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House of Anansi Press

As Far As You Know

Written by A.F. Moritz

Published April 07, 2020 | ISBN 9781487007409

Cover of As Far As You Know

Regular price $19.95 CAD

120 pages | 8.5 in × 5.5 in
Print Format

Also Available as an Ebook

About this book

As Far As You Know

A.F. Moritz

From one of the defining poets of his generation, a new collection that plumbs the depth of beauty, history, responsibility, and love.

As Far As You Know, acclaimed poet A. F. Moritz’s twentieth collection of poems, begins with two sections entitled “Terrorism” and “Poetry.” The book unfolds in six movements, yet it revolves around and agonizes over the struggle between these two catalyzing concepts, in all the forms they might take, eventually arguing they are the unavoidable conditions and quandaries of human life.

Written and organized chronologically around before and after the poet’s serious illness and heart surgery in 2014, these gorgeously unguarded poems plumb and deepen the reader’s understanding of Moritz’s primary and ongoing obsessions: beauty, impermanence, history, social conscience and responsibility, and, always and most urgently, love. For all its necessary engagement with worry, sorrow, and fragility, As Far As You Know sings a final insistent chorus to what it loves: “You will live.”

About the Author

A.F. Moritz

A. F. MORITZ is widely considered one of the defining and most beloved lyric poets of his generation. His many honours include a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Award in Literature from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, the Griffin Poetry Prize, the Bess Hokin Prize, and an Ingram Merrill Fellowship. He currently serves as the sixth poet laureate of the City of Toronto.

Awards and Praise


“At the level of craft, Moritz [is] a master of the poetic line. Astonishing moments are so frequent that it is hard to choose which one is most brilliant … A comprehensive overview of a jaw-dropping and prolific career … The Sparrow is an essential read.” — Quill & Quire, STARRED REVIEW

“The title of the new omnibus volume, The Sparrow, refers to Moritz’s ‘Death of a Sparrow,’ one of those perfectly constructed, perfectly expressed and unforgettable poems that some of the finest poets succeed in writing once or twice in a long career … Most people use language simply to communicate — to say hello, to argue, to order a pizza, to get through the day. Moritz is engaged in making something that is memorable and freshly meaningful rather than easy.” —Globe and Mail


Winner, Griffin Poetry Prize
Finalist, Governor General’s Literary Award for Poetry
A Globe and Mail Top 100 Book

“The Sentinel is filled with moments like this: graceful, adroit, surprising. There is something reassuring in art of this calibre; it reminds us how things matter. Moritz’s voice is unmistakable. His readers, his admiring peers, and his reviewers have long felt this, but it has become so obvious that it must finally be said: A. F. Moritz is one of the true master poets of his generation.” — Globe and Mail

“Moritz’s sensibility is unique: melancholic, intellectual, comic, erotic, pitying … Moritz is a difficult, often obscure poet, whose works can defy paraphrase. With images culled from dreams, he constructs allegories of love and oppression that communicate by strange association and mysterious overtones and vague or mysterious words … The emotional content of Moritz’s work is so abundant and accessible that the reader is never lost. The Sentinel is a good place to become acquainted with Moritz’s work … A masterpiece … [Moritz is a] rare poet.” — National Post

“Moritz is at his best when he combines his poetic sensibility — his ear for rhythm, precise phrasing, nuanced shifts in tone and register, and lyrical imagery — with his knowledge of mythic and literary conventions and his cogent political and philosophical observations.” — Canadian Literature


Winner, Raymond Souster Award
Finalist, Governor General’s Literary Award for Poetry

“By their mysteriousness and mythic quality … we are invited to see ourselves and our society in those imagined. The New Measures is a book of stand-alone poems that enrich one another through proximity. Moritz’s vision builds not just within but also between poems — between those of societal ruin, and those that dream longingly of paradise.” — Arc Poetry Magazine

“The New Measures articulates with great artistry its author’s profound concern and abiding love for the human race.” — Quill & Quire, STARRED REVIEW


Winner, ReLit Award
A Globe and Mail Best Book of the Decade


“An ancient voice, mournful like the wind, speaks to itself yet means to be overheard in A. F. Moritz’s amazing poems … We seem to hear shattered echoes from the Bible, Dante, Petrarch, or Scève bound up in Maldoror’s cruel eloquence.” — John Ashbery

“A. F. Moritz is a poet of originality, daring, and projection: a remarkable voice and range of imagination.” — W. S. Merwin

“A. F. Moritz’s work leaves me reassured about the potential efficacy of poetry, of mind engaged with world on all fronts — politically, mythically, philosophically.” — Don McKay

“Moritz’s work isn’t light reading, its polished turns of phrase and fluid cadences notwithstanding. But taking the time to let these subtle, far-reaching poems sink in is itself spiritually revitalizing.” — Toronto Star

“Moritz is a poet of high seriousness — rare in this quick and confessional age. And so, all the more to be valued. Some of [his] poems are like fables, some like tableaus — motionless, full of portent, with the gravity and power of myth. Still others are as riveting as still lifes by an old master. I find them, literally, entrancing.” — P. K. Page

  • Short-listed Trillium Book Award,