Sorry About the Fire

By (author): Colleen Coco Collins

A CBC Books’ Poetry Collection to Watch for in Spring 2024

I wanted a good bewildering, / down deep, / as the keep of a castle.

With a voice as ungovernable and determined as Prometheus—who stole fire from Zeus only to face dire consequences—Colleen Coco Collins’ debut poems are daring dispatches from beyond the margins: light-filled flares sent up from the edge of language, sentience, land, and story. Drawing on all of her multidisciplinary enamorations and rendered through the triple vision of her Irish, French, and Odawa heritage, Sorry About the Fire introduces not just a poet, but a stunningly original sensibility.

Colleen Coco Collins

Colleen Coco Collins

Colleen Coco Collins [she/they] is an interdisciplinary artist of Irish, French, and Odawa descent, working in songwriting, performance, poetry and visual arts. She’s worked as a gallery director, in forestry, fossil preparation, and renovation; as an autism support worker, teacher, and women’s shelter counsellor. Her writing, music, and art practice centers on temporality, presumptions of sentience, subversion, rhythm, gesture, geographies, biophonies, frequencies, the ouroboric, the peripatetic, love and the polyglottic. Hailing from Antler River/Deshkan Ziibiing/London, Ontario, Coco has studied at universities in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, New Zealand, and Ireland. She lives litorally in rural Port Greville, Mi’kma’ki/Nova Scotia amidst crows, coyotes, grackles, bees, humpback, lichen and fox.


Praise for Sorry About the Fire

“The poems in this slim volume, the first from artist and songwriter Colleen Coco Collins, feel richly off-kilter, exciting as they bound from earth and the material and felt treasures and on through the infinite.”
—Toronto Star

“Fealty to the sentient. To every mostleast thing, to every impulse (sentient), gesture (sentient). Re-resourcing language to equip it to be fit: bawaajigan. telamon. mothaitheacht … Collins’ Sorry About the Fire is the story of a dark time, in which the strike of language on the texture of reality sounds a sharp off-note—and sparks; and/or the story of a light-drenched time in which a sensibility cracks open, beholding/becoming.”
—Luke Hathaway, author of The Affirmations

“Drawn to rims, arising patterns, nervy and peripheral flow, a hard-won lexicon, oblique echoes of crow, and twist of contrapposto, the Irish-French-Indigenous poet windhovers and burns through words and pages until the nadir of ember and ash.”
—The Miramichi Reader

“Colleen Coco Collins employs vocabulary as a joyful precision tool, re-earthing the intimate relations between wonder, grief, and the more-than-human world. Embodying the playful and destructive energy of the cosmos, her poems vibrate like some kind of ancient, sacred rock & roll.”
—Shary Boyle


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64 Pages
8in * 5in * .3in


April 02, 2024





Book Subjects:

POETRY / Women Authors

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