The Scarborourgh takes place over three days in 1992: Good Friday, Holy Saturday and Easter Sunday--the weekend 15-year-old Kristin French was abducted and murdered by Paul Bernardo and Karla Homolka. In poems both opulent and stricken, ravishing and unflinching, Michael Lista--nine, at the time--revisits those dates, haunted by the horrifying facts he now possesses. Inspired, in part, by Dante's Inferno, Virgil's tale of Orpheus' descent into the underworld for Eurydice, as well as the Bernardo trial itself--where the judge ruled that the gallery could hear the video tapes of the crimes, but not see them--Lista's poems adhere to a single rule: you cannot gaze at the beloved you seek to rescue. The Scarborourgh is book about Bernardo that doesn't show us Bernardo, a conceptual project that ignores its concept. Shiveringly bold, it is a major achievement.
Praise for Bloom:
"There aren't many Canadian books of poetry that are anticipated with quite so much excitement as Michael Lista's debut, which has been the talk of the town for some time. But the book outpaces the expectations even of those kindly disposed to it."--Quill and Quire (which named Bloom a Book of the Year)
"Lista has here brought together potent ingredients, at once harmonious and dissonant, in a container with metal enough to withstand blasts from poems being split apart and reincarnated."--The Globe and Mail
"A brilliant, erudite new voice on the Canadian poetry scene."--Montreal Gazette