by Conrad Scott
Diversely interwoven with threads from the Norse creation myth, to colonial Contact with North America, to personal stories about his grandparents, Conrad Scott's Waterline Immersion asks the fundamental question of what it means to understand a place. The writer's genealogical lines join in the river valleys of Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada -- the cartographic point where the North and South Thompson rivers meet and meld on their journey away, to the Pacific. Yet Waterline Immersion is not only a foray into this surface geography and personal history, but delves deeper into cultural stories and geological processes that formed the waterways present today.
|Dimensions||9 × 6 × .375 in|
Soft Cover with flaps
Conrad is a graduate of the 2010 Spring Writing Studio at the Banff Centre for the Arts. His poetry has appeared in such publications as Freefall magazine and The Enpipe Line. Conrad achieved his PhD in English at the University of Alberta, where he contemplates the dystopian and environmentally apocalyptic zeitgeist of today, and remnants of our places and spaces in those futuristic settings. His creative work takes a step to the side and urges us to look askance at our society and our sense of place in the world
We did not set out for the borderplaces
armed with foresight,
yet we girded ourselves with words
of infallible logic,
sharpening some, stoking fires
for a marriage of ironboned tongues
and carbonfused bodies—
words to tongues to bodies,
a molten beat of blades across water—
searching for bog iron leachate deposits of language
Point Rosée, L’Anse aux Meadows,
maybe even coastal Qikiqtaaluk
The sharp, carven prows passing between
shoulder blades of surf
a forceful ease of killing time
how we pass through
The rite, the ceremony of passage.
spit spray wash
a huddle against ship curves
as Odin watches our conquests.
Our craft aslant, reluctant
beneath the beat;
our language a hesitant
elocution of silences
beaching the backdrop of a empty land
a land teaming sea to shining sea
a land teaming shearwater to skylark
—all our pelagic ones—
buffers of wingbeat around
cultures older than distant pyramids.
Memory a hall of hammer falls
where taletellers stalk
the firepit, rail against a night land
only populated by monsters and heroes.
That node of uncertain narratives.