Pouring Small Fire by Susan ManchesterPouring Small Fire by Susan Manchester

Pouring Small Fire

bySusan Manchester

Paperback | March 5, 2003

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Pouring Small Fire is a debut poetry collection that intricately regenerates a full life experience spanning from the baseball diamonds, pond-mist and summer grass of Upstate New York to hot and sour soup and middle-aged love on Toronto's Spadina Street. Understandably, throughout this journey much is tragically and regretfully left behind, but Manchester's poems form a powerful, life-affirming argument convincing us that it's what is retained -- not only from the past but at this very moment -- that is enduringly important. Manchester possesses the uncanny ability to transport her readers to any specific time and place with her rich and precise memory and her refined command of the language. Hear the banter of the crowd, smell the hot-dog mustard, feel the mud in your fingernails, and "feel feather stroke feather, watch beak peck beak/ to know the instant when image is not image but real." A genuine poet of the senses, Manchester explores the heartache of personal loss as well as the small joys found throughout life--from childhood to marriage.
Susan Manchester has lived most of her life in central New York State, moving to Toronto in 1993. She has taught high school English for twenty-five years, and has also been an instructor at the State University of New York at Morrisville and Utica College of Syracuse University. Her poems have appeared in many periodicals including: T...
Title:Pouring Small FireFormat:PaperbackDimensions:96 pages, 8 × 5.5 × 0.19 inPublished:March 5, 2003Publisher:Nightwood EditionsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0889711895

ISBN - 13:9780889711891

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Read from the Book

leaving the pondleaving was harder than being there;what we have not resolved is the coming home:where you might lingerwhere you might give us a sign that you didn't mean to fade awaythat you miss us, that it was all right for us to go to Old Forge without youthat the pine trees were silently missing you toothat the mist still paused, still hung lowon the sand where you sat looking at the lakewhere you wished you were, where a single boatrowing toward you reminded youof a skirting water spider you watched as a kidwhen dusk was all the gray you'd ever knownwhere your passing was a mirror where we could seeourselves dissolving, where the only reason you livedas long as you did, was to see yourselfone more time on the face of the pondHow to Destroy a ColourYou feel it in the voice of your dying motherwho tells you spring will never beagain. She stops eating. She kills herselfalways in summer, when doing so bothers youthe most, when doing so makes you question why green was ever invented.How to destroy a colour. This dyingis constant. This voice descends everywherein whispers. It withers the ferns. Youare almost glad nothing green survives.

Editorial Reviews

"Her art transcends the personal to reveal the universal. In fact Manchester's finely crafted lines, burnished images, and unifying motifs reveal not only grief's lengthening shadows but also its luminosity. Small windows in these dark rooms open onto October's colours, abundance, and ripeness."
-Lynda Grace Philippsen, Books in Canada