A launch party for Gordon Hill Press’ Fall 2020 poetry titles, M. Travis Lane’s “Keeping Count” and Lily Wang’s “Saturn Peach”, with readings , Q&A, and a guest reading by Khashayar Mohammadi from his forthcoming colelction, “Me, You, Then Snow”.
Register at EventBrite here – https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/gordon-hill-press-fall-2020-season-launch-tickets-125342844823
“Keeping Count”, M. Travis Lane’s 18th collection of poetry, begins in the poet’s favourite terrain: short, condensed lyric that focuses on the natural world. “But pull a thread: music turns” Lane writes, and the book progressively defamiliarizes the reader, moving from ecopoetry to a longer poetry of interiority in the second section, concluding with a final section that focuses on issues of mortality. As George Elliott Clarke has written so aptly, “If you have not read Lane before, prepare to travel: Like T.S. Eliot, she wants you to have a transporting experience in your imagination. If you have read Lane before, prepare for fresh astonishment. She is Homeric breadth and Sapphic brevity.”
In “Saturn Peach”, Lily Wang establishes a distinctive voice that is part heartbreak and part wise witness chronicling the strangeness of a technologized world. When asked to describe her book, Wang answered in her quintessential way, “There are things I never want to know but always know. Every day I live with them. Every day I live. I am like a young fruit. Like a peach, common, not the popular kind but oblate, saturn. I live and inside me this pale fruit, yellow and white. I take bites out of myself and share them with you. Maybe you taste like me. Maybe you hold this fruit and become a tree.” If ever there were a book that disarmingly – and seemingly effortlessly – encouraged its reader to become a metaphor, then “Saturn Peach” is it.
Khashayar Mohammadi’s “Me, You, Then Snow” is a collection of poetry woven from dreams, memories and deep-seeded longing, a collection of poetry that ranges from ambiguously addressed love-letters, to ekphrastic poems for arthouse cinema, to pieces written near midnight when the day’s experiences rush back into view. Though working in diverse forms and styles, the poetry manifests as a profoundly unified desire to experience and communicate the world.