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Poetry Canadian

God on His Haunches

by (author) Diane Tucker

Nightwood Editions
Initial publish date
Jan 1996
Canadian, General
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Jan 1996
    List Price

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Diane Tucker writes from experience and "the sustaining power of memory" in this first collection of poems. She writes of falling in love with the wrong person: "For you I ride without a seat belt, willing to be thrown clear at first impact"; her daughter at four months, whose fingertips "are globes of amber salmon roe/ cool smooth/ and salty"; and growing up as an adopted child: "mystery breathes on my bare shoulders/ whispers between my spread-eagled arms:/ you could be anyone in the whole wide world."

Tucker treats her subjects with respect, compassion and a subtle playfulness. Her love of language, humour and poetic consciousness transforms images from everyday life into lyrical, intimate and original works of art, offering the reader fresh insights - with just a touch of magic.

About the author

Diane Tucker writes fiction and poetry. Her poems have been published in numerous Canadian and international publications. Her first book of poetry, God on His Haunches (Nightwood Editions, 1996), was a finalist for the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award. She has a BFA in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia. Tucker lives in Burnaby, BC, and is an active member of the Burnaby Writers' Society. Her poetry has been published in national and international publications, including AeringsGreen's MagazineThe New Quarterly and Canadian Literature.

Diane Tucker's profile page


  • Short-listed, Gerald Lampert Memorial Award

Excerpt: God on His Haunches (by (author) Diane Tucker)

God on his haunches
such an appalling picture
God on his haunches
like a bird watcher, waiting
for what he knows must happen
but will for the world neither impede nor hurry on
waiting for the crunch of the beak through the egg
waiting for the infusion of blue through the bud
God the time-lapse photographer

such a terrifying picture
that the Timeless One should savour time
should know the necessity of every second
should want to plunge me
into the deeps of every moment
drown me in the glory of that which has been made
raise me, sodden, into uncreated light
gleaming in the sun like a dolphin's back

a barbed baptism, the eternal end
reached only through fiery lungfuls of time
every second clotting the nostrils
each moment a coal ablaze in the throat

For a Woman of Note
I have written before of this golden ghost
this bare-necked enchantress
of two worlds she was

now giving all to song and wine
to the sour haze of hashish
to flying
through the mist of moving silence
outside her window

now infant alone
in her girl's room
on the floor
sipping tea
near the journal of small poetry
and the oboe
on its thin, bent stand

is she still alone
in one room
lips pressed
dragging a brush through her broomstraw hair
in white immobile silence?

Other titles by Diane Tucker