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7 by 7 inches | 72 pp
978-1-926655-88-8 | $20.00

16 greyscale 5 colour photographs

Threshold

An encounter with the seventeenth-century Hebridean bard Màiri nighean Alasdair Ruaidh (Mary MacLeod).

poems by Marilyn Bowering
photographs by Xan Shian

The words of Threshold are plain, as bare and pregnant as the stones of a ruined croft. Marilyn Bowering unites her voice with the life and words of a silenced, exiled female Hebridean poet who speaks across three centuries. Xan Shian's photographs face this world of extremes and change with a timeless and contemporary eye.

Marilyn Bowering photo by Michael Elcock

Marilyn Bowering is a poet, novelist and non-fiction writer who lives in British Columbia. She has received many awards for her work including designation of Notable Book by the New York Times, short-listing for the world-wide Orange Prize and a number of prizes named after women poets (Dorothy Livesay, Pat Lowther and Gwendolyn MacEwen). She is the librettist for the opera Marilyn Forever (with Gavin Bryars). www.marilynbowering.com

Mary MacLeod (Màiri nighean Alasdair Ruaidh) was a Scottish Gaelic poet. She was born c.1615 on the island of Harris and died at Dunvegan c.1707 on the island of Skye.

Xan Shian has lived and photographed in Montreal, Scotland, Spain, France and Victoria; she works primarily with film and makes most of her edits in camera. Her work has been published in a variety of periodicals and exhibited in Montreal, Edinburgh and Victoria. www.xanshian.com

Xan Shian photo by Mia Watkins

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From the Afterword:" Whatever this experience was, for me it is about poetry; about being a woman poet in a changing culture when poetry, as in Màiri's later years, is largely disregarded; about having a vocation for an art form for which there is small reward or place; and about being an older woman living with the problems of age which include grief, anger and physical fragility (and the need for some pain-killing whisky) and with its privileges, too, such as having learned trust in heart and intuition and to believe, despite the flow of contemporary events, that words retain the power to affirm human values and communicate wisdom across cultures and even time and space. That words may outlast a fall of darkness".


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