The Corpses of the Future is a sustained, confessional new collection of poems by Lynn Crosbie. It tells the story of her father’s battle with frontotemporal dementia and blindness, following a stroke. The poems chronologically recount the poet’s conversations and time with her father, and capture his still-astonishing means of communicating. The book’s title is his sardonic remark. Crosbie considers dementia to be a symbolic language and as such, similar to poetry. The author’s attempts to understand her father’s distress, pain, fear, and brave love are assisted by her understanding of the “negative capability” required of readers of poetry.
This is a harrowing book, with moments of joy and even levity. It is a collection of poetry about love, and love’s persistence, even under the most unspeakable circumstances.