A posthumous collection of poetry from Patrick Lane, compiled and edited by Lorna Crozier.
In this final collection, Patrick Lane cultivates the quiet of living in a body amongst so many other bodies—the trout in the lake, geese arriving with the wind, a raccoon fishing in a river—ultimately revealing a tangled web of life and a speaker who sees both beauty and pain brimming around him.
Together, the poems in The Quiet in Me are a clear-eyed and sharp meditation on existing in a world pulsing between life and death, death and life. When the body is “a museum for what’s gone” and a heart is “the sound of the wind seething,” there is no answer but to learn the language of quiet; the language of an earth unfolding itself perpetually in the dawn: “the song of the falling water and wild birds.”
With incredible poetic precision, this collection is an offering—to come back to yourself and to lose yourself in sight, sound and sense. Playing in paradoxes—“empty marrow bones with their strings of red ants”—these poems cultivate dualisms: intimacy and realism, vulnerability and the roughness of youth, a scar that is a father’s teaching, a blade that is a sigh.
From one of Canada’s most lyric writers comes a book steeped in the wisdom of the natural world. Told by an eye that never ceases to observe and a heart that is willing to make itself known—to invite others into its warmth and wilderness—this collection transposes leaf to leaf, stone to stone, reminding us that water will always return to water and so will we.
About the authors
Patrick Lane, considered by most writers and critics to be one of Canada's finest poets, was born in 1939 in Nelson, BC. He grew up in the Kootenay and Okanagan regions of the BC Interior, primarily in Vernon. He came to Vancouver and co-founded a small press, Very Stone House, with bill bissett and Seymour Mayne. He then drifted extensively throughout North and South America. He worked at a variety of jobs, from labourer to industrial accountant, but much of his life was spent as a poet. He was also the father of five children and grandfather of nine. He won nearly every literary prize in Canada, from the Governor General's Literary Award to the Canadian Authors Association Award to the Dorothy Livesay Prize. In 2014, he became an Officer of the Order of Canada, an honour that recognizes a lifetime of achievement and merit of a high degree. His poetry and fiction have been widely anthologized and translated into many languages. His more recent books include Witness: Selected Poems 1962-2010 (Harbour Publishing, 2010), The Collected Poems of Patrick Lane (Harbour Publishing, 2011), Washita (Harbour Publishing, 2014; shortlisted for the 2015 Governor General's Literary Award), Deep River Night (McClelland & Stewart, 2018) and a posthumous collection, The Quiet in Me (Harbour Publishing, 2022). Lane spent the later part of his life in Victoria, BC, with his wife, the poet Lorna Crozier. He died in 2019.
Lorna Crozier, one of Canada's most celebrated poets, has read from her work on every continent. She has received numerous awards, including the Governor General's Award, for her fifteen books of poetry, which include The Blue Hour of the Day: Selected Poems; Whetstone; Apocrypha of Light; What the Living Won't Let Go; A Saving Grace; Everything Arrives at the Light; Inventing the Hawk; Angels of Flesh, Angels of Silence; and The Garden Going On Without Us. She has also edited several anthologies, among them Desire in Seven Voices and, with Patrick Lane, Addicted: Notes from the Belly of the Beast. She lives in Saanich, BC.
"Lane is a poet more of the individual, hard-hitting poem; like physical blows, he wields his pieces like small threats of intense beauty."
<i>Globe and Mail</i>
"Lyric art of the highest order. The voice, relieved of everything nonessential, speaks with effortless assurance of last, and first, things."
"...likely to be remembered as a man who fashioned some of the most gorgeously beautiful poems ever written in this country."
Guy Vanderhaeghe, author of <i>The Last Crossing</i> and <i>The Englishman's Boy</i>
Other titles by Patrick Lane
Other titles by Lorna Crozier
Photographs by George Webber
Through the Garden
A Love Story (with Cats)
The House the Spirit Builds
God of Shadows
Lots of Kisses Read-Along
So Many Babies Read-Along
More Than Balloons Read-Along
The Heart Is Improvisational
An Anthology in Poetic Form