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"Edges and Other Poems" by Heather Nolan
Poems from the edge, from the edge of the pandemic.
Another independent publication, another multi-talented person: Heather Nolan is a writer, poet, photographer and knitwear designer who lives in St. John’s. -JRS
This week marks a somber milestone: On January 25, 2020, Canada reported its first case of COVID-19. As with many things – cultural and artistic trends, time itself – the pandemic came a little later to our island. Newfoundland noted its first diagnosis in mid-March; later that month, the province locked down.
And thus it was culture, canceled: no concerts, no shows, no readings. In response, Heather Nolan self-published Edges and Other Poems, a slim, white-and-blue book designed by Hazel Eckert with endpapers from Krista Power.
Across a dozen poems, the limited-edition, monochrome chapbook explores life at “the edge of the island,” primarily in that protracted season that starts in October and stretches, depending on the year, into June. Scatter geographical reference aside (e.g. Bottle Cove, Cedar Cove), the setting could be any bay or inlet along the province’s “ragged cloth of coastline.” Romantic with a capital “r”, Edges and Other Poems is unapologetically poetic – in uncertain times, an artful salve for fans of artful verse.
In a way, Nolan’s slim volume is an artifact from that early edge of the pandemic; twenty-four months on, the other edge (i.e. the end) remains out of sight. Indeed, life sort of feels like we’re stuck somewhere on the shoreline in that ceaseless coastal season – to quote the poem “cartographer”: “but when the fog rolls in / damned if you know what shore you’re on.”
Edges and Other Poems
16 pages. Self-published. $25.00