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Poetry Canadian

Night Work: The Sawchuk Poems

The Sawchuk Poems

by (author) Randall Maggs

Brick Books
Initial publish date
Jan 2008
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Jan 2008
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In compact, conversational poems that build into a narrative long poem, Night Work: The Sawchuk Poems follows the tragic trajectory of the life and work of Terry Sawchuk, dark driven genius of a goalie who survived twenty tough seasons in an era of inadequate upper-body equipment and no player representation. But no summary touches the searching intensity of Maggs's poems. They range from meditations on ancient/modern heroism to dramatic capsules of actual games, in which the mystery of character meets the mystery of transcendent physical performance. Night Work: The Sawchuk Poems is illustrated with photographs mirroring the text, depicting key moments in the career of Terry Sawchuk, his exploits and his agony. - See more at:

About the author

Randall Maggs is the author of the poetry collection Timely Departures (Breakwater Books, 1994), and co-editor of two anthologies pairing Newfoundland and Canadian poems with those of Ireland. He is one of the organizers and the former artistic director of Newfoundland's March Hare, the largest literary festival in Atlantic Canada. He is a former professor of literature at Sir Wilfred Grenfell College, Memorial University. Night Work: The Sawchuk Poems, his second poetry collection (Brick Books, 2008), was the winner of the 2008 Winterset Award, the 2009 E.J. Pratt Poetry Prize, and the 2010 Kobzar Literary Award, and was shortlisted for the 2009 Heritage and History Book Award, longlisted for the Relit Award and named a Globe 100 book in 2008. He lives in Steady Brook, near Corner Brook, Newfoundland.

Randall Maggs' profile page

Editorial Reviews

" ... An exquisite biographical novel, in the tradition of Michael Ondaatje's The Collected Works of Billy the Kid ... clearly [Maggs] has his own deep knowledge of what he calls Ôan ancient game with ancient rules' ... Night Work takes us into the darker, more complex psyche of a colder nation."--John Degen, The Globe and Mail

"Sawchuck could be the poster boy for that golden age of hockey ... also [the] face of the game's darker side ... [Night Work]'s a historical epic, complete with tragically flawed characters, high drama, gladiatorial combat, and occasional comic relief."--Barbara Carey, The Toronto Star

"Each of the dozens of short poems is a revelation ... a wonderful celebration of maskless, thinly padded goalies who wore bare-faced grimaces of pain, even fear, with their bruises that lasted deep into the summer."--Dave Stubbs, Montreal Gazette

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