about the poems and discomfort zones
These poems are an excerpt from a new long poem project titled blackstone/saga that uses sparse fragmented language to explore the people and landscape of modern Iceland. It builds on a framework of earth and language using different images associated with transition / with movement. The intent is for the work to be modular, so that poems can flow into each other or work in isolation as needed (acting as either one longer narrative poem or many smaller works). The title for each piece serves as both a first line and also a connection point or link between poems.
I thought these particular poems might especially resonate with the theme of discomfort zones on a number of levels—geographical, physical, and cognitive (dis)comfort zones—as they examine the mental state caused by a displacement of spaces and timezones.
The relationship between people and their landscape is one area that I am particularly interested in examining through verse. blackstone/saga follows on my recently released collection Huge Blue, which bridges the contrasting physical landscapes of western Canada with recurring characters and images — crows, moments, light and sky.
Both works bring to the foreground an important facet of writing that is rooted in place and displacement. By breaking down areas of comfort with new environments and situations, and linking these back to previous experience, I suggest that a writer can begin to define the edges of unique moments — special kind of insight found only through (dis)comfort.
- Patrick M. Pilarski
Huge Blue (Leaf Press, 2009)
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