BC Poetry 2017: "Short Takes on the Apocalypse" by Patricia Young (Biblioasis)

Shott Takes on the Apocalypse
For many people, myself included, the end of the world is happening all the time! –Douglas Coupland
We stage a dress rehearsal that ends at eight p.m. The lights dim, then go out. The city disappears into darkness. * Nightly blackouts, ghostly trams. Weary millions riding the subway back and forth across the city. * A dress rehearsal is performed on the world’s stage. No one is watching. When the play’s over we go home to our dim hopes and prodigious hunger. * Poor actors dressed in bark cloth. City of millions, city of endings. It is eight o’clock. * On empty stomachs we forget our lines. The end of the world is a dim rehearsal on an unlit stage. * We are prodigious. We are hopeful. We lie down in the dark.


Patricia Young has published twelve collections of poetry and one of short fiction. She has received numerous awards for her writing including The Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize, the Pat Lowther Award, and a CBC Literary Prize. She has twice been nominated for the Governor General’s Award for Poetry. Her collection of short fiction, Airstream, won the Rooke-Metcalf Award, was shortlisted for the Butler Prize and was named one of the Globe and Mail’s Best Books of the Year.


Short Takes on the Apocalypse features poems built entirely upon the words of others. Originating as a response to Elmore Leonard’s “Ten Rules of Writing,” and expanding to include poetic responses to quotations about writing from other sources—from Leonardo da Vinci to Neil Gaiman, Margaret Atwood to Jimmy Kimmel—the resulting pieces traverse a myriad of themes. Playfully exploring subjects as wide-ranging as veganism, gun violence, sex, parenting, feminism, death, and Coachella, Young bounces off the selected epigraphs with a vital energy and crackling wit.


Arrived October 2016.


Book Launches: Done and gone!

Purchases: From the Biblioasis website or at your local bookstore. $18.95.


Building entirely upon the words of others.

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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