George Bowering Selected Poems, 1961-1992
Dennis Denisoff teaches English at McGill University and is the author
of Dog Years.
Editor Roy Miki faced a formidable task, given that George Bowering has
published a book of poetry almost every year since 1962. This excellent
collection includes as wide a variety of the author’s poems as can
reasonably be contained in 230 pages. It opens with “Radio Jazz,” a
poem Bowering wrote at the age of 25, and includes a number of the other
lyrical pieces from the poet’s early days with the Tish group of UBC
poets. It also contains numerous excerpts from Bowering’s more popular
serial poems. A large portion of the collection is taken up by
Kerrisdale Elegies, which includes some of the poetry for which Bowering
is best known. The volume also contains recently written pieces.
This excellent sampling of some of the best writing by one of
Canada’s most respected poets is pedagogically supported by Miki’s
brief but informative critical discussion at the end of the collection.
Of course, the classroom is by no means the only place where this
collection of complex, sensitive poetry will be found.