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Poetry Canadian

Memory Orchard, The

by (author) Tim Bowling

Brick Books
Initial publish date
Apr 2004
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2004
    List Price

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In Tim Bowling's poems, memory is much more than a sally down landmark lane. Time is both creator and destroyer, equally at home with the shocking or the sublime. The skid marks on our hearts, the exclamation points carved in our eyeballs, these are signs that we have lived and been lived. This is poetry of loss and fury, of awe and celebration, Bowling's voice stunningly rich and rakish.

I write this with the hot ink
of the red stripe on the back
of a garter snake stopped
a second in the tall grass
beside the Fraser River under a sky of August fire.

I reached into a closet
racked with bones
in a condemned house
I put my arm through
the dark of the dead
to wet this quill
I leaned all my weight
on the dust and air
(nobody there
but this moment, still).

from "Memory"

About the author

Tim Bowling has published numerous poetry collections, including Low Water Slack; Dying Scarlet (winner of the 1998 Stephan G. Stephansson Award for poetry); Darkness and Silence (winner of the Canadian Authors Association Award for Poetry); The Witness Ghost; and The Memory Orchard (both nominated for the Governor General's Literary Award). He is also the author of three novels, Downriver Drift (Harbour), The Paperboy's Winter (Penguin) and The Bone Sharps (Gaspereau Press). His first book of non-fiction, The Lost Coast: Salmon, Memory and the Death of Wild Culture (Nightwood Editions), was shortlisted for three literary awards: The Writers' Trust Nereus Non-Fiction Award, the BC Book Prizes' Roderick Haig-Brown Regional Prize and the Alberta Literary Awards' Wilfred Eggleston Award for Non-Fiction. The Lost Coast was also chosen as a 2008 Kiriyama Prize "Notable Book." Bowling is the recipient of the Petra Kenney International Poetry Prize, the National Poetry Award and the Orillia International Poetry Prize. Bowling was the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2008. A native of the West Coast, he now lives in Edmonton Alberta. His latest collection of poetry is Tenderman (Nightwood), due out in fall 2011.

Tim Bowling's profile page

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