Celebrating the 2021 Trillium Book Award for Poetry
Celebrating the finalists for the 2021 Trillium Book Award for Poetry, honouring new and emerging Ontario poets, awarded by Ontario Creates. Moderated by Chuqiao
Celebrating the finalists for the 2021 Trillium Book Award for Poetry, honouring new and emerging Ontario poets, awarded by Ontario Creates.
Moderated by Chuqiao Yang.
The story of Layla and Majnun, made immortal by the Persian poet Nizami Ganjavi in the 12th century, has been retold thousands of times, in thousands of different ways, throughout literature. Against the backdrop of this story, to the soundtrack of modern hip-hop, and amid the struggle of an immigrant family to instill an old faith under new conditions, Irfan Ali’s Accretion hurtles toward an unsustainable, “greater madness.” Majnun, one of the foundational literary characters who haunt Accretion, is also an Arabic epithet for “possessed.” In this tradition, Ali has written a book from the places where the self is no longer the self; places where, in order not to shut down forever, the debris must be cleared, and the soul must inch toward love and hope, “on memory’s dusty beams.”
Accretion is written in a contemporary lyricism that honours ancient poetic traditions. It is a familiar story, imbued with a particularity and honesty that only Irfan Ali could bring to the table.
Black Lawrence Press
Jody Chan writes, “have you ever found your specific wounds curled up in a song / written by someone else?” This striking debut—poems of history, of beauty, of violence, of grief—unearths tenderness. In sick, Jody Chan examines loss through brilliant and stunning lyric, each poem urgent with gentle ferocity.
Promotional Partner: VERSeFest
(Sunday) 11:30 am - 12:30 pm