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Poetry Canadian


by (author) Kevin Connolly

House of Anansi Press Inc
Initial publish date
Apr 2005
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2005
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  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Apr 2005
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What are we thinking at any given moment? What happens to a thought as that moment, on its way to oblivion, collides with its successor?

Rambunctious, witty, joyous, and bittersweet, drift is an investigation conducted by a truly unfettered imagination. In fluid, sparkling cadences, Kevin Connolly's poems let the mind's downtime have the stage for a change -- the desert sky transformed; Spring Break as viewed by passing skipjacks; narratives of danger and dream narrative; a meditation on the business end of a sea cucumber; figures of history disfigured and left to wander the consumer grid -- such are the entirely odd, entirely current events in Connolly's world, a realm that stands at an acute angle from the place we normally live in but which we all seem to drift into. As one of Connolly's own high-voltage sonnets states, "what stops the heart starts the world."

In drift's constant juxtaposition of abundance and loneliness, we hear what it is to confront a new century, having quite likely failed during the last. We're reminded, by a voice unlike any other on the Canadian landscape, that our solitude is painful yet precious.

About the author

Kevin Connolly’s previous collections include Asphalt Cigar (finalist, Gerald Lampert Award), Drift (winner, Trillium Poetry Prize), and Revolver (finalist, Griffin Poetry Prize, Trillium Book Award). He teaches poetry in the MFA program at the University of Guelph-Humber and has been poetry faculty at the Banff Centre’s May Writing Studio. Connolly was poetry editor at Toronto’s Coach House Books from 2008–2013, and currently selects and edits poetry for McClelland & Stewart.

Kevin Connolly's profile page


  • Winner, Trillium Book Award for Poetry

Editorial Reviews

Whitman established his individuality by incorporating multitudes. Connolly, on the other hand, lives in a world where it's nearly impossible to be an individual. Everyone represents everyone else - everything reflects everything, every day another building of mirrors goes up - and everyone, rather than containing multitudes, has become contained by multitudes.

Chicago Review

Kevin Connolly invites readers to step beyond the usual bounds of the lyric, even as it presents the illusion of lyric poetry...drift is funny, yes, but the humour is cutting; it knows too well what its final line says: 'What starts the heart stops the world.'

Edmonton Journal

Anguish, mockery, the simple, searing truth of being and essence: these are some of the components of Kevin Connolly's astonishing and absolute poetry...These poems are what the Cyclone is to Coney Island - what poetry, at its thrilling, unsettling best, should be.

Trillium Award jury citation

Peppered with recognizable forms and diction, yet distinctly different in tone and content, drift sets Kevin Connolly apart from his contemporaries as a poet who unexpectedly delights in toying with reader expectations.

Globe and Mail

Though I'm not usually a fan of poetry too full of wordplay, Connolly (like Paul Muldoon) is one who can pull it off. But his sense of play goes beyond silliness. The poems that result, though completely contemporary, are ageless.


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