• A Revision Of Forward

A Revision Of Forward

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978-1-926455-37-2 | 2015 September | 72 Pages


By turns tender and rough-hewn, and always structurally inventive, the poems in Wendy McGrath’s new collection show a writer reaching the height of her creative powers.

Whether evoking the vulgar give-and-take of a men’s poker night, fleeting moments of connection between mothers and sons, afternoons spent in overgrown backyard gardens, or wondrous childhood trips to the drive-in, McGrath’s feel for the bygone details of working-class life is uncanny. The book’s highlight is the playful poetic sequence that gives the book its title, the product of a more-than-decade-long improvisational collaboration with printmaker Walter Jule, a series of not-quite-mirror poems whose meanings reflect on each other in kaleidoscopic ways.

  • Interview with Ore Samples blog
  • Winner of the Book Design Award at the 2016 Alberta Book Publishing Awards
  • Honourable Mention from the Alcuin Society Awards for Excellence in Book Design in Canada

Regarding the images in the book: “Walter Jule's visual images are aids to meditation, communicating on an intuitive level that which cannot be expressed in words. In them we experience in suspended time the knife's edge between creation and destruction.”
— Jennifer Dickson, C.M

“Wendy McGrath shows how a poetic novelty, the mirror poem, can become an important new form. Hamlet spoke of holding the mirror up to nature. McGrath holds the mirror up to art, but she also tells us about the nature of desire and separation, about truth and lies.”
— Bert Almon, author of A Ghost in Waterloo Station

“[F]ragmentary and experimental, impressionistic daguerrotypes of everyday life.” 
— Bruce Cinnamon, VUE Weekly (full review)

“Its stanzas experiment with the visual aspect of text, spreading out across largely blank pages with their own quiet artfulness.” 
— Brent Wittmeier, Edmonton Journal (full review)

“She has given substance top billing, and this collection is rich with detail, honing in on the most delicate, intangible moments and weaving in the raw, often conflicting beauty of city and nature, creating whole new textures with the experiences exposed within.” 
— Quill and Quire (full review)