BOOKS

ARBOROPHOBIA

2022

Arborophobia is a poetic spiritual reckoning. Its elegies, litanies, and indictments concern wonder, guilt, and grief about the journey of human life and the state of the natural world. When a child attempts suicide and western North America burns and mortality closes in, is spiritual and emotional solace possible or even desirable? Answers abound in measured, texturally intimate, and often surprising ways. Arborophobia is a companion for all who grapple with the problem of hope in times of crisis.

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THE FLICKER TREE: OKANAGAN POEMS

2012

A collection of poems about the animals, plants, places and people of the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia.

Sagebrush Mariposa Lily

 

When I see it in early summer

rising like a fantasy out of last year’s

grass,  I feel my own flesh

unpeel from the stem of my bone,

become petalled,

muscle and skin

thinly scalpeled open, purple,

bruising, incarnate

in wind and sun.

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MANDORLA

2005

A collection of poems about motherhood, children, the author's family roots in a Ukrainian settlement in Alberta.

Effigy


At the beach, my child slowly buries me.

He packs the sand into a pail. When

It’s full, he ices the damp cement smoothly

Between the pail’s parted lips and then

Dumps the fragile cones on top of me.

Warm and rotten bricks, they crumble: but only

At first a dusty sheet, dry and shroudy—

Soon a suit of armour made of stone.


Buried alive, I’m now his monument.

Beneath the heavenly vault, I cannot raise

A hand or ease the vice of ribs around

My heart.  As children must, he will prevent

The wrath of gods that rise.  Today he plays

His future plans to keep me in the ground.

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THE ADULTERY POEMS

2002

A collection of poems about love, lust, betrayal and pleasure.

Latin for "Ditch"

 

is vulva.

Funny how this makes me think

of that ad I saw for the new female condom.

It is called "Reality".

My brain does a back flip.

Why do men get condoms called

"Ramses", "Sheik", "Supreme"?

And we get a dose of reality again?

What about "Tunnel of Love"?

Wasn't that good enough?

What about "Vortex"?

Too flippant?  Having too much fun?

Or "Lovers' Lane" or "Whirlpool"?

Reality my ass.

 

The bastards.

 

And come to think of it,

he really ditched me good.

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OPEN WIDE A WILDERNESS: CANADIAN NATURE POEMS

2009

An anthology of 200 years of Canadian nature poetry.  Edited by Nancy Holmes with an introductory essay, "Great Flint Singing," by Don McKay.

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DOWN TO THE GOLDEN CHERSONESE: VICTORIAN LADY TRAVELLERS

1991

A series of poetic sequences and one short story about Victorian lady travellers, including Marianne North, Isabella Bird Bishop, Mary Kingsley, Mabel Loomis  Todd and stay-at-home Emma Darwin.  This book is out of print.

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VALANCY AND THE NEW WORLD

1988

A collection of poems love, children, books and writers.  Winner of the Kalamalka New Writers Prize.  Out of Print.

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