One of Canada’s most eminent and respected poets, Erín Moure is a translator and the author of seventeen books of poetry. Moure has received the Governor General’s Literary Award, the Pat Lowther Memorial Award, and the A.M. Klein Prize, and is a three-time finalist for the Griffin Poetry Prize. Most recently, she has been a finalist for the 2018 Kobzar Literary Award. She lives in Montreal.
The Elements is a family book, a thinker’s biography in poetry, and a polylingual homage. Poems about and for Moure’s late father — accepting his dementia as a real way of thinking “world” and “self” in a struggle against invasive powers — are braced alongside poems invoking the struggle of Galician peasants against the invasion of the armies of Napoleon. It is a book about tenderness, and about The Good, in the face of destructions. By celebrating our ability to think and to revolt, it defends the human pull toward happiness and sovereignty, toward life, toward living.
While reading your new collection of poetry, what would you recommend as . . .
One song or album to listen to: "When I’m Sixty-Four" by The Beatles.
One film to watch: No Home Movie, directed by Chantal Akerman.
One meal to eat: Just “eat food with respect; it teaches us meaning.”
One piece of art to look at: Anything on Montreal artist Vida Simon’s Instagram feed.
One place to plan to visit: The Miño River.
One quotation to read from another writer: “Every listing generates a new listing. Every map another road.” Dionne Brand
One question to ask yourself or a friend: Isn’t it amazing to get up in the morning and turn the tap on and clean water comes out?