Rouge

By Adrian De Leon

Rouge
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To commemorate a tragedy.

This series of poems is a response to the 2012 mass shooting at a block party on Danzig Street, Scarborough (Toronto). The city's east end becomes a source of poetic inspiration, and the two intersecting subway lines provide the organizing structure. ... Read more


Overview

To commemorate a tragedy.

This series of poems is a response to the 2012 mass shooting at a block party on Danzig Street, Scarborough (Toronto). The city's east end becomes a source of poetic inspiration, and the two intersecting subway lines provide the organizing structure. From west to east, and north to south--Kipling to McCowan, Finch to Downsview--the stations on the way inspiring form, voice, and content, meditation, commentary, and geometry. The City is the Poem.

The Discovery Walk,
inviting my well-worked Clarks
to pry my feet from the confines
of the station,
wasn't necessary to make
a most marvelous Discovery:
the bus sign, hung with steel
--from "Old Mill"

Adrian De Leon

Adrian De Leon is a writer and educator from Manila by way of Scarborough. He is the author of two poetry collections: Rouge (Mawenzi House, 2018), and barangay: an offshore poem (Buckrider Books/Wolsak & Wynn, 2021). He lives in Los Angeles, where he is an ethnic studies professor at the University of Southern California.

Reviews

"[A]n enjoyable and various book all around. " --University of Toronto Quarterly

"Rouge is spiky and caustic yet delights in more ways than you could count Toronto the Good's abundant pleasures, quirks and treasures. " --Philippine Daily Inquirer

"For De Leon, Toronto and Scarborough are cities filled with life and inexhaustible rhythm. They're messy, complicated, boring, romantic, fun, dangerous, and, for better or worse, discoverable. " --Debutantes

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