Pedlar Press

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Difficult, The

Reading Christina Baillie, I find myself thinking of experimental Canadian writers like Daphne Marlatt, ErĂ­n Moure, Gail Scott. I also think of Mary Dalton's Hooking, a "book of centos . . . made of lines which occur at the same point in the linear structure of the poems they are excised from." None of these women writes like any other, nor is their writing all the same, but their styles are often no less demanding than the Baillie style.

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I turn the key and push. The door begins to swing but bangs against its chain -- a barrier she's fashioned from a leash. This means she's home. Mouth to slit: "Sister, hello, sister." From some room she comes. The chain unfastened, I step inside -- admitted. Begin by admitting. A good beginning, but how much either party will admit (or admit to) is never a known factor. I've brought a desire. We begin, she and I; we've begun before, and often. It so happens, this day, our desires agree: to discuss language -- the many ways it rescues and fails her.

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