by Patrick Pilarski
Andrea McKenzie Raine from Victoria, B.C.
Patrick Pilarski's small poems, or meditations, in
his first collection Huge Blue leave monumental footfalls in
recording the various terrains of western Canada. In the tradition of
Japanese poetry--haiku, haibun, tanka and senryu--the crisp and condensed
images embody a larger experience and draw the reader into a heightened
intimate moment. Pilarski uses these forms to capture his relationship
with the natural world.
The poems are placed like small stepping stones across the varying landscapes,
and mark the resting points where the poet reflects on the journey's
highlights with his travel companion. In Pilarski's use of the tanka
prose and haibun form, there is a sprinkling of humour or surprise in
the normalcy of everyday actions or reactions to the unfolding of the
speaker's surroundings. For instance, in the poem "Last Load",
the speaker comments on the adjustments to a new environment after a
long journey and how his partner suddenly remembers 'the box of handmade
pottery above the stove'. There is a sense of restlessness in an otherwise
state of exhaustion; something random and contrast.
The poems also reflect on the seasons, and how the weather and natural
landscapes are parallel to how the poet moves through his emotions in
these changing landscapes. Nature is also personified, as witnessed
in the lines: two mountains/ cross-legged in the valley/ watching the
storm/ one pulls the screen, changes/ into its best white gown. Pilarski
focuses on the seemingly small, yet miraculous happenings in the natural
world. The use of the Japanese poetic form is appropriate to record
these snapshots of time and place, and to share these personal experiences
on a global plane.
Lanie Shanzyra Rebecanos from the Philippines on
Vivid Tour Guide
Huge Blue by Patrick Pilarski is a collection
of Japanese form poetry which revolved in the beauty and breath taking
sights found in Canada. Every written poem is entwined with colors that
you could almost see it right through the pages. The smell and feel
of his words will make you jump right through his books. Even the cold
wind seems visible, touching your skin as you turn the pages for more
beautiful and profound pomes.
Huge Blue as I must say is one of the best
Japanese form poetry book I get my hands on. Mr. Pilarski's words will
take you high up in the Canadian skies. His book will almost make you
feel as if you are already standing on the cold land of Canada. Your
eyes will see things in different ways as you read his poems.
Huge Blue is so vivid you'd forget you
are just sitting right in your home.
to Huge Blue web page
Patrick M. Pilarski
has a website at www.pilarski.ca.
Alice Major's website is at www.alicemajor.com.
Cover design and photography: Patrick M. Pilarski.
Author's photo by Linda Pilarski.