Shortlisted for 2009 Pat Lowther Memorial Award
and the Atlantic Poetry Prize
The essence, the quintessence, of lyric poetry.
Sue Sinclair is the direct inheritor of the great early 20th Century German poet, Rilke: she possesses intense lyrical vision, steeped in wonder at the existence of the world, and a kind of grief at our inability to lose ourselves in it completely. Her perception is acutely focused and rigorous; and she is acutely self-aware. She is not afraid of words like “beauty” or “being,” yet, because of the intensity of her vision, she never uses them as clichés. Her gift for metaphor is astonishing and may remind some readers of the young Roo Borson.
You cross the heat-ridden ground, the sweet, brittle scent
of sage rising underfoot. So easy to pretend a single word
will occur to you, and that it will do all the good
anyone could hope. The earth is parched and lonely,
relies on dignity to protect it. Each thing hanging
by the thread of itself. Bleating crickets. Rustle of dry stalks.
The silence pushes you toward yourself:
it’s time to walk deep into the heart of what troubles you.
“In these poems, ‘the world lifts its head/and clarity pours from its back.’ The world-reading in Sue Sinclair’s Breaker, the ontology of the book, is magical and feels deeply true. All objects here exercise the power of a profound affective gravity; cities, islands, gardens and the savouring mind itself pull and accommodate the one who looks hard. Sinclair’s poems shape us to be just this sort of fierce viewer. They have a moving, extraordinary facility to discern, taste, the sweet depths of things.” – Tim Lilburn
- Transformation of the Observer and the Observed in Sue Sinclair’s “Streetlight, Afternoon”
Nick Geldart, St. Thomas University, Atlantic Canadian Poets' Archive
- Breaker by Sue Sinclair
Bonnie Hughes, Journal of Canadian Poetry: The Poetry Review (Vol 25), 2008
- Breaker, by Sue Sinclair
B. Morrison, She Writes blog, August 15, 2011
- Sue Sinclair’s Breaker
Frances Sprout, Materfamilias Reads blog, August 10, 2011
- Sue Sinclair – UNB Writer-in-Residence 2011-2012 reading from Breaker, Monday, 12 March, 2012 at 7 pm, Faculty Staff Club, UNB Saint John
Anne Compton, Lorenzo reading series 2011-2012
About the Author
Sue Sinclair is the author of four previous collections, all of them nominated for regional and/or national awards. She also recently completed a PhD in philosophy at the University of Toronto on the subject of beauty and ethics. In 2012 she was Writer-in-Residence at the University of New Brunswick, and in 2013 she served as…