Down in the Valley: Contemporary Writing of the Fraser Valley


160 pages
ISBN 0-894800-59-1
DDC C810'.0971137





Edited by Trevor Carolan

M. Wayne Cunningham is a past executive director of the Saskatchewan
Arts Board and the former director of Academic and Career Programs at
East Kootenay Community College.


Patrick Lane and Lorna Crozier have assembled a good cross-section of
poets born between 1970 and 1980. They were looking entirely for
literary merit, and it is interesting that the book has a good gender
and ethnic balance in its 33 writers. Each poet has a few representative
pages, which limits the possibilities of representing narrative writing.
The emphasis is on lyrical and confessional poetry rather than
experimental; the one clearly experimental poet is Natalie Stephens.
Performance poetry gets no attention.

Most of the writers that one would expect to find in such anthology are
here—like Shane Rhodes, Sue Sinclair, and Matt Robinson—but there
are good poets who have not yet published a volume. The editors present
a brief but helpful headnote (with photograph) of each writer. The
introduction does not attempt to take the temperature of contemporary
writing, nor does it generalize about aesthetic practices. All in all, a
useful guide to further reading in the poets.


“Down in the Valley: Contemporary Writing of the Fraser Valley,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 24, 2024,