House of Anansi Press

The Elements

Written by Erin Moure

Published April 09, 2019 | ISBN 9781487003722
POETRY / Canadian

Cover of The Elements

Regular price $19.95 CAD

120 pages | 8.15 in × 5.5 in
Print Format

About this book

The Elements

Erin Moure

The Elements is a family book, a thinker’s biography in poetry, and a polylingual homage, constructed on a double axis. 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. “The infinitely transmissible,” it says, “demands this polyvalent body.”

Excerpt

The Accidents (Merlín)

That day I went into the trees
—Give me nothing

My scope was interwoven
birds sang their low

cuckoo thing
easily a wave

Small insects rose up into the wave of
Openly

—Ábreme a luzporta!

Swimming in mere air or sheer air
not quite sure

—Could about be
Yet why put such words in a single monstrance?

Open as those trees
Our mermaid is
its long branches trail out to a leaf or vein

My mermaid is
bark’s integument so salutory to view

Give me nothing
Give me not this monstrance
The elements

For which I went today in morning
my mouth black
in the lightcup of the trees

About the Author

Erin Moure

One of Canada’s most eminent and respected poets, ERÍN MOURE is a translator from French, Spanish, Galician, and Portuguese, 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 she has been 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.

Awards and Praise

PRAISE FOR ERÍN MOURE AND FURIOUS:

Winner, Governor General’s Literary Award for Poetry

“Her work sparks with passion, inventiveness, and more conceptual leaps than quantum physics.” — Books in Canada

“Moure manages an impressive range and balance. She is humorous, tender, sad, fanciful, and angry, and she writes with a freshness and energy that convince the reader: language does indeed have power.” — Kingston Whig-Standard

“Erín Moure stakes out new, exciting, precarious turf. Nothing can subvert an artist’s impulse more subtly or drastically than adherence to a theoretical view of the work. Yet Moure is willing to take that risk, and in doing so has uncovered a new threshold and power in her writing.” — Montreal Gazette

PRAISE FOR ERÍN MOURE AND KAPUSTA:

Finalist, A.M. Klein Prize for Poetry
Finalist, Kobzar Literary Award

Kapusta is an alchemical cookbook of language, history, heartbreak, and wonder.” — Natasha Chaykowski, Canadian Art

Kapusta continues Moure’s exploration of the boundaries of language, form, and technique. The French deconstructionist [Jacques Derrida] would surely approve.” — Quill & Quire

“It’s in the way Moure persistently weaves together philosophy and pop culture, YouTube and trauma, iPhones and ancestry, the ‘real’ and the ‘replica,’ that Kapusta is most daring. Again and again, disparate things and the ideas they symbolize get stitched together, reverberate dissonantly, and become uncanny.” — Neil Surkan, The Puritan

PRAISE FOR ERÍN MOURE AND PLANETARY NOISE: SELECTED POETRY OF ERÍN MOURE:

“Translations with real originals, ambient thoughts carved from air, design elements from art books, and slices from philosophy circulate in work created to never settle down, never to narrow to any one point.” — Stephanie Burt, New York Times

PRAISE FOR ERÍN MOURE AND ON SITTING SHIVA ON MINTO AVENUE, BY TOOTS:

“In this intricately layered book, a cross-genre narrative encompassing memoir, biography, goodbye letter, and poetic socio-historic treatise stretching from Vancouver to Montreal, Erín Moure reminds us that memory transcends mortality, that in our rawest grief, love and reflection can offer the greatest shelters.” — Cora Siré, Montreal Review of Books

PRAISE FOR ERÍN MOURE AND THE UNMEMNTIOABLE:

Finalist, Kobzar Literary Award

“A stunning book.” — Winnipeg Free Press

“The Unmemntioable has much of value to share on family, history, memory, and above all, experience.” — Arc Poetry Magazine

“Ambitious and laudable.” — Quill & Quire

“[Moure] understands spaces and the art of language’s fickle and fleeting ways. Her strength as a poet is simple diction, she toys with layout; how the words also act as visuals on the page . . . Consider The Unmemntioable a lease on humanity; the tenants are love and loss.” — Telegraph Journal

PRAISE FOR ERÍN MOURE AND O RESPLANDOR:

“Moure’s ambition is to transform the performance of poetry into poetry itself . . . it makes for a remarkable reading experience.” — Harvard Review

“Heady, heartbreaking, visionary — the words to describe O Resplandor.” — Event

“A new book by Erín Moure is always an exciting event in Canadian literary history . . . This is a tour-de-force of lyric writing.” — Prairie Fire

O Resplandor is an elegy to love, a testament to friendship.” — Matrix

“Moure has composed a joyfully aching, tough, and vulnerable poetry of lyrical splendor, a liberated culmination of the transgressive, language-based that has so richly, powerfully, and playfully hinged her poetry, essays, and translations to date.” — Winnipeg Free Press