Word-House of a Grandchild


64 pages
Contains Photos
ISBN 0-920304-68-0
DDC C811





Reviewed by Don Precosky

Don Precosky teaches English at the College of New Caledonia and is the
co-editor of Four Realities: Poets of Northern B.C.


Halfway through reading this book I was asking myself two questions:

Why is this arranged as poetry and not as prose? Why would Ragweed Press publish such a book?

I have answers for neither query, but the questions do identify the reasons for my unhappiness with Liliane Welch’s latest offering. The worst problem is that there is nothing particularly poetic about the pieces in the book — no arresting images or unique figures, no significant placement or displacement of elements of the language. Most line breaks, for instance, seem to be random.

The idea behind the book, though conventional, has potential. It is quest book. The writer returns to Europe to find her roots. She especially wishes to understand her maternal grandfather, a rogue and outcast she’s never met. As the book unfolds the grandmother and grandfather become symbols of opposites in human attitudes. But the treatment of the quest theme is dull. We are left with an unartistic and uninspired book.



Welch, Liliane, “Word-House of a Grandchild,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 20, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/34673.