BC Poetry 2016: "Threshold" by Marilyn Bowering (Leaf Press)


Glac throm air do shliasaid
An déidh a snaidheadh gun fhiaradh,
Is bàrr dosrach de sgiathaibh an eioin.

On thine hip a heavy quiver flawlessly shaped, on thine
head a crest from the wings of the eagle.
- Gaelic Songs of Mary MacLeod

No stag with an arrow   through its chest
the tip   embedded
the fletching   broken
no stag   blood on its flanks
blood   in its eye
no headless stag   at the roadside
no doe pierced 

But a stag   on the hillside 
the doe   on the mud flats
the sea lapping

the forest on fire   with red leaves
and the call of   the raven

the haunted ravens
all that remain   of the violence


Marilyn Bowering is a poet, novelist and non-fiction writer who lives in British Columbia. She has received many awards for her work including designation of Notable Book by the New York Times, short-listing for the world-wide Orange Prize and a number of prizes named after women poets (Dorothy Livesay, Pat Lowther and Gwendolyn MacEwen). She is the librettist for the opera Marilyn Forever (with Gavin Bryars).


The words of Threshold are plain, as bare and pregnant as the stones of a ruined croft. Marilyn Bowering unites her voice with the life and words of a silenced, exiled female Hebridean poet who speaks across three centuries. Xan Shian's photographs face this world of extremes and change with a timeless and contemporary eye.


Arrived in November 2015.


Book Launches: N/A

Purchases: From the Leaf Press website or at your local bookstore. $20.


Uniting voices.

The copyrights of all poems included in the series remain with their authors, and are reprinted with the permission of the publishers.

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