Veronica Gaylie Book Launch
Veronica Gaylie is launching her new book of poetry, Sword Dance (Exile Editions), on Tuesday, November 3, 7:30 PM, at The Bookshelf (41 QuebecStreet) with guest readers, Gary Barwin, James Clarke, and Nicholas Ruddock.
Veronica Gaylie is a poet, writer, teacher, and environmentalist whose work has been published in literary journals around the globe, including Poetry Review (UK), Crannog (Ireland), and the Canadian journals Carte Blanche, Ditch, Filling Station, Geez, Geist, Grain, Lake, and Room. Sword Dance (Exile Editions) is her debut book of poetry. She is also the author of The Learning Garden: Ecology, Teaching and Transformation (Peter Lang) and Roots and Research in Urban School Gardens (Peter Lang). She currently serves as an associate professor of Education at UBC.
Sword Dance explores a woman’s childhood life in Scotland and her new life in Canada through the eyes of her daughter. It is a memoir-style poem that profoundly embodies the classic North American immigrant tale. The story opens with Tom, Dick, and Harry, three ancestors who emigrated to New York. It cycles back to the author’s father, a young soldier who catches the eye of his wife-to-be at the glove counter in Woolworth’s. In between we encounter the real, rare characters of everyday Glasgow life, including cousin John Lennon in a scheme to raise pigs, and a bicycle-riding Richard Nixon who arrives just after a factory blow-up. Framed by a prologue and epilogue, the story is told in a working-class vernacular—the characters all real, the voice gritty, witty, and distinct as it unfurls a beautiful tapestry by way of the music and language of Glaswegian storytelling.
Gary Barwin is a writer, composer, multimedia artist, and the author of 20 books of poetry and fiction, and books for kids, mostly recently, I, Dr Greenblatt, Orthodontist, 251-1457 (short fiction, Anvil) and, forthcoming Yiddish for Pirates (novel, Random House Canada.) A PhD in music, Barwin was 2014-2015 Writer-in-Residence at Western University, has taught creative writing at a number of colleges and universities and lives in Hamilton, Ontario.
James Clarke is the author of almost 20 books of poetry and memoir, including Dreamworks, Forced Passage, How to Bribe a Judge, L’Arche Journal, A Mourner’s Kaddish, The Raggedy Parade, Silver Mercies, and The Way Everyone is Inside. He is a former Superior Court judge and his judgments have been published extensively in legal journals. He lives in Guelph, Ontario.
Nicholas Ruddock is the author of The Parabolist (novel, Doubleday) and How Lovetta Got Her Baby (short-fiction, Brekwater). His work has been widely published in magazines and journals, including The Dalhousie Review, The Antigonish Review, Fiddlehead, Prism International, Grain, sub-Terrain, Event, and Exile. His short story, “How Eunice Got Her Baby” was published in The Journey Prize Anthology in 2007, and the Canadian Film Centre has made a film adaptation of the same story, narrated by Gordon Pinsent, directed by Ana Valine.