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Poetry Lgbt


by (author) Tanis Franco

University of Calgary Press
Initial publish date
Jan 2018
LGBT, Canadian, Places
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Jan 2018
    List Price

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Spaces are not exterior to bodies. They influence and affect the way bodies exist in the world. A quarry is an unnatural place within a natural territory. At any moment, it can be abandoned. A body is not separate from the spaces it inhabits. They exist together, in a mutual state of interrelation and instability.

Quarry relays a year in the life of a body in transition as it changes with other bodies; human, animal, and mineral. It examines queer social spaces and contested natural spaces, asking how they affect each other. Using evocative metaphor and refreshing language, these poems make bodily experience new.

Tanis Franco eschews traditional narratives of the queer and transgender body, bringing nuanced ideas to an ongoing literary and philosophical conversation. Their strong sense of location and landscape is interwoven with sensual language and impeccable craft, creating a unique and distinctive voice.

About the author

Tanis Franco has been published in Grain, Room, and Best American Experimental Writing 2018. This is their first book.

Tanis Franco's profile page


  • Winner, Gold Medal, PubWest Design Award for Poetry
  • Winner, Bronze Medal, Forward Review INDIES - LGBTQ Non-Fiction
  • Short-listed, Leage of Canadian Poets Gerald Lampart Memorial Award

Editorial Reviews

Tanis Franco's debut collection of poetry is as dense as it is moving, with new dimensions presenting themselves on each re-read.

- Marcela Huerta, Montreal Review of Books

Quarry reminded me of all the things I love about poetry . . . A collection that will last, and one I will recommend for some time.

- Evelyn Deshane, Plenitude Magazine

Franco here writes beautifully, with imagery of the can?t-go-back sort, line breaks that magnify scenes, and a tone that feels plain-true (yet far from plain). However, the poems are worth reading not for what they do on the page-vacuum, but for where they guide the reader, by way of things concrete (stones, rocks, a quarry), to a place of only being, to the seen/un/seen's edge.

- Hayden Bergman, The Literary Review

This book transitions, is in transition, comes through transition. It describes a state of tension, of anxiety, of becoming. Lines blur between person and place: this pond was a quarry, was excavated from a prior landscape. The discussion of body, of bodily changes is amorphous, we begin with bois and bodies colliding, moments of aloneness and of intimacy…. Quarry is full of hard minerals, of stones, of pebbles. It chips away. A pebble is a stone you can take with you, a souvenir. Bodies and ecosystems cannot fail to leave traces of themselves; they alter things. These minerals hint at the skeleton beneath flesh, “the body is only a vase for holding." The book a body, the book bringing us alongside the body, witnessing body in relation, in environment, in flux.

-Claire Lacey, Debutantes

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