The first anthology to focus on the rich tradition of Canadian nature poetry in English, Open Wide a Wilderness is a survey of Canada's regions, poetries, histories, and peoples as these relate to the natural world. The poetic responses included here range from the heights of the sublime to detailed naturalist observation, from the perspectives of pioneers and those who work in the woods and on the sea to the dismayed witnesses of ecological destruction, from a sense of terror in confrontation with the natural world to expressions of amazement and delight at the beauty and strangeness of nature, our home. Arranged chronologically, the poems include excerpts from late-eighteenth-century colonial pioneer epics and selections from both well-known and more obscure nineteenth- and twentieth-century writers. A substantial section is devoted to contemporary writers who are working within and creating a new ecopoetic aesthetic in the early twenty-first century. Don McKay's introductory essay, "Great Flint Singing," explores in McKay's inimitable way the thorny issues of Canadian poets' representations of nature over the past 150 years.
Focusing on key texts by Duncan Campbell Scott, Charles G.D. Roberts, Earle Birney, Dennis Lee, and others, the essay traces Wordsworthian influences in a New World context, celebrates Canadian poets' love of natural history observation, and finds a way through a rich and contradictory tradition to current trends in ecopoetics.
Buy Open Wide a Wilderness book by Don McKay from Australia's Online Bookstore, Boomerang Books.
(228mm x 152mm x 33mm)
Wilfrid Laurier University Press
Publisher: Wilfrid Laurier University Press
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Author Biography - Don McKay
Nancy Holmes has published four collections of poetry, most recently Mandorla (2005). She has lived in Alberta, Ontario, and, most recently, British Columbia, where she teaches creative writing at the University of British Columbia Okanagan in Kelowna. Don McKay has published eight books of poetry. He won the Governor Generalas Award in 1991 (for Night Field ) and in 2000 (for Another Gravity ), a National Magazine Award (1991), and the Canadian Authors Association Award for Poetry in 1984 (for Birding, Or Desire ). Don McKay was shortlisted for the 2005 Griffin Poetry Prize for Camber and was the Canadian winner of the 2007 Griffin Poetry Prize for Strike/Slip . Born in Owen Sound, Ontario, McKay has been active as an editor, creative writing teacher, and university instructor, as well as a poet. He has taught at the University of Western Ontario, the University of New Brunswick, The Banff Centre, The Sage Hill Writing Experience, and the BC Festival of the Arts. He has served as editor and publisher of Brick Books since 1975 and from 1991 to 1996 as editor of The Fiddlehead . He resides in British Columbia.