Naked Trees is a meditation on urban trees. It explores the life and death of these trees and the people who live with them. We see the trees through the eyes of a child, who finds her tree friendly and inviting, or view the tree's life through the thoughts of a leaf, promised flight, but denied it by the capricious wind. Terpstra finishes the collection with a section on varieties, composed of poems on individual tree types such as prunus serotina and utility pole.
Since the early 1980s, John Terpstra has been a mainstay of the Canadian literary scene, publishing both poetry and non-fiction. He has also been a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Charles Taylor Prize. He lives in Hamilton, Ontario, where he works as a writer, cabinetmaker and carpenter.
Wesley Bates was born in the Yukon and raised in Saskatchewan. He now lives in Clifford, Ontario, where he runs West Meadow Press. Known primarily as a wood engraver, Bates’ work has been commissioned by numerous publishers, including Penguin, Random House, McClelland & Stewart, The Porcupine’s Quill and Gaspereau Press.
"Naked Treesis finely grained, thoughtful prose poetry with only a few decorative knots, and the woodcut illustrations by Wesley Bates fit the text like a well-glued joint in your best furniture. " - The Chronicle Herald
"He tells of towering white oaks along the QEW and the black walnut trees of Hamilton, discusses the beauty and functionality of utility poles, and the joy of creating a work of art from black cherry wood. " - The Globe and Mail
"Naked Trees is a journey to be taken and re-taken, like a favourite path or street revisited. Perhaps the best way to read it is to embrace it as an invitation?a call to look more closely at the trees you encounter, in all environments and seasons. " - Hamilton Arts Council
Tell us what you think!
Sign Up or Sign In to add your review or comment.