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Gun Dogs

Written by James Langer

  • 112 Pages
  • 9780887848223
  • 8.630" x 5.630"
  • POETRY / Canadian


Publication Date April 01, 2009

What is a Gun Dog? An uncontrolled creature purportedly under our control? These poems strain at the lead. The torque is felt in the line, the verb, the wild thinking in metaphor. The maturity of James Langer's vision reveals itself here in the cumulative effect of his rhetoric. He won't land on his quarry -- Love, Forgiveness, Respect of Place, Clarity of Memory. He will, however, attain wisdom within these poems, a measured equanimity that can be traced back to the Stoics. These lines are like those of Les Murray, Seamus Heaney, Derek Walcott, and Robin Robertson. Here is a debut from a genuine, fully formed talent whose poems reach the sublime.

Short-listed for the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award 2010


James Langer
James Langer is the poetry editor for The Fiddlehead. His poems have been published in numerous literary journals, including TickleAce, lichen, Arc, Grain, Event, The Fiddlehead, The Newfoundland Quarterly, The Antigonish Review, and the Riddle Fence. Originally from Trinity Bay, Newfoundland, he now lives in Fredericton, New Brunswick.


"A spectacular mouthful...musically alert, with marvellous rhythmic and tonal variety . . Langer has a knack for finding words that, placed together, crackle and buzz." Globe and Mail

"Poetry at its best...Gun Dogs - lyrical magical, feisty - provides that firm tug on the sleeve that wrests us from complacency." Daily Gleaner

"When I first read the title poem of Gun Dogs, wild dogs chased through the room where I was reading...In James Langer's marvellous debut collection, words are storm-driven spilling out like fierce, charged poetry. This is a rare book. Sit down, read it, then go back and read it again." Anne Simpson

"Assured and mature...striking [in] it's range of allusion, tone, and form...accomplished and entertaining." Quill & Quire