In The Vicinity David O’Meara gives us a new kind of cityscape, one that brings its unseen, and usually unsung, materials to the foreground. Brick, concrete (that “not-so-silver screen / our walk-on parts are posed upon”), glass, steel, wire: they step boldly from anonymity into fresh focus, backdrops goaded into stardom. Full of casually-worn wit and humour, often using intricate forms that deftly reflect their subjects, these poems probe our conventional attitudes while walking us down present or remembered streets.
Praise for The Vicinity:
“‘Let / how I loved to be here / not change,’ David O’Meara says, almost under his breath, in one of the stirring, subtle cadences he is perpetually discovering. The Vicinity wanders and wonders, seeking a possible home, and along the road it notices, savours, questions and praises every sight and sound, from a steel vertex to an old poster for a long-gone ska concert. Paradoxically, in his ‘fog of love, homelessness’ O’Meara’s innovative mastery of form and rhythm creates perfect, if fleeting, homes for the spirit at every step on these restless streets.” — A. F. Moritz
“Though meticulously crafted, his lines never show off, always deferring not so much to their subjects as to the singular mind that moves through them. This book … looks hard at the common object and the day to day — how the ordinary can harbour its own kind of revelation. The poems show a rare balance of care and spontaneity, intelligence and intuition. This is an outstanding collection not just for the Nation’s Capital but for the nation, period.” — Jury Comments, Archibald Lampman award