Book details

Publication date: February 2020
Series: Robert Kroetsch Series
Keywords: Poetry / Canadian Literature
Subject(s): POETRY / Canadian, Creative Writing, Creative Writing / Poetry, Poetry / Canadian Literature, POETRY / Women Authors, Poetry / Canadian Literature, Poetry, Literature, Poetry
Publisher(s): The University of Alberta Press

E. Alex Pierce. E. Alex Pierce, author of Vox Humana, lives in East Sable River, Nova Scotia. She conducts manuscript review workshops throughout Canada, and is Senior Editor at Boularderie Island Press. Pierce holds an MFA from Warren Wilson College and for ten years taught Creative Writing at Cape Breton University. Her work has been widely anthologized and published in literary journals. Her most recent publications are Aubade: Poetry and Prose from Nova Scotia Writers (Editor) and Salt and Wild: Shelburne County Anthology (Co-editor).

“Pierce creates movements in the rhythm of the estuary of Sable River, where she grew up, opening, closing up, floating and drowning as consistently as moon directs the tides…. Hers is a poetry of attentiveness, reaching back through the years and into the future without sentimentality…” [Full review at]

Joan Shillington, Freefall Magazine

"We are immersed in Pierce’s baptismal font of words, held deeply, only to emerge into a new air, made over, revived by a poetry of the rarest beauty. 'The Creek' surely is a masterpiece, a world poem created from the cross currents of the heart and the gold-brown waters of the Sable River."

Harry Thurston, author of Keeping Watch at the End of the World

To float, to drown, to close up, to open – a throat

3 To float, to drown…
19 Full Moon
22 The boy. The boy is her beloved.
23 Medway River, Carousel
25 Nothing more lonely
26 The Creek

MĪthan, to conceal
31 A Dug Well
32 Tempest
33 The sky full of empty rooms
35 Bach Prelude: Reprise
36 Mīthan
37 Not wanting it to end
39 The fetch of the wind
40 It is in me forever
41 Vindauga

The Stanzas. Rooms.
44 You want to say the word chemise
47 It could have been that morning
48 The opening, the newness, as if it were now
49 In an afternoon, at your house
50 Not of you. Of the capturing
51 Now, on YouTube, the camera
52 Heat from the photo lamps
53 Enraptured. Christmas morning at your house
54 The two Polish chairs
55 I can still see you, us. Side by side at Logan Airport
56 Every Sunday morning we would set off
57 Something about the dark
58 What were they doing
59 Honey and locusts. A man in pain
60 In this last hour
61 The vulnerability that doesn’t show
62 Should I tell you now
63 Or have we lived it
64 It’s not the heart. It’s the cry
65 Lento assai, cantante e tranquillo
66 We’ve come so far
67 The boards are bare

Coda, Aubade.
71 The way white lilacs

73 Notes
83 Acknowledgements
ISBNs: 9781772124538 978-1-77212-453-8 Title: to float to drown to close up to open ISBNs: 9781772124613 978-1-77212-461-3 Title: to float to drown to close up to open ISBNs: 9781772126426 978-1-77212-642-6 Title: to float to drown to close up to open