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Daniel David Moses

Saskatoon (Sask.), Fifth House, 1990. 80pp, paper, $10.95
ISBN 0-920079-68-7. CIP

Adult / Secondary
Reviewed by Grace Shaw.

Volume 19 Number 2
1991 March

"But who cares?" writes Daniel David Moses. Native writers have moved onto the stage of Canadian literature and are finally speaking for themselves instead of, as throughout our history, being spoken for and about. Celebrate! I so wanted to celebrate Daniel David Moses' book of poems, The White Line. But I search and read and reread but 1 am not led into unlighted corners.

Poetry, queen of the language arts, communicates intellectually, emotion­ally and artistically. Though Moses' animated natural world speaks, I sleep, unaroused. Some lines delight, sparkle, attack; some yearn, question the ordi­nary or touch the chords of human existence, but I fail to find the intricately rhythmic dance of the universe. Am I disappointed because Moses chooses not to be a native activist? Probably yes. I fail to find a strong theme or focus. What if he should try a more disciplined poetic form than his conversational free verse? What if he decried poverty? What if he promoted native rights? What would his voice become? I wait to see. Perhaps he needs to make us care!

Read his book and be challenged; you may see beyond my frustrations with ambiguity. Watch this man. We will see more of him.

Grace Shaw, Vancouver Community College, Vancouver, B.C.
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1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995


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