ThrumFront Cover

ISBN: 9780889228504 | paperback / softback

$16.95 | 128 pages | Pub. Date: 2014
8.5 W × 6 H × .5 D inches
Poetry | Backlist | Bisac: POE011000
ISBN 13: 9780889228504 | Rights: WORLD

“To get at turn away.” In Thrum, her second collection of poetry, Natalie Simpson reveals how making sense is not always the same as making meaning. Her supple and agile poems seduce the weary reader away from representation and toward sound, texture, and absence. Here, a sentence is no longer a sentence, but “a word in pieces, plastered, faster,” which “crumbles” on the page into strange and luminous syntactical patterns that create new and better pathways for meaning.

Roughly woven, rough to touch.
Small words stealing fog. The rest are tongue flicks.
Home is how hard you eat your heart out.

Simpson writes in a tradition that begins with Gertrude Stein and includes many contemporary Canadian and American poets, such as Lisa Robertson, Harryette Mullen, Anne Carson, Dorothy Trujillo Lusk, Dennis Lee, Nicole Brossard, and Juliana Spahr. Like the authors and the work that has influenced it, Simpson’s free writing engages with language non-representationally and pays close attention to sound, rhythm, and energy within the sentence, often in dialogue with phrases from other poets. Not limited to the literary, Simpson also recontextualizes snippets of language from other discourses, such as news, advertising, and law.
Thrum records a poetics of process. Immersing herself in loosely strung lines and repeated phrases, Simpson’s speaker seeks refuge in disordered language, in the alternative logic of poetic devices. For Simpson, the act of writing and unwriting is a movement toward beauty and hope, an opening. Sound and rhythm. Syntax and punctuation. Tension in the sentence. Torque. Making strange, Simpson reveals, is making sense, and placing pressure on language through poetic devices uncovers its beautiful absurdities, its languid uncertainties.

“a heady mix of the silly and profane … Simpson tends to coil out the languages of public communication, whether casual or legalistic, to examine their absurdities … or even their accidental grace.”
Winnipeg Free Press

“Reader, writer, and language are elusive. … She intriguingly reconfigures parts of speech”
Canadian Literature

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news | 2015-05-01
Authors for Indies Day! Tomorrow (Saturday, May 2)

…In Calgary, AB, poet Natalie Simpson author of Thrum, will be at Shelf Life Books from 4 PM until 6 …


news | 2015-02-25
derek beaulieu’s ACAD students respond to Thrum

…of Natalie Simpson’s 2014 collection of poetry, Thrum , published by Talonbooks. About Antiphon: In … Thrum Simpson explores how language “grapple[s] every …


news | 2015-01-07
Our Best of 2014, According to the Year-End Lists

…Nicholson’s From the Poplars, Natalie Simpson’s Thrum, Nikki Reimer’s DOWNVERSE , and ryan … Free Press, and among them were DOWNVERSE and Thrum. He also gave Fortified Castles an honourable …


news | 2014-06-18
Video: Talon’s Spring 2014 Poetry Launch in Vancouver

…), Catriona Strang ( Corked ), Natalie Simpson ( Thrum ), and Nikki Reimer ( DOWNVERSE ). The launch was …


news | 2014-05-01
Meta-Talon: Launched and Loving It

…the Poplars, DOWNVERSE, The World Afloat, and Thrum Four fantastic poets (Cecily Nicholson, Nikki …


news | 2014-04-15
Hot Off the Presses! Thrum, God and the Indian, DOWNVERSE, and From the Poplars

…Spring 2014 poetry has arrived! Thrum by Natalie Simpson, DOWNVERSE by Nikki Reimer, …


news | 2014-04-01
It’s Poetry Month!

…Corked , Downverse , From the Poplars , or Thrum today; they are due to arrive from the presses …