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    ISBN: 9781772012378 | Hardback

    656 pages | Pub. Date: 20191015
    6 W × 9 H × 2.5 D inches
    Backlist | Poetry | Bisac: LCO006000
    Rights: WORLD

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    ISBN: 9781772012446 | Paperback

    656 pages | Pub. Date: 20200921
    6 W × 9 H × 1.6 D inches
    Backlist | Poetry | Bisac: POE011000
    Rights: WORLD

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Taking Measures
Selected Serial Poems
By George Bowering
Edited by Stephen Collis

The serial form allows the trademark playful seriousness of Canada’s inaugural Parliamentary Poet Laureate, George Bowering, to extend and expand, producing poetry that remains compelling, complex, and exciting decades after its composition. Taking Measures, the first-ever collection of Bowering’s major serial poems, includes work from each of the last six decades, offering a career-spanning and revelatory sample of one of Canada’s best-known and most versatile writers. Including such celebrated Bowering texts as Genève, Autobiology, Allophanes, and Kerrisdale Elegies, as well as Baseball, At War with the U.S., Smoking Mirror, Irritable Reaching, Delayed Mercy, Do Sink, Blonds on Bikes, His Life, and Los Pájaros de Tenacatita, Taking Measures shows this acclaimed and prolific author at his experimental and irreverent best. Edited by the award-winning poet Stephen Collis.

“What I learned from reading George Bowering! Few of my books would exist without his joyful mixcentrations, Anne Hébert with Mallarmé, Avison spills tea on Saint-John Perse. In generously sounding poetry’s idioms, fearless foot in mouth if needed, George Bowering’s serial work quixotes us without quitting. It hurrahs us all.”
—Erín Moure

“‘A serial poem,’ Robin Blaser writes, ‘refuses to adopt an imposed story line.’ So the poems in Taking Measures begin over and over, tracking Bowering’s narrative momentum, poetic sensibility, and wit. When the poem moves in a new direction, the way it goes is not premeditated; rather, it arises out of the poet’s alertness to his Muse in language.”
—George Stanley

Taking Measures is a box of treasures. These poems are serial, yes, but they are also dendritic, in the way they have made way for other poems by other poets, and in other ways. When you’re reading George Bowering and you stop, reverse, and re-read, then lift your eyes up off the page to go where your thoughts are going past that, you’re in the procedure; you’re wonderfully forever in it. Also: pleasures.”
—Wayde Compton

“In delving into this recently published collection, we have proof of what we already suspected of George Bowering’s work ... This book is a must-read.”
—Alessandra Capperdoni, Canadian Literature / Littérature canadienne

“A beautiful edition and a gift to Bowering’s readers.”
—Nicholas Bradley, The Ormsby Review

By George Bowering

George Bowering, Canada’s first Poet Laureate, was born in the Okanagan Valley.

After serving as an aerial photographer in the Royal Canadian Air Force, Bowering earned a BA in English and an MA in history at the University of British Columbia, where he became one of the co-founders of the avant-garde poetry magazine TISH. He has taught literature at the University of Calgary, the University of Western Ontario, and Simon Fraser University, and he continues to act as a Canadian literary ambassador at international conferences and readings.

Read more about George Bowering


Edited by Stephen Collis

Stephen Collis is the author of six books of poetry, including the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize–winning On the Material (Talonbooks, 2010). His memoir, Almost Islands: Phyllis Webb and the Pursuit of the Unwritten, was published by Talonbooks in 2018. He teaches contemporary poetry and poetics at Simon Fraser University. Collis was the 2019 recipient of the Latner Writers’ Trust Poetry Prize, which is given to a mid-career poet in recognition of a remarkable body of work, and in anticipation of future contributions to Canadian poetry.

Read more about Stephen Collis


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news | 2020-09-28
The paperback of Taking Measures is now available!

…We are pleased to announce that Taking Measures is now available in paperback! The first-ever … Parliamentory Poet Laureate, George Bowering, Taking Measures includes work from each of the last six decades, … Do Sink, His Life, and Los Pájanos de Tenacatita, Taking Measures offers a new and revealing look at this acclaimed … Edited by the award-winning poet Stephen Collis, Taking Measures offers a career-spanning and revelatory sample of … and most versatile writers. Pick up your copy of Taking Measures today! …