Ottawa has a lot of poets. I’ve decided to let you all know this. While Hail might be in the tradition of the great chapbook, its pithy layout — and dare I say environmental eyesore, or eyesore to the environmentalist — is highly contagious. There isn’t a poem in here more than sixteen words in length, which translates into about six or seven one or two word stanzas. I won’t dare emulate the layout in this review, but simply quote one that was of sufficient poetic merit, if only a short breath. From “Crows”: “The crows of Sandy Hill are much too big/sleek with wide bristling wings.” That’s nice but perhaps there should be a sequel. Where are these crows now? And what murder of crows is complete without this epiphany on the facing page, just moments previous called “Stone”: “You have come and gone and none know your voice or name but stone.” Nicely produced, but something’s missing. (Nathaniel G. Moore)
poetry, Seymour Mayne, Sandaflon & Metatron, 390 Rideau Street unit 20360, Ottawa ON, K1N 1A3
12 thoughts on “Hail”
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