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    ISBN: 9780889226609 | Paperback

    96 pages | Pub. Date: 20110315
    6.00 W × 9.00 H × 1 D inches
    Backlist | Poetry | Bisac: POE011000
    Rights: WORLD

    Or find Discovery Passages in your local bookstore

With breathtaking virtuosity, Garry Thomas Morse sets out to recover the appropriated, stolen and scattered world of his ancestral people from Alert Bay to Quadra Island to Vancouver, retracing Captain Vancouver’s original sailing route. These poems draw upon both written history and oral tradition to reflect all of the respective stories of the community, which vocally weave in and out of the dialogics of the text.

A dramatic symphony of many voices, Discovery Passages uncovers the political, commercial, intellectual and cultural subtexts of the Native ­language ban, the potlatch ban and the confiscation and sale of Aboriginal artifacts to museums by Indian agents, and how these actions affected the lives of both Native and non-Native inhabitants of the region. This displacement of language and artifacts reverberated as a profound cultural disjuncture on a personal level for the author’s ­people, the Kwakwaka’wakw, as their family and tribal possessions became at once both museum artifacts and a continuation of the ­tradition of memory through another language. Morse’s continuous poetic dialogue of “discovery” and “recovery” reaches as far as the Lenape, the original Native inhabitants of Mannahatta in what is now known as New York, and on across the Atlantic in pursuit of the European roots of the “Voyages of Discovery” in the works of Sappho, Socrates, Virgil and Frazer’s The Golden Bough, only to reappear on the American continent to find their psychotic apotheosis in the poetry of Duncan Campbell Scott.

With tales of Chiefs Billy Assu, Harry Assu and James Sewid; the ­family story “The Young Healer”; and transformed passages from Whitman, Pound, Williams and Bowering, Discovery Passages links Kwakwaka’wakw traditions of the past with contemporary poetic ­tradition in B.C. that encompasses the entire scope of ­relations between oral and vocal ­tradition, ancient ritual, historical ­contextuality and our continuing rites.

Short-listed 2011 Governor General’s Literary Award for Poetry

Short-listed 2012 BC Book Prize: Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize

Joint winner 2011 One of the Top Ten Poetry Collections (Globe and Mail)

Joint winner 2012 One of the Best Ten Aboriginal Books from the past decade CBC - 8th Fire

“With Discovery Passages Garry Thomas Morse has remained true to what U.S. poet Gary Snyder has called the work of poetry: seriousness, commitment to craft, and no bulls—-, no backing away from any of the challenges that are offered to you.”
The Vancouver Sun

“Morse is a master of tonal balance, a virtuoso composer with an ear for epic contrast, and a poet of complexly binary intertexts for whom an envoi leads to no single destination.”
Canadian Literature

Discovery Passages is far too rich a mélange to be fully appreciated in a single reading. A super kind of bricolage, it’s a cornucopia of gifts from Garry Thomas Morse’s personal potlatch that readers will accept with deep gratitude.”
Eclectic Ruckus

"As in all good poems, form is only a pretext. And what Morse succeeds in doing is not only to focus on the words but also their relations. It's a gift."
– François Lachance

By Garry Thomas Morse

Garry Thomas Morse’s poetry books include Transversals for Orpheus, Streams, After Jack, Discovery Passages (finalist for the Governor General’s Award for Poetry and the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize), Prairie Harbour, and Safety Sand. Morse’s books of fiction include his collection Death in Vancouver, and the three books in The Chaos! Quincunx series, Minor Episodes / Major Ruckus (2013 ReLit Award finalist), Rogue Cells / Carbon Harbour (2014 ReLit Award finalist), and Minor Expectations, all published by Talonbooks.

Read more about Garry Thomas Morse

news | 2018-01-09
Morse’s ideas of North

…companion to Governor General’s Award finalists Discovery Passages and Prairie Harbour, Morse resumes his …

news | 2015-11-16
Two reviews of Morse’s Prairie Harbour

…poem. … What Morse has done in both his earlier Discovery Passages & Prairie Harbour is to radically complicate …

news | 2015-03-30
Meet Garry Thomas Morse in the Middle

…recently read from his last collection of poetry, Discovery Passages Poet and author Garry Thomas Morse, newly …

news | 2014-03-05
Poetry and Garry Thomas Morse, Together Again

…The Wind River Variations, Garry Thomas Morse’s Discovery Passages, and Evelyn Lau’s A Grain of Rice ”. …

news | 2013-08-21
First Nation Communities Read 2013–2014

…Richard Wagamese. The reading list also includes Discovery Passages , by our own Garry Thomas Morse, and Unearthed …

news | 2013-08-12
8th Fire’s Essential Reads List

…Indian by Basil Johnston (Kegedonce Press, 2010) Discovery Passages by Garry Thomas Morse CBC published a slide show …

news | 2013-06-24
That’s a Wrap on the 2013 Whitehorse Poetry Festival

…of poet and surrealist Garry Thomas Morse ( Discovery Passages , 2011) was covered in local-interest magazine …

news | 2012-05-23
Aboriginal Awareness Week in 2012

…Myth and Legend Dead White Writer on the Floor Discovery Passages Ernestine Shuswap Gets Her Trout Gabriel Dumont …

news | 2012-03-07
Shortlists for 2012 B.C. Book Prizes Announced!

…for the Poetry Prize is Garry Thomas Morse for Discovery Passages (Talonbooks), a recent finalist for the … (University of Alberta Press) Garry Thomas Morse, Discovery Passages (Talonbooks) John Pass, crawlspace (Harbour) …

news | 2011-10-11
B.C. and the GGs in 2011

…English-language poetry Garry Thomas Morse, Discovery Passages (Talonbooks) Susan Musgrave, Origami Dove …