Prairie HarbourFront Cover
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    ISBN: 9780889229402 | Paperback

    176 pages | Pub. Date: 20150921
    6 W × 9.5 H × 1 D inches
    Backlist | Poetry | Bisac: POE011000
    Rights: WORLD


In this contrapuntal follow-up to Governor General’s Award finalist Discovery Passages, Garry Thomas Morse traces multiple lines of his mixed ancestry. These include the nomadic “pre-historical” movements of Wakashan speakers who were later to form various West Coast First Nations; the schismatic mindset of Jedidiah Morse, the “father of American geography”; and eternal struggles of European Jewish relations, artists, and close friends against perennial anti-Semitism. Set around the vigilantly maintained border/lines that mark the relatively “unsung” decline of natural prairie life, this unromantic “wrecklogue” radiates outward from a new real-estate development in Regina, Saskatchewan.

The first section, “Company Romance,” is a sequence of sardonic “heritage minute” poems that examine the intensely aggressive capitalist aspects of colonization that drove the fur trade in Manitoba and deeply influenced our contemporary sense of cultural and national identity. They also draw parallels between the shift in nomadic hunter/warrior culture to our own transformation as global consumers.

The second part, “Prairie Harbour,” a long poem in twenty-four parts, takes the form of postexilic elegies that transcend the dominant tradition of Canadian prairie poetry, infusing it with epical echoes of poets John Clare, Charles Olson, Louis Zukofsky, and William Carlos Williams. The work reaches its stride in a hearing of the Regina Symphony Orchestra’s performance of Gustave Mahler’s Fifth Symphony, which includes a French horn of warning for the “have-not” province.

The finale offers aesthetic fragmentation of Stephane Mallarmé’s Un Coup de Dés and “The Untroubled Mind,” a poem by Saskatchewan-born abstract expressionist Agnes Martin, salvaging space for an inner landscape and a “harbour” for the mind.

“ingenious masterpiece”
—George Elliot Clarke, Toronto Poet Laureate, author of MMI

“No words, no words, no words can do this book justice. The poems explode every boundary ...”
—Lorna Crozier, author of The Book of Marvels

“Visionary and discordant, reverent and relevant, Prairie Harbour is a symphony sounding the world.”
—Brenda Schmidt, Author of Flight Calls: An Apprentice on the Art of Listening

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

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

…General’s Award finalists Discovery Passages and Prairie Harbour, Morse resumes his expansionist mapping of …

news | 2016-10-04
Prairie Harbour is a finalist for the Governor General’s Awards!

…poet Garry Thomas Morse, whose latest collection Prairie Harbour has been short-listed for the 2016 Governor …

news | 2016-07-14
Tonight in New York City, the Poets House Poetry Publication Showcase opens New York City

…Jordan Abel, Pound @ Guantánamo by Clint Burnham, Prairie Harbour by Garry Thomas Morse, Rom Com by Dina Del …

news | 2016-04-04
The North + South Book Tour – Garry Thomas Morse in the prairies

…Garry Thomas Morse, author most recently of Prairie Harbour , will read poetry on a prairie near you! Join …

news | 2016-01-28
George Elliot Clarke plugs Prairie Harbour!

…published by the Globe and Mail, Clarke riffs on Prairie Harbour, Morse’s latest collection of poetry. Watch the … Here are a few further comments from Clarke about Prairie Harbour: Prairie: Haven for the fugitive. Harbour: … Epicentre of epic. In Prairie Harbour, Garry Thomas Morse drafts a fugitive epic that … Fugitive reader, get thee into this epic! Prairie Harbour is available for $18.95. …

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

Prairie Harbour , the latest collection of poetry by Garry Thomas … and enliven the place they represent. … Even as Prairie Harbour concludes, it demonstrates that there is enough … Ruckus published a review last week that calls Prairie Harbour “a whoppingly huge act of synthetic imagination,” … done in both his earlier Discovery Passages & Prairie Harbour is to radically complicate both the … to any willing to give these poems a go. … Prairie Harbour offers readers an engagement they will not soon …

news | 2015-09-24
Garry Thomas Morse harbours Prairie Harbour on the prairie

…Bash. Morse will be reading from his new book, Prairie Harbour, and copies will be available for purchase and … Also see the University of Winnipeg website. Prairie Harbour is now available from Talonbooks, having arrived …

news | 2015-08-10
Highlights from the CBC, Q&Q and 49th Shelf fall previews

…Del Bucchia and Zomparelli’s Rom Com, Morse’s Prairie Harbour, Wah’s Scree, Kurd’s Cosmophilia, Fitzgerald’s …

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

…read from his forthcoming collection of poetry, Prairie Harbour, which will be published in Talon’s Fall 2015 …