A charm can protect, inflict or influence.
For this week’s edition of Feature Friday, we’re pleased to bring you an excerpt from Charm, the second poetry collection by Ottawa poet Christine McNair. In Charm, McNair considers the craftwork of conception from a variety of viewpoints—from pregnancy and motherhood, to how an orchid is pollinated, to overcoming abusive relationships, to the manual artistry of carving a violin bow or marbling endpapers. Through these works, McNair’s poetic line evolves as if moving in a spellbound kaleidoscope, etched with omens, fairytales, intimacy’s stickiness, and the mothering body.
Sandra Ridley, author of the Griffin Poetry Prize nominated book, Silvija, writes, “McNair’s Charm is unyielding. Replete with precision, elegance and power, an attentive intensity thrives in these poems… Charm is stunning and alchemical.”
Read on to discover a sample of McNair’s kaleidoscopic world of orchids and artistry, and of corporeal and unbounded experience in Charm.
Excerpt from Charm:
From “the problem with orchids”
From “shudder of days”
Order your copy of Charm here.
Christine McNair is the author of Conflict (BookThug, 2012; finalist for the City of Ottawa Book Award, the Archibald Lampman Award, and the ReLit Award, and shortlisted for the Robert Kroetsch Award for Innovative Poetry) and pleasantries and other misdemeanours (2013; shortlisted for the bpNichol chapbook award). Her work has appeared in Arc Poetry Magazine, CV2, Descant, Poetry is Dead, Prairie Fire, and other places. McNair lives in Ottawa, where she works as a book doctor.