Intimate Distances by Fiona Tinwei LamIntimate Distances by Fiona Tinwei Lam

Intimate Distances

byFiona Tinwei Lam

Paperback | October 25, 2002

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A stunning first book from one of the Chinese-Canadian community's most insightful and grippingly honest young voices, Intimate Distances is a deep exploration of the vicissitudes of interpersonal connection and family relationships. Lam writes poignantly and vividly about her background: her father's early death during her childhood, the end of marriage, the gradual loss of her mother to Alzheimer's and, most recently, childbirth.
Fiona Tinwei Lam is a Scottish-born, Vancouver-based writer whose work has appeared in literary magazines across the country, as well as in the Globe & Mail, and anthologies in Canada, the US and Hong Kong. Her work has also been featured as part of B.C.'s Poetry in Transit program. Her book of poetry, Intimate Distances (Nightwood 200...
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Title:Intimate DistancesFormat:PaperbackDimensions:96 pages, 7.5 × 5.25 × 0.25 inPublished:October 25, 2002Publisher:Nightwood EditionsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0889711887

ISBN - 13:9780889711884

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Customer Reviews of Intimate Distances

Reviews

Read from the Book

LEARNING CHINESEAfter English school, we took the bus three days a weekto a Chinese church basement and a teacherwho looked like Chairman Mao with a perm.Dreaming of TV, we sat at tableswith our textbooks open to rhymesabout cows and sheep going up mountains,the shepherds who looked for them,good students who arrived early to schoolwhile mothers made meals and fathers worked.Each lesson, the teacher conductedour choir of fingers, new wordspoked, brushed and sliced into the air--the three drops of water,flat lines like ladder rungs,lines straight down with slight flicks to the left,or tapered tails, swept in or out.We learned how a mouth is a squarewith a hollow inside; two trees make a forest;the sun and the moon side by sidecan be bright as a mind; peaceis a woman under the roof of a home;how man stands in the centreof both fire and sky.NEIGHBOURHOODthese geometric days, boundedby brushcut grassamputated mapleslean lopsided into a skyincised by wire grids,nets for ephemeralconnectiona satellite platterfunnels a particled worldinto a glowing cubewe huddle before it,avid for evidenceof life outside ourintricate caves

Table of Contents

one
Prelude
Rewind
Conception
Coming to Canada
A Doctor's Wife
Son
The Quiet One
Tag
Vista Cruiser
Dad
Absentee
Faith

two
Grandmother
Headlines
The Doctor's Widow
Film Loop
Camouflage
The Hyphenated
Father's Day
Studio Portrait
Learning Chinese
Babysitting

three

Conspiracies
Mango
Memory Test
Step on a Crack
Child
Maternal Archaeology
Photograph
Flight

four
Neighbourhood
Bank Street
Narcissus
Examination
Ring
Marriage
Departure
Chateau Lake Louise
Games
The Busy Man
Lament of the Bowl
Consideration
The Last Time

five
Aftermath
Loop
Legacy
Ankara
Mementos
Honey
Father's Day
Signs
Arrival
Colostrum
This Poem
I Don't Understand Love
Cemetery on Boxing Day

Editorial Reviews

"Lam's voice has a mature, cured quality that is devoid of pretension. She communicates intensity without overstatement, and you can feel the proximity between your life and her words. If I were to have a hyphenated string of adjectives to describe me, I doubt I'd share any terms with Fiona Tinwei Lam. At the same time, I feel remarkably comfortable with her poetry. This book gets a respectful grunt of approval from me, and I have a strange feeling that getting into her poetry now may give you bragging rights later."-The Ubyssey