“With the prismatic eye of a witch-blessed Alden Nowlan, Sadie McCarney sculpts a hard-won beauty into the passion of her lines.” —Marilyn Bowering, author of Threshold and The Alchemy of Happiness
Sadie McCarney’s first full-length poetry collection grapples with mourning, coming of age, and queer identity against the backdrop of rural and small-town Atlantic Canada. Ranging from pellet-gunned backyard butterflies to a chorus of encroaching ghosts, Live Ones celebrates the personal and idiosyncratic aspects of death, seeing them as intimately wedded to lives well-lived. Personal myth-making collides with grocery shopping, ancient history turns out to be alive and well in modern-day Milford, Nova Scotia, and the complexities of queer female desire call out to us from beyond the grave.
“McCarney’s poems hook you with the first line. Her writing crosses between quotidian and fantastical with such ease that you’ll climb into the unreal like a child climbs onto a school bus. From folks in an almost normal Black Friday lineup to a surviving child relieving a family home of its contents, each character implicates you in their business.” —Kathy Mac, author of Human Misunderstanding
“McCarney writes with photographic intensity and a lilting ear: bumblebee, lime, chokeweed, toucan, ‘the dead, but once or twice removed.’ Live Ones is a book rife with honesty, vulnerability, and a stark ability to transform even the most minute of objects into dancing flora.” —Joshua Whitehead, author of full-metal indigiqueer
Sadie McCarney’s poetry has appeared in Plenitude, Grain, Prairie Fire, The Malahat Review, The Puritan, Room, and The Best Canadian Poetry in English, among other places. She lives in Charlottetown. This is her first book.