Karen Solie’s Pigeon was published in 2010 by House of Anansi. I didn’t get around to reading it until 2017. Too bad for me…when I did finally spend time with this book, I found some amazing compositions that restored my confidence that Canadian poetry, as a genre, is still capable of producing poets to be emulated.
As a collection, I find that the poems are both intelligent and grounded. There is a refreshing coherence in the imagery. Solie provides the reader with room, and motivation, to think. I’ve found in my summer reading that so many poets seem to be so particularly interested in performing, indoctrinating and startling that they’ve forgotten to leave their readers room to read and engage. Solie’s Pigeon speaks without echoing itself. And that’s a terrific thing.
Examples? I recommend The Girls, Bone Creek, Park Place, Prayers for the Sick and Pigeon. Solie does something important in her poetry. She provides highly particular truths that from which shared generalized truths may be discovered. This inherently inductive presentation strikes me as contrary to much that is wrong in poetry as I’ve been observing it for a very long time. As I’ve already suggested, this is poetry to be studied and imitated.
When I consider my own poetry in comparison to this award-winning book, I understand that many of my own efforts have not been enough. It is a benchmark and a spur to put more into poetry.
Revision History Notes: All content on http://www.ericadriaans.com is subject to edit and revision. Whenever possible, dates of revisions will be note. Original post 05/10/2017. Updated 22/01/2018