CM Archive
CM Archive Book Review line

Brian Henderon.

Toronto, General Publishing, c1983.
Spectrum Poetry series.
111pp, paper, $9.95.
ISBN 0-7736-1135-5.

Reviewed by Pat Bolger.

Volume 12 Number 2
1984 March

One of the newer poets on the Canadian scene, Brian Henderson may also be one of the more difficult for the average reader. At times, his work may be functioning through associations known only to the writer: "Torrents of seeds the water binds, the blood/saturns drift like your emptying thought, through/stained stratospheres. . ." Balanced against this seemingly intentional obscurity, there is the frequent delight of lines that are startling in their vividness: "Today/tongues are buds/the poplar leafing its hearts/the hackberry with its bright, temporary fruit of warblers." Although many of the poems are based on specific incidents in his own life, Henderson is usually distanced from his work, and even the love lyrics seem oddly impersonal. This formality works best in the sonnets, which he handles with admirable ease and originality.

Like the other titles in the Spectrum Poetry series, Migration of Light is handsomely, even elegantly produced. It is not likely to be much used in high school libraries, but it would be a challenging new voice in the Canadian literature section in public libraries.

Pat Bolger, Renfrew C. I., Renfrew, ON.
line indexes


1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995


The materials in this archive are copyright © The Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission Copyright information for reviewers

Young Canada Works