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Origami Dove

4.27  ·  Rating Details ·  37 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
The first collection of new poems in more than a decade from one of Canada's most vibrant and original writers.

With her first major collection in ten years, Susan Musgrave displays a range of form and expression that may surprise even her most faithful readers. The quiet, lapidary elegies of “Obituary of Light” are set against the furious mischief of “Random Acts of Poetry
Paperback, 128 pages
Published March 29th 2011 by McClelland & Stewart
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James Murphy
Jan 17, 2012 James Murphy rated it it was amazing
I've come to Susan Musgrave late. She'd written a lot of poetry prior to Origami Dove. I missed it and now, riding the sweep of the present, will have to reach back to try and reel in some of it because she writes a muscular verse I don't want to miss.

In a section of Origami Dove called "Obituary of Light" she writes a series of nature poems about the seasons. I especially like this kind of meditative verse in which the poet is sensitive to the ancient and reliable flow of nature around her, in
Origami Dove is the first poetry collection by Canadian author Susan Musgrave in over ten years. It is divided into four section, and the first portion, "Madagascar vanilla", focuses on loss and love, particularly when it comes to a husband and father who suffers from heroine addiction. In "The Room Where They Found You" Musgrave writes "I believed in everything: the hope / in you, your brokenness". The poems are about lost hope and about grieving, they are powerful and tragic. These poems, like ...more
Apr 25, 2012 Andrea rated it it was amazing
Shelves: canadian, poetry

What can one say about the amazing Susan Musgrave. Her work is so well crafted and heartfelt. There is a light and a dark side to her work. This is her first major collection in ten years and honestly it has been worth the wait. One section of this book is entitled Obituary of Light - The Sangan River Meditations. It is hard to choose passages to share because there are so many beautiful passages. For example from :Spring (i) In another life , this place was my home.
I feel the rising of forgot
Jul 24, 2011 Calista rated it really liked it
My main source of criticism for this collection would be putting Heroines at the end, only because it's so strong and powerfully sad that I wish something had come after so I wasn't left feeling like I've been kicked in the stomach. Musgrave's poetry is everything I aspire to as a poet, and then some.
Here are some of my favourite lines:

Shouldn't it be "Christians are like tea-bags?"

I could never be a heroin addict because I can't stand doing the same thing day after day.

Try to describe a fist
Ariel Gordon
May 18, 2011 Ariel Gordon rated it really liked it
Susan Musgrave's Origami Dove (McClelland & Stewart, 128 pages, $19) shares The Wrecking Light's coppery reek and surprising range of registers.

The Vancouver Island poet's first major collection in 10 years has four radically different sections: sad/wise love poems, spare nature poems, raucous efforts, and a sequence on women from Vancouver's downtown east side.

Which is to say, enough tragedy to break your goddamn heart. But also enough craft to parse it for her readers.

A good example is "Wi
Sep 12, 2012 Susan rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed the 'Heroines' sequence to this book -- it is worth the read for that sequence alone. 'Heroines' is also part of a documentary film by photographer Lincoln Clarkes titled 'Heroines: A Photographic Obsession' about the women of the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver. Both the film and Susan Musgrave's sequence of poems are very powerful --she is able to give the women a voice without being exploitative -- (esp after I have heard so many Canadian poets take on the voice of the ...more
As far as "dark poetry" goes this was perhaps the darkest collection i have read so far, especially the fourth section of this book - "Heroines" - with a very complicated back story behind it. The darkness is the very strength of this collection and the reason why i loved it so much. I loved the dark humour, the fact that this book made me chuckle or mumble "That's so true" under my breath while reading it. This is the kind of poetry I love and would recommend to anyone. It's raw and real with ...more
Tricia Dower
Jun 30, 2012 Tricia Dower rated it it was amazing
Many of these poems have appeared before, according to the credits, but I hadn't read any of them. I'm not a poet and am not experienced in critiquing poetry but I know what moves me and these poems do. Especially the ones in part four, "Heroines," which Musgrave did as a "script," of sorts for a documentary about heroin-addicted prostitutes from Vancouver's Downtown Eastside. They hit me like a punch to the gut. Other poems are likewise powerful and/or darkly or wryly funny, qualities that ...more
Leah Horlick
Jul 08, 2011 Leah Horlick rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry, canadian
Fucking amazing. *And* it features a poem that includes the poetic antics of my friend and mentor Adrienne Gruber. Doesn't get much better than this.
Lea Harper
Dec 09, 2015 Lea Harper rated it it was amazing
Susan Musgrave's poetry always excites, enlightens and challenges. A distinctive and unforgettable voice
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Susan Musgrave is a Canadian poet and children's writer. She was born in Santa Cruz, California to Canadian parents, and currently lives in British Columbia, dividing her time between Sidney and Haida Gwaii.

Musgrave is married to Stephen Reid, a writer, convicted bank robber and former member of the infamous band of thieves known as the Stopwatch Gang. Their relationship was chronicled in 1999 in
More about Susan Musgrave...

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