast first meaning." In its line-by-line leaping precision, in the carefully detailed manyness of its particulars, in its expansive, intricate, overarching design, LAMB refutes that laxity. Kenyon combs through time, history, identity, passionately seeking "something lost." LAMB is a long poem of potent lyricism. It enacts what Galway Kinnell says of poetry, that it "sings past even the sadness that begins it." Singing through, Kenyon shapes a resonant world that is representative and yet very much his own.
Michael Kenyon was born in Sale, England, but has lived most of his life on the west coast of Canada. He works as a freelance editor, and has a therapy practice in process-oriented psychology and jin shin do bodymind acupressure. The author of seven books, he is primarily known as a fiction writer. In 1991 Brick Books published Rack of Lamb, a collection of prose poems. His work has appeared in a number of anthologies and magazines, and has aired on CBC. For many years, he served on the editorial board of The Malahat Review.
Stan Dragland was born and brought up in Alberta. He was educated at The University of Alberta and Queen's University. He has taught at the University of Alberta, at The Grammar School, Sudbury, Suffolk, England, in the English Department at the University of Western Ontario in London, and in the Banff Centre Writing Studio. He now lives in St. John's, Newfoundland. He was founding editor of Brick, a journal of reviews and founder of Brick Books, a poetry publishing house, which he still serves as publisher and editor. Between 1993 and 1996 he was poetry editor for McClelland and Stewart. He has published three previous books of fiction: Peckertracks, a Chronicle (shortlisted for the 1978 Books in Canada First Novel Prize), Journeys Through Bookland and Other Passages, and (for children) Simon Jesse's Journey. He has edited collections of essays on Duncan Campbell Scott and James Reaney. Wilson MacDonald's Western Tour, a 'critical collage,' has been followed by two other books of criticism, The Bees of the Invisible: Essays in Contemporary English Canadian Writing and Floating Voice: Duncan Campbell Scott and the Literature of Treaty 9, which won the 1995 Gabrielle Roy Prize for Canadian Literary Criticism. 12 Bars, a prose blues, was co-winner of the bp Nichol Chapbook Award in 2003, the same year Apocrypha: Further Journeys appeared in NeWest Press's Writer-as-Critic series. Apocrypha was winner of the Rogers Cable Non-Fiction Award in 2005. In April 2004 the stage adaptation of HalldÛr Laxness's The Atom Station, co-written with Agnes Walsh, was performed at the LSPU Hall in St. John's. His most recent book is Stormy Weather: Foursomes, prose poetry from Pedlar Press, was shortlisted for the EJ Pratt Poetry Award in 2007. He is editor of the recently-released Hard-Headed and Big-Hearted: Writing Newfoundland, a collection of essays by Newfoundland historian Stuart Pierson.
In his latest collection, a woman named Astatine, named after a radioactive element whose isotopes endure half-lives of mere seconds, haunts the poet, much like Dante's Beatrice. Like Brock's Everyone is C02, Kenyon uses parts of the earth and the ideas behind scientific elements to weave rumination on the nature of life. By using surprising subject matter, both collections have keen emotional depth and insight through unexpected and lyrical styles.
Tell us what you think!
Sign Up or Sign In to add your review or comment.
Related Blog Posts